Liz Humphreys

Senior Research Ecologist

Liz's current job is to develop research projects principally concerned with wetland and marine issues. Her most recent work has focused on understanding the impacts of the renewable industry on seabirds. Previously to joining the BTO, Liz's main research interests involved quantifying the factors that determine the foraging performance and energetics of seabirds.

Interests & Responsibilities

As well as her commitments to the Wetland & Marine team within the BTO, Liz also worked on a diverse range of topics including machair, urban and woodland ecology. She has also worked on a number of policy relevant projects including the management of goose management populations in Scotland.

Other Information

Honorary Lecturer, SBES, University of Stirling
Former editor of the Seabird Group Newsletter and member of its Executive Committee
European representative of the World Seabird Union


BSc (Hons) Environmental Biology, University of St Andrews, 1991-1995 MSc Ecology, University of Aberdeen, 1997-1998. PhD Kittiwake Foraging and Energetics, University of Stirling, 1998-2002.

Recent BTO Publications

Clewley, G.D., Thaxter, C.B., Humphreys, E.M., Scragg, E.S., Bowgen, K.M., Bouten, W., Masden, E.A. & Burton, N.H.K. 2021. Assessing movements of Lesser Black-backed Gulls using GPS tracking devices in relation to the Walney Extension and Burbo Bank Extension Offshore Wind Farms. Research Report no. 738. ISBN: 978-1-912642-27-4
Humphreys, E.M., Austin, G.E., Frost, T.M., Mellan, H.J., Boersch-Supan, P., Burton, N.H.K., Balmer, D.E. 2021. Wader populations on the UK’s open coast: results of the 2015/16 Non-Estuarine Waterbird Survey (NEWS-III) and a review of population trends. Bird Study 67 : 371-384 View at journal website (DOI: 10.1080/00063657.2021.1884184) 14pp
Jarrett, D., Calladine, J., Cotton, A., Wilson, M.W. & Humphreys, E. 2020. Behavioural responses of non-breeding waterbirds to drone approach are associated with flock size and habitat. Bird Study View at journal website (DOI: 10.1080/00063657.2020.1808587) 7pp
Cook, A.S.C.P., Humphreys, E.M., Robinson, R.A. & Burton, N.H.K. 2019. Review of the potential of seabird colony monitoring to inform monitoring programmes for consented offshore wind farm projects. Research Report no. 712. British Trust for Ornithology, Thetford, Norfolk ISBN: 978-1-912642-07-6 163pp
Horswill C., Humphreys E.M., Robinson R.A. 2018. When is enough enough? Effective sampling protocols for estimating the survival rates of seabirds with mark-recapture techniques. Bird Study View at journal website (DOI: 10.1080/00063657.2018.1516191)
Cook, A.S.C.P., Humphreys, E.M., Bennet, F., Masden, E.A. & Burton, N.H.K. 2018. Quantifying avian avoidance of offshore wind turbines: Current evidence and key knowledge gaps. Marine Environmental Research 140 : 278-288 View at journal website (DOI: 10.1016/j.marenvres.2018.06.017) 11pp

Other Publications

Humphreys, E.M., Gillings, S., Musgrove, A., Austin, G., Marchant, G, and Calladine J 2015. An update of the review on the impacts of piscivorous birds on salmonid populations and game fisheries in Scotland. Commissioned Research Report to SNH.

Cook, A.S.C.P., Still, D.A., Humphreys, E.M. & Wright, L.J. 2015. Review of evidence for identified seabird aggregations. JNCC Report No 537. JNCC, Peterborough.

Humphreys, E.M. Austin, G.E., Thaxter, C., Johnston, A., Risely, K., Frederiksen, M. & Burton, N.H.K. 2014. Development of MSFD Indicators, Baselines and Targets for Population Size and Distribution of Marine Birds in the UK. Report to JNCC.

MMO 2014. Review of post-consent offshore wind farm monitoring data associated with licence conditions. A report produced for the Marine Management Organisation, pp 194. MMO Project No:1031. ISBN: 978-1-909452-24-4.

Mackenzie, M.L., Scott-Hayward, L.A.S., Oedekoven, C.S., Skov, H., Humphreys, E. and Rexstad, E. 2013. Statistical Modelling of Seabird and Cetacean data: Guidance Document.  University of St. Andrews contract for Marine Scotland, SB9 (CR/2012/05).

Humphreys, E.M., Kirkland, P., Russell, S., Sutcliffe, R., Coyle, J. & Chamberlain, D. 2012. Urban Biodiversity: Successes and Challenges: The Biodiversity in Glasgow (BIG) project: the value of volunteer participation in promoting and conserving urban biodiversity. The Glasgow Naturalist Volume 25, Part 4.

Humphreys, L., Winterbottom, S., Smith, M., Humphrey, J., Ockendon, N., & Chamberlain, D. 2008. Development of a methodology for predicting the impact of demographic change and urban development on biodiversity. Report to SNIFFER.

Daunt, F., Camphuysen, C.J., Humphreys, E.M., Hamer, K.C., Wanless, S. & Skov, H. 2005. Local/daily scale hydrography, prey and seabird interactions. In Understanding Marine Food-web Processes: an Ecosystem Approach to Sustainable Sandeel Fisheries in the North Sea: IMPRESS Final Report (ed C.J. Camphuysen), pp 163-180. NIOZ-rapport, 2005-5, NIOZ, Texel, Netherlands.

Summers, R.W., Humphreys, E.M., Newall, M. & Donald, C. 2002. Nest site selection by Crossbills Loxia spp. in ancient native woodlands at Abernethy Forest, Strathspey, Highland. Bird Study 49:258-262.

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