headshot photo of Dr. Walter Piper

Dr. Walter Piper

Schmid College of Science and Technology; Biological Sciences
Expertise: Territorial Behavior; Habitat Selection; Aggression; Common Loon; Conservation; Ecology
Office Location: Keck Center for Science and Engineering 259
Phone: (714) 997-6907
Scholarly Works:
Digital Commons
Harvard University, Bachelor of Arts
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Ph.D.



  • BIOL 205 Evolution and Diversity of Multicellular Organisms
  • BIOL 333 Animal Behavior
  • BIOL 338 Ornithology


  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Ph.D. in Biology
  • Harvard University, B.A. in Biology

Research Interests

  • impact of site-familiarity on use of space
  • territory defense and acquisition
  • impact of old age on behavior
  • natal habitat imprinting
  • longitudinal study of the common loon


  • National Science Foundation
  • National Geographic Society
  • Disney Conservation Fund

Recent Creative, Scholarly Work and Publications

Piper, W. H. Grear, J. S. and Meyer, M. W. 2012. Juvenile survival in common loons: Effects of natal lake size and pH. J. Avian Biol. 43: 280-288.
Piper, W. H., J. N. Mager, & C. Walcott. 2011. Marking loons, making progress. American Scientist 99: 220-227.
Mager, J. N., Walcott, C. and Piper, W. H. 2010. Common loons (Gavia immer) can differentiate between yodels of territorial neighbors and non-neighbors. J. Field Ornithol., 81: 392-401.
Piper, W. H. 2010/2011. Troubled Waters: Loons’ territorial fights are no laughing matter. Natural History, 119: 22-26.
Grear, J. S., Meyer, M. W., Cooley Jr., J. H., Kuhn, A., Piper, W. H., Mitro, M. G., Vogel, H. S., Taylor, K. M., Kenow, K. P., Craig, S. M., Nacci, D. E. 2009. Population Growth and Demography of Common Loons in the Northern United States. Journal of Wildlife Management 73: 1108-1115.