Chris Thaxter

Senior Research Ecologist

Chris's principal role is undertaking research into changes in the abundance and foraging behaviour of seabirds and waterbirds in relation to both man-made impacts and environmental processes. He takes a central role in conducting and developing marine research projects at BTO.

Interests & Responsibilities

Chris's post entails a broad spectrum of research projects. Current key research includes the use of bird-borne logging devices to understand foraging behaviour, distribution and interaction of seabirds with offshore windfarms. He recently completed a review into the foraging ranges of UK breeding seabirds with a view to such data being used as a preliminary tool in identifying candidate marine protected areas (MPAs). Recent work has also explored the use of sea-watching data for monitoring the non-breeding movements of species past our coasts. Chris is also involved in environmental impace assessments of renewable energy developments on waterbird and seabird populations. He is involved in numerous other projects investigating the impacting of offshore developments on birds, and have previously completed a review of the use high definition imagery technology for surveying seabirds and marine mammals.

Other Information

Chris has a broad interest in the natural sciences with a research background in seabird ecology. He has a keen interest in seabird foraging behaviour, population ecology, and life-history environment interactions. He is an ordinary Member of the Seabird Group, and am a guest lecturer as part of BSc and MSc University modules.

Qualifications

BSc (Hons) Geography, University of Reading, 1999-2002. MSc Wildlife Conservation and Management, University of Newcastle, 2002-2003. PhD Foraging and Breeding Ecology of Guillemots and Razorbills, University of Leeds, 2005-2008.

Recent BTO Publications

Woodward, I.D., Thaxter, C.B., Owen, E., Bolton, M., Ward, R.M. & Cook, A.S.C.P. 2024. The value of seabird foraging ranges as a tool to investigate the impact of offshore wind farms. Ocean and Coastal Management 254 View at journal website (DOI: 10.1016/j.ocecoaman.2024.107192)
O’Hanlon, N.J., Harris, S.J., Thaxter, C.B., Boersch-Supan, P.H., Robinson, R.A., Balmer, D.E. & Burton, N.H.K. 2024. Seabird population and demographic monitoring in the UK: a review and recommendations for future sampling. Research Report no. 754. ISBN: 978-1-912642-49-6
O'Hanlon, N.J., van Bemmelen, R.S.A., Snell, K.R.S., Conway, G.J, Thaxter, C.B., Aiton, H., Aiton, D., Balmer, D.E., Are Hanssen, S., Calladine, J.R., Hammer, S., Harris, S.J., Moe, B., Schekkerman, H., Tulp, I. & Humphreys, E.M. 2024. Cross population comparison of complex migration strategies in a declining oceanic seabird. Marine Ecology Progress Series 730 : 113-129 View at journal website (DOI: 10.3354/meps14533)
O’Hanlon, N.J., Thaxter, C.B., Clewley, G.D., Davies, J.G., Humphreys, E.M., Miller, P.I. Pollock, C.J., Shamoun-Baranes, J., Weston, E. & Cook, A.S.C.P. 2024. Challenges in quantifying the responses of Black-legged Kittiwake to habitat variables and local stressors due to individual variation. Bird Study View at journal website (DOI: 10.1080/00063657.2024.2305169)
Martín Vélez, V., Cano-Povedano, J., Cañuelo-Jurado, B., López-Calderón, C., Céspedes, V., Ros, M., Sánchez, M.I., Shamoun-Baranes, J., Müller, W., Thaxter, C.B., Camphuysen, C.J., Cózar & Green, A.J. 2024. Leakage of plastics and other debris from landfills to a highly protected lake by wintering gulls. Waste Management 177 : 13-23 View at journal website (DOI: 10.1016/j.wasman.2024.01.034)

Other Publications

Thaxter, C.B., Redfern, C.P.F. & Bevan, R.M. 2006. Survival rates of adult Reed Warblers Acrocephalus scirpaceus at a northern and southern site in EnglandRinging & Migration 23 : 65-79 View Abstract


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