Meet Jaime Carlino, our Marion Paviour Awardee 2021

We are very excited to introduce Jaime Carlino, our 2021 Marion Paviour award winner, a graduate student on Humboldt State University’s Barn Owl Research Team. Jaime works in the vineyards of Napa Valley, California and is studying where Barn Owls prefer to nest, how healthy they are and what effects this has on how successfully they reproduce. This work is particularly fascinating for us, as it aligns with our British conservation work providing nest boxes for owls. Jaime tells us more below!

“Hello from northern California, USA! My name is Jaime Carlino (she/her). I am a second-year master’s student in the Department of Wildlife at Humboldt State University (HSU), and a long-time bird lover. I am especially passionate about raptors, and have a unique fondness for owls. I was born and raised in California’s Central Valley, which is well-known for its industrial-scale agriculture, as it provides much of the U.S. and beyond with a variety of crops. I became involved with a local raptor rehabilitation center in high school, which inspired my passion for raptor conservation and my interest in studying how raptors interact and function in agricultural landscapes.

As a graduate student on HSU’s Barn Owl Research Team, I study Barn Owls occupying nest boxes in the winegrape vineyards of Napa Valley, California. For some context, winegrape growers in this world renown wine producing region install nest boxes to encourage the presence of Barn Owls, which are thought to provide pest control services through their consumption of rodents.

I am studying the effects of habitat preferences and individual owl quality on annual reproductive success. Previous students on the team have found that Barn Owls in this system select wooden nest boxes at least 3 meters high, with high proportions of grasslands surrounding the nest box. I am interested in whether these preferences are associated with increased annual reproductive success, hinting that nest box selection may be adaptive, or if there is a potential mismatch. In addition to the effect of habitat preferences on reproductive success, I am also interested in the relationship between reproductive success and intrinsic quality, measured using variation in breast plumage, morphometrics, and age.

With the support of the Hawk Conservancy Trust, I am looking forward to collecting another season of reproductive success data to improve the quality of my data!”

~Jaime Carlino, Marion Paviour Awardee 2021



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