Barbara Avers

Barbara Avers

Contact Me

Adjunct Assistant Professor
Department of Fisheries and Wildlife


Waterfowl and Wetland Specialist, Michigan DNR

Biography: Barbara Avers is the Waterfowl and Wetland Specialist for the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) Wildlife Division, a position she has held since 2008.  Barbara leads all efforts related to waterfowl management including development of migratory bird hunting regulations and policy, human-waterfowl conflict programs, and public engagement.  She is also the lead for the MDNR Wildlife Division on wetland habitat conservation efforts including planning and partnerships to implement large-scale wetland protection and restoration.  Barbara represents the MDNR on the Mississippi Flyway Council Technical Section and chairs or serves on several Flyway and national committees including the North American Waterfowl Management Plan Human Dimensions-Public Engagement Team and Unified Science Team.  Prior to her current position, she was a MDNR Wildlife Biologist with planning and management oversight of several coastal wetland areas in the Saginaw Bay region of Michigan.  While employed with the MDNR, she recently earned her Ph.D. in Fisheries and Wildlife (in Human Dimensions of Wildlife Management) from Michigan State University where she explored support and stewardship potential of stakeholders associated with wildlife management areas that are intensively managed for waterfowl and waterfowl hunting.  Barbara’s previous academic training includes a M.S. in Wildlife Ecology from Mississippi State University and a B.S. in Zoology from Michigan State University.  In addition to waterfowl, her research interests include building support and stewardship for wetland conservation and sustainable wildlife management, stakeholder engagement, and the integration of social science into wildlife management policy and practice.