Meet . . . members of BOU Council
Prof Juliet Vickery
Chair, Equality & Diversity Working Group
Juliet’s interest in ornithology started at Oxford with an undergraduate project on swifts and a DPhil on Dippers. ‘Hooked for life’ she went on to a Post doc at the University of East Anglia and research posts at Scottish Natural Heritage, University of Edinburgh and the British Trust for Ornithology. Juliet is now Head of the International Conservation Science in the RSPB Centre for Conservation Science, an Honorary Professor at the University of East Anglia and an Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Cambridge. Her own work focuses mainly on the impact of land use change on farmland and migratory birds and ways to integrate conservation and human development. The research of her RSPB team underpins the conservation of threatened sites, species and habitats throughout the world and strives to help build the scientific capacity of in-country partner organisations. She is committed to building an equal and diverse community of future conservation scientists and serves on steering committees of the Cambridge MPhil in Conservation Leadership, the Cambridge Student Conference on Conservation Science and is a member of the Darwin Initiative Expert Committee. Outside work she spends most of her time in the triathlon world of swimming, cycling and running.
Email Juliet | Follow Juliet on Twitter @juliet_vickery
Prof Tony Fox
Tony cannot remember a time when he was not obsessed by birds and feels deeply privileged that anyone should employ him to follow his hobby! His research life started with a Ph.D spent up to his waist in peat studying the hydrological budget of a coastal Welsh raised bog. However, after two ornithological expeditions to west Greenland and two years working for the Nature Conservancy Council in the Scottish Highlands, he moved to the (then) Wildfowl Trust at Slimbridge to specialise in waterbird research, a field in which he has concentrated ever since. He moved from being Head of Research at WWT to work for the Ministry of the Environment in Denmark in 1993, becoming part of Aarhus University in 2011, where he is currently Research Professor in Waterbird Ecology. His current research work lacks any sensible focus, straying from sea duck ecology to effects of lake eutrophication and predation on breeding ducks, from Little Owls to Black Woodpeckers. His professional focus continues to be on arctic geese (especially his beloved Greenland Whitefronts!) but much of his recent work through a visiting professorship with the Chinese Academy of Sciences has been centred on wintering waterbirds in the Yangtze River Floodplain.
Dr Richard Bradbury
Richard is Head of People Conservation Science at the RSPB’s Centre for Conservation Science. He also holds an Honorary Research Fellowship at Cambridge University and is a member of Natural England’s Science Advisory Committee. His career has taken him from a PhD on avian sex ratios at the Edward Grey Institute in Oxford, to farmland bird research at Oxford and on to leading an RSPB research team working on topics as diverse as renewable energy impacts on birds, climate change risks to birds and ecosystem services. He now leads a team building RSPB’s social science and nature-based solutions capacity. He has previously served the BOU (2003–11) including as Chair of the Meetings Committee and member of BOU Council. Richard is a keen birder, especially on his local Cambridgeshire patch.
Follow Richard on Twitter @Rich_B_Bradbury
Dr Helen Baker
Helen is Marine Species Team Leader at JNCC, responsible for managing the marine ornithology group, including UK seabird monitoring, strategic and technical advice, and offshore industry evidence and advice. Prior to this she had several roles in JNCC providing technical advice to UK government on bird conservation, research needs, natural capital, and biodiversity reporting. As part of her ornithological roles in JNCC, Helen has advised on EU Birds Directive implementation, the African Eurasian Waterbird Agreement, the Agreement on Albatrosses and Petrels, Ramsar, seabird conservation strategy development, Chairs the UK Seabird Monitoring Programme partnership and has been involved in the JNCC-BTO Partnership Agreement and WWT Goose and Swan Monitoring Programme.
Before working for JNCC, Helen worked for SNH on Special Protection Area designation, and before that on several research projects, including five years in Hawaii working on Hawaiian honeycreepers and Nene, and Crested Tits in Scotland for her PhD.
Helen has been involved in the BOU for more than 11 years, as a member of the Meetings Committee, an ordinary member of Council and as Honorary Secretary since 2014. As well as birding in north-east Scotland, she is a field mycologist with an interest in Russulas, records moths and plants, and makes pots.
Email Helen | Follow Helen on Twitter @HelenBinP
Graham has been the BOU’s Honorary Treasurer since 2017, having been recruited as a Trustee the year before. He had two careers, firstly as a Maths teacher and Deputy Headmaster and latterly as a fundraiser and Director of Communications for the British Trust for Ornithology. While teaching he was the Treasurer of the Scottish Ornithologists’ Club and a Trustee of the BTO. More recently he has been a school governor, chairing the finance committee, and is a Pension Fund Trustee. Graham started doing BTO surveys nearly 50 years ago but his main ornithological focus is on waders, undertaking fieldwork in Iceland and the UK. He has written hundreds of articles for Shooting Times and writes his own WaderTales blog series, translating scientific research about shorebirds into stories that appeal to birdwatchers.
Follow Graham on Twitter @ grahamfappleton
Dr Sonya Clegg
Chair, Grants Committee
Sonya is Associate Professor of Evolutionary Ecology at the Department of Zoology, University of Oxford. Her research focuses on unravelling the evolutionary processes that promote divergence in wild vertebrate systems. She uses a variety of methodologies to answer questions about genomic, morphological, ecological and behavioural differentiation, including the role of natural selection and the ecological and evolutionary importance of disease in bird communities. Sonya’s primary research systems are island colonising birds of south-west Pacific islands, and she runs a long-term study of silvereyes on Heron Island, Australia.
Dr Emma Cunningham
Emma gained her BSc in Zoology from the University of Glasgow and her PhD in the breeding ecology of wildfowl from the University of Sheffield. A Royal Society Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowship then took her to the University of Cambridge where she worked on the impact of avian brood parasitism on host reproductive strategies in neotropical birds in Central America. Since 2014 she has been based at the University of Edinburgh, initially supported by a Royal Society University Research Fellowship, where her focus has been on maternal responses to infection in gamebirds and the impact of parasitism in seabird populations. She has previously sat on Council of the Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour in a number of roles, been a member of NERC College and and is currently an Associate Editor for the British Ecological Society’s Journal of Animal Ecology. She is currently leading the development of the University of Edinburgh’s Centre for Adapting to Environmental Change.
Dr Francis Daunt
Chair, Meetings Committee
Francis Daunt is an ecologist whose research has focussed on the causes of population change in UK seabirds. After completing a PhD at the University of Glasgow, he joined the UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology (UKCEH) in 2001 and has spent the last two decades researching the effects of anthropogenic change on seabirds, in particular climate change (including extreme events), fisheries and marine renewables. His approach is to link behavioural ecology, life history variation and population dynamics, collaborating with statisticians and modellers to analyse key drivers of change at the individual and population level. He has published >120 scientific papers in peer-reviewed journals, and his research feeds into a range of policy areas including marine protection, fishery policy and sustainable development of offshore renewable developments. He coordinates the long-term study of seabird populations on the Isle of May, one of the longest running and most comprehensive of its kind in the world. He has been a member of the BOU for over two decades and a regular attendee at its annual conferences. He is an Ibis Associate Editor and chairs BOU’s Meetings Committee.
Dr Mark Eaton
Mark has a dual employment as Secretary of the Rare Breeding Birds Panel and as a Principal Conservation Scientist in the Monitoring Science section of the RSPB Centre for Conservation Science, and is also Chair of the European Bird Census Council. As this would suggest, his work focuses on monitoring through surveys and analysis of biological records, and reporting on the state of biodiversity through the likes of red lists, indicators and ‘state of’ reports both in the UK and overseas. When not working, he’s most likely to be found birdwatching along the Northumberland coast.
Follow Mark on Twitter @Mark_A_Eaton
Dr Tom Finch
Chair, Engagement Committee
Tom works is a Senior Conservation Scientist with the RSPB’s Centre for Concervation Science. His interests include conservation, agriculture and bird migration. He completed his PhD at the University of East Anglia in 2016, where he studied the breeding ecology and migration of the European Roller. He sits on BOU Council as an ordinary member, and is also on the BOU Engagement Committee.
Follow Tom on Twitter @ tomfinch89
Dr James Gilroy
Chair, Records Committee
James is a Lecture in Ecology at University of East Anglia. A lifelong birder and natural historian, his childhood fascination with wildlife developed into a career studying how animals are responding to human impacts in our rapidly-changing world. Since completing a PhD studying the declines of farmland birds in the UK, his work has taken him to many countries around the world, including spending several years at Rutgers University in New Jersey and the Norwegian University of Life Sciences in Oslo, as well as long spells in the tropics. His current research combines ecological modelling, large-scale big-data analysis and field-based studies to predict species responses to climate and land-use change, with a focus on migratory species.
James remains an obsessively keen birder (when time allows), and still pores religiously over daily weather charts in an effort to predict the arrivals of interesting species.
Dr Rosemarie Kentie
Chair, IBIS Management Committee
Rose obtained her PhD at the University of Groningen, the Netherlands, on how agricultural intensification affected breeding Black-tailed Godwits. Thereafter she received a Newton International Fellowship and spent two years at the University of Oxford where she studied the combined effects of climate change and habitat quality on timing of breeding and population dynamics of godwits, and how population density affected life history strategies within a population of Soay sheep. Currently she is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Amsterdam and guest researcher at the Netherlands Institute for Sea Research, where her research is focussed on how Herring Gulls and Lesser Black-backed Gulls react to changing environments. She combines fieldwork in breeding colonies with GPS tracking and diet analyses. In her past and current studies she often works with long-term mark-recapture datasets. After Rose visited her first BOU conference in 2013, she became more and more involved in the society and joined the IBIS Management Committee in 2018 and became an Associated Editor for IBIS in 2019.
Follow Rosemarie on Twitter @RoosKentie
Dr Julie Millier
Julie is an ornithologist and seabird ecologist at the University of Glasgow completing her PhD in quantitative modelling of seabird demography, with an applied interest in assessment of impacts to populations from human activities. Passionate about the natural world, Julie is particularly interested in blue-sky questions in ecology, quantitative approaches to assess patterns in data and applied conservation management. Growing up in Glasgow she has a keen interest in social connectivity with nature and accessibility of science to broad audiences.
Prof Rosie Trevelyan
Equality & Diversity Working Group member
Rosie is the Director of the Tropical Biology Association (TBA) and is a capacity building expert. Through the TBA, she has developed a programme of practical training combined with follow-up support that is building careers of conservation scientists and professionals from around the world. The TBA’s network spans over 70 countries and over 90% of TBA’s alumni are currently working in conservation-related fields. Rosie received the Zoological Society of London’s Silver Medal for contributions to wildlife conservation and education in 2008 and was the British Ecological Society’s equality and diversity champion, 2018. Rosie has a doctorate on the evolution of life history variation in birds from the University of Oxford. She is a founding member of the Cambridge Conservation Initiative and is co-organiser of the annual Student Conference on Conservation Science.
Dr Lucy Wright
Chair, Awards Nominations Committee
Lucy has a lifelong interest in birds and now work as a Principal Conservation Scientist in the RSPB Centre for Conservation Science. Her career began with various short research contracts before and after a PhD on Woodlark demography. She worked at the British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) as a Research Ecologist and later Research Manager focusing largely on investigating the potential impacts of developments (wind farms, tidal power, airports) on birds and advising on the designation of marine protected areas. She then moved to her current role at the RSPB in 2016, where Lucy leads a small team who provide scientific support for RSPB’s casework relating to planned developments and protected areas, and conduct research into the impacts of offshore wind farms on seabirds.
Lucy is a keen bird ringer, mostly with the Wash Wader Ringing Group, and sits on the BTO’s Ringing Committee that oversees the work of volunteer ringers across Britain and Ireland. She’s an Associate Editor for the BTO journal Bird Study. She believes that diversity, in all its forms, makes us stronger, and she wants to help the BOU to continue its work to improve equality and diversity in ornithology.
Follow Lucy on Twitter @_LucyWright