Director of Conservation Science
Cornell Lab of Ornithology
159 Sapsucker Woods Rd.
My research program seeks to understand the behavioral and demographic mechanisms guiding population, community, and landscape-scale responses of birds to land use change and human activity in the eastern US and Latin America. I tightly integrate my research and outreach efforts to inform policy and management, and as such, regularly interact with government agencies, conservation organizations, and private landowners. Among my national leadership activities I serve on the Science Advisory Board of US EPA.
As both a faculty member in DNR and Director of Conservation Science at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, I work to generate, apply, and communicate science in ways that advance our understanding of ecology and also support conservation. In the broadest sense, my research program seeks to understand how human activities influence ecological systems and the services they provide. Because my students and I work towards developing a mechanistic understanding of these influences, we work across spatial scales (from microhabitats to landscapes), at multiple levels of biological organization (i.e., individual, population, and community levels), and within both experimental and observational frameworks. As such, my research touches on a variety of sub-disciplines, including conservation biology, landscape ecology, community ecology, population demography, behavioral ecology, and ecological restoration. Most of my current projects focus on understanding how land use change, agroforestry practices, and invasive species affect (1) species interactions, including predator-prey and food web dynamics, (2) population demography and behavioral ecology of forest birds, (3) patterns of avian distribution and diversity at the landscape scale, and (4) selective environments for behavioral and morphological traits. My current study systems are deciduous forests of eastern and central US (urban, agricultural, and managed forest landscapes) and montane forests of Central and South America.
Wildlife ecology and management, conservation biology, urban ecology.