2014-present Administrative Director, Bard Ecology Field station
2012-present Assistant Professor of Biology, Division of Science, Mathematics and Computing, Bard College,
Annandale-on-Hudson, New York.
2012 George Didden Conservation Biology Fellow, National Zoological Park, Smithsonian Institution,
2010-2011 Postdoctoral Fellow, Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute, Migratory Bird Center,
National Zoo, Advisors: Robert Rice, Scott Sillett
2010-present Adjunct Research Faculty, Department of Entomology, Michigan State University
2010 Visiting Scientist, Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute, Migratory Bird Center, National Zoo
2008-2010 Postdoctoral Associate, U.S. Department of Energy, Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center,
Michigan State University. Advisors: Douglas Schemske, Patrick Doran
2008 Adjunct Lecturer, University of Montana, Division of Biological Sciences
2001-2007 Ph.D. Organismal Biology and Ecology, University of Montana. Advisor: Richard L. Hutto
1999-2001 Conservation Associate, Cornell University Laboratory of Ornithology.
1998 Endangered Species Biologist, San Clemente Loggerhead Shrike Restoration Project, Point Reyes Bird
Observatory, San Diego, CA
1998 Field Ornithologist, Palomarin Terrestrial Research Program, Point Reyes Bird Observatory, Bolinas, CA
1997 Field Biologist, Greater Prairie Chicken Restoration Research, George Miksch Sutton Avian Research
Center, Bartlesville, OK
1996 Field Biologist, Avian Predation Project, Columbia River Estuary, Oregon State University, Columbia River
Intertribal Fishing Commission, Astoria, OR
1992-1996 B.S. University of Notre Dame, Biological Sciences, Notre Dame, IN
PEER-REVIEWED PUBLICATIONS (*undergraduate co-author)
2018 Robertson, B.A., Hetterich, I.*, Keddy-Hector, I.*, Silverberg, L.* Shrestha, S.*, Woolner, C.W.*, and Horvath,
G. Susceptibility to ecological traps is similar among closely related taxa but sensitive to spatial isolation.
Animal Behaviour 135:77-84.
2017 Robertson B.A., Ostfeld, R. and Keesing, F. Trojan Females and Judas Goats: Evolutionary Traps as Tools in
Wildlife Management. BioScience 67: 983–994.—COVER PHOTO
2017 Robertson, B.A., Campbell, D.*, Durovitch, C.*, Hetterich, I.*, Les, J.*, & Horváth G. The interface of ecological
novelty and behavioral context in the formation of ecological traps. Behavioral Ecology 28: 1166–1175.
2017 Landis, D.A., Gratton, C., Jackson, R.D., Gross, K.L., Duncan, D.S., Liang, C., Meehan, T.D., Robertson, B.A.,
Schmidt, T.M., Stahlheber, K.A., Tiedje, J.M., Werling, B.P. Biomass and biofuel crop effects on biodiversity and
ecosystem services in the North Central US. Biomass and Bioenergy--INVITED
2016 Robertson, B.A. & Chalfoun, A.D. Evolutionary traps as keys to understanding behavioral maladapation. Current
Opinion in Behavioral Sciences 12:12–17.--INVITED
2016 Száz, D., Mihályi, D., Farkas, A, Barta, A, Egri, Á, Blahó, M, Kriska, G., Robertson, B.A. ,Horváth, G. Anti-
reflective photovoltaics reduce polarized light pollution and its impact on some polarotactic aquatic
insects. Journal of Insect Conservation 20:663–675.
2015 Meyer L*, Schmidt KA, & Robertson BA. Exotic plant species as evolutionary traps for nesting Veery. The
Condor: Ornithological Applications 117:320-327.
2015 Száz D, Horváth G, Barta A, Robertson BA, Farkas A, Egri A, Farkas A, Egri A, Tarjanyi N, Racz G, and Kriska,
G. Lamp-lit bridges as dual light-traps for the night-swarming mayfly, Ephoron virgo: Interaction of phototaxis
and polarotaxis. PLoS One 10(3):e0121194.
2015 Horváth G, Kriska G, Robertson BA. Chapter 10: Anthropogenic polarization and polarized light pollution
inducing polarized ecological traps. Pages 443-517 in (Horváth G., ed.) Polarized Light and Polarization
Vision in Animal Sciences. Springer-Verlag, Berlin. pp. 649 pages.
2014 Sánchez-Mercado A, García-Rangel S, Yerena E, Ferrer-Paris JR, Robertson BA & Rodríguez-Clark KM.
Combining habitat and threat models to identify potential ecological traps for Andean bears in the Cordillera de
Mérida, Venezuela. Animal Conservation 17: 388-398
2014 Werling BP, Dickson TL, Issacs RI, Gaines H, Gratton C, Gross KL, liere H, Malmstrom CM, Meehan T.D.,
Ruan L., Robertson BA, Robertson GP, Schmidt TM, Schrotenboer AC, Teal TK, Tuell J, Wilson J & Landis
DA. Perennial grasslands increase multiple ecosystem services in bioenergy landscapes. Proceedings of the
National Academy of Sciences of the United States 111:1652–1657
2013 Pienta K, Robertson, BA, Coffee, DS & Taichman, RS. The Cancer Diaspora: Metastasis beyond the seed and
soil hypothesis. Clinical Cancer Research 19: 5849-5855.
2013 Robertson, BA, Rehage, J & Sih, A. Ecological novelty and the emergence of evolutionary traps. Trends in
Ecology and Evolution 28: 522-560—COVER PHOTO
2013 Robertson BA & Doran PJ. Biofuels and Biodiversity: The Implications of Energy Sprawl. Chapter 341 In: Levin
S.A. (ed.) Encyclopedia of Biodiversity, Second Edition, Volume 1, pp. 528-539. Waltham, MA: Academic
2013 Robertson, BA, Sillett, TS, Landis, DA, Loomis, EL & Rice, R. Perennial agroenergy feedstocks as en route
habitat for spring migratory birds. Bioenergy Research 6: 311-320.
2012 Robertson, BA, Rice, RA, Sillett, TS, Ribic, CA, Babcock, BA, Landis, DA, Herkert, JR, Fletcher Jr.
RJ, Fontaine, JJ, Doran, PJ & Schemske, DW. Are agrofuels a conservation threat or opportunity for grassland birds in the United States? Condor 114:679–688.
2012 Robertson, BA. Investigating targets of avian habitat management to eliminate an ecological trap. Avian
Conservation and Ecology 7(2): 2. [online] URL: http://www.ace-eco.org/vol7/iss2/art2/
2012 Fletcher Jr, RJ, Orrock, JL & Robertson, BA. How the type of anthropogenic change alters the consequences of
ecological traps. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B 280: 279: 2546-2552.
2012 Robertson, BA, Porter, C, Landis, DA & Schemske, DW. Agroenergy crops influence the diversity, biomass, and
guild structure of terrestrial arthropod communities. Bioenergy Research 5: 179-188.
2011 Fletcher Jr, RJ, Robertson, BA, Evans, J, Doran, PJ, Alavalapati, JRR, & Schemske, DW. Biodiversity
conservation in the era of biofuels: Risks and opportunities. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment
2011 Werling, BP, Meehan, T, Robertson, BA, Gratton, C, & Landis, DA. Biocontrol potential varies with changes in
biofuel-crop plant communities and landscape perenniality. Global Change Biology Bioenergy 3:347-359
2011 Robertson, BA, McDonald, R, Wells, JV, Blancher, P & Bevier, L. Chapter 7: Boreal migrants in winter bird
communities. Pp. 85–94 in JV Wells (editor). Boreal birds of North America: A Hemispheric View of Their
Conservation Links and Significance. Studies in Avian Biology (no. 41), University of California Press,
2011 Robertson, BA, Doran, PJ, Robertson, JR, Loomis, ER & Schemske, DW. Perennial biomass feedstocks enhance
avian diversity. Global Change Biology Bioenergy 3: 235–246—COVER PHOTO
2011 Robertson, BA, Doran, PJ, Loomis, ER*, Robertson JR, & Schemske, DW. Avian use of perennial biomass
feedstocks as post-breeding and migratory stopover habitat. PLoS One 6(3): e16941
2010 Horváth, G, Blahó, M, Egri, A, Kriska, G, Seres, I & Robertson, BA. Reducing the maladaptive attractiveness of
solar panels to polarotactic insects. Conservation Biology 24: 1644-165.
2010 Robertson, BA, Hutto, RL & Fontaine, JJ. Evaluating food availability and nest predation risk as sources of bias
in aural bird surveys. Journal of Field Ornithology 81:420–429
2010 Horváth, G, Kriska, G, Malik, P, Hegedus, R, Neuman, L, Akesson, S, & Robertson, BA. Asphalt surfaces as
ecological traps for water-seeking polarotactic insects: How can the polarized light pollution of asphalt surfaces
be reduced? Booklet. Nova Science Publishers, Inc., Hauppauge, New York, USA. 47 pp
2010 Wells, JV, Robertson, BA, Rosenberg, KV & Mehlman, D. Global versus local conservation focus of U.S. state
agency endangered bird species lists. PLoS One 5(1): e8608.
2010 Robertson B.A., Kriska G, Horváth, V. & Horváth, G. Glass buildings as bird feeders: Urban birds exploit an
ecological trap. Acta Zoologica Academiae Scientiarum Hungaricae 56: 283-293.
2010 Robertson, B.A. Farmland birds across the world (book review). Wilson Journal of Ornithology 122: 629-
2009 Robertson, B.A., Loomis, L. & Fontaine, J.J. Seasonal patterns of song structure variation in a suboscine
passerine. Wilson Journal of Ornithology 121: 815-818.
2009 Horváth, G., Kriska, G., Malik, P. &Robertson, B.A. Polarized light pollution: A new kind of ecological
photopollution. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 7: 317-325.
2009 Robertson, B.A., Horváth, and Kriska G. Polarized Light Pollution. In: Encyclopedia of Earth. Eds. Cutler J.
Cleveland. Washington, D.C.: Environmental Information Coalition, National Council for Science and the
2009 Robertson, B.A. The influence of spatio-temporal variation in food availability and nest predation risk on laying
decisions. Condor 111: 523–533.
2009 Robertson, B.A.Nest site selection in a postfire landscape: Do parents make trade-offs between microclimate and predation risk? Auk 126: 500-510.
2008 Malik, P, Horvath, G., Kriska, G. & B.A. Robertson. Poláros fényszennyezés: A környezeti ártalmak egy új
formája. (Polarized light pollution: a new form of the environmental contamination). Fizikai Szemle
(Physical Review) 58: 379-386. (in Hungarian)—COVER PHOTO.
2007 Robertson, B.A.& Hutto, R.L. Is selectively harvested forest an ecological trap for Olive-sided Flycatchers?
Condor 109: 109-121.
2006 Robertson, B.A. & Hutto, R.L. A framework for understanding ecological traps and an evaluation of existing
evidence. Ecology 87: 1075-1085.
2004 Mehlman, D., Robertson, B.A., Wells, J.V. & Rosenberg, K.V. A comparison of North American avian
conservation priority ranking systems. Biological Conservation 120: 383-390.
2004 Robertson, B.A. Stable isotope analysis: Forging new links in bird migration. Birding 36: 142-145.
MANUSCRIPTS IN REVIEW / REVISION
Robertson, B.A. and Horvath, G. In review. Color polarization vision in aquatic insects as a cause of ecological traps.
Fraleigh, D and B.A. Robertson. In prep. Ultraviolet light pollution as a cause of evolutionary traps for aquatic insects. For Behavioral Ecology
2011 Robertson, B.A., Sillett, T.S., Landis, D.A., & Rice, R. 2011. Perennial biomass crops as a new source of en
route habitat for spring migratory birds. A report to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Upper Mississippi
Migratory Bird Joint Venture.
2000 Robertson, B.A. & Rosenberg, K.V. 2000. Partners in Flight Bird Conservation Plan: Physiographic Region 24
(Allegheny Plateau). Cornell University. 77 pp.
2000 Rosenberg, K.V. & Robertson, B.A. 2000. Partners in Flight Bird Conservation Plan: Physiographic Region 17
(Northern Ridge & Valley). Cornell University. 82 pp.
2000 Rosenberg, K.V. Robertson, B.A. & Dettmers, R. 2000. Partners in Flight Bird Conservation Plan: Physiographic
Region 22 (Ohio Hills). Cornell University. 82 pp.
GRANTS, AWARDS AND FELLOWSHIPS
2017 California Energy Commission “Investigating the Impacts of “Lake Effect” from Solar Energy-Generating Facilities
in Avian Behavior” (GFO-16-306). Co-PI $799,785.
2015 Bard Sustainability Council Grant “Amphibian road brigades as community engagement and scientific education
tool.” PI $1795
2014 Winner. World Cup of Applications Contest—Ocean Optics, Inc. Contest to decide the most innovative scientific application of Ocean Optics equipment. Trip to Florida to attend the inauguration of a new company
2014 Bard College-HHMI Project on Scientific Literacy—One-semester course release to enhance teaching of science to non-majors in my Global Change Biology course.
2013 New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation. “Bard Regional Demonstration Project to Improve
Stormwater Management” Contributing author. $732,000.
2013 Travel Award for Undergraduate Institutions. Gordon Research Conference on Predator-Prey Interactions 5-10
January, 2014. $600
2013 Bard Summer Research Institute—Internal grant to support undergraduate research experiences. $9,000 / 3
2012 U.S. Department of Agriculture, 2012 AFRI RFP. “Developing sustainable perennial bioenergy crop
management for birds and pollinators: Understanding the interacting effects of harvest, on-farm conservation
reserves and landscape context.” $497,500.
2011 “Pest Control by Grassland birds in Perennial Biomass Crops—Smithsonian collaboration.” U.S. Department of
Energy, Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center. $29,895.
2010 “Agroecology and Ecosystem Services of Migratory Grassland Birds in Cellulosic Biofuel Crops” Smithsonian
Postdoctoral Fellowship, National Zoo. $46,800. PI.
2010 "Cellulosic Biofuel Crops and a New Source of Migratory Stopover Habitat forGrassland Birds" U.S. Fish and
Wildlife Service Migratory Bird Joint Venture Research Opportunities Program. $19,214. Co-PI.
2009 Funding supplement: Bioenergy, Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services Research. U.S. Department of Energy,
Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center. $11,500. Co-PI.
2008 “Bioenergy Crops as En Route Habitat for Migratory Birds—Pilot Study.” U.S. Department of Energy.
Supplemental Research Grant, Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center. $13,200. PI.
2006 Bertha Morton Research Fellowship, Morton Graduate School, University of Montana. $6000.
2005 Outstanding Presentation Award, University of Montana Graduate Student and Faculty Research Conference.
2004 Mazamas Foundation Research Travel Grant $4500. PI.
2004 Biology Block Grant recipient, Morton Graduate School, University of Montana. $2500 + summer support. PI.
2002 Americorps Conservation Fellowship. $10,000.
TEACHING AND MENTORING
2015/2016 Instructor. Tropical Ornithology and Conservation Biology. Two-week short course within the program: ‘Tropical Ecology and Sustainability Studies on Montserrat’. Bard College at Simon’s Rock (Winter Intercession ’15). Montserrat, West Indies.
2014 Instructor. Bio 424: Advanced Seminar in Conservation Biology. Bard College (Spring ’14)
2013 Instructor. Bio 415: Advanced Seminar in Urban Ecology, Bard College (Spring ’13, ‘15)
2014 Instructor. Bio 311: Field Ornithology. Bard College (Spring ‘14)
2014 Instructor. Bio 215: Independent study. Topic: Does distance mitigate the effect of polarized light pollution on aquatic insects? 4 students (Fall ’14)
2014/2015 Instructor. Bio 208: Biology Seminar. Bard College (Fall ’14, Spring ‘15)
2012-2013 Instructor. Bio 202: Ecology and Evolution. Bard College (Fall ‘12/’13, Spring ’13)
2013 Instructor. Bio 153: Global Change Biology. Bard College (Fall ‘13/’14
2012-2013 Instructor. Bard College, Ecology and Evolution
2010 Instructor. Michigan State University, Academic Success (9 lectures)
2009 Guest Lecturer. Michigan State University, Field Ornithology (2 lectures).
2007 Instructor. University of Montana, Ecology (BIOL 360; 26 lectures). Developed course and 8 field
labs, delivered lectures and supervised 4 TAs.
2001-2006 Teaching Assistant. University of Montana, Ornithology (BIOL 324, 14 lectures/year). Contributed to
course development, evaluation and lectures.
2000-2005 Teaching Assistant. University of Montana, General Biology (BIOL 101, 12 lectures/year).
Contributed to course development, evaluation and lectures.
2001 Co-instructor. Field Ornithology, Cornell University. (2 lectures). Contributedto course development and lectures
Graduate research mentoring:
2014-2015 Alex Sicurella, Bard Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) Program Project: How far can plant-to-bird distress
calls travel in the field?
2012-2013 Franck Hollander, University Catholique de Louvain, Belgium Ph.D Board Member Project: Maladaptive
habitat selection in a migratory bird in a human-modified landscape
Undergraduate research mentoring (research published in peer-reviewed journal*):
2015 Theodore Black, Bard College, Biology. Project: Optimal design of solar cell placement for reducing the
impacts of polarized light pollution to aquatic insects.
2015 Leah Silverberg, Bard College, Biology. Project: The influence of light pollution on parental care and
offspring fitness in American Tree Swallow (Tachycineta bicolor)
2014-2015 Lily Mastrodimos, Bard College, Biology. Project: Identifying danger-level of predators via vocalization: Do
song birds use tone or syntax?
2014-2015 Imaani Easthausen, Bard College, Biology. Project: Testing polarized light as a cue for the location of water in songbirds
2014-2015 Jake Weissman, Bard College, Biology (co-advised with Dr. Csilla Szabo. (Bard /Math) and Dr. Robert
Fletcher Jr., University of Florida, Gainesville). Joint Math-Biology Project: The role of environmental
stochasticity in escape from evolutionary traps.
2014-2015 Casay Yamazaki-Heineman, Bard College, Biology. Project: From Plants to Birds: Are birds more responsive to the smell of insect herbivory of native plants?
2013-2014 Alexia Motal, Bard College. Biology. Project: An experimental test of the ability of birds to located water via reflected polarized light
2013-2014 Desi-Rae Campbell, Bard College. Biology. Project: Polarized vs. unpolarized light pollution: Differential
impacts on insect functional groups.
2013-2014 Haya Dandees, Bard College/ Al-Quds University, Biology. Project: Stress modulates the sensation of taste
in human subjects.
2012-2013 *Lydia Myers, Bard College, Biology. Project: Exotic shrubs as evolutionary traps for nesting songbirds.
2012-2013 Amy List, Bard College. Co-advised with Felicia Keesing. Project: Winter displacement of Red Fox by
Coyote in relation to lyme disease prevalence.
2012-2013 Jeremy Arnstein, Bard College. Co-advised with Felicia Keesing. Project: Are bird-driven trophic cascades
more protective of native than exotic plants?
2012 Agroenergy and Biodiversity: Oxymoron or Opportunity? Organizer and speaker. Symposium at
the 2012 meeting of the Ecological Society of America.
2011 Evolutionary Mismatch and What To Do About It. Working group member. National Evolutionary
Synthesis Center, Duke University / National Science Foundation.
2010 Developing cross-disciplinary partnerships for the production of next generation perennial
biomass crops. Working group member. Annual meeting of the Department of Energy, Great Lakes
Bioenergy Research Center, Michigan State University.
2009 Communication strategies for the dissemination of discoveries in sustainable biomass
production. Working group leader. Annual meeting of the Department of Energy, Great Lakes Bioenergy
Research Center, Sustainability Thrust Group, Michigan State University.
2015 University of Wyoming Biology Department Seminar Series. Laramie, Wy, 17 October.
2015 Keynote speaker, Hudson Valley Life Science Group Symposium. “When Good Animals Make Bad Decisions:
Evolutionary Traps as Conservation Threats and Tools”. Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY, 29 April.
2015 Bard College Faculty Seminar Series, “When good animals make bad decisions: Evolutionary traps as conservation threats and tools. Annandale-on-Hudson, NY, 22 April
2014 SUNY Binhamton, Department of Biology
2012 SUNY Binhamton, Department of Biology
2011 Symposium on Sensory Pollution, Annual Meeting of the Animal Behavior Society, Bloomington, IN, 27 July.
2011 University of California—Davis, Department of Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Biology
2011 University of California—Irvine, Environment Institute, Irvine, CA, 24 January.2010 Smithsonian Institution,
National Zoo. Washington, D.C., 26 February.
2010 Pfizer Pharmaceuticals, Environmental Lecture Series, Portage, MI, 16 March.
2010 Argonne National Laboratory, Department of Energy, Chicago, IL, 9 January.
2009 Meeting of the Entomological Society of America, Biofuels and Biodiversity Symposium, 11 December.
2009 Annual Meeting of the Michigan Audubon Society, Lansing, MI, 16 March.
1st Annual Gordon Conference on Predator-Prey Interactions (2014)
Ecological Society of America (2004, 2008-2012)
Animal Behavior Society (2005, 2006, 2011-Invited)
American Ornithologists Union (2006, 2010)
Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology (2006)
Cooper Ornithological Society (2009)
Annual Meeting of the Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center (2008-10)
North American Ornithological Convention (2006)
Annual Meeting of the Entomological Society of America (2009-Invited)
National Council on Science and the E nvironment (2008)
University of Montana, Graduate Student Research Conference (2005-06)
2012-present Editorial board member. Bard Science Journal
2012-present Editorial board member. Avian Conservation and Ecology (journal)
2011-2012 Organizer. Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute Seminar Series
2009-2010 Postdoctoral Representative to the Academic Personnel Committee, Kellogg Biological Station,
Michigan State University.
2004-2005 Graduate Student Association Representative. Division of Biological Sciences, University of Montana.
Journal Referee: American Naturalist (2), Animal Behaviour, Behavioral Ecology (2), Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology (4), Biodiversity and Conservation, Biology Letters, Biomass and Bioenergy, Biotropica, Bird Study, British Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Condor (2), Conservation Biology (4), Ecological Applications (3), Ecography (2), Ecology (4), Ecology Letters, Ecosphere, Environmental Conservation, Ethology, European Journal of Entomology, Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution, Evolutionary Applications, Global Change Biology Bioenergy (5), Ibis, International Journal for Biotechnology and Molecular Biology Research, Journal of Applied Ecology, Journal of Experimental Biology (2), Journal of Field Ornithology (2), Journal of Ornithology, Journal of Thermal Biology, Journal of Wildlife Management, Landscape Ecology, Nature, Nature: Scientific Reports, North American Journal of Fisheries Management, Oikos(2), Open Journal of Ornithology, Physiology and Behavior (2), PLoS One (3), Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research, Science (2), Studies in Avian Biology (2), The Auk, Theoretical Ecology, Trends in Ecology and Evolution (2), Veterinary Parasitology (3), Wilson Journal of Ornithology (2), Book chapter (1)
Grant Proposal Referee: National Science Foundation—Population and Community Ecology Cluster-CAREER, National Environmental Research Council (UK), National Research, National Development and Innovation Office (Hungary)
Professional Societies: Ecological Society of America, Society for Conservation Biology, Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology, Animal Behavior Society, American Ornithologists Union, Entomological Society of America
Volunteer work: AAAS On-call scientist—Science and human rights program, Michigan Breeding Bird Atlas, Montana Breeding Bird Atlas.