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Dr. Bradley F. Blackwell



Dr. Blackwell focuses his research toward understanding and exploiting animal sensory ecology and antipredator behavior relative to human-wildlife interactions. He works primarily in the area of aviation safety, but is also interested in applications of sensory ecology and animal behavior within the broader discipline of road ecology and animal detection of and response to various forms of human disturbance.

NWRC Research Project:  Understanding, preventing, and mitigating the negative effects of wildlife collisions with aircraft, other vehicles, and structures

Current studies include:

  • Collaboration with NWRC and Purdue Univ. colleagues to derive rules for animal spatial responses to object approach
  • Collaboration with NWRC, Purdue Univ., and Indiana State Univ. colleagues in understanding avian heart rate as correlate to alert behaviors in response to object approach.
  • Collaboration with NWRC, Mississippi State Univ., and Univ. of Georgia colleagues in quantifying wildlife-aircraft collision risk
  • Collaboration with Purdue University colleague to quantify the visual configuration of several avian species and understand how these metrics influence response to object approach, such as aircraft.
  • Collaboration with Oklahoma State University, Wildlife Services OK, the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, and the USAF to quantify bird-strike Risk near Vance AFB.
  • Development of management guidelines to exploit antipredator behavior and foraging success in birds recognized as hazardous to aviation safety and that use airport grasslands


  • Ph.D., University of Maine, Wildlife Ecology
  • M.S., North Carolina State University, Zoology
  • B.S., North Carolina State University, Animal Science


  • Address: Wildlife Services, NWRC Ohio Field Station, 6100 Columbus Avenue, Sandusky, Ohio 44870
  • Telephone: 419.625.0242
  • Fax: 419.625.8465
  • E-mail: Bradley.F.Blackwell@aphis.usda.gov



DeVault, T.L., B.F. Blackwell, T.W. Seamans, S.L. Lima, and E. Fernandez-Juricic. 2015. Speed kills: ineffective avian escape responses to oncoming vehicles. Proceedings of the Royal Society B 282:20142188.  doi: 10.1098/rspb.2014.2188 

Doppler, M.S., B.F. Blackwell, T.L. DeVault, and E. Fernandez-Juricic. 2015. Cowbird responses to aircraft with lights tuned to their eyes: Implications for bird-aircraft collisions. The Condor 117:165-177. doi:10.1650/CONDOR-14-157.1

Lima, S.L., B.F. Bradwell, T.L. DeVault, and E. Fernandez-Juricic. 2015. Animal reactions to oncoming vehicles : a conceptual review. Biological Reviews 90:60-76.  doi: 10.1111/brv.12093.


Blackwell, B.F., T.W. Seamans, T.L. DeVault. 2014. White-tailed deer response to vehicle approach: Evidence of unclear and present danger. PLoS ONE 9(10):e109988.  doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0109988.

DeVault, T. L., B. F. Blackwell, T. W. Seamans, S. L. Lima, and E. Fernández-Juricic.  2014.  Wildlife-vehicle collisions: do birds accurately assess vehicle speed?  PLoSOne 9(4):e87944.  9 pp.

Drey, K.M., J.A. Martin, J.L. Belant, T.L. DeVault, B.F. Blackwell. 2014. Interactions between wildlife and civil aircraft in Mississippi. Southeastern Naturalist 13(1): 156-165.

DeVault, T.L., T.W. Seamans, J.A. Schmidt, J.L. Belant, B.F. Blackwell, N. Mooers, L.A. Tyson, and L. VanPelt. 2014. Bird use of solar photovoltaic installations at US airports: Implications for aviation safety. Landscape and Urban Planning 122:122-128.  doi:10.1016/j.landurbplan.2013.11.017. 


Seamans, T.W., B.F. Blackwell, and T.L. Devault. 2013. Brown-headed cowbird (Molothrus ater) response to pyrotechnics and lethal removal in a controlled setting. Proceedings of the Wildlife Damage Management Conference 15: 56-62.

Blackwell, B. F., T. W. Seamans, P. M. Schmidt, T. L. De Vault, J. L. Belant, M. J. Whittingham, J. A. Martin, and E. Fernández-Juricic. 2013. "A Framework for Managing Airport Grasslands and Birds Amidst Conflicting Priorities." Ibis 155 (1): 189-193.

DeVault, T. L., B. F. Blackwell, and J. L. Belant, Editors.  2013.  Wildlife in Airport Environments:  Preventing Animal-Aircraft Collisions through Science-based Management.  The Wildlife Society and Johns Hopkins University Press.

DeVault, T. L., M. J. Begier, J. L. Belant, B. F. Blackwell, R. A. Dolbeer, J. A. Martin, T. W. Seamans, and B. E. Washburn. 2013. "Rethinking Airport Land-Cover Paradigms: Agriculture, Grass, and Wildlife Hazards." Human-Wildlife Interactions 7 (1): 10-15.  

Fox, B. J., W. B. Holland, F. L. Boyd, B. F. Blackwell, and J. B. Armstrong. 2013. "Use of Stormwater Impoundments Near Airports by Birds Recognized as Hazardous to Aviation Safety." Landscape and Urban Planning 119: 64-73. 


Blackwell, B. F., T. L. Devault, T. W. Seamans, S. L. Lima, P. Baumhardt, and E. Fernández-Juricic. 2012. "Exploiting Avian Vision with Aircraft Lighting to Reduce Bird Strikes." Journal of Applied Ecology 49 (4): 758-766. 

Blackwell, B. F., T. W. Seamans, L. A. Tyson, J. L. Belant, and K. C. Vercauteren. 2012. "Exploiting Antipredator Behavior in White-Tailed Deer for Resource Protection." Wildlife Society Bulletin 36 (3): 546-553. . 

DeVault, T. L., J. L. Belant, B. F. Blackwell, J. A. Martin, J. A. Schmidt, L. W. Burger Jr., and J. W. Patterson Jr. 2012. "Airports Offer Unrealized Potential for Alternative Energy Production." Environmental Management 49 (3): 517-522.  

Moore, B. A., P. Baumhardt, M. Doppler, J. Randolet, B. F. Blackwell, T. L. DeVault, E. R. Loew, and E. Fernández-Juricic. 2012. "Oblique Color Vision in an Open-Habitat Bird: Spectral Sensitivity, Photoreceptor Distribution and Behavioral Implications." Journal of Experimental Biology 215 (19): 3442-3452. 


De Vault, T. L., J. L. Belant, B. F. Blackwell, and T. W. Seamans. 2011. "Interspecific Variation in Wildlife Hazards to Aircraft: Implications for Airport Wildlife Management." Wildlife Society Bulletin 35 (4): 394-402. 

Fernández-Juricic, E., B. A. Moore, M. Doppler, J. Freeman, B. F. Blackwell, S. L. Lima, and T. L. Devault. 2011. "Testing the Terrain Hypothesis: Canada Geese See their World Laterally and Obliquely." Brain, Behavior and Evolution 77 (3): 147-158. 

Fernández-Juricic, E., J. Gaffney, B. F. Blackwell, and P. Baumhardt. 2011. "Bird Strikes and Aircraft Fuselage Color: A Correlational Study." Human-Wildlife Interactions 5 (2): 224-234. 

Martin, J. A., J. L. Belant, T. L. Devault, B. F. Blackwell, L. W. Burger Jr., S. K. Riffell, and G. Wang. 2011. "Wildlife Risk to Aviation: A Multi-Scale Issue Requires a Multi-Scale Solution." Human-Wildlife Interactions 5 (2): 198-203. 

Seamans, T.W., and B. F. Blackwell.  2011.  Electric shock strips as bird deterrents:  does experience count?  International J. Pest Management 57:357–362.

Tyson, L. A., B. F. Blackwell, and T. W. Seamans. 2011. "Artificial Nest Cavity used Successfully by Native Species and Avoided by European Starlings." Wilson Journal of Ornithology 123 (4): 827-830. 


Bernhardt, G. E., B. F. Blackwell, T. L. Devault, and L. Kutschbach-Brohl. 2010. "Fatal Injuries to Birds from Collisions with Aircraft Reveal Anti-Predator Behaviours." Ibis 152 (4): 830-834. 

Homan, H. J., A. A. Slowik, B. F. Blackwell, and G. M. Linz. 2010. Field testing Class IIIb handheld lasers to disperse roosting blackbirds. Online: National Sunflower Association Research Forum (http://www. sunflowernsa. com/research/research-workshop/documents/Homan_Lasers_10. pdf). National Sunflower Association, Fargo, North Dakota

Keirn, G., J. Cepek, B. Blackwell, and T. Devault. 2010. On a quest for safer skies. The Wildlife Professional Summer 2010:52-55.

King, D. T., B. F. Blackwell, B. Dorr, and J. Belant. 2010. Effects of Aquaculture on Migration and Movement Patterns of Double-crested Cormorants. Human-Wildlife Interactions 1:77−86.

Seamans, T. W., S. Beckerman, J. Hartmann, J. A. Rader, and B. F. Blackwell. 2010. Reporting difference for colored patagial tags on ring-billed bulls. Journal of Wildlife Management 74:1926-1930.


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