We study a diverse array of birds, across a variety of habitats; all our work is unified by an interest in answering the questions How Does That Work? and How Does it Matter?

We approach questions in avian conservation, ecology and evolution mechanistically, integrating tools from functional morphology, biomechanics, physiology, and animal behavior as necessary to produce explanations for why birds look, live and act as they do. We are especially interested in feeding in birds --- the morphology, the mechanics, the food -- because a bird that isn't fed is a bird that's dead.

Where ever possible, we aim to contribute to avian conservation by identifying, explicitly and quantitatively, the mechanical limits to the ability of birds to adjust to environmental change.

Chimney swifts

Chimney swifts feed only on bugs they can snatch out of the air. (photo courtesy of Michael Brown)