Impact of Habitat Destruction & Fragmentation on Birds

presented by Robert Gentry

Black-necked Stilt Photo Credit: John Winnie Sr.

Robert Gentry will be the guest speaker at the Flathead Audubon monthly meeting Monday, January 13 from 7-9 PM in the Gateway West Community Meeting Room in Kalispell. As any birder knows, habitat is critical to birds. Robert will discuss not only how habitat loss affects birds, but also the fragmentation of habitats affects them.

Mr Gentry attended Hendrix College in Conway, Arkansas where he received a degree in biology. His senior thesis research was about a little blue heron and cattle egret colony on the shores of Lake Conway, a shallow lake with extensive wetlands and cypress, gum and cottonwood trees and snags.  He looked at chick mortality in the colony and examined the cooperative sharing of mating/brood-rearing territory.  

He attended the University of Missouri for graduate school where he studied the impacts of forest fragmentation on the mating success of ground-nesting neotropical migrants, particularly the Ovenbird.  He looked at minimum area requirements, the impact of edge of forest interior mating success in a transect of forest fragments, and depredation by edge species and brood parasitism.  

He has traveled to Mexico, Puerto Rico, Belize and Guatemala in winter to help assess impacts of habitat degradation on these birds in their winter range.

After graduate school, he attended Vermont Law School where he obtained a Masters degree in environmental law and a JD degree.  After law school he worked for 2 states on environmental cleanup and compensation under CERCLA and state law equivalents.  In 2010 he established a private practice in which he focuses on public interest environmental law and immigration law. He continues to keep up with impacts of habitat degradation and fragmentation for area sensitive birds and other animals with a focus on the impacts of climate change.

The program is free and open to the public.