AOU Award Winner: Patricia Parker

Every year AOU and COS present professional awards to honor members for their service and contributions to science.  Today we’re featuring the 2016 winner of AOU’s prestigious Brewster Award.

Patty ParkerDr. Patricia Parker of the University of Missouri-Saint Louis and the Saint Louis Zoo won the William Brewster Award, bestowed each year to the author or co-authors of an exceptional body of work on birds of the Western Hemisphere.

The last two decades of Dr. Parker’s forty-year research career have focused on the evolution, diseases, and conservation of the birds of the Galápagos Islands. She has made enormous contributions to ornithology through the development of creative new applications of DNA analysis while producing more than 180 publications and training and inspiring a broad array of students and professionals early in their career.

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Submit Papers to Auk and Condor!

Attention ornithologists: here are some of the reasons to submit your manuscript to The Auk: Ornithological Advances or The Condor: Ornithological Applications.

  • Weekly publication of articles, 8-9 weeks after acceptance
  • Fast first-decision times, averaging only 33 days
  • Lowest open access fee (no page charges with OA)
  • Author publicity via EurekAlert
  • Uniquely qualified copyeditors, figure editor, translators
  • Highly ranked in ornithology: Auk #1 and Condor #5 over 5 years

Auk and Condor, Abby McBride
Image: Abby McBride

The Auk: Ornithological Advances and The Condor: Ornithological Applications are publications of the American Ornithological Society.

Student Presentation Award Winners

Each year we are proud to recognize students who have given outstanding presentations at the annual meeting (this year, held at the North American Ornithological Conference in Washington DC).

In 2016 AOU honored Allison Lansverk, Laura Farwell, Ping Huang, Nick Sly, and Gunnar Kramer. Read about the AOU awards and recipients.

COS honored Katie LaBarbera, Richard Hedley, Michelle Peach, and Andy Boyce. Read about the COS awards and recipients.

Blue-and-yellow Macaw by Luc Viatour
Blue-and-yellow Macaw by Luc Viatour CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Logo Contest: New Look for Merged Society

AOU and COS are merging, forming the new American Ornithological Society (AOS) to serve ornithologists and advance ornithology in the 21st century. To go with our new name, we are developing a new image to reflect who we are and what we are about—and we would love to have input from the ornithology community.

How do you think our new logo should look?  We invite you to submit original AOS logo designs or concepts, whether they are polished graphics files or hand-drawn sketches. The winning design will receive a $500 prize.

Deadline:  Saturday, 15 October, at midnight EASTERN


  • Please email your entry to Dr. Mark Hauber at
  • Please submit an electronic file in jpg, png, gif, ai, or indd file format
  • Submissions must include your name and email address
  • Please include a short description of how the design represents AOS

Guidelines: We are looking for a logo or logo concept that captures the essence of AOS as a new organization. Entries will be judged for the style, creativity, and impact of a design that can be used in the web, email, and print materials of AOS. Entries may optionally include the name American Ornithological Society and tagline Advancing Scientific Knowledge and Conservation of Birds.

More about AOS: The mission of AOS will not depart from the complementary missions of AOU and COS: to advance the scientific understanding of birds and disseminate ornithological knowledge, to enrich ornithology as a profession and mentor young professionals , and to promote a rigorous scientific basis for the conservation of birds.

AOS’s vision is to provide an inclusive and stimulating professional home for ornithologists that supports members at every career stage, from students through retirement; to produce scientific publications of the highest quality and make them available to the widest audiences possible; to host intellectually engaging and professionally vital meetings; to pursue a global perspective; and to inform public policy on all issues important to ornithology and ornithological collections.

AOS’s long range goals are to:

  1. Sustain scientific impact through financial support for ornithological research
  2. Publish openly accessible ornithological research of the highest quality
  3. Pursue excellence in organizing and hosting annual conferences that meet the ever-changing needs of ornithology and ornithologists
  4. Excel in professional development for members at all stages of their careers
  5. Recognize and promote significant accomplishments in ornithology
  6. Create and connect a vibrant community of ornithologists throughout the Americas

Individuals serving on the panel of appointed judges are not eligible to submit entries. The contest winner must relinquish all rights to the design to AOS, which will be the sole owner of rights to the design. AOS may employ a graphic designer to finalize the winning design submission into an official logo. Decisions of the judges will be final.

COS Professional Awards of 2016

The Cooper Ornithological Society announced the winners of three professional awards during the society’s annual meeting, held in August at the North American Ornithological Conference in Washington, D.C.

The Young Professional Award recognizes early-career researchers for their outstanding scientific research and contributions to the ornithological profession. In 2016, the society awarded Young Professional Awards to Daniel Baldassarre, University of Miami (Sexual selection and speciation in the red-backed fairywren) and Peter Hosner, University of Florida (‘Continental’ bird speciation in an oceanic archipelago).

The Loye and Alden Miller Research Award for lifetime achievement in ornithological research was presented to Walter Koenig, for his foundational contributions to ornithology, ecology, and behavioral ecology and the uniting of these and related disciplines through his integrative, interdisciplinary investigations of birds and their environments. His long-term study of Acorn Woodpeckers, which he continues to lead after more than four decades of continual investigation, is among the most influential of such studies, in part because it has continued to evolve as new generations of field and lab techniques provided opportunities to ask new questions at all levels of biological organization, from proximate to ultimate.

The Katma Award, for an outstanding paper related to ornithology that offers unconventional idea or innovative approaches, was presented to Drs. Muhammad Asghar, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden, Dennis Hasselquist, Lund University, Lund, Sweden, Bengt Hansson, Lund University, Pavel Zehtindjiev, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Sofia, Bulgaria, Helena Westerdahl, Lund University, and Staffan Bensch, Lund University, for their paper “Hidden costs of infection: Chronic malaria accelerates telomere degradation and senescence in wild birds” which appeared in 2015 in Science (347:436–438).

Learn more about COS’s professional awards here.