Will is a Professor of Biology at St Andrews University and has been studying the ecology of migrant birds for the last 25 years. Current research priorities are to understand the factors determining the density and distribution of Palearctic migrants wintering in West Africa so that we can address their continuing declines in the face of anthropogenic habitat and climate change. As part of the solution he is involved with capacity building in the region through helping to run the AP Leventis Ornithological Research Institute that trains future African ornithologists. But he is a bird watcher first having been birding for 42 years.
To understand what happens to our summer migrants when they are not with us, you need to track them and follow them to Africa. Will will talk about some of the challenges they face migrating and wintering in Africa, some recent discoveries we have made that allow us to understand why migrant birds are declining and what we might be able to do about migrant bird declines.