Grass Wrens in the Uspallata Valley: notes from a Bergstrom Award recipient

I studied the Grass Wren in the Uspallata Valley, Mendoza, Argentina, at the foothills of the magnificent Central Andes Mountains. A beautiful setting where there are grassland patches associated with riverbeds in which the Grass Wrens breed and reside all year round. The development of my PhD thesis involved fieldwork during four months and three breeding seasons... Read More

Measuring the value of oil palm plantations versus native forest as habitat for Neotropical migratory birds in Mexico

I came to Michigan Technological University from southern Brazil in the Fall of 2017 to start my Ph.D. in the College of Forest Resources and Environmental Science. Once in Michigan, I was introduced to a diverse community of neotropical migrant songbirds that were rarely seen in my home country of Brazil. Although different species, I was familiar with some closely related South American birds within the same genus as those found in Michigan, such as warblers (Setophaga) and vireos (Vireo). Read More

Mid-summer arrival by Blue Grosbeaks at the northern extent of their breeding range: evidence for dual breeding?

On my morning running route through farmland with shrubby field borders in southeastern South Dakota, I noticed that Blue Grosbeaks often first showed up in the area on approximately July 1st. This arrival pattern seemed odd and different from arrival patterns of typical migrants in this habitat, such as Dickcissel, Indigo Bunting, Field Sparrow and Orchard Oriole... Read More

Diverse patterns of migratory timing, site use, and site fidelity by Alaska-breeding Whimbrels

In February 2008 my boss offered me the chance to “spring out” at our U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service administrative cabin on Kanuti National Wildlife Refuge in north-central Alaska. Having visited the cabin occasionally for brief summer stints in my previous five years with the Refuge, I had not been there in the boreal spring to observe the many changes during this special season... Read More

Documenting the ecology of Cerulean Warblers in the understudied Ozark region

Cerulean Warblers (Setophaga cerulea) are a Nearctic-Neotropical migratory songbird species in decline. During the breeding season, Cerulean Warblers nest in deciduous forests of the eastern United States and Canada. Over about the last twenty years, much research has focused on improving our knowledge of the biology of this species to inform conservation and reverse this decline. Read More

Bergstrom Award helps Ph.D. student with research on threatened grassland birds in Argentina

When I was awarded my Ph.D. grant I was filled with excitement and joy as I would be able to study some of the most iconic bird species of northeastern Argentina’s vast grasslands: the Strange-tailed Tyrant (Alectrurus risora), the Black-and-white Monjita (Xolmis dominicanus), the Tawny-bellied Seedeater (Sporophila hypoxantha), and the recently described Iberá Seedeater (S. iberaensis). Read More

Joint Society Statement on Ornithological Field Safety

AFO recently became aware of a public allegation of a sexual assault by a well-known birder that occurred during a bird-watching excursion in a metro-Atlanta park. The professional ornithological societies of the Americas have come together in solidarity with a statement affirming our commitment to maintaining the safety of everyone participating in ornithological field activities or exploring the natural world. Read More