Kristin Brunk, Ph.D.

I am interested in how species respond to anthropogenic threats, and I work to incorporate this interest into conservation and behavioral ecology using a broad range of field and analytical techniques. I got my start in ecological research through fieldwork, so whenever possible I like to spend time in the field to really begin to understand ecological systems.

At the K. Lisa Yang Center for Conservation Bioacoustics, I will use bioacoustics data about bird communities in California’s Sierra Nevada collected by Dr. Connor Wood to model the occupancy of several bird species in response to habitat and fire conditions. These models and data will be used by managers to inform conservation decisions into the future, especially in the face of an uncertain climate.

During my PhD, I studied the effectiveness of conservation measures on private land for the Marbled Murrelet (a threatened seabird) and the effectiveness of non-lethal management strategies for an important murrelet nest predator, the Steller’s Jay. I also examined the potential of anthropogenic food subsidies to impact the ecology and social dynamics of the Steller’s Jay. Prior to completing my PhD, I worked on a variety of conservation research projects and species including Common Loons, Black Rails, Wood Storks, Nazca Boobies, and more!

Year Hired: 2022

Contact Information
Cornell Lab of Ornithology
159 Sapsucker Woods Road, Ithaca, NY 14850, USA

Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2021
B.S., Northland College, 2013

Other: ResearchGate, LinkedIn

Recent Publications

Brunk, K.M. et al. (2023) ‘Quail on fire: changing fire regimes may benefit mountain quail in fire-adapted forests’, Fire Ecology, 19(1), p. 19. Available at: