Who's Who in WeBS

There are a few key members of the WeBS team who spend at least part of their working day beavering away behind the scenes. Here is a little bit about us (more serious information is available by clicking on our names). If you manage to identify us in the field, then please come up and say hello. 

If you need to contact us please use webs [at] bto.org or for a specific person, use the format of firstname.surname@bto.org (eg gillian.birtles@bto.org)


As WeBS Manager, Teresa is responsible for overall project management of WeBS and delivery of scheme development, reports and other outputs. She works closely with the WeBS Partner organisations, and endeavours to develop strategic partnerships for the benefit of waterbird monitoring in the wider flyway.

Teresa joined the WeBS team in November 2015. She first worked with WeBS data back in 2005-09, as a statistics research student looking at WeBS wildfowl data analysis. From 2008 to 2015 she worked in Local Environmental Records Centres in Kent and Cumbria, managing habitat and sites datasets and species records of all taxa, increasing effective biodiversity data use and encouraging more people to get in to wildlife recording and monitoring. Teresa is a self-styled "data naturalist" and is a fan of maps, graphs, insects - and birds, of course. She sits on the Council of the National Forum for Biological Recording.

WeBS Officer 

For requesting WeBS data, articles for WeBS News, and all things low tide, Neil is the person to speak to.

After several years walking round East Anglian fields as a BTO fieldworker, Neil took over as the Low Tide Counts Organiser. Prior to this Neil worked contracts for the RSPB watching enigmatic Bitterns and Stone Curlews before moving to the Nunnery. Originally from Manchester, despite living in possibly the best birding county in England, Neil still longs for the hills and his old local patch Piethorne Valley…

WeBS Counter Network Organiser

 Gillian Birtles


For any information about WeBS Online, getting in contact with your WeBS Local Organiser, site allocation or to make any comments, Gill is the person to contact in the first instance.

Prior to joining the BTO in July 2019, Gill worked in West Yorkshire as an environmental consultant on development projects. Before that, she studied Wildlife Conservation at Liverpool John Moores University and spent her placement year carrying out practical and research work at the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust reserve in Slimbridge. It's here that her love for wetlands and birds was nurtured!

Gill is a keen explorer and has also carried out conservation and research work all around the UK, South Africa, Peru and the USA.

Senior Research Ecologist
Graham provides the analytical brains behind the whole operation, ensuring all the databases and programs run smoothly.  He also is responsible for the production of the WeBS Alerts Report and generating the species population trends for the annual report. A mine of statistical knowledge, what Graham doesn't know about "Goose Trumps", isn't worth knowing. 
Head of Surveys Dawn Balmer

Dawn is Head of Surveys, which includes WeBS, BBS, WBBS and the Heronries Census. Dawn sits on the WeBS Steering Group with Teresa and representatives from the other WeBS partners.

Dawn has worked for the BTO since 1992 on a wide range of census, fieldwork and ringing projects and was the Migration Watch and BirdTrack Organiser from 2002-2006. She was the Atlas Coordinator for the Bird Atlas 2007-11 project, which resulted in the publication of the book in November 2013. She is the BTO representative on the Rare Breeding Birds Panel.

Dawn is a keen birder and ringer and has special interests in migration and gull identification.  In her spare time, she is on the Editorial Board of British Birds, a Trustee of the Eric Hosking Charitable Trust and writes regularly for British Wildlife.

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