Partners in Flight, a bird conservation network of more than 150 partner organizations in the Western Hemisphere, awarded Rob Miller and Jay Carlisle of the Intermountain Bird Observatory for their exceptional contributions to the field of landbird conservation across the Americas. The 87th North American Wildlife and Natural Resources Conference honored the awardees in a presentation held in conjunction with the U.S. Forest Service Partners’ virtual meeting on Thursday, March 10, 2022.
Miller, statistician and research biologist for the Intermountain Bird Observatory, received the Partners in Flight Investigations Award for his development and oversight of the Western Asio Flammeus Landscape Study, a study of the occurrence, distribution, habitat associations and population dynamics of the Short-eared Owl, which has declined precipitously over the past 40 years. Partners in Flight writes, “Rob has displayed tremendous leadership, analytical, and public outreach abilities, along with unwavering dedication, in implementing this complex project, now a model, across eight western states, including: writing a successful Competitive State Wildlife Grant, designing a survey strategy, creating a statistical design, recruiting and coordinating agency, public, and private partners with over 1,200 community-science volunteers surveying across 87 million hectares, creating online training modules, conducting all statistical analyses, writing and publishing manuscripts and reports, presenting results at scientific conferences, working with partners to create conservation decision support tools and administering budgets and in-kind matches worth over $1 million.”
Carlisle, associate research professor and research director for the Intermountain Bird Observatory, received the Partners in Flight Leadership Award for his career avian conservation efforts spanning from 1995. Partners in Flight writes, “Carlisle is a leader in creating effective partnerships, conducting research, and sharing conservation with diverse audiences. His professional objectives are focused on the stopover ecology, habitat needs, and conservation of migratory landbirds, and he is also dedicated to instilling a conservation ethic in students, young biologists, and community volunteers. He has led effective avian conservation partnerships including the Idaho Bird Conservation Partnership, Idaho’s Yellow-billed Cuckoo Working Group, and a program to monitor breeding populations of Long-billed Curlews along with mapping their range-wide migratory connectivity, innovatively addressing illegal shooting, and initiating outreach programming. He is also involved in the monitoring project for the Cassia Crossbill, Idaho’s only endemic bird species, and in the Rosy-Finch and Pinyon Jay Working Groups.”