KBO is thrilled to introduce our new Science Director, Ryan Terill. Ryan grew up birding in the Santa Cruz mountains of central California and has a life-long interest in birds. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from UC Santa Cruz and his Ph.D. in Biology from Louisiana State University, where his thesis focused on understanding how avian molt strategies interact with evolution over time. He has authored over 25 peer-reviewed articles in Ornithology and is an author of the Field Guide to the Birds of Bolivia. In addition to studying the ecology and evolution of avian molt, his research has also focused on the distribution and conservation of birds of the Americas. He was involved in discovering and describing a new species and genus of bird to science: The Inti Tanager (Heliothraupis onelilli) in Bolivia, and he continues to work to understand the population size, distribution, and risks for this species. His recent work has focused on understanding populations of Mexican birds over the 20th century from a framework of long-term distribution and occupancy trends, as well as the effects of climate change on the molting grounds of North American molt-migratory birds. He has served on various committees and boards, including the editorial boards of Western Birds and The Neotropical Naturalist journals, the California Bird Records Committee, and the Howard and Moore Checklist of the Birds of the World advisory committee.
As Science Director, Ryan will lead the development, design, and review of monitoring and research studies, including long-term monitoring, effectiveness monitoring, and theoretical research; oversee staff leading long-term bird banding (25+ year dataset), long-term monitoring, and applied ecology studies using point count methodology, and full-lifecycle limiting factors research focused on single species using multiple methodologies; advance KBO’s robust body of science focused on bird populations and their response to management and/or restoration of shrub-steppe, western forests, oak woodlands, riparian, and montane meadows of Oregon and northern California; and contribute to forest collaboratives, provide expertise specific to bird conservation and the application of birds as focal species to inform planning and evaluate success.
Ryan is thrilled to be joining like minds at the Klamath Bird Observatory. His scientific philosophy is that conservation, ecology, and evolution are integrally connected and are best informed by careful natural history study in the field combined with modern analytical tools. He joins KBO’s long tradition of just such work.