Research Interests

We are fascinated by animals, and their interactions with other organisms, and so we enjoy researching basic questions about their behavior, and how such behaviors structure animal communities. Yet at the same time we are challenged by what we consider the most important biological question of our time: how to best conserve biodiversity in the face of human disturbance and while understanding the real need for sustainable development. Hence we try to design interdisciplinary projects that include elements of behavioral ecology and conservation biology.

Some of our current interests and projects include:

Behavioral ecology:

  • The vocalizations of group-living birds, including those in mixed-species bird flocks.
  • Documenting the effects of models on mimics in aposematic mimicry.

Community ecology:

  • Acoustic biomonitoring of birds and relating bird and plant diversity.
  • Variation in the leadership in mixed-species flocks over an elevational gradient.

Urban ecology / Conservation:

  • Effect of landscape heterogeneity on birds in agricultural and urban landscapes.
  • Changes in community structure, aggressiveness and foraging over an urbanization gradient; comparing these characteristics in native and invasive populations of a species.
  • Changes in the diversity and movement patterns of birds over a land-intensification gradient.


  • Levels and effects of mercury on birds in Asia.