Track 1. Introduction: Birds as Pest Control Allies
Lesson 2: How Many and What Kinds of Pests Do Birds Eat
Elissa is a Postdoctoral Researcher at Virginia Tech and works at the interface of conservation and agriculture. Her research focuses on understanding the processes that determine species distributions and functions, and how we can harness this knowledge to conserve, manage, and restore biodiversity. Much of her recent work focuses on the relationship between birds and California agriculture.
Jo Ann, Executive Director of Wild Farm Alliance, is the author of many farm publications on birds, biodiversity, food safety and organic agriculture. Before joining WFA in 2001, she received her Master’s researching birds eating codling moths in apple orchards, worked for other sustainable agricultural nonprofits and was an organic farmer for over a decade.
- Identify management practices that can promote avian pest control benefits
- Describe songbird pest control of insects in: orchards and vineyards; row crops; and shade-grown crops.
Article press releases
- "Natural Habitat Around Farms a Win for Strawberry Growers, Birds and Consumers" by Kat Kerlin. UC Davis. March 11, 2020.
- "Bringing Out the Best in Wild Birds on Farms" by Kat Kerlin. UC Davis. February 23, 2022.
- Heath and Long. 2019. Multiscale habitat mediates pest reduction by birds in an intensive agricultural region. Ecosphere 10.
- Jedlicka et al. 2011. Avian Conservation Practices Strengthen Ecosystem Services in California Vineyards. PLoS ONE 6.
- Olimpi et al. 2022. Semi-natural habitat surrounding farms promotes multifunctionality in avian ecosystem services. Journal of Applied Ecology.
- Olimpi et al. 2020. Shifts in species interactions and farming contexts mediate net effects of birds in agroecosystems. Ecological Applications 30.
- Gonthier et al. 2019. Bird services and disservices to strawberry farming in Californian agricultural landscapes. Journal of Applied Ecology 56:1948-1959.
- Karp et al. 2013. Forest bolsters bird abundance, pest control and coffee yield. Ecology Letters.
- Maas et al. 2013. Bats and birds increase crop yield in tropical agroforestry landscapes. Ecology Letters 16:1480-1487.
- Milligan et al. 2016. Quantifying pest control services by birds and ants in Kenyan coffee farms. Biological Conservation 194:58-65.