Kristina L. Paxton

Kristina L. Paxton
University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo | UHH · Hawai'i Cooperative Studies Unit

PhD

About

38
Publications
7,512
Reads
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1,162
Citations
Citations since 2017
20 Research Items
600 Citations
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2017201820192020202120222023020406080100120
2017201820192020202120222023020406080100120
2017201820192020202120222023020406080100120
Introduction
Kristina L. Paxton is currently a Quantitative Ecologist with the Hawaiʻi Cooperative Studies Unit at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo. She utilizes a diversity of statistical analysis tools from basic statistics to multivariate community analysis to spatial modeling to hierarchical Bayesian modeling to addresses complex ecological questions that can guide conservation initiatives. Projects are focused on native and invasive plants and animals throughout the Pacific Islands.
Additional affiliations
January 2017 - present
University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo
Position
  • PostDoc Position
June 2015 - December 2015
Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute
Position
  • PostDoc Position
August 2013 - May 2016
University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo
Position
  • Lecturer

Publications

Publications (38)
Article
A key component for biologists managing mobile species is understanding where and when a species occurs at different locations and scaling management to fit the spatial and temporal patterns of movement. We established an automated radio‐telemetry tracking network to document multi‐year movement in 2016–2018 of 3 endangered waterbirds among wetland...
Article
Of the estimated 55 Hawaiian honeycreepers (subfamily Carduelinae) only 17 species remain, 9 of which the International Union for Conservation of Nature considers endangered. Among the most pressing threats to honeycreeper survival is avian malaria, caused by the introduced blood parasite Plasmodium relictum, which is increasing in distribution in...
Article
Full-text available
A major advancement in the use of radio telemetry has been the development of automated radio tracking systems (ARTS), which allow animal movements to be tracked continuously. A new ARTS approach is the use of a network of simple radio receivers (nodes) that collect radio signal strength (RSS) values from animal-borne radio transmitters. However, t...
Article
Full-text available
Activity patterns are a key component of avian life history and behavior, and deci- sions about how activity periods are structured can have important fitness implica- tions. Despite the importance of activity patterns, individual variability in activity is poorly studied in small birds. We used automated radio telemetry to track Hawaiian forest bi...
Article
Full-text available
When acoustic signals sent from individuals overlap in frequency and time, acoustic interference and signal masking may occur. Under the acoustic niche hypothesis (ANH), signaling behavior has evolved to partition acoustic space and minimize overlap with other calling individuals through selection on signal structure and/or the sender’s ability to...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Movement of animals directly affects individual fitness, yet fine spatial and temporal resolution movement behavior has been studied in relatively few small species, particularly in the tropics. Nectarivorous Hawaiian honeycreepers are believed to be highly mobile throughout the year, but their fine-scale movement patterns remain unkno...
Article
Full-text available
Continuous movement monitoring is a powerful tool for evaluating reintroduction techniques and assessing how well reintroduced animals are adjusting to the wild. However, to date, continuous monitoring has only occurred for large-bodied species capable of carrying heavy tracking devices. In this study we used an automated VHF radio telemetry array...
Article
Full-text available
Context Anthropogenic noise is relatively new to natural soundscapes and may have adverse effects on acoustically active species. In birds, adverse effects include changes in vocalization patterns. Helicopters and songbirds are ubiquitous in protected natural areas but the effect of helicopter noise on songbirds has never been assessed. Objectives...
Article
Full-text available
The malaria parasite Plasmodium relictum (lineage GRW4) was introduced less than a century ago to the native avifauna of Hawaiʻi, where it has since caused major declines of endemic bird populations. One of the native bird species that is frequently infected with GRW4 is the Hawaiʻi ʻamakihi (Chlorodrepanis virens). To achieve a better understandin...
Article
Context Anthropogenic noise is relatively new to natural soundscapes and may have adverse effects on acoustically active species. In birds, adverse effects include changes in vocalization patterns. Helicopters and songbirds are ubiquitous in protected natural areas but the effect of helicopter noise on songbirds has never been assessed. Objectives...
Preprint
Full-text available
When acoustic signals sent from individuals overlap in frequency and time, acoustic interference and signal masking may occur. Under the acoustic niche hypothesis (ANH), signaling behavior has evolved to minimize overlap with other calling individuals through selection on signal structure and the sender’s ability to adjust the timing of signals. In...
Article
Full-text available
We have limited knowledge of the patterns, causes, and prevalence of elevational migration despite observations of seasonal movements of animals along elevational gradients in montane systems worldwide. While a third of extant Hawaiian landbird species are estimated to be elevational migrants this assumption is based primarily on early naturalist’s...
Article
Full-text available
The effects of population decline on culturally transmitted behaviours in animals have rarely been described, but may have major implications to population viability. Learned vocal signals in birds are of critical importance to behaviours associated with reproduction, intrasexual interactions and group cohesion, and the complexity of vocal signals...
Article
Hawaiian nectarivorous forest birds play a vital ecological role as pollinators in Hawaiian ecosystems. However, little is known about what nectar resources are utilized by Hawai'i's nectarivorous birds, how seasonality influences nectar availability, and how nectar preference differs by bird species. We sampled pollen from the heads of 'i'iwi (Dre...
Article
Full-text available
Little is known about how important social behaviors such as song vary within and among populations for any of the endemic Hawaiian honeycreepers. Habitat loss and non-native diseases (e.g., avian malaria) have resulted in isolation and fragmentation of Hawaiian honeycreepers within primarily high elevation forests. In this study, we examined how i...
Article
Full-text available
The phases of the annual cycle for migratory species are inextricably linked. Yet, less than five percent of ecological studies examine seasonal interactions. In this study, we utilized stable hydrogen isotopes to geographically link individual black-and-white warblers (Mniotilta varia) captured during spring migration with breeding destinations to...
Article
Full-text available
1.Identifying migratory connections across the annual cycle is important for studies of migrant ecology, evolution, and conservation. While recent studies have demonstrated the utility of high-resolution SNP-based genetic markers for identifying population-specific migratory patterns, the accuracy of this approach relative to other intrinsic taggin...
Article
Full-text available
Annual survivorship in migratory birds is a product of survival across the different periods of the annual cycle (i.e., breeding, wintering, and migration), and may vary substantially among these periods. Determining which periods have the highest mortality, and thus are potentially limiting a population, is important especially for species of cons...
Preprint
1. Identifying migratory connections across the annual cycle is important for studies of migrant ecology, evolution, and conservation. While recent studies have demonstrated the utility of high-resolution SNP-based genetic markers for identifying population-specific migratory patterns, the accuracy of this approach relative to other intrinsic taggi...
Article
Full-text available
The annual migration of a bird can involve thousands of kilometers of non-stop flight, requiring accurately timed seasonal changes in physiology and behavior. Understanding the molecular mechanisms controlling this endogenous programme can provide functional and evolutionary insights into the circannual biological clock and the potential of migrato...
Article
Full-text available
We examined how conditions prior to migration influenced migration performance of two breeding populations of black-and-white warblers (Mniotilta varia) by linking information on the migrant's winter habitat quality, measured via stable carbon isotopes, with information on their breeding destination, measured via stable hydrogen isotopes. The quali...
Chapter
Full-text available
Migratory songbirds are advancing their arrival to breeding areas in response to climatic warming at temperate latitudes. Less is understood about the impacts of climate changes outside the breeding period. Every spring, millions of migrating songbirds that overwinter in the Caribbean and Central and South America stop to rest and refuel in the fir...
Article
Full-text available
Neotropical migratory birds are declining across the Western Hemisphere, but conservation efforts have been hampered by the inability to assess where migrants are most limited – the breeding grounds, migratory stopover sites, or wintering areas. A major challenge has been the lack of an efficient, reliable, and broadly applicable method for measuri...
Preprint
Neotropical migratory birds are declining across the Western Hemisphere, but conservation efforts have been hampered by the inability to assess where migrants are most limited–the breeding grounds, migratory stopover sites, or wintering areas. A major challenge has been the lack of an efficient, reliable, and broadly applicable method for connectin...
Article
Full-text available
Predicting how migratory animals respond to changing climatic conditions requires knowledge of how climatic events affect each phase of the annual cycle and how those effects carry-over to subsequent phases. We utilized a 17-year migration dataset to examine how El Niño-Southern Oscillation climatic events in geographically different regions of the...
Article
Full-text available
Molecular markers and stable isotopes have provided important insights into the migratory connectivity of small landbirds. Research integrating these two methods has primarily focused on linking breeding and wintering sites, rather than focusing on timing of migratory movement of different breeding populations. We used mitochondrial DNA and isotopi...
Conference Paper
Background/Question/Methods Both the frequency and intensity of severe droughts in the Southwestern US are predicted to increase in the next century. A consensus of climate change models shows this region is already transitioning to a more arid climate, with potential for widespread landscape changes due to massive vegetation die-off. Pinyon pine,...
Article
Full-text available
El conocimiento sobre el comportamiento de las aves durante el periode no reproductivo aún es menor que el del periode reproductivo, a pesar de que durante la ultima década ha habido una proliferación considerable de investigaciones que han producido un progreso significativo en el entendimiento de los patrones de migracion de las aves de Norteamér...
Article
Full-text available
We used radio-telemetry to examine fine-scale movement patterns of Wilson's Warblers (Wilsonia pusilla) at a stopover site on the lower Colorado River during spring migration in 2005 and 2006. The overall movements of Wilson's Warblers were restricted to small, localized areas, with an average linear displacement of only 332 m. Warblers exhibited e...
Article
Full-text available
Many of the world’s large river systems have been greatly altered in the past century due to river regulation, agriculture, and invasion of introduced Tamarix spp. (saltcedar, tamarisk). These riverine ecosystems are known to provide important habitat for avian communities, but information on responses of birds to differing levels of Tamarix is not...
Article
Full-text available
In southwestern North America, riparian habitats have declined precipitously in the last century both within and outside protected areas such as national parks,U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service refuges, and Bureau of Land Management and biosphere reserve lands. These declines are primarily due to anthropogenic perturbations such as alterations in rive...
Article
Full-text available
We used stable hydrogen isotopes (δD) to identify the breeding locations of Wilson’s Warbler (Wilsonia pusilla) migrating through five sites spanning a cross-section of the species’ southwestern migration route during the springs of 2003 and 2004. Determining the temporal and spatial patterns of migration and degree of population segregation during...
Article
Full-text available
We used stable hydrogen isotopes (δD) to identify the breeding locations of Wilson’s Warbler (Wilsonia pusilla) migrating through five sites spanning a cross-section of the species’ southwestern migration route during the springs of 2003 and 2004. Determining the temporal and spatial patterns of migration and degree of population segregation during...
Article
Full-text available
Understanding patterns of plant population mortality during extreme weather events is important to conservation planners because the frequency of such events is expected to increase, creating the need to integrate climatic uncertainty into management. Dominant plants provide habitat and ecosystem structure, so changes in their distribution can be e...
Article
Understanding patterns of plant population mortality during extreme weather events is important to conservation planners because the frequency of such events is expected to increase, creating the need to integrate climatic uncertainty into management. Dominant plants provide habitat and ecosystem structure, so changes in their distribution can be e...

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Projects

Projects (4)
Project
With bird populations declining across Hawaii, it is increasingly important to improve our ability to monitor population size, particularly for those difficult to detect rare species that live in remote areas. Bioacoustics is a rapidly evolving field and there is great potential to use bioacoustics to improve our ability to accurately monitor animal distribution and abundance, and to even allow us to better estimate the density of calling organisms. We are currently employing songmeters and other programmable recording devices to monitor birds across Hawaii and actively developing algorithms for the automated detection of recorded song from a variety of Hawaiian bird species. We also continue to use traditional survey techniques to relate bird distribution and abundance with habitat and other variables.
Project
How do the characteristics of bird song change over time, especially as bird populations decrease? Is there less potential for learning complex social behaviors as population sizes becomes smaller, and if so, is this an additional negative effect of population decline? We have examined aspects of these questions for the declining populations of honeycreepers on Kauai, as well as for the ‘alalā, or native Hawaiian crow. Current grad students are addressing similar questions with other Hawaiian bird species.
Project
One major area of research in the Hart lab looks at the biogeography of birdsong, or how song characteristics vary at different spatial scales across the landscape as a function of fragment size and degree of isolation. Within the Hawaiian islands, there is lots of potential for isolation of bird populations as a result of both natural and anthropogenic habitat fragmentation. Natural fragmentation often occurs as a result of lava flows that create islands of vegetation (kipuka) surrounded by a matrix of barren lava. Anthropogenic fragmentation has been occurring in Hawaii for centuries as a result of farming, logging, and ranching. We have also addressed these questions in wet forest fragments in Costa Rica.