Juan Masello

Principal Investigator - Giessen, Germany
Giessen, Germany
Juan Masello

I am forced to fly for fieldwork in very remote places (Antarctica, Siberia, Falkland Islands, Azores, Patagonia, etc). But, as I love Nature, I think I need to reduce how much I fly (e.g. conferences, meetings) in order to reduce my footprint on the environment.

Current technology allows good quality virtual communication, of which I am making extensive use. I hope others will follow.

My multidisciplinary areas of interest and research focus on the behavioural ecology, parasitology, and molecular ecology of wild populations of birds. The primary focus of my research has been (1) responses of individuals to changing environmental conditions, (2) foraging strategies, (3) reproductive strategies, 4) individual reproductive performance, and (5) the evolutionary consequences of behaviour. My ornithological research was conducted primarily on wild populations of parrots, penguins, gulls, and other seabirds since these offer excellent opportunities for testing a number of theoretical predictions.

I have been responsible for initiating and leading several projects, among them the ‘Breeding biology of Burrowing Parrots’ (since 1998) and the study of Gentoo Penguin foraging ecology using energy landscapes. As a result, I have long-term data on the breeding biology of Burrowing Parrots, which allowed me, among other future possibilities, to conduct the study of determinants of breeding success in birds such us global climatic events like ENSO.

As early as my MSc, I was interested in the responses of individuals to environmental conditions, and during that time studied zooplanktonic molluscs, Urochordata, phytoplankton, and bacteria in extreme environments such us the South Atlantic Ocean and Antarctica. A further focus of my work is to contribute scientific data to enable more effective conservation of species and ecosystems. Since 2003, I am involved in projects on parrot conservation in co-operation with the Wildlife Conservation Society, the World Parrot Trust, BirdlLife International and Aves Argentinas among others. Since 2014, I am Fellow of the International Ornithologists’ Union (IOU). Since 2018, I am Member of the IOU Council, as well as Chair of the Scientific Programs Committee (SPC) for the 28th International Ornithological Congress.