Dr. Lisa “Cali” Crampton, Project Leader

crampton AT hawaii.edu

Dr. Crampton ("Cali”) has been KFBRP’s Project Leader since April 2010.  She obtained her Ph.D. in Ecology, Evolution and Conservation Biology from the University of Nevada at Reno in December 2004.

Cali has extensive experience coordinating the design, conduct, and delivery of large research and monitoring projects with teams of diverse stakeholders.   For her doctoral research, she examined the landscape ecology and conservation of Phainopeplas, threatened passerines in southern Nevada, for the regional Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP).  As part of her post-doctoral work, she led a team of other scientists, NGOs, and government managers in designing the HCP’s adaptive management plan for conserving and restoring threatened desert woodlands on which Phainopeplas and other sensitive species in Nevada depend.  In addition to her familiarity with avian field research techniques, Cali is experienced in the use of multivariate statistical and spatial analysis tools to evaluate the effects of environmental variables on animal distribution, abundance, and fecundity. For example, while working at the USGS Kilauea Field Station on Hawai'i Island, she analyzed field data on the population and behavioral ecology of the endangered Laysan teal to improve monitoring and management strategies implemented by the US Fish and Wildlife Service.  Subsequently, for the US Forest Service, she analyzed impacts of recreation on abundance of Sierra Nevada forest birds, small mammals and carnivores.

All of Cali’s projects have involved substantial interaction and communication with scientific and non-scientific groups, including interpretative programs for the general public.   Consequently, her record includes numerous journal publications, technical reports, and conference presentations as well as popular articles and TV shows.

Justin Hite, Field Crew Leader


Justin joined KFBRP in February 2015. Justin fell in love with birds as a child and was delighted to discover that you could make a career of studying any aspect of any bird on the planet.  He graduated from Cornell University with a BS in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology in 2005, having already spent six summers studying California Gulls at Mono Lake and two winters studying Jacamars in Venezuela.  Since then he has studied numerous species in 12 countries, and taught field skills to Cornell undergraduates in Borneo, Honduras and Panama.   Besides nest searching and recording bird songs, his favorite pastime is entertaining his friends with imitations of bird displays.

Maria Costantini, Field Assistant


Maria joined KFBRP as a field assistant in February 2015 from the east coast. She obtained her BS in Biological Sciences from Rowan University in New Jersey and her MS in biology from Auburn University in Alabama. Maria’s thesis project focused on the effects of male plumage coloration on the parental effort of eastern bluebirds. She has been eager to shift her research focus and efforts to conservation. With the severe issues facing Hawaii’s native birds, she cannot think of a more suitable and exciting place to take the next step in her career. Prior to joining KFBRP she had a very broad understanding of what she wanted to do, but since arriving in Kaua’i Maria feels at home with the fulfilling work being done. She has already quickly fallen in love with the spectacular native Kauai birds, especially the incredibly charming ‘Akikiki!

Kayla Bonnette, Americorps Intern


Kayla came to KFBRP as an Americorps intern in October 2014. She graduated from Humboldt State University in May 2014 with a B.S. in Wildlife Biology. She came to Kaua’i with a passion for conserving our feathered friends and raising awareness about the plight of endangered species. Previous work with threatened Western Snowy Plovers gave her the “Where’s Waldo?” skills she puts to use with Kaua’i’s forest birds. In her spare time she puts birds on things, usually using watercolors.