Andy Kemerer serves San Diego Zoo Global as a Research Associate in Recovery Ecology. He is based at the Maui Bird Conservation Center, where his primary duties involve overseeing the daily management of the population of endangered palila. In addition to serving as palila captain, he also works to breed and recover other Hawaiian forest birds of conservation concern, including ‘alala, puaiohi, and kiwikiu. Recently he has participated with field partners on a new initiative involving 'akikiki and akeke'e. Other field experience includes participation in the annual palila point count to estimate population parameters within core habitat on the slopes of Mauna Kea.
Andy received his first introduction to working with bird species as a volunteer at the Living Coast Discovery Center. There he had the opportunity to care for a small collection of raptors, waterfowl, and shorebirds, including the endangered light-footed clapper rail. Through his career, Andy has also worked with a diverse collection of birds from around the world at both the Louisville Zoological Gardens and the National Aviary, where he served as a keeper/aviculturist for over nine years.
Andy earned his bachelor’s degree in Zoology from the University of New Hampshire. Although the natural world has always been of interest, he also received a minor in art. Andy enjoys photography and watercolor painting, and seeks ways to bring art and biology together.