Reader in Ecology and Conservation
School of Natural and Environmental Sciences, Newcastle University, UK
Find Darren on Twitter @DarrenMarkEvans
Involved with the BOU as:
Member of BOU Council as Chair of Meetings Committee
Member of Engagement Committee
BOU member since: 1995
Most likely to be found . . .
. . . behind a computer screen wishing I was in the field.
Why are you a member of the BOU?
I’m a member of the BOU because of my passion for ornithology. In a rapidly changing science/academic environment, being part of an ornithological community is becoming increasingly important.
What is your role on the BOU Council or committee on which you sit?
I’m Chair of the BOU Meetings Committee and have helped to organise a number of interesting conferences on diverse topics such as ecosystem services and avian food-webs. It is particularly satisfying getting a group of ornithologists together in the same room to examine advances or state-of-the-art technologies. I recently joined the Engagement Committee too and see this as a crucial way in which BOU can expand its activities.
What would you say to anyone who is considering joining (or leaving!) the BOU?
The benefits of being part of the BOU community are immeasurable. BOU conferences in particular are an excellent way of meeting ornithologists working on a range of diverse topics. These are especially good for students and early career researchers and many of the activities are tailored for them.
When did your interest in ornithology begin?
I grew up in a run-down, inner city estate and didn’t have much access to the countryside but always had an interest in birds. At primary school I can remember going on a trip to what is now the FSC Amersham Field Centre and finding my niche! I would badger my parents to take me back there and it wasn’t long before I got a pair of (ex-WWII) binoculars.
What is your most memorable bird-y experience?
I ringed the first Paddyfield Warbler caught in the Iberian Peninsula.
What is your favourite outdoor place and why?
Birding takes you to places you have no other reason to visit and I’ve been privileged to travel to some pretty remote parts of the world. But I feel particularly at home in the Scottish Highlands and have a fondness of upland birds.