Richard T. Holmes

Dartmouth College
Department of Biological Sciences
Hanover, NH 03755
Telephone: (603) 646-2078
FAX: (603) 646-1347


Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley, 1964
B.S., Humboldt State University, 1959

Professional Positions:
  • Ronald and Deborah Harris Professor of Environmental Biology, Dartmouth College, 1992-2004 ; Emeritus, 2004-
  • Professor of Biological Sciences, Dartmouth College, 1976-2004; Emeritus, 2004-
  • Chair, Department of Biological Sciences, Dartmouth College, 1983-88, 1989-91;
  • Visiting Senior Scientist, The Australian Museum, Sydney, 1980-81;
  • Visiting Research Fellow, Oxford University, Oxford, England, 1973-74;
  • Associate Professor of Biology, Dartmouth College, 1970-76;
  • Assistant Professor of Biology, Dartmouth College, 1967-70;
  • Assistant Professor of Biology, Tufts University, 1965-67;
  • Lecturer in Biology, University of California, Santa Barbara, 1964-65.

  • Research Interests and Activities:
    Avian population and behavioral ecology; role of animals in ecosystem processes; forest ecology

    Distinguished Awards and Memberships:
    Brewster Medal from American Ornithologists' Union; Lifetime achievement awards from Cooper Ornithological Society, Wilson Ornithological Society.

    Selected Publications:

    Holmes, R.T., and G. E. Likens. 2016. Hubbard Brook: The Story of a Forest Ecosystem. Yale University Press, New Haven. pp 1-270.

    Townsend, A. K., E. G. Cooch, T. S. Sillett, N. L. Rodenhouse, R. T. Holmes, and M. S. Webster. 2016. Contrasting effects of warm springs and global climate cycles on population dynamics of a migratory songbird. Global Change Biology 22: 544-555 (doi: 10.1111/gcb.13053).

    Marra, P. P., C. E. Studds, S. Wilson, T. S. Sillett, T. W. Sherry, and R. T. Holmes. 2015. Non-breeding season habitat quality mediates the strength of density-dependence for a migratory bird. 2015. Proceedings of the Royal Society London B 282,

    Sherry, T.W., S. Wilson, S. Hunter, and R.T. Holmes. 2015. Impacts of nest predators and weather on reproductive success and population limitation in a long-distance migratory songbird. Journal of Avian Biology 46: 559- 569.

    Lany, N.K., M. P. Ayres, E.E. Stange, T.S. Sillett, N.L. Rodenhouse, and R.T. Holmes. 2015. Breeding timed to maximize reproductive success for a migratory songbird: the importance of phenological asynchrony. Oikos, doi: 10.1111/oik.02412.

    Holmes, R.T. 2011. Avian population and community processes in forest ecosystems: long-term studies in the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest. Forest Ecology and Management 262: 20-31.

    Goetz, S.J., S. Steinberg, M. Betts, R.T. Holmes, P. Doran, R. Duayah, and M. Hofton. 2010. Lidar remote sensing variables predict breeding habitat of a Neotropical migrant bird. Ecology 91: 1569-1576.

    Holmes, R.T. 2007. Understanding population change in migratory songbirds: long-term and experimental studies of Neotropical migrants in breeding and wintering areas. Ibis, in press.

    Johnson, M.D., T.W. Sherry, R.T. Holmes, and P.P. Marra. 2006. Assessing habitat quality for a migratory songbird wintering in natural and agricultural habitats. Conservation Biology 20: 12433-1444.

    Sillett, T.S., and R.T. Holmes. 2005. Long-term demographic trends, limiting factors, and the strength of density dependence in a breeding population of a migratory songbird. Pp. 414-425 in Birds of Two Worlds: Advances in the Ecology and Evolutiion of Temperate-Tropical Migration Systems. Johns Hopkins Press, Baltimore

    Nagy, L.R., and R.T. Holmes. 2004. Factors influencing fecundity in migratory songbirds: is nest predtion the most important? Journal of Avian Biology 35: 487-491.

    Sillett, T.S., N.L. Rodenhouse and R.T. Holmes. 2004. Experimentally reducing neighbor density affects reproduction and behavior of a migratory songbird. Ecology 85: 2467-2477.

    Jones, J., P.J. Doran, and R.T. Holmes. 2003. Climate and food synchronize regional forest bird abundances. Ecology 84: 3024-3032.

    Rubenstein, D.R., C. P. Chamberlain, R.T. Holmes, et al. 2002. Linking breeding and wintering ranges of a Neotropical migrant songbird using stable isotopes. Science 295:591-593.

    Sillett, T.S., and R.T. Holmes. 2002. Variation in survivorship of a migratory songbird throughout its annual cycle. Journal of Animal Ecology 71:296-308

    Chuang-Dobbs, H.C., M.S. Webster, and R.T. Holmes. 2001. Paternity and parental care in the Black-throated Blue Warbler (Dendroica caerulescens). Animal Behavior 62:83-92.

    Holmes, R.T., and T.W. Sherry. 2001. 30-year bird population trends in an unfragmented temperate deciduous forest: the importance of habitat change. Auk 118:589-609.

    Strong, A.M., T.W. Sherry, and R.T. Holmes. 2000. Bird predation on herbivorous insects: indirect effects on sugar maple saplings. Oecologia 125:370-379.

    Sillett, T.S., R.T. Holmes, and T. W. Sherry. 2000. Impacts of a global climate cycle on the population dynamics of a migratory songbird. Science 288: 2040-2042.

    Marra, P.P., K.A. Hobson, and R. T. Holmes. 1998. Linking winter and summer events in a migratory bird by using stable-carbon isotopes. Science 282:1884-1886.

    Co-Authors and Collaborators:
    Nicholas L. Rodenhouse, T. Scott Sillett, Michael S. Webster, and others

    Postdoctoral Associates:
    Matthew Betts

    Graduate Advisor:
    Frank A. Pitelka

    Role at the Hubbard Brook:
    Researcher since 1969; Member, Committee of Scientists

    Title at Hubbard Brook:
    Principal Investigator