I am interested in conservation as an applied pursuit to build resiliency in species, ecosystems and human communities. Much of my research has focused on using bioacoustics and soundscape ecology to learn about ecosystem states and wildlife populations. Most of it focuses on seabirds, a highly threatened and ecologically important group of birds that “make their living” on the ocean. I also go gaga over their amazing life histories, physiological feats, and conservation, and this even occasionally extends to some other large marine predators.

My interest in monitoring stems from a desire to empower conservation practitioners to accurately measure outcomes, and find the best solutions. Evidence-based conservation can only progress if we have the scalable and powerful tools to gather evidence on conservation outcomes. It’s this direction, our diverse portfolio of powerful conservation actions, and passionate conservationists worldwide that gives me hope in the face of global environmental crisis. – November 5th, 2017



Melissa R. Cronin, Suzanne H. Alonzo, Stephanie K. Adamczak, D. Nevé Baker, Roxanne S. Beltran, Abraham L. Borker, Arina B. Favilla, Remy Gatins, Laura C. Goetz, Nicole Hack, Julia G. Harenčár, Elizabeth A. Howard, Matthew C. Kustra, Rossana Maguiña, Lourdes Martinez-Estevez, Rita S. Mehta, Ingrid M. Parker, Kyle Reid, May B. Roberts, Sabrina B. Shirazi, Theresa-Anne M. Tatom-Naecker, Kelley M. Voss, Ellen Willis-Norton, Bee Vadakan, Ana M. Valenzuela-Toro & Erika S. Zavaleta Anti-racist interventions to transform ecology, evolution and conservation biology departments. Nature Ecology & Evolution 8/2021; DOI:10.1038/s41559-021-01522-z


Erika S. Zavaleta, Roxanne S. Beltran, and Abraham L. Borker: How Field Courses Propel Inclusion and Collective Excellence
Trends in Ecology & Evolution 11/2020; DOI:10.1016/j.tree.2020.08.005


Sarah A. Skikne, Abraham L. Borker, Ryan S. Terrill, Erika Zavaleta: Predictors of past avian translocation outcomes inform feasibility of future efforts under climate change
Biological Conservation 7/2020; DOI:10.1016/j.biocon.2020.108597


Abraham L Borker, Rachel T. Buxton Ian L. Jones Heather L. Major Jeffrey C. Williams Bernie R. Tershy Donald A. Croll: Do soundscape indices predict landscape‐scale restoration outcomes? A comparative study of restored seabird island soundscapes
Restoration Ecology 10/2019; DOI:10.1111/rec.13038


Abraham L Borker, Portia Halbert, Matthew W McKown, Bernie R Tershy, Donald A Croll: A comparison of automated and traditional monitoring techniques for marbled murrelets using passive acoustic sensors Wildlife Society Bulletin 12/2015; DOI:10.1002/wsb.608


Abraham L Borker, Matthew W McKown, Joshua T Ackerman, Collin A Eagles-Smith, Bernie R Tershy, Donald A Croll: Vocal Activity as a Low Cost and Scalable Index of Seabird Colony Size. Conservation Biology 03/2014; 28(4). DOI:10.1111/cobi.12264


Rachael A. Orben​, Abram B. Fleishman, Abraham L. Borker, William Bridgeland, Amanda J. Gladics, Jessica Porquez, Peter Sanzenbacher, Shawn W. Stephensen, Roberta Swift, Matthew W. McKown, Robert M. Suryan: Comparing imaging, acoustics, and radar to monitor Leach’s storm-petrel colonies
PeerJ 7:e6721 DOI:10.7717/peerj.6721

Bernie Tershy, Susan Harrison, Abraham Borker, Barry Sinervo, Tara Cornelisse, Cheng Li, Dena Spatz, Donald Croll, and Erika Zavaleta: Biodiversity chapter in book: Ecosystems of California, Edition: 1st, Chapter: 11, Publisher: University of California Press, Editors: Harold Mooney, Erika Zavaleta, pp.187-212

Peter Pyle, Reginald David, Bruce D. Eilerts, A. Binion Amerson, Abraham L Borker, Matthew McKown: Second record of Bryan’s Shearwater Puffinis Bryani from Midway Atoll, with notes on habitat selection, vocalizations and at-sea distribution. Marine Ornithology 01/2014; 42(1):5-8. Recordings and Video.

Matthew W McKown, Martin Lukac, Abraham Borker, Bernie Tershy, Don Croll: A wireless acoustic sensor network for monitoring wildlife in remote locations. The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 09/2012; 132(3):2036. DOI:10.1121/1.4755484

Media Coverage

The outdoors opens doors — to success
UC Santa Cruz Magazine October, 2021

Sifting Through Sound: Using Soundscapes to Understand Ecosystem Health
Freethink October 25, 2019

Listen for a Change: Bioacoustics in Restored Habitat Combats the Bird Decline
Envirobites October 30, 2019

The Call of the Seabird: Advances in Acoustic Monitoring Island Conservation July 21, 2017

Sound Recorders Track Seabirds by the Seashore Inside Science July 5, 2017

Tech helps find endangered seabirds among Santa Cruz redwoods Santa Cruz Sentinel March 3rd, 2016

Autonomous acoustic sensors help researchers find endangered seabirds University of California – Santa Cruz News Office February 24, 2016

For Endangered Marbled Murrelets, Inexpensive Surveys With Acoustics Environmental Monitor March 9, 2016

Fieldnotes: Acoustic Recorders Track Bird Activity The Wildlife Society January 15, 2016

The Sounds of Science Discover Magazine May 1, 2015

Acoustic monitoring eases studies of remote seabird populations Environmental Monitor April 2nd, 2014

Smartphones and Seabirds City on a Hill Press April 12, 2012

Año Nuevo Island: Where the wild things are San Francisco Chronicle July 17, 2009

Blue-footed booby makes unexpected stop in Monterey Bay Santa Cruz Sentinel September 8, 2013

The great woodpecker hunt The Boston Globe February 10, 2008