Chris Wernham

Chris Wernham

Job Description

Associate Director, Country Offices


Chris is the strategic lead for BTO Country Ofices in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, providing oversight of their programmes of research and the activities that underpin development of our supporter bases in each country.


BSc (Hons) Ecology, University of Stirling, 1985-1989
PhD “Ecology and energetics of breeding Puffins: variation in individual reproductive effort and success”, University of Stirling, 1990-1993

Interests & Responsibilities

Chris's team at BTO Scotland is responsible for a programme of science that is relevant to the Scottish context, with particular expertise in upland/montane/moorland and forestry research, and raptors. We also have research interests in urban issues, seabirds and stakeholder engagement/human-wildlife conflict resolution. Chris's team has the additional responsibility of enhancing the coverage and relevance of BTO-led long-term monitoring schemes in Scotland, and working more generally to increase BTO’s overall supporter base of Members, volunteers and funders in Scotland.

Chris has a particular background in avian demography and migration/movements, having previously held the posts of Senior Populations Biologist (Ringing Scheme) and Migration Atlas Project Manager at BTO. Since joining BTO in 1996 she has worked on a wide range of applied and policy-driven conservation research, survey and review projects, including: the conflicts of fish-eating birds with fisheries; the population dynamics of Canada Geese; the effects of predatory birds on wildlife in Scotland; demography and management of urban gull populations; goose management policy in Scotland; and other applied work on seabirds (gulls and auks), raptors and geese. She has a particular interest in raptors, and was one of the editors of the field guide to surveying and monitoring raptors. She is BTO’s main representative on the Scottish Raptor Monitoring Group, on behalf of which BTO Scotland employs the Scottish Raptor Monitoring Officer, Amy Challis.

Other Information

Honorary Lecturer, Natural Sciences, University of Stirling
BTO Scotland representative on the Scottish Raptor Monitoring Group
Licensed bird ringer

Recent BTO Publications

M. W. Wilson, D. E. Balmer, K. Jones, V. A. King, D. Raw, C. J. Rollie, E. Rooney, M. Ruddock, G. D. Smith, A. Stevenson, P. K. Stirling-Aird, C. V. Wernham, J. M. Weston & D. G. Noble. 2018. The breeding population of Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus in the United Kingdom, Isle of Man and Channel Islands in 2014. Bird Study Link to publication View at journal website (DOI: 10.1080/00063657.2017.1421610)
David Jarrett, John Calladine, Chris Wernham & Mark Wilson 2017. Monitoring Breeding Waders in Wensleydale: trialling surveys carried out by farmers and gamekeepers. Research Report no. 703. British Trust for Ornithology, Thetford ISBN: 978-1-908581-85-3 PDF icon Download Report (1.87 MB)
Ainsworth, G., Calladine, J., Martay, B., Park, K., Redpath, S., Wernham, C., Wilson, M. & Young, J. 2016. Understanding Predation. A review bringing together natural science and local knowledge of recent wild bird population changes and their drivers in Scotland. Moorland Forum Link to publication
Roos, S., Noble, D., Dobson, A., Howarth, P., Fielding, A., Carrington-Cotton, A., Etheridge, B. & Wernham, C. 2015. Raptors in Scotland – a methodology for developing trends and indicators. SNH Commissioned Report 542 Scottish Natural Heritage PDF icon Download Report (4.66 MB)
Hardey, J., Crick, H.Q.P., Wernham, C.V., Riley, H., Etheridge, B. & Thompson, D.B.A. 2013. <p>Raptors: a field guide for surveys and monitoring [3rd Edition]</p>. The Stationary Office, Edinburgh
Appleton, G.F. & Wernham, C.V. 2012. Scotland's long-distance migrants - contrasting changes and new challenges. Scottish Birds 32 (part 2) : 148-154

Other publications

Wernham-Calladine, C.V. 1995. Guillemot preening activity in relation to tick infestation. British Ecological Society Bulletin 26 : 187-195