Brian Olsen

Professor of Ornithology

Degree: Ph.D. 2007 Virginia Tech
Phone: (207) 581-2542
Website: Olsen Lab
Location: 202 ESL (Environmental Science Lab)

Research Topic:
Avian ecology, behavior, demography, mating systems, and life history evolution

Research Program:
Research in my lab focuses on adaptation to changing landscapes.  Whether concerned with rising sea-levels, landscape development, or changing weather patterns, my students and I study how animal populations (particularly birds) react to our dynamic planet.  Lab members measure behavior, morphology, niches, and genes to identify constraints on adaptation (both genetic and plastic) and tipping points where populations are no longer resilient.  My ongoing research addresses conservation concerns in Atlantic coastal marshes, Maine’s rocky intertidal zone, and the warming arctic.  I am part of a large-scale effort with multiple state, federal, and non-governmental organizations to address conservation concerns for the tidal marsh birds of the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts of the United States (as a founding PI of the Saltmarsh Habitat and Avian Research Program – SHARP