Kathleen Farley

Kathleen Farley

Fledgling Ornithologist

Rutgers University

I'm a PhD Candidate at Rutgers-University in Newark, NJ. My interests are changing landscapes focusing on the long-term population changes in avian communities. I have worked with banding and mortality databases in urban regions and endemic cloud forest species in the tropics.


As an undergraduate at Rutgers, I took ornithology. From there, I did a season of avian field research in SE Arizona. The fieldwork centered on a habitat comparison study for band-tailed pigeon nest depredation rates.

Upon graduating with a B.S. in Ecology and Natural Resource Management, I became a science teacher in Newark, NJ. After a few years of focusing on teaching I went back to graduate school at Montclair State University where I took a graduate level ornithology class, renewing my interest. During my return to school I became involved in an American Kestrel nesting research program. 2016 marked my eighth season participating in the research.

In 2012, I left teaching to focus on my graduate studies. I defended and graduated with a Masters of Science in May 2013.

Starting in Fall 2014 I began a PhD program in Biology at Rutgers University. As a PhD student I am working with my adviser to establish an urban banding program to help us learn more about how birds move through highly populated areas during migration.

While at Rutgers-Newark, my research interests have lead me to analyzing long-term migration trends for passerines along the east coast as well as to Honduras with Operation Wallacea where I focused on detection techniques and their effectiveness to develop a model for rapidly assessing cloud forest avian communities (on going). I also work on a community ecology study looking at interactions between invasive plants and fruit-eating birds.

November 2016
Newark, NJ