As an Avian Ecologist for Point Blue, my work involves researching birds in the riparian ecosystems of California's Central Valley and training the next generation of field biologists at the Palomarin Field Station in the Point Reyes National Seashore.

My passion for birds and birding started in my homestate of Michigan, though I graduated from the University of Michigan with a B.S. in Chemical Engineering (2001). After realizing my true calling was more in the natural sciences, I completed a master's degree program in Natural Resources at Cornell University (2005). Since 2006, I've had the pleasure of working for Point Blue in various locations around California.

Over the years I've led field crews studying Least Bell's Vireos along the San Joaquin River, wintering songbirds in the Central Valley, Western Yellow-billed Cuckoos along the Sacramento River, and banding interns at the Palomarin Field Station. From this work I've been able to co-author scientific papers and present our findings at scientific conferences.

I generally spend my summers somewhere in the Central Valley and the rest of the year working out of the Palomarin Field Station. When I'm not working you might find me surfing, camping, or birding.

Featured Work:

Least Bell's Vireo breeding records in the Central Valley following decades of extirpation

CA Howell, JK Wood, MD Dettling, K Griggs, CC Otte, L Lina, T Gardali
Western North American Naturalist 70(1):105-113. 2010
View abstract here.

Use of data on avian demographics and site persistence during overwintering to assess quality of restored riparian habitat

SC Latta, CA Howell, MD Dettling, RL Cormier
Conservation Biology 26(3):482-492. 2012
View abstract here.