Andrew Joys

Andrew Joys


Senior Database Officer


I am a member of the Information Systems Unit with responsibility for helping to administer the oracle databases that hold most of the BTO’s long term datasets and the online web surveys (such as BirdTrack, Garden BirdWatch, Breeding Bird Survey and Atlas). I have experience ranging from the design of databases to my specialism in SQL tuning. This includes maximising OLTP performance for web applications and also implementing data warehousing concepts for OLTP reporting purposes; utilising the spatial component of Oracle where possible and practical. In addition I take the lead role in providing web support to our many web users at all levels of ability. I also provide SQL support to our web developers, in both pure SQL and Oracle’s procedural language in the form of stored PL/SQL (packages) and where necessary have provided SQL training for internal staff members.


BSc (Hons)  Combined Honours in Biology and Geography (1st), University College Chester (1992-1995).
MSc Environmental Science (distinction), Nottingham University (1997-1998).
PhD  ‘Determinants of songbird community structure in a woodland environment: coppice in lowland England’, University of East Anglia (1998-2002).

Research Interests/Responsibilities

My work involves maintaining the integrity of the BTO’s online survey datasets, and providing support to other work colleagues of the BTO in querying data from the online tables.  I’m keen to increase our ability to retrieve data from the online tables much faster and leaner and provide greater possibilities for our web applications to handle and display this data (OLAP). Currently specialized in Oracle databases but I’m keen to spread out to other database vendors, especially open source ones such as PostgreSQL, especially with the desire to better increase our capability in storing and handling spatial data.

Selected Publications

Eglington, S.M., Davis, S.E., Joys, A.C., Chamberlain, D.E., & Noble, D.G. 2010. The effect of observer experience on English Breeding Bird Survey population trends. Bird Study 57(2): 129-141.

Thaxter, C.B., Joys, A.C., Gregory, R.D., Baillie, S.R., & Noble, D.G. 2010. Hypotheses to explain patterns of population change among breeding bird species in England. Biological Conservation 143(9): 2006-2019.

Newson, S.E., Ockendon, N., Joys, A.C., Noble, D.G., & Baillie, S.R. 2009. Comparison of habitat?specific trends in the abundance of breeding birds in the UK. Bird Study 56(2): 233-243.

Norton, L., Johnson, P., Joys, A.C., Stuart, R., Chamberlain, D., Feber, L., Firbank, W., Manley, M., Wolfef, B., Hart, F., Mathews, D., Macdonald, R.J. & Fuller R. J. 2009. Consequences of organic and non-organic farming practices for field, farm and landscape complexity. Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment 129(1): 221-227.

Gregory, R.D., Vorisek, P., Noble, D.G., Van Strien, A., Klvanova, A., Eaton, M., Joys, A.C. & Burfield, I.J. 2008. The generation and use of bird population indicators in Europe. Bird Conservation International 18(1): 223.

Joys, A.C. & Eaton, M.A. 2008. Production of BBS-based regional indicators for wild bird populations: 1994-2006 BTO Research Report 430.

Noble, D., Eaton, M. & Joys, A.C. 2005. A provisional Scottish biodiversity indicator for terrestrial breeding birds.  BTO Research Report 427.

Joys, A.C., Clark, J.A., Clark, N.A. & Robinson, R. 2005. An investigation of the effectiveness of rehabilitation of birds as shown by ringing recoveries.  ISBN: 1-904870-19-8  BTO Research Report 324.

Moss, D, Joys, A.C., Clark, J.A., Kirby, A., Smith, A., Baines, D., & Crick, H.Q.P. 2005. Timing of Breeding of Moorland Birds BTO Research Report 362.

Joys, A.C. & Crick, H.Q.P. 2004. Breeding periods for selected bird species in England . ISBN 1-904870-07-4 BTO Research Report 352.

Joys, A.C., Fuller, R.J. & Dolman, P.M. 2004. Influences of deer browsing, coppice history, and standard trees on the growth and development of vegetation structure in coppice woods in lowland England. Forest Ecology and Management 202: 23-37.

Contact details

Email: andrew.joys [at]
Telephone: 01842 750050
Fax: 01842 750030
Postal address: British Trust for Ornithology, The Nunnery, Thetford, IP24 2PU, UK.