About me

Ecologist working for WWT since 1999 with a keen interest in behavioural ecology (PhD in rook ecology, Durham), ornithology and botany and the application of remote sensing, drone and telemetry techniques to the challenges many species currently face and in the pursuit of immutable scientifically objective data collected by the organisms themselves.

Work

Out-posted Principal Research Officer based at WWT Caerlaverock Wetland Centre, Dumfries, Scotland; prime research interests are telemetry studies into various goose species including Svalbard barnacle geese, Greenland white-fronted geese, Taiga bean geese and Icelandic/Greenlandic pink-footed geese, with the broad aims of uncovering life-history traits of declining species of conservation concern or elucidating their response to human infrastructure developments such as wind turbines. Telemetry techniques have also been used in relation to Icelandic whooper swan and Bewick’s swan migration with regard to the latter. Much of this is UK based autumn and winter work, and in spring the Scottish breeding population of common scoter becomes a subject of intensive observational study as do the local populations of breeding waders, natterjack toad and rare tadpole shrimps, recently discovered on site, and one of only two extant sites in the UK.

Skills

Proficient and licensed in the use of telemetry techniques from collars and backpacks on geese, swans and cranes to geolocators on the leg rings of ducks. Heavily involved in the design of collar tags for geese and swans so that welfare impacts on the birds can be at the forefront of design. Licensed cannon-netter and “A” ringer. Long history of using GIS platforms and their use in framing relevant questions, practicalities of use and limitations and data needs; most recently including QGIS having switched from ESRI products. Excellent botany – including moorland and aquatic macrophyte contract surveys - and ornithology identification skills. Independent management of fieldwork, time and budget commitments on many medium-term and short-term contracts for WWT, having secured funding for nearly all work carried out for the Trust.

Publications

Reports

Griffin, L.R., Burrell, E.M., Harrison, A.L., Mitchell, C. & Hilton, G.M. 2018. Conservation management of Greenland white-fronted geese Anser albifrons flavirostris on Islay, Scotland. Scottish Natural Heritage Commissioned Report.

Griffin, L.R. 2017. Svalbard Barnacle Goose distribution around the Solway Firth 2016-2017: Flock counts from the Solway goose Management Scheme area. WWT report to Scottish Natural Heritage. (An annual report).

Minshull, B.C., Mitchell, C., Maciver, A. & Griffin, L. 2014. Report on the collation of field use data relating to wintering bean geese on the Slamannan Plateau. Scottish Natural Heritage, Commissioned Report No. 711.

Griffin, L., Rees, E. & Hughes, B. 2011. Migration routes of Whooper Swans and geese in relation to wind farm footprints: Final report. WWT Report to the Department of Energy and Climate Change, Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust, Slimbridge, Gloucester. 87 pp.

Francis, I., Mitchell, C., Griffin, L. & Fox, A.D. 2011. Greenland White-fronted Geese. Land use and conservation at small wintering sites in Scotland.GWGS/WWT report to SNH.

Mitchell, C., Francis, I., Griffin, L., Stroud, D., Thomas, H., Weegman, M. & Fox, A.D. 2011. Greenland White-fronted Geese: Investigating causes of low reproductive output in Greenland. Report on fieldwork in spring 2010. GWGS/WWT report to SNH.

Griffin, L., Rees, E. & Hughes, B. 2010. The Migration of Whooper Swans in Relation to Offshore Wind

Farms. WWT Final Report to COWRIE Ltd. WWT, Slimbridge. 69 pp.

Mitchell, C., Griffin, L., Trinder, M. & Newth, J. 2010. The population size of breeding greylag geese Anser anser in Scotland in 2008/09. Scottish Natural Heritage Commissioned Report No. 371.

Papers

2017

Fox, A.D., Frederiksen, M., Heinicke, T., Clausen, K.K., van der Jeugd, H.P., Paasivaara, A., Griffin, L., Carl Mitchell, C. & Helle, P. (in press). Annual survival estimates of Taiga Anser fabalis fabalis and Tundra Bean Geese A. f. rossicus wintering in Western Europe. Journal of Ornithology.

Weegman, M.D., Bearhop, S., Hilton, G.M., Walsh, A.J., Griffin, L., Resheff, H., Nathan, R. & Fox, A.D. 2017. Using accelerometry to compare costs of extended migration in an Arctic herbivore. Current Zoology 63:667-674.

Weegman, M.D., Fox, A.D.,Hilton, G.M., Hodgson, D.J., Walsh, A.J., Griffin, L.R. & Bearhop, S. 2017. Diagnosing the decline of the Greenland White-fronted Goose Anser albifrons flavirostris using population and individual level techniques. Wildfowl 67:3-18.

Mitchell, C., Griffin, L., Maciver, A & Minshull, B. 2017. Scotland’s Bean Geese and the spring 2017 migration. Short Note. Scottish Birds 37:126-134.

Sellers, G.S., Griffin, L.R., Hänfling, B. & Gómez, A. 2017. A new molecular diagnostic tool for surveying and monitoring Triops cancriformis populations. PeerJ 5:e3228; DOI 10.7717/peerj.3228

Shariati, M., Skidmore, A.K., Darvishzadeh, R., Klaus-Michael Exo, K-M., Kölzsch, A., Griffin, L., Stahl, J., Cabot, D. & Toxopeus, A.G. 2017. Expert system for modelling stopover site selection by barnacle geese. Ecological Modelling 359:398-405.

Kölzsch, A., Voslamber, B., Griffin, L., Mitchell, C., Logotheti, A., Boudewijn, T., Glazov, P., Kruckenberg, H. & Müskens, G. 2017. Advantages of neckband GPS tags on grey geese. Goose Bulletin 22:3-16.

2016

Mitchell, C., Griffin, L., Maciver, A., Minshull, B. & Makan, N. 2016. Migration routes, stop-over locations and breeding area of Taiga Bean Geese Anser fabalis fabalis wintering in central Scotland. Bird Study 63: 437-446.

Shariati-Najafabadi, M., Darvishzadeh, R., Skidmore, A.K., Kölzsch, A., Exo, K.M., Nolet, B.A., Griffin, L., Stahl, J., Havinga, P.J.M., Meratnia, N. & Toxopeus, A.G. 2016. Environmental parameters linked to the last migratory stage of barnacle geese en route to their breeding sites. Animal Behaviour 118: 81-95.

2015

Kölzsch, A., Bauer, S., de Boer, R., Griffin, L., Cabot, D., Exo, K-M., van der Jeugd, H.P. & Nolet, B.A. 2015. Forecasting spring from afar? Timing of migration and predictability of phenology along different migration routes of an avian herbivore. Journal of Animal Ecology 84: 272-283.

Urquhart, C., Fox, A.D., Francis, I., Griffin, L., Mitchell, C., Stroud, D.A. 2015. Greenland white-fronted goose. In: The Species Action Framework Handbook, Gaywood, M.J., Boon, P.B., Thompson, D.B.A., Strachan, I.M. (eds). Scottish Natural Heritage, Battleby, Perth.

2014

Shariatinajafabadi, M., Wang, T., Skidmore, A.K., Toxopeus, A.G., Kölzsch, A., Nolet, B.A., Exo, K-M., Griffin, L., Stahl, J. & Cabot, D. 2014. Migratory Herbivorous Waterfowl Track Satellite-Derived Green Wave Index. Plos One 9(9): 1-11.

de Boer, R., Bauer, S., van der Jeugd, H.P., Ens, B.J., Griffin, L., Cabot, D., Exo, K-M., Nolet, B.A. & Kölzsch, A. 2014. Een vergelijking van de voorjaarstrek van drie populaties Brandganzen met behulp van GPS-satellietzenders. Limosa 87: 99-106.

Adams, C.E., Griffin, L.R., Benzies, E., Aherne, D., Bean, C.W., Dodd, J., Fairlamb, D. & Maitland, P.S. 2014. Short range dispersal by a rare, obligate freshwater crustacean Triops cancriformis (Bosc). Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems 24: 48-55.

Fox, A.D., Weegman, M.D., Bearhop, S., Hilton, G.M., Griffin, L., Stroud, D.A. & Walsh, A. 2014. Climate change and contrasting plasticity in timing of a two-step migration episode of an Arctic-nesting avian herbivore. Current Zoology 60 (2): 233242.

Sarkar, D., Chapman, C.A., Griffin, L. & Sengupta, R. 2015. Analyzing Animal Movement Characteristics from Location Data. Transactions in GIS 19(4): 516–534.

2013

Safi, K, Kranstauber, B., Weinzierl, R., Griffin, L., Rees, E.C., Cabot, D., Cruz, S., Proaño, C., Takekawa, J.Y., Newman, S.H., Waldenström, J., Bengtsson, D., Kays, R., Wikelski, M. & Bohrer, G. 2013. Flying with the wind: scale dependency of speed and direction measurements in modelling wind support in avian flight. Movement Ecology 1:4.

2011

Feber, R., Hilton, G.M., Hutchins, E., Griffin, L., Ewald, N.,Pain, D., Biggs, J., Hughes, I. & Macdonald, D. 2011. Ecology and conservation of the Tadpole Shrimp Triops cancriformis in Britain. British Wildlife June 2011. 334-341.

Fox, A.D. Mitchell, C., Weegman, M.D., Griffin, L.R., Thomas, H. Stroud, D.A. & Francis, I.S. 2011. Potential factors influencing increasing numbers of Canada Geese Branta canadensis in west Greenland. Wildfowl 61: 30-44.

Mitchell, C., Griffin, L., Trinder, M., Newth, J. & Urquhart, C. 2011. The status and distribution of summering Greylag Geese in Scotland, 2008/09. Bird Study 58: 338-348.

Pennycuick, C.J., Griffin, L. R., Colhoun, K. & Angwin, R. 2011. A trial of a non-statistical computer program for monitoring fuel reserves, response to wind and other details from GPS tracks of migrating geese. Journal for Ornithology 152 (Suppl. 1): S87-S99.