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Department of Zoology



I am interested in a wide range of topics in ecology and conservation, with particular experience of climate change and the ecology of birds and urban areas. I am passionate about ensuring that conservation interventions are based on evidence, and that their outcomes are monitored. I currently work as part of Bill Sutherland's group; my roles include organising the annual horizon scan of global issues for conservation, and acting as managing editor of the journal Conservation Evidence.

Previously I worked as a research ecologist for the British Trust for Ornithology, and was involved in projects investigating the impacts of climate change on natural populations and factors affecting long-distance migrant birds. Before that I worked for the RSPB, running a project investigating the causes of the decline of the urban house sparrow population in London.


Key publications: 

Ockendon, N., Thomas, D.H.L., Cortina, J., Adams, W.M., Aykroyd, T., Barov, B., Boitani, L., Bonn, A., Branquinho, C., Brombacher, M., Burrell, C., Carver, S., Crick, H.Q.P., Duguy, B., Everett, S., Fokkens, B., Fuller, R.J., Gibbons, D.W.,  Gokhelashvili, R., Griffin, C., Halley, D.J., Hotham, P., Hughes, F.M.R., Karamanlidis, A.A., McOwen, C.J., Miles, L., Mitchell, R., Rands, M.R.W., Roberts, J., Sandom, C.J., Spencer, J.W., ten Broeke, E., Tew, E.R., Thomas, C.D., Timoshyna, A., Unsworth, R.K.F., Warrington, S., Sutherland, W.J. (2018) One hundred priority questions for landscape restoration in Europe. Biological Conservation, 221, 198-208, doi: 10.1016/j.biocon.2018.03.002.

Sutherland, W. J., Barnard, P., Broad, S., Clout, M., Connor, B., Côté, I. M., Dicks, L. V., Doran, H., Entwistle, A. C., Fleishman, E., Fox, M., Gaston, K. J., Gibbons, D. W., Jiang, Z., Keim, B., Lickorish, F. A., Markillie, P., Monk, K. A., Pearce-Higgins, J. W., Peck, L. S., Pretty, J., Spalding, M. D., Tonneijck, F. H., Wintle, B. C. & Ockendon, N. (2017) A 2017 Horizon Scan of Emerging Issues for Global Conservation and Biological Diversity. Trends in Ecology & Evolution. doi: 10.1016/j.tree.2016.11.005

Sutherland, W. J., Broad, S., Caine, J., Clout, M., Dicks, L. V., Doran, H., Entwistle, A. C., Fleishman, E., Gibbons, D. W.; Keim, B., LeAnstey, B., Lickorish, F. A., Markillie, P., Monk, K. A., Mortimer, D., Ockendon, N., Pearce-Higgins, J. W., Peck, L. S., Pretty, J., Rockström, J., Spalding, M. D., Tonneijck, F. H., Wintle, B. C. & Wright, K. E. (2016) A horizon scan of global conservation issues for 2016. Trends in Ecology & Evolution31, 44-53. doi: 10.1016/j.tree.2015.11.007

Sutherland, W.J., Dicks, L.V., Ockendon, N., and Smith, R.K. (2015) What Works in Conservation. OpenBook Publishers. Available at:

Sutherland, W. J., Clout, M., Depledge, M., Dicks, L. V., Dinsdale, J., Entwistle, A. C., Fleishman, E., Gibbons, D. W.; Keim, B., Lickorish, F. A., Monk, K. A., Ockendon, N., Peck, L. S., Pretty, J., Rockström, J., Spalding, M. D., Tonneijck, F. H., Wintle, B. C. (2015) A horizon scan of global conservation issues for 2015. Trends in Ecology & Evolution, 30, 17-24. doi: 10.1016/j.tree.2014.11.002

Pearce-Higgins, J. W., Ockendon, N., Baker, D. J., Carr, J., White, E. C., Almond, R. E. A., Amano, T., Bertram, E., Bradbury, R. B., Bradley, C., Butchart, S. H. M., Doswald, N., Foden, W., Gill, D. J. C., Green, R. E., Sutherland, W. J. & Tanner, E. V. J. (2015) Geographical variation in species' population responses to changes in temperature and precipitation Proceedings of the Royal Society B 282; doi: 10.1098/rspb.2015.1561

Ockendon, N., Baker, D. J., Carr, J. A., White, E. C., Almond, R. E. A., Amano, T., Bertram, E., Bradbury, R. B., Bradley, C., Butchart, S. H. M., Doswald, N., Foden, W., Gill, D. J. C., Green, R. E., Sutherland, W. J., Tanner, E. V. J. & Pearce-Higgins, J. W. (2014). Mechanisms underpinning climatic impacts on natural populations: altered species interactions are more important than direct effects. Global Change Biology, 20, 2221–2229. doi: 10.1111/gcb.12559

Ockendon, N., Leech, D. I., & Pearce-Higgins, J.W. (2013). Climatic effects on breeding grounds are more important drivers of breeding phenology in migrant birds than carry-over effects from wintering grounds. Biology Letters, 9, 20130669. doi: 10.1098/rsbl.2013.0669

Ockendon, N., Hewson, C. M., Johnston, A., & Atkinson, P. W. (2012). Declines in British-breeding populations of Afro-Palaearctic migrant birds are linked to bioclimatic wintering zone in Africa, possibly via constraints on arrival time advancement. Bird Study59, 111-125.

Other publications: 

Pearce-Higgins, J.W., Beale, C.M., Oliver, T.H., August, T.A., Carroll, M., Massimino, D., Ockendon, N., Savage, J., Wheatley, C.J., Ausden, M.A. and Bradbury, R.B. (2017) A national-scale assessment of climate change impacts on species: assessing the balance of risks and opportunities for multiple taxa. Biological Conservation, 213, 124-134. doi: 10.1016/j.biocon.2017.06.035

Ockendon, N., Johnston, A., & Baillie, S. R. (2014) Rainfall on wintering grounds affects population change in many species of Afro-Palaearctic migrants. Journal of Ornithology, 155, 905-917. 

Johnston, A., Ausden, M., Dodd, A. M., Bradbury, R. B., Chamberlain, D. E., Jiguet, F., Thomas, C. D., Cook, A. S., Newson, S. E., Ockendon, N., Rehfisch, M.M., Roos, S., Thaxter, C. B., Brown, A., Crick, H. Q. P., Douse, A., McCall, R. A., Pontier, H., Stroud, D. A., Cadiou, B., Crowe, O.,  Deceuninck, B., Hornman, M. & Pearce-Higgins, J. W. (2013) Observed and predicted effects of climate change on species abundance in protected areas. Nature Climate Change, 3, 1055-1061. doi:10.1038/nclimate2035

Newson, S. E., Ockendon, N., Joys, A., Noble, D. G., & Baillie, S. R. (2009) Comparison of habitat‐specific trends in the abundance of breeding birds in the UK. Bird Study, 56, 233-243.

Ockendon, N., Davis, S. E., Toms, M. P., & Mukherjee, S. (2009). Eye size and the time of arrival of birds at garden feeding stations in winter. Journal of Ornithology150, 903-908.

Ockendon, N., Davis, S. E., Miyar, T., & Toms, M. P. (2009). Urbanization and time of arrival of common birds at garden feeding stations. Bird Study56, 405-410.

Ockendon, N., Griffith, S.C., & Burke, T. (2009). Extrapair paternity in an insular population of house sparrows after the experimental introduction of individuals from the mainland. Behavioral Ecology 20, 305-312.

Nakagawa, S., Ockendon, N., Gillespie, D. O., Hatchwell, B. J., & Burke, T. (2007). Assessing the function of house sparrows' bib size using a flexible meta-analysis method. Behavioral Ecology18, 831-840.

Griffith, S. C., Dawson, D. A., Jensen, H., Ockendon, N., Greig, C., Neumann, K., & Burke, T. (2007). Fourteen polymorphic microsatellite loci characterized in the house sparrow Passer domesticus (Passeridae, Aves). Molecular Ecology Notes7, 333-336.

Nakagawa, S., Ockendon, N., Gillespie, D. O., Hatchwell, B. J., & Burke, T. (2007). Does the badge of status influence parental care and investment in house sparrows? An experimental test. Oecologia153, 749-760.

Conservation Biology Coordinator

Contact Details

Room 3.01 David Attenborough Building
01223 (7)68921