Naturalist and author Tim Birkhead studies the reproductive biology and behavior of birds.

Why you should listen

Tim Birkhead is a professor of behavior and evolution at the University of Sheffield. His research on promiscuity and sperm competition in birds helped to re-shape current understanding of bird mating systems. His undergraduate teaching includes courses in animal behavior and the history and philosophy of science.

Since 1972 Birkhead has maintained a long-term study of guillemots on Skomer Island, Wales. Tim has been president of the International Society for Behavioural Ecology and currently serves on the management committee of the Darwin Correspondence Project.

Birkhead has written for New Scientist, BBC Wildlife, Natural History magazine and The Independent and has a regular column in the Times Higher Education. His most recent book The Wisdom of Birds is an illustrated account of how we know what we know about birds.

What others say

“The evolving narratives attaching to certain birds, which Birkhead has so elegantly explored, demonstrate how important they have been to our understanding of natural science.” — The Guardian

Tim Birkhead’s TED talk