Avian Research Coordinator
Luke DeGroote is the avian research coordinator at Powdermill Nature Reserve, Carnegie Museum of Natural History’s environmental research center. DeGroote received his MS in natural resources from Ohio State University in 2006 and his BS in wildlife ecology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2001. He has conducted research across the western hemisphere from Canada to Brazil, studying songbird migration, avian disease, bird-window collisions, breeding phenology, molt, and habitat use.
Since 2012, DeGroote has overseen Carnegie Museum of Natural History’s avian research programs, including the longest continually running bird banding station in the United States. Using the long-term dataset, he has published research demonstrating that many species of birds are breeding 15 days earlier than they did in the 1960s. Utilizing birds captured at Powdermill, he also tests birds’ ability to see patterned glass prototypes. Prototypes that birds avoid are credited as being “bird friendly” by the American Bird Conservancy and can be used in LEED certification credit. He has initiated new research tracking songbirds along their migratory journey utilizing state-of-the art radio transmitters and the Motus Wildlife Tracking System. DeGroote’s research has been featured by NPR, The Atlantic, Discovery Channel’s Daily Planet, Carnegie Magazine, Anthropocene Magazine, The Allegheny Front, and Audubon Magazine.
In 2014, DeGroote co-founded the citizen-science project BirdSafe Pittsburgh, a partnership between seven local organizations committed to researching and reducing bird-glass collisions. His conservation and partnership building efforts have resulted in the United States Fish and Wildlife Service recognizing Pittsburgh as an Urban Bird Treaty City in 2015. In 2016, he co-founded the Allegheny Bird Conservation Alliance, a broader strategic partnership between local and national conservation organizations working together to conserve birds. He is a certified bird-banding trainer for the North American Banding Council (NABC), the director-at-large of the NABC since 2014, and a council member for the Eastern Bird Banding Association since 2015.
McDermott, M. E. and L. W. DeGroote. 2016. Long-term climate impacts on breeding bird phenology in Pennsylvania, USA. Glob Change Biol, 22: 3304–3319.
Henning, J. D., L. DeGroote, and C. R. Dahlin. 2015. Implementation of a Sampling Strategy to Detect West Nile Virus in Oral and Cloacal Samples in Live Song Birds. Journal of Virological Methods 222:81-84.
Ober, H. K., and L. W. DeGroote. 2014. Repeated raking of pine plantations alters soil arthropod communities. Forests 5:689-714.
DeGroote, L. W., H. K. Ober, C. M. McDonough, R. F. Mizell III. 2013. An evaluation of the nine-banded armadillo as predators of gopher tortoise and northern bobwhite quail nests in Florida. The American midland Naturalist 169:74-85.
DeGroote, L. W., H. K. Ober, J. Aldrich, J. G. Norcini, and G. W. Knox. 2011. Susceptibility of cultivated native wildflowers to deer damage. Southeastern Naturalist 10:761-771.
Ober, H. K., L. W. DeGroote, C. M. McDonough, R. F. Mizell III, and R. W. Mankin. 2011. Identification of an attractant for the nine-banded armadillo, Dasypus novemcinctus. Wildlife Society Bulletin 35:421-429.
Ober, H. K., and L. W. DeGroote. 2011. Effects of litter removal on arthropod communities in pine plantations. Biodiversity and Conservation 20:1273-1286.
Boone, A. T., P. G. Rodewald, and L. W. DeGroote. 2010. Neotropical wintering habitat of the magnolia warbler: effects on molt, energetic condition, migration timing, and hematozoan infection during spring migration. Condor 112:115–122.
DeGroote, L. W., and P. G. Rodewald. 2010. Blood parasites in migrating wood-warblers (Parulidae): effects on refueling, energetic condition, and migration timing. Journal of Avian Biology 41:1–7.
Alex E. Jahn, A. E., J. P. Ledezma, A. M. Mamani, L. W. DeGroote, and D. J. Levey. 2010. Seasonal home range size of Tropical Kingbird (Tyrannus melancholicus) in the southern Amazon Basin. Orntologia Neotropical 21:39–46.
DeGroote, L. W., and P. G. Rodewald. 2008. An improved method for quantifying hematozoa by digital microscopy. Journal of Wildlife Diseases 44:446–450.