Nancy Mahony

Research Biologist - Grassland and Aerial Insectivore Bird Research

Current research and/or projects

Conservation and management of declining landbird populations with emphasis on grassland and aerial insectivore species

  • Studying the demography and population dynamics of grassland birds in interior BC in relation to land use activities
  • Studying the effects of agricultural practices on grassland birds to support development of Beneficial Management Practices
  • Supporting Environment Canada's exploration of the causes of population decline in aerial insectivore birds
  • Researching the demography of Barn Swallows in BC in relation to other populations across Canada

Professional activities / interests

Co-supervisor of M.Sc. student at Simon Fraser University

Education and awards

Ph.D. Centre for Applied Conservation Research, University of British Columbia, 2003

M.Sc. Watershed Ecosystems Graduate Program, Trent University, 1995

B.Sc. (hon.) Wildlife Biology, University of Guelph, 1988

Key publications

Whitehorne, I. B. J., Harrison, M. L., N. A. Mahony, P. Robinson, A. Newbury and D. J. Green. 2011. Effects of Cattle Grazing on Avifauna in Interior Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) Forests of British Columbia. BC Journal of Ecosystems and Management. 12(3):1-17

Harrison, M. L., N. A. Mahony, P. Robinson, A. Newbury and D. J. Green. 2011. Nest-site selection and productivity of Vesper Sparrows breeding in grazed habitats. Journal of Field Ornithology. 82(2):140–149.

Harrison, M. L., N. A. Mahony, P. Robinson, A. Newbury and D. J. Green. 2010. Vesper Sparrows and Western Meadowlarks Show a Mixed Response to Cattle Grazing in the Intermountain Region of British Columbia. Avian Conservation and Ecology- Écologie et conservation des oiseaux 5 (1): 1.


Lougheed, S. C., E. Croteau, P. G. Krannitz, N. A. Mahony, B. Walker and P. T. Boag. 2007. Genetic population structure of the Sagebrush Brewer’s Sparrow, Spizella breweri breweri, in a fragmented landscape at the northern range periphery.  Conservation Genetics 8(6):1453-1463.

Mahony, N. A., P. G. Krannitz and K. Martin. 2006. Seasonal fecundity of Sagebrush Brewer’s Sparrow (Spizella breweri breweri) at the northern edge of its breeding range. Auk 123: 512-523.

Welsted, K., P. G. Krannitz and N. A. Mahony. 2003. Using survival analysis of artificial and real Brewer’s Sparrow (Spizella breweri breweri) nests to model site level and nest site factors associated with nest success in the south Okanagan region of Canada. USDA Forest Science Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-191.

Mahony, N. A., W. M. Vander Haegen, B. L. Walker and P. G. Krannitz. 2002. Male incubation and multiple brooding in Brewer’s Sparrows. Wilson Bulletin 113(4): 441-444.