Brian D. Peer, Ph.D.
Department of Biological Sciences
Western Illinois University
Macomb, IL 61455
My general interests are in ecology, evolution, behavior, and ornithology. My specific area of research
interest is the coevolutionary interactions between avian brood parasites and their hosts. Brood parasites
such as the Brown-headed Cowbird lay their eggs in the nests of other birds, relying on these hosts to
raise their young. Brood parasites have evolved a number of strategies to increase the likelihood of
successfully parasitizing their hosts, which in turn has selected for host defenses to circumvent parasitism.
It is these adaptations of parasites and counter-adaptations of their hosts that I find particularly fascinating.
45. M. J. Kuehn, B. D. Peer, and S. I. Rothstein. 2014. Variation in host response to brood parasitism reflects evolutionary differences and not phenotypic plasticity. Animal Behaviour 88: 21-28.
44. Rivers, J. W., M. A. Blundell, T. M. Loughin, B. D. Peer, and S. I. Rothstein. 2013.The exaggerated begging behavior of an obligate avian brood parasite is shared with a nonparasitic close relative. Animal Behaviour 86:529-536.
43. Peer, B.D., J.W. Rivers, and S.I. Rothstein. 2013. The Brown-headed Cowbird: North America’s Brood Parasite. Chinese Birds 4:93-98.
42. Peer, B. D., J. W. Rivers, and S. I. Rothstein. 2013.
Cowbirds, Conservation, and Coevolution: potential
misconceptions and directions for future research. Chinese Birds 4:15-30.
40. Dubina, K.M.*, and B.D. Peer. 2013. Egg pecking and discrimination by female and male Brown-headed Cowbirds. Journal of Ornithology
39. Jaeckle, W., M. Kiefer*, B. Childs*, R. G. Harper, J. W. Rivers, and B.D. Peer. 2012. Comparison of eggshell porosity and estimated gas flux between the Brown-headed Cowbird and two common hosts. Journal of Avian Biology 43:486-490.
38. Peer, B.D. 2011. Invasion of the Emperor’s Grackle. Ardeola 58:405-409.
37. Peer, B.D., M. J. Kuehn, S. I. Rothstein, and R. C. Fleischer. 2011. Persistence of host defence behaviour in the absence of brood
parasitism. Biology Letters 7:670-673.
36. Peer, B. D., C. E. McIntosh, M. J. Kuehn, S. I. Rothstein, and R. C. Fleischer. 2011. Complex biogeographic history of shrikes and its implications for the evolution of defenses against avian brood parasitism. Condor 113:385-394.
35. Atterberry-Jones, M*. and B. D. Peer. 2011. Social behavior in Red-headed Woodpeckers. Meadowlark 20:6-9.
34. Peer, B.D. 2010. Conspecific brood parasitism by the Dickcissel. Wilson Journal of Ornithology 122:186-188.
33. Atterberry-Jones, M.* and B. D. Peer. 2010. Cooperative breeding by Red-headed Woodpeckers. Wilson Journal of Ornithology 122:160-162.
32. Peer, B. D., S. I. Rothstein, and R. A. McCleery. 2010. Intraclutch variation in egg appearance constrains rejection of Brown-headed Cowbird eggs in Common Grackles. Auk 127:759-764.
31. Peer, B. D., and S. I. Rothstein. 2010. Phenotypic plasticity in Common Grackles in response to repeated brood parasitism. Auk 127:293-299.
30. Sealy, S. G., B. D. Peer, and D. Strickland. 2009. Gray Jays accept Brown-headed Cowbird eggs. Wilson Journal of Ornithology 121:174-177.
29. Peer, B. D., S. I. Rothstein, K. S. Delaney, and R. C. Fleischer. 2007. Defence behaviour against brood parasitism is deeply rooted in mainland and island scrub- jays. Animal Behaviour 73:55-63.
28. Peer, B. D., L. R. Hawkins*, E. P. Steinke*, P. B. Bollinger, and E. K. Bollinger. 2006. Eastern Bluebirds reject Brown-headed Cowbird eggs. Condor 108:741-745.
27. Peer, B. D. 2006. American Coot parasitism on Least Bitterns. Wilson Journal of Ornithology 118:415-418.
26. Peer, B. D. 2006. Egg destruction and egg removal by avian brood parasites: Adaptiveness and consequences. Auk 123:16-22.
25. Rothstein, S. I., and B. D. Peer. 2005. Conservation solutions for threatened and endangered cowbird hosts: Separating fact and fiction. Ornithological Monographs 57:98-114.
24. Peer, B. D., S. I. Rothstein, M. J. Kuehn, and R. C. Fleischer. 2005. Host defenses against cowbird parasitism: Implications for cowbird management. Ornithological Monographs 57:84-97.
23. Ortega, C. P., J. F. Chace, and B. D. Peer. 2005. Research directions and cowbird management. Ornithological Monographs 57:1-5.
22. Ortega, C. P., J. F. Chace, and B. D. Peer, editors. 2005. Management of cowbirds and their hosts: Balancing science, ethics, and mandates.
Ornithological Monographs 57.
21. Peer, B. D., S. I. Rothstein, and J. W. Rivers. 2005. First record of Bronzed Cowbird parasitism on the Great-tailed Grackle. Wilson Bulletin 117:194-196.
20. Peer, B. D., and S. G. Sealy. 2004. Fate of grackle defenses in the absence of brood parasitism: Implications for long-term brood parasite-host coevolution. Auk 121:1172-1186.
19. Peer, B. D., and S. G. Sealy. 2004. Correlates of egg rejection in hosts of the Brown-headed Cowbird. Condor 106:580-599.
18. Peer, B. D., H. J. Homan, and G. M. Linz. 2003. Impact of blackbird damage to sunflower: Bioenergetic and economic models. Ecological Applications 13:248-256.
17. Peer, B. D., K. S. Ellison, and S. G. Sealy. 2002. Intermediate frequencies of egg ejection by Northern Mockingbirds sympatric with two cowbird species. Auk 119:855-858.
16. Linz, G. M., B. D. Peer, H. J. Homan, R. L. Wimberly, D. L. Bergman, and W. J. Bleier. 2002. Has an integrated pest management approach reduced blackbird damage to sunflower? Pp. 132-137 in Human conflicts with wildlife: Economic considerations (L. Clark, ed.). National Wildlife Research Center, Ft. Collins, CO.
15. Sealy, S. G., D. G. McMaster, and B. D. Peer. 2002. Tactics of obligate brood parasites to secure suitable incubators. Pp. 254-269 in Avian
incubation: Behaviour, environment, and evolution (D.C. Deeming, ed.). Oxford University Press, Oxford.
14. Johnson, K., and B. D. Peer. 2001. Great-tailed Grackle (Quiscalus mexicanus). In The birds of North America, No. 576 (A. Poole and F. Gill, eds.). Academy of Natural Sciences, Philadelphia, and American Ornithologists’ Union, Washington, DC.
13. Peer, B. D., H. J. Homan, and S. G. Sealy. 2001. Infrequent cowbird parasitism on Common Grackles revisited: New records from the northern Great Plains. Wilson Bulletin 113:90-93.
12. Peer, B. D., and S. G. Sealy. 2001. Mechanism of egg recognition in the Great-tailed Grackle. Bird Behavior 14:71-73.
11. Homan, H. J., G. M. Linz, and B. D. Peer. 2001. Dogs increase recovery of passerine carcasses in dense vegetation. Wildlife Society Bulletin 29:292-296.
10. Peer, B. D., and E. K. Bollinger. 2000. Why do female Brown-headed Cowbirds remove host eggs? A test of the incubation efficiency
hypothesis. Pp. 187-192 in Ecology and management of cowbirds and their hosts (J.N.M. Smith, T. Cook, S. I. Rothstein, S. K. Robinson, and S. G. Sealy, eds.). University of Texas Press, Austin.
9. Peer, B. D., S. K. Robinson, and J. R. Herkert. 2000. Egg rejection by cowbird hosts in grasslands. Auk 117:892-901.
8. Peer, B. D., and S. G. Sealy. 2000. Conspecific brood parasitism and egg rejection in Great-tailed Grackles. Journal of Avian Biology 31:271-277.
7. Peer, B. D., and S. G. Sealy. 2000. Responses of Scissor-tailed Flycatchers (Tyrannus forficatus) to experimental cowbird parasitism. Bird
6. Peer, B. D., and S. G. Sealy. 1999. Parasitism and egg puncture behavior by Bronzed and Brown-headed cowbirds in sympatry. Studies in
Avian Biology 18:235-240.
5. Peer, B. D., and S. G. Sealy. 1999. Laying time of the Bronzed Cowbird. Wilson Bulletin 111:137-139.
4. Peer, B. D., and E. K. Bollinger. 1998. Rejection of cowbird eggs by Mourning Doves: A manifestation of nest usurpation? Auk 115:1057-1062.
3. Peer, B. D., and E. K. Bollinger. 1997. Common Grackle (Quiscalus quiscula). In The birds of North America, No. 271 (A. Poole and F. Gill,
eds.). Academy of Natural Sciences, Philadelphia, and American Ornithologists’ Union, Washington, DC.
2. Peer, B. D., and E. K. Bollinger. 1997. Explanations for the infrequent cowbird parasitism on Common Grackles. Condor 99:151-161.
1. Bollinger, E. K., B. D. Peer, and R. W. Jansen. 1997. Status of Neotropical migrants in three forest fragments in Illinois. Wilson Bulletin