Dr Benjamin Van Doren

Dr Benjamin Van Doren


Name: Dr Benjamin Van Doren
Position: DPhil Student
Email: benjamin.vandoren@zoo.ox.ac.uk

Short Biography:

In 2016, I graduated from Cornell University with degrees in Biological Sciences and Biometry & Statistics. My concentrations in these fields were Ecology & Evolutionary Biology and Statistical Genomics.

I started studying bird migration in 2009, and at Cornell I worked with the BirdCast project (http://birdcast.info). We use remote sensing tools such as Doppler weather radar to understand migration over the United States, and we continue to publish weekly migration forecasts and analyses during the migration season. In 2015, I became interested in genomics and completed a senior thesis on genome-wide patterns of differentiation in stonechats (genus Saxicola), working in the lab of Professor Irby Lovette (www.eeb.cornell.edu/lovette/). I have also worked in Ecuador, Panama, Maine, Michigan, and Germany. After leaving Cornell, I came to Oxford on a Marshall Scholarship. My personal website is bvandoren.com.

Research Activities:

I’m currently studying change and flexibility in avian migration. Specifically, I am interested in how birds adjust their migratory behaviour in response to both short- and long-term environmental changes, and the relative contributions of individual plasticity and hard-coded” evolutionary changes in these responses. I am also interested in how modifications in migratory behaviour arise and propagate in a population and how migration can influence diversification. I enjoy using a range of tools and approaches – from light-level geolocators, to radar, to genomics – to better understand the determinants of migration.

Selected Publications

Van Doren BM,* Horton KG,* Dokter AM, Klinck H, Elbin SE, Farnsworth A. 2017. High-intensity urban light installation dramatically alters nocturnal bird migration. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 201708574. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1708574114.

Van Doren BM, Liedvogel M, Helm B. 2017. Programmed and flexible: long-term Zugunruhe data highlight the many axes of variation in avian migratory behaviour. Journal of Avian Biology. 48:155-172. doi: 10.1111/jav.01348.

Van Doren BM, Campagna L, Helm B, Illera JC, Lovette IJ, Liedvogel M. 2017. Correlated patterns of genetic diversity and differentiation across an avian family. Molecular Ecology. 26:3982-3997. doi: 10.1111/mec.14083.

Van Doren BM, Horton KG, Stepanian PM, Mizrahi DS, Farnsworth A. 2016. Wind drift explains the reoriented morning flights of songbirds. Behavioural Ecology. 27:1122-1131. doi: 10.1093/beheco/arw021.

Horton KG, Van Doren BM, Stepanian PM, Hochachka WM, Farnsworth A, Kelly JF. 2016. Nocturnally migrating songbirds drift when they can and compensate when they must. Scientific Reports. 6:21249. doi: 10.1038/srep21249.

Complete list at http://bvandoren.com/publications.

*Equal author contributions.