Helen Boland


Helen has been working full-time with BirdWatch Ireland since 2003 on a range of projects but her main interest is wintering waterbirds, particularly waders. She is currently the National Organiser of the Irish Wetland Bird Survey (I-WeBS), funded by the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS). Aside from the set-up of the colour-marking of waders in Dublin Bay, she has been involved in several other bird tracking and marking projects including a study using geolocators to discover the breeding origins of Purple Sandpipers, the marking of Greylag Geese in Donegal (NPWS, BWI & Inch Wildfowling Club), and GPS-tagging of seabirds on the East coast (FAME).


  1. Summers R.W., Boland H., Colhoun K., Elkins N., Etheridge B., Foster S., Fox J.W., Mackie K., Quinn L.R. & Swann R.L. Contrasting trans-Atlantic migratory routes of Nearctic Purple Sandpipers Calidris maritima associated with low pressure systems in spring and winter. 2014. Ardea 102: 139–152.
  2. Crowe, O., Boland, H., Walsh, A.J. & Tierney. T.D. Barnacle Geese Branta leucopsis in Ireland: a report on the 2013 census, and long-term trends. 2014. Irish Birds 10: 11–18
  3. Boland, H., Tierney, N., & Crowe, O. Irish Wetland Bird Survey: Results of Waterbird Monitoring in Ireland in 2012/13BirdWatch Ireland report.
  4. Boland, H. and Crowe, O. Irish Wetland Bird Survey: waterbird status and distribution 2001/02 – 2008/09BirdWatch Ireland, Kilcoole, Co. Wicklow.
  5. Crowe, O., Austen, G. & Boland, H. Waterbird populations on non-estuarine coasts in Ireland: results of the 2006/07 Non-Estuarine Coastal Waterbird Survey (NEWS). 2012. Irish Birds 9: 385-396
  6. Tománková, I., Boland, H., Reid, N. and Fox, A. D. 2012. Assessing the extent to which temporal changes in waterbird community composition are driven by either local, regional or global factorsAquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems 23: 343-355
  7. Boland, H,G. McElwaine, G. Henderson, C. Hall, A. Walsh and O. Crowe. Whooper Cygnus cygnus and Bewick’s C. Columbianus bewickii Swans in Ireland: results of the international census, January 2010. 2010. Irish Birds 9, 1-10.
  8. Foster, S., Boland, H., Colhoun, K., Etheridge, B., Summers, R. Flock composition of Purple Sandpipers Calidris maritima in the west of Ireland. 2010. Irish Birds 9, 31-34.
  9. Hall, C., Glanville, J.R., Boland, H., Einarsson, Ó., McElwaine, G., Holt, C.A., Spray, C.J. & Rees, E.C. 2012. Population size and breeding success of Icelandic Whooper Swans Cygnus cygnus: results of the 2010 international census. Wildfowl 62: 73–96.
  10. Reneerkens, J., Benhoussa, A., Boland, H., Collier, M., Grond, K., Günther, K., Hallgrimsson, G.T., Hansen, J.,Meissner, W., de Meulenaer, B., Ntiamoa-Baidu, Y., Piersma, T., Poot, M., van Roomen, M., Summers, R.W., Tomkovich, P.S. & Underhill, L.G. 2009. Sanderlings using African–Eurasian Flyways: a review of current knowledge. Wader Study Group Bulletin 116(1): 2–20.

Professional Activity

Colour Ringed Oystercatcher

Colour Ringed Bar-Tailed Godwit



Helen Boland

Contact Details:


PhD Student


Postgraduate Students

UCC Ornithology Research Group

School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences, UCC North Mall Campus, North Mall, Cork City,