Raptor Research Foundation

James Koplin Student Travel Grant

James Koplin Student and Early Career Travel Grant

THE AWARD: The James Koplin Travel Awards are given to up to six students who are the senior authors and presenters of a paper or poster to be presented at the RRF meeting for which travel funds are requested. A recipient from a previous year cannot apply in following years if working on the same degree. Applicants with the greatest financial need will receive the greatest consideration. The selection committee must receive all application materials by the deadline for regular abstracts. That date is included in the announcement of RRF’s annual meeting sent each year to the membership.

This year we are expanding the Koplin grant program, offering three travel grants to early career raptor researchers (ECRRs). Applicants must be no more than three years past graduation, either from an undergraduate or graduate program. The application process for ECRRs will be the same as for current students. Given the late announcement of the new program, the deadline for submitting applications for ECRRs will be 15 June.

ABOUT JAMES KOPLIN: James Koplin was a long-standing member of The Raptor Research Foundation, who passed away in 1987. Perhaps the most significant contribution Jim made to the fields of raptor biology and wildlife ecology was in training young professionals. In his 20-plus years as an educator, thousands of young scientists took his courses in wildlife ecology, management and population dynamics. In recognition of his long-term commitment to training young ecologists, Jim Koplin's contributions are remembered through these travel grants.


TO APPLY: Application materials include:

• A cover letter

• A project description not to exceed one page, single spaced. The project description should be as detailed as one page will permit and must include a brief

introduction outlining the significance and importance of the research, a description of methods, including the analytical approach, and results.

• An itemized budget of costs associated with attending the meeting and an explanation of how the expenses not covered by this award will be met

• A letter of recommendation from the student’s major professor. The letter of recommendation is extremely important and should contain a thorough

evaluation of the applicant’s academic abilities, the significance of the research, the student’s relative contribution to the research, and his or her potential

for future contributions to the field of raptor biology.

AMOUNT: Up to $700 can be requested. The award will also include a free 1-year membership to RRF.

Number of Awards Issued per Year: up to 6

DEADLINE: Abstract submission deadline

Application Method: Apply online before the abstract submission deadline. Please contact awards@raptorresearchfoundation.org with questions about your application. The online application opens in January each year.

Past Recipients

YearKoplin RecipientProject Title
2023João Salvadore FaléUnravelling the trophic dynamics of sympatric raptors in the Tagus estuary during the non-breeding period.
2023Natia JavakhisvilliAssessing occupancy of an elusive forest raptor using passive acoustical monitoring
2023Madeleine BarhamProductivity and nest survival of White-tailed Hawks in south Texas during the 2021-2023 breeding seasons
2023Alexis KentDispersal movements of marked Harris’s Hawks among territories in south Texas
2023Alice VoulesonUsing feathers and blood to understand lead exposure rates in Golden Eagles migrating across Montana
2022Natasha K. MurphyIdentifying mitigation priority areas for human-Osprey conflict using habitat suitability and power infrastructure information.
2022Brooke PoplinForaging Behavior of American Kestrels is Influenced by External Temperature in North Texas.
2022Diego Gallego GarcíaLatitude and body size determine the length of the post-fledgling dependence period in Accipitridae: a review.
2022Stacia A. NovyExamining the relationships between beak shape and diet within a Nearctic-Neotropical raptor clade.
2022Matthew BowersAmerican Kestrels Competing with European Starlings over Nestboxes in Southeastern Pennsylvania.
2022Philip KavouriarisNesting and movement ecology of the American Black Vulture (Coragyps atratus).
2021Mercy MeloRapid Urbanization Alters Winter Abundance and Sex Ratio in the American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
2021Jaime CarlinoBarn Owl (Tyto furcata) Nest Box Selection in Napa Valley, California: Is It Adaptive?
2021Laura EchavezDoes Degree of Reddishness Matter? Polymorphism in Barn Owls (Tyto furcata), Diet Patterns, and Habitat Choice in Napa Valley
2021Christopher VennumAgriculture As a Driver of Population Dynamics in a Hemispheric Migrant
2019Matias JuhantWhat we know about raptor migration within South America
2019Haruki NatsukawaBreeding-sites of the northern goshawk indicate high year-round species richness for birds in an urban ecosystem
2019Katie HarringtonSeasonal time-energy allocation of an island restricted Falconid, the Striated Caracara, using a low-cost, open-source inertial movement GPS logger
2019Rebecca A. McCabeWintering space use of an irruptive species south of the Tundra
2019Sandra CuadrosOverwintering habitat use by a secretive forest raptor: the Broad-winged Hawk (Buteo platypterus)
2019Shivangi MishraBreeding Ecology of endangered Egyptian Vulture Neophron percnopterus (Linnaeus,1758)   in Gangetic Plains of Uttar Pradesh, India
2018Ryan SteinerLinking local and regional weather variables to migration phenology in North American raptors
2018Ivan StarikovPhylogenetic analysis of Elaninae Kites based on nucleotide sequences of mitochondrial and nuclear DNA
2018Vincent SlabeContinental-Scale Patterns of Lead Exposure of Facultative Avian Scavengers
2018Haruki NatsukawaBreeding-state determinants of the endangered Mountain Hawk-eagle revealed by a dynamic multi-state occupancy model
2018Anthony LowneySleeping with the enemy: the extreme associations of the African Pygmy Falcon to Sociable Weaver colonies
2018Ron EfratEffects of early life experience on the behavior of reintroduced Egyptian Vultures
2018Ariana DicksonNon-target exposure of toxins to raptors: anticoagulant rodenticides and Ferruginous Hawks
2017Katheryn A. WatsonDo Swainson’s Hawks use the Stopover or Staging Strategy to Complete Long-distance Migration?
2017Mathieu TétreaultThe Effect of Prey Abundance and Nestling Demand on the Foraging Patterns of Arctic-breeding Peregrine Falcons
2017Mitchell L. PruittWinter Occurrence of Roosting Behavior of Northern Saw-whet Owls in NW Arkansas
2017Danielle VaguineSexual Segregation in American Kestrels in North Texas
2017Ben DudekThe Role of Disease and Ectoparasites in the Ecology of Nesting Golden Eagless
2016Christopher VennumDemographics and recruitment of Swainson’s Hawks
2016Sara PourzamaniVocalization and nest defense of Burrowing Owls in the Snake River Birds of Prey Area
2015J Rowen Van EedenMartial Eagles in Kruger Park
2015Marie-Sophie Garcia-HerasAssessing the health status of a scarce and threatened raptor endemic to southwestern Africa, the Black Harrier
2015Megan JudkinsGenomics of Bald Eagles
2015Tempe ReganBarn Owl Roadway Mortality in Southern Idaho
2015Robert SpaulRecreation disturbance to Golden Eagles
2014Jamie WadeBehavioral Responses of Burrowing Owls to Experimental Brood Parasitism
2014Julio GallardoThe Puerto Rican Sharp-shinned Hawk (Accipiter striatus vennator): An Insular Species on the Edge of Extinction
2014Joseph EisaguierreGyrfalcon (Falco rusticolus) Movements and Home Ranges on the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, Alaska
2013Luis Cruz-MartinezExposure and effects of oil sands-related emissions on American Kestrels in Western Canada
2013Helena AguiarHarpy Eagle habitat use and home range size at different scenarios in the Brazilian Amazon
2012nonenot awarded (joint meeting with other North American ornithological societies)
2011Kristin KeyesShort-eared Owl (Asio flammeus) spatial origins across North America: a stable isotope approach
2011Jean-Francois TherrienAvian predators play a key role in population regulation and energy flux of the arctic tundra food web
2011Ben SkipperIs aggressive nest defense by urban Mississippi Kites (Ictinia mississippiensis) triggered by landscape features?
2010Romeo TinajeroEffects of Habitat Fragmentation on the Breeding Ecology and Territory Size of Harris’s Hawks in the Desert of Baja California Sur, México
2009 No applications received
2008Sofi HindmarchHabitat Transformed: How is Barn Owl (Tyto alba) Distribution and Breeding Success Influenced by Land Use in The Fraser Valley, British Colombia?
2006noneRRF contributed its travel award to the NAOC pool of student travel funds
2005Jessi L. BrownExploring Aplomado Falcon Nest Success by Modeling Daily Nest Survival Rates
2004Nicole TaylorNestling sex ratio variation in Burrowing Owls
2003Colleen MoultonTerritory defense of nesting Burrowing Owls: responses to simulated conspecific intrusion
1999Caroline E. DeppeDo eyespots on Northern Pygmy Owls influence avian mobbing behaviour?
1999Brian W. SmithEctoparasites on Burrowing Owls: potential effects on nest site re-use and growth, body condition and survival of juveniles
1998Not awarded 
1997Brian SmithBurrowing Owls prefer large nest chambers: results of experiments using artificial burrows
1996Ruth TingayPhilopatry and inter-year nest site fidelity in American Kestrels near Hawk Mountain, PA
1995Daniel R. ArdiaEffect of time of day and weather on survey route efficiency for non-breeding American Kestrels
1994Johanna M. WardEffects of experimental food addition on the reproductive ecology of the Northern Goshawk during brood rearing
1993Elsie V. SchmidtMorphological and genetic variation in migratory raptors
1992Laura B. Rivera-Rodriguez Breeding ecology of the Crested Caracara in the Cape Region, B.C.S., Mexico
1991James R. Duncan 
1990Bryan Kimsey 
1989Vanessa M. Dickinson 
1989Gustavo D. Danemann Breeding ecology of the Osprey in the high density, ground nesting colony of Ballena Island, San Ignacio Lagoon, Baja California Sur, Mexico