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Scientists & Staff

Frank R. Thompson

Frank R. Thompson

Research Wildlife Biologist
Sustainable Management of Central Hardwood Ecosystems and Landscapes
202 ABNR Bldg., University of Missouri-Columbia
Columbia, Missouri 65211-7260
Phone: 573-875-5341 x224

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Current Research

I discover and develop information needed for conservation strategies for songbirds and other wildlife. My primary focus is to determine the effects of selected land use practices on forest songbirds, determine population demographics of selected neotropical migratory birds and identify factors regulating populations, and to determine factors affecting nest predation and brood parasitism. This information is used in landscape and habitat modeling to assist with conservation planning at landscape and ecoregional-scales. As Project Leader, I lead a multidisciplinary unit to develop the information needed for sustainable management of Central Hardwood ecosystems.

Research Interests

I am very interested in the development of tools and technologies to assist conservation planners and managers in planning wildlife conservation at large spatial scales. This involves the development of landscape change and wildlife habitat and viability models that can be used with existing data sources and GIS products over large areas such as national forests and ecological sections and provinces.

Why This Research is Important

Land managers and conservationists need tools based on state of the art science to accomplish conservation and management objectives.


  • University of Missouri, Ph.D. Wildlife Biology, 1987
  • University of Vermont, M.S. Wildlife Biology, 1982
  • Rutgers University, Cook College, B.S. Wildlife Science, 1979

Professional Organizations

  • The Wildlife Society
  • The American Ornithologists Union
  • Cooper Ornithological Society

Featured Publications & Products

Publications & Products

National Research Highlights

Many Bird Species Benefit From Oak Savanna Woodland Restoration (2014)
Many bird species of conservation concern in the midwestern United States are associated with early successional or open forest conditions that are maintained by disturbance, such as fire or timber harvest. Growing interest in restoring savannas and woodlands in the Midwest for a variety of objectives can benefit many of these bird species.

Prairie Warbler and Wood Thrush Populations Respond Well to Strategic Conservation Efforts (2013)
A Forest Service scientist and his research partners demonstrated the power of landscape-based population viability models by evaluating responses of prairie warbler and wood thrush populations to different landscape-scale conservation scenarios. They found that relying on randomly placed habitat conservation was ineffective and potentially counterproductive, whereas strategic conservation focused around concentrations of public land and highly forested landscapes reversed regional population declines. These findings will help ensure scarce conservation funding is spent in the most effective manner.

Research Addresses Decline of Young Forests in Central Hardwood Region (2012)
Report details how young forests can be sustainably created and managed in a landscape context

Last updated on : 16-Nov-2016