Autumn-Lynn Harrison is a Research Ecologist at the Migratory Bird Center, Smithsonian's National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute. She studies the ecology and conservation of ocean and coastal migratory species, including seabirds, shorebirds, and seals and manages multiple collaborative research programs including the Migratory Connectivity Project  and the Shorebird Science and  Conservation Collective.

She conducts field research using a range of animal tracking technologies, and applies her research to many conservation questions, including contributing to United Nations efforts to identify ecologically significant areas for migratory marine animals in international waters. Autumn-Lynn has led scientific research in Alaska, California, Texas, and Maryland in the United States, and Australia, Argentina, and South Africa. 

Harrison earned B.S. Degrees in Environmental Science and Fisheries and Wildlife Science from Virginia Tech, a Graduate Diploma of Science in Tropical Marine Ecology and Fisheries Science from James Cook University in Townsville, Australia, and a Ph.D. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from the University of California, Santa Cruz where she was a part of the Tagging of Pacific Predators initiative of the Census of Marine Life.

Prior to joining the Migratory Bird Center in 2014, Harrison worked for the Society for Conservation Biology for 11 years and as a postdoctoral fellow with the Institute for Parks at Clemson University. At Clemson, she studied Bahamanian seabird migration and developed a "big-data" digital humanities project with historical archives of the U.S. National Park Service. She is also a trained park naturalist and graphic designer and has developed and led training workshops in interpretation and graphic design for the Tanzania National Parks Authority and the David H. Smith Conservation Research Fellows. Autumn-Lynn grew up on the Eastern Shore of Maryland with family roots in the Chesapeake Bay region going back to 1655.


Tracking and Migratory Connectivity

Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center scientists use novel technologies to track birds year-round throughout their annual cycle.