Professional summary

Research Interests

I am an ecologist and GIS specialist at the UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, and a Senior Research Associate at the University of Oxford (Dept of Zoology). My main interests are in landscape ecology and the behaviour and habitat use of birds and mammals. I undertake ecological fieldwork, spatial and statistical analyses, processing and mapping of remote sensing data (e.g. LiDAR, Sentinel), and combining these datasets to understand ecosystems and species distributions. My research areas include:

  • Habitat quality and fragmentation for birds and mammals, especially British farmland & woodland and Białowieża Forest in Poland.
  • Ecology and behaviour of woodland birds, including long-term studies of Marsh Tits, Willow Tits & Wood Warblers.
  • Agri-environmental schemes and hedgerows, especially for farmland birds & small mammals.
  • Natural regeneration of woodland and shrubland habitats for biodiversity.
  • Landscape ecology and using LiDAR and other remote-sensing tools to model habitats, especially woodland and hedgerows.
  • Species interactions, particularly birds, insects (bees, wasps, ants), and mammals, including invasive species e.g. Grey Squirrel, Red-billed Leiothrix.
  • Pesticide effects on birds of prey, particularly rodenticides (SGARs).
  • Training of fieldwork methods (bird/mammal trapping & surveying) & GIS for ecology.

Brief CV

  • 2019 - present: Ecologist, Ornithologist & GIS Specialist at the UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, Wallingford, UK.
  • 2020 - 2024: Senior Research Associate, Department of Zoology, University of Oxford.
  • 2008 - 2019: Higher Scientific Officer within NERC's Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, Wallingford, UK.
  • 2008 - 2014: Visiting Research Fellow at Bournemouth University.
  • 1999 - 2008: Scientific Officer at CEH (formerly ITE) Monks Wood, UK.


  • 2012: PhD by publications (Bournemouth University): Habitat modelling and the ecology of the Marsh Tit (Poecile palustris). Open access
  • 1999: MSc in Geographical Information Science, University of Edinburgh, UK.
  • 1998: BSc (First class) in Physical Geography, University of Hull, UK.

Panels, committees and memberships

  • European Ornithologists' Union (EOU)
  • British Ornithologists' Union (BOU)
  • British Trust for Ornithology (BTO)
  • Vice/Acting Chair of the BTO Ringing Committee (inc. Ringing Standards Sub-Committee & advisor to Special Methods Technical Panel) 2015-2019


Postgraduate students:

  • Catrin Eden (PhD Lancaster University, 2021-)
  • Carys Cunningham (PhD Reading University, 2020-)
  • Ailidh Barnes (PhD Bournemouth University,  2016-2020)
  • Lindsay Henderson (MRes University of York, 2007)
  • Deborah Marchant (MRes University of York, 2006)


Selected Publications (click here for open access versions):

  • 2021:

Broughton, R.K., Bullock, J.M., George, C., Hill, R.A., Hinsley, S.A., Maziarz, M., Melin, M., Mountford, J.O., Sparks, T.H., Pywell, R.F. (2021) Long-term woodland restoration on lowland farmland through passive rewilding. PLOS ONE 16(6): e0252466. Open access  Guardian  The Conversation  Project webpage

Broughton, R.K., Chetcuti, J., Burgess, M.D., Gerard, F.F., Pywell, R.F. (2021) A regional-scale study of associations between farmland birds and linear woody networks of hedgerows and trees. Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment 310, 107300. abstract

Broughton, R.K., Parry, W., Maziarz, M. (2021) Wilding of a post-industrial site provides a habitat refuge for an endangered woodland songbird, the British Willow Tit Poecile montanus kleinschmidti. Bird Study 67, 269-278. abstract  Guardian media  Telegraph media  BBC Springwatch (27 May 2021)

Broughton, R.K., Kettlewell, M.G.W., Maziarz, M., Vickers, S.H., Larkman, A., Wilkinson, I. (2021) Intensive supplementary feeding improves the performance of wild bird seed plots in provisioning farmland birds throughout the winter: a case study in lowland England. Bird Study 67, 409-419. abstract

Maziarz, M., Broughton, R.K., Casacci, L.P., Hebda, G., Maak, I., Trigos-Peral, G., Witek, M. (2021) Interspecific attraction between ground-nesting songbirds and ants: the role of nest-site selection. Frontiers in Zoology 18, 43. Open access

Gwiazdowska, A., Karpińska, O., Kamionka-Kanclerska, K., Rowiński, P., Panagiotopoulou, H., Pomorski, J.J., Broughton, R.K., da Silva, L.F.P, Rutkowski, R. (2021) First microsatellite markers for the European Robin (Erithacus rubecula) and their application in analysis of parentage and genetic diversity. Scientific Reports 11, 18962. Open access

Napierała, A., Maziarz, M., Hebda, G., Broughton, R.K., Rutkowski, T., Zacharyasiewicz, M., Błoszyk, J. (2021) Lack of specialist nidicoles as a characteristic of mite assemblages inhabiting nests of the ground-nesting wood warbler, Phylloscopus sibilatrix (Aves: Passeriformes). Experimental and Applied Acarology 84, 149–170. Open access

Broughton, R.K., Redhead, J.W., Turk, A., Pywell, R.F. (2021) Live-trapping surveys of small mammals on arable field margins on the Hillesden estate in Buckinghamshire (England) during 2005-2011. NERC Environmental Information Data Centre. link

Broughton, R.K., Bellamy, P.E., Hinsley, S.A. (2021) Tree and shrub vegetation surveys in Monks Wood National Nature Reserve, Cambridgeshire, England, 2005-2006. NERC Environmental Information Data Centre. link

  • 2020:

Maziarz, M., Broughton, R.K., Casacci, L.P., Dubiec, A., Maak, I., Witek, M. (2020) Thermal ecosystem engineering by songbirds promotes a symbiotic relationship with ants. Scientific Reports 10, 20330 (2020). Open access here

Broughton, R.K., Bubnicki, J.W., Maziarz, M. (2020) Multi-scale settlement patterns of a migratory songbird in a European primeval forest. Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 74, 128. abstract

Broughton, R.K. (2020) Current and future impacts of predation and competition by invasive Eastern grey squirrels Sciurus carolinensis on European nesting birds. Mammal Review 50, 38-51. abstract

Broughton, R.K., Maziarz, M., Hinsley, S.A. (2020) Marsh Tit (Poecile palustris) territory surveys in English woods during 2002-2020. NERC Environmental Information Data Centre. (Dataset). link

Finch, D., Corbacho, D.P., Schofield, H., Davison, S., Wright, P.G.R., Broughton, R.K., Mathews, F. (2020) Modelling the functional connectivity of landscapes for greater horseshoe bats Rhinolophus ferrumequinum at a local scale. Landscape Ecology 35, 577-589. Open Access

Broughton, R.K., Parry, W. (2020). A Long-tailed Tit Aegithalos caudatus nest constructed from plastic fibres supports the theory of concealment by light reflectance. Ringing & Migration. abstract

  • 2019:

Broughton, R.K., Maziarz, M., Hinsley, S.A. (2019) Social structure of Coal Tits Periparus ater in temperate deciduous forest. Journal of Ornithology 160, 117-126. abstract

Maziarz, M., Grendelmeier, A., Wesołowski, T., Arlettaz, R., Broughton, R.K., Pasinelli, G. (2019) Patterns of predator behaviour and wood warbler Phylloscopus sibilatrix nest survival in a primeval forest. Ibis 161, 854-866. abstract

Parry, W., Broughton, R.K. (2018) Nesting behaviour and breeding success of Willow Tits Poecile montana in north-west England. Ringing & Migration 33, 75-85. abstract

Graham, L., Broughton, R.K., Gerard, F., Gaulton, R. (2019) Remote Sensing Applications for Hedgerows. In: J. Dover (Ed): The Ecology of Hedgerows and Field Margins. Earthscan/Routledge, Abingdon, UK. pp. 72-89.

  • 2018:

Broughton, R.K., Dadam, D., Maziarz, M., Bellamy, P.E., Hinsley, S.A. (2018) An efficient survey method for estimating populations of Marsh Tits Poecile palustris, a low density woodland passerine. Bird Study 65, 299-305 abstract

Broughton, R.K., Day, J.C., Carpenter, J.E., Gosler, A.G., Hinsley, S.A. (2018) Offspring sex ratio of a woodland songbird is unrelated to habitat fragmentation. Journal of Ornithology 159 (2), 593-596. abstract

Broughton, R.K., Clark, J.A. (2018) Understanding potential sources of bias and error in the biometric sexing of birds. Ringing & Migration 32 (2), 79-86. abstract

Melin, M., Hinsley, S.A., Broughton, R.K., Bellamy, P.E., Hill, R.A. (2018) Capabilities of lidar- and satellite data in assessing the drivers of avian diversity in a fragmented landscape. IGARSS 2018 -2018 IEEE International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium, Valencia, Spain, 2018, pp. 6596-6599. doi: 10.1109/IGARSS.2018.8517491 abstract

Gerard, F., George, G., Iglhaut, J., Broughton R.K., Chavana-Bryant, C., White, K., Schonrogge, K. (2018) Deriving hyper spectral reflectance spectra from UAV data collected in changeable illumination conditions to assess vegetation condition. IGARSS 2018 -2018 IEEE International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium, Valencia, Spain, 2018, pp. 8837-8840. doi: 10.1109/IGARSS.2018.8518049 abstract

Maziarz, M., Broughton, R.K., Hebda, G., Wesołowski, T. (2018) Occupation of wood warbler Phylloscopus sibilatrix nests by Myrmica and Lasius ants. Insectes Sociaux 65, 351-355. abstract

Melin, M., Hinsley, S.A., Broughton, R.K., Bellamy, P., Hill, R.A. (2018) Living on the edge: utilising lidar data to assess the importance of vegetation structure for avian diversity in fragmented woodlands and their edges. Landscape Ecology 33 (6), 895-910. abstract

Redhead, J.W., Hinsley, S.A., Beckmann, B.C., Broughton, R.K., Pywell, R.F. (2018) Effects of agri-environmental habitat provision on winter and breeding season abundance of farmland birds. Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment 251, 114-123. abstract

Staley, J.T., Lobley, M., McCracken, M.E., Chiswell, H., Redhead, J.W., Smart, S.M., Pescott, O.L., Jitlal, M., Amy, S.R., Dean, H.J., Ridding, L., Broughton, R., Mountford, J.O. (2018) The environmental effectiveness of the Higher Level Stewardship scheme; Resurveying the baseline agreement monitoring sample to quantify change between 2009 and 2016. Full technical final report. Natural England project ECM 6937. Full report

  • 2017:

Broughton, R.K., Gerard, F., Haslam, R., Howard, A.S. (2017) Woody habitat corridor data in South West England. NERC Environmental Information Data Centre. doi:10.5285/4b5680d9-fdbc-40c0-96a1-4c022185303f link

Maziarz, M., Broughton, R.K., Wesolowski, T. (2017) Microclimate in tree cavities and nest-boxes: implications for hole-nesting birds. Forest Ecology and Management 389, 306-313. abstract BBC media

Hebda, G., Broughton, R.K. (2017) Inter-specific nest re-use by Barn Swallows Hirundo rustica. Bird Study 64, 112-115. abstract

  • 2016:

Broughton, R.K., Burgess, M.D., Dadam, D., Hebda, G., Bellamy, P.E., Hinsley, S.A. (2016) Morphology, geographical variation and the subspecies of Marsh Tit Poecile palustris in Britain and central Europe. Bird Study 63, 58-65. abstract

Day, J.C., Broughton, R.K., Hinsley, S.A. (2016). Sequence and organization of the complete mitochondrial genome of the marsh tit Poecile palustris (Aves: Paridae). Mitochondrial DNA Part A 27, 3212-3213. abstract

Maziarz, M., Wesolowski, T., Hebda, G., Cholewa, M., Broughton, R.K. (2016). Breeding success of the Great Tit Parus major in relation to attributes of natural nest cavities in a primeval forest. Journal of Ornithology 157, 343-354. Open access.

  • 2015:

Broughton, R.K., Hebda, G., Maziarz, M., Smith, K.W., Smith, L., Hinsley, S.A. (2015) Nest-site competition between bumblebees (Bombidae), social wasps (Vespidae) and cavity-nesting birds in Britain and the Western Palearctic. Bird Study 62, 427-437. abstract

Broughton, R.K., Bellamy, P.E., Hill, R.A., Hinsley, S.A. (2015) Winter social organisation of marsh tits Poecile palustris in Britain. Acta Ornithologica 50, 11-21. abstract

Maziarz, M., Broughton, R.K. (2015) Breeding microhabitat selection by great tits Parus major in a deciduous primeval forest (Białowieża National Park, Poland). Bird Study 62, 358-367. abstract

Broughton, R.K., Hinsley, S.A. (2015) The ecology and conservation of the marsh tit in Britain. British Birds 108, 12-28. abstract

  • 2014:

Broughton, R.K., Shore, R.F., Heard, M.S., Amy, S.R., Meek, W.R., Redhead, J.W., Turk, A, Pywell, R.F. (2014) Agri-environment scheme enhances small mammal diversity and abundance at the farm-scale. Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment 192, 122-129. abstract

Broughton, R.K., Bellamy, P.E., Hill, R.A., Hinsley, S.A. (2014) Winter habitat selection by marsh tits Poecile palustris in a British woodland. Bird Study, 61 (3). 404-412. abstract

Hill, R.A., Hinsley, S.A., Broughton, R.K. (2014) Assessing habitats and organism-habitat relationships by airborne laser scanning. In: Maltamo, Matti; Naesset, Erik; Vauhkonen, Jari, (eds.) Forestry applications of airborne laser scanning: concepts and case studies. Dordrecht, Springer, 335-356. (Managing Forest Ecosystems, 27).

  • 2013:

Broughton, R.K., Hill, R.A., Hinsley, S.A. (2013) Relationships between patterns of habitat cover and the historical distribution of the marsh tit, willow tit and lesser spotted woodpecker in Britain. Ecological Informatics 14, 25-30. abstract

Redhead, J.W., Pywell, R.F., Bellamy, P.E., Broughton, R.K., Hill, R.A., Hinsley, S.A. (2013) Great tits Parus major and blue tits Cyanistes caeruleus as indicators of agri-environmental habitat quality. Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment 178, 31-38. abstract

  • 2012:

Broughton, R.K., Hill, R.A., Freeman, S.N., Bellamy, P.E., Hinsley, S.A. (2012) Describing habitat occupation by woodland birds with territory mapping and remotely sensed data: an example using the marsh tit (Poecile palustris). Condor 114, 812-822. abstract

Broughton, R.K., Hill, R.A., Henderson, L.J., Bellamy, P.E., Hinsley, S.A. (2012) Patterns of nest placement in a population of marsh tits Poecile palustris. Journal of Ornithology 153,. 735-746. abstract

  • 2011:

Alderman, J., Hinsley, S.A., Broughton, R.K., Bellamy, P.E. (2011) Local settlement in woodland birds in fragmented habitat: effects of natal territory location and timing of fledging. Landscape Research 36, 553-571. abstract

Broughton, R.K., Hill, R.A., Bellamy, P.E., Hinsley, S.A. (2011) Nest-sites, breeding failure and causes of non-breeding in a population of British Marsh Tits Poecile palustris. Bird Study 58, 229-237. abstract

  • 2010:

Broughton, R.K., Hill, R.A., Bellamy, P.E., Hinsley, S.A. (2010) Dispersal, ranging and settling behaviour of Marsh Tits Poecile palustris in a fragmented landscape in lowland England. Bird Study 57, 458-472. abstract

Hinsley, S.A., Redhead, J.W., Bellamy, P.E., Broughton, R.K., Hill, R.A., Heard, M.S., Pywell, R.F. (2010) Testing agri-environment delivery for farmland birds at the farm scale: the Hillesden experiment. Ibis 152, 500-514. abstract

Hinsley, S.A., Nowakowski, M., Heard, M., Bellamy, P.E., Broughton, R.K., Hulmes, S., Hulmes, L., Peyton, J., Pywell, R.F. (2010) Performance and effectiveness of winter bird food patches established under Environmental Stewardship: results from the Hillesden experiment. In: Boatman, Nigel; Green, Mike; Holland, John; Marshall, Jon; Renwick, Alan; Siriwardena, Gavin; Smith, Barbara; de Snoo, Geert, (eds.) Agri-environment schemes: what have they achieved and where do we go from here? Association of Applied Biologists, 151-158. (Aspects of Applied Biology, 100).

  • pre-2010:

Broughton, R.K. (2009) Separation of Willow Tit and Marsh Tit in Britain: a review. British Birds 102, 604-616. pdf

Hill, R.A., Broughton, R.K. (2009). Mapping Understorey from Leaf-on and Leaf-off Airborne LiDAR Data of Deciduous Woodland. ISPRS Journal of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing 64, 223-233. abstract

Bellamy, P.E., Hill, R.A., Rothery, P., Hinsley, S.A., Fuller, R.J., Broughton, R.K. (2009) Willow Warbler Phylloscopus trochilus habitat in woods with different structure and management in southern England. Bird Study, 56:3, 338-348. abstract

Hinsley, S.A., Hill, R.A., Bellamy, P.E., Broughton, R.K., Harrison, N.M., Mackenzie, J.A., Speakman, J.R. & Ferns, P.N. (2009) Do highly modified landscapes favour generalists at the expense of specialists? An example using woodland birds. Landscape Research 34, 509-526. abstract

Hinsley, S.A., Carpenter, J.E., Broughton, R.K., Bellamy, P.E., Rothery, P., Amar, A., Hewson, C.A., Gosler, A.G. (2007) Habitat selection by Marsh Tits Poecile palustris in the UK. Ibis 149 (Suppl. 2), 224–233.

Broughton, R.K., Hinsley S.A., Bellamy P.E., Hill R.A. & Rothery P. (2006) Marsh Tit Territories in a British Broadleaved Wood. Ibis 148, 744-752. abstract

Broughton, R.K., Osborn, D., Shore, R.S., Wienberg, C.L. & Wadsworth, R.A. (2003) Identifying pollution hotspots from PCB residues in birds of prey. Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry 22, 2519-2524. link

Broughton, R.K. (2002) Birds of the Hull Area. Kingston Press, Hull, UK. pp. 260, ISBN 978-1902039145. link