Rhona-Lookingup (1)


I’m a scientist and entrepreneur with a passion for wine. I formed Nativus to help winegrowers deliver quality wine aided by NATIVE plants and wildlife, thereby leaving a legacy of ECOSYSTEM sustainably. To know our approach is truly sustainable, Nativus is linked to the automated (and thus unbiased) monitoring capability of EchoTrack.


2012 – present    Adjunct Professor, Simon Fraser University     Burnaby, B.C.

  • Instructor and thesis advisor in Biological Sciences.
  • Reviewer for the Journal of Field Ornithology

2014 – 2016          Thesis advisor, Stellenbosch University     Stellenbosch, South Africa

2004 – present   President, EchoTrack Inc.     Whistler, B.C.

  • Developed a patented omni-directional radar acoustic technology for use in research and monitoring (Canada and US patents).
  • Transferred technology to South Africa for use in renewable energy impact assessment. Completing 6th project; pre and post-construction.
  • Responsible for conducting assessments of the risk of wind turbine developments to night migrant birds and bats and diurnal raptors in 43 projects involving pre and post-installations, in prairie, forest and agricultural ecosystems, in BC, Manitoba, Alberta, Ontario, Canada and Michigan, USA.
  • Responsible for conducting assessments of night migrant birds and bats and diurnal raptors for an additional 10 projects for conservation and aviation safety.
  • Managed a four-season environmental assessment of all wildlife.
  • Served as an expert witness in the Alberta Utility Commission hearing on wind, where the EchoTrack technology was recognized for Environmental Assessment
  • Supervisor for M.Sc. student at SFU studying bat habitat use.
  • Co-supervisor of Ph.D. student at SFU studying shorebird flight dynamics.

2017 – 2019          Manager, Environment and Climate Change Canada

  • Director/manager of 20-40 staff, responsible for the delivery of wildlife and habitat programs in the Pacific Region, including monitoring, regulations, permitting, enforcement, emergencies, and data management.
  • Successful in building a vision and mandate for a new team following the reorganization of the department.

2016 – 2017           Manager, Environmental Protection, Environment and Climate Change Canada

  • Responsible for the delivery of expertise to Environmental Assessment, Air and Water Networks, Environmental Effects Monitoring, Contaminated Sites and Disposal at Sea.

2009 – 2016          Head, Population Assessment Unit, Environment Canada         Delta, B.C.

  • Responsible for the delivery of population status and trend information for all bird groups to ensure their conservation in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.
  • Provide support and direction for staff including safety and training. Manage budgets and projects with partners inside and out of government. Communicating results to the scientific community and the minister.
  • Integrate innovative practices in data management and geographic information systems as it relates to landscape analysis and habitat assessment.

2001 - 2009          Species at Risk Biologist, Environment Canada         Delta, B.C.

  • Developed an MOU for identification and protection of critical habitat with Department of National Defence.
  • On assignment with headquarters, developed guidelines for identification and protection of critical habitat for Government and Non-government organizations.
  • Prepared an assessment of the Endangered Species Fund for Environment Canada.

1992 - 2000          Senior Landbird Biologist, Environment Canada         Delta, B.C.

  • Established and led the landbird program for Pacific and Yukon region including research on species at risk and monitoring of population trends.
  • Chaired recovery teams for endangered landbirds, leading to one of Canada’s first ecosystem-based teams, the South Okanagan team.
  • Established Partners in Flight B.C., expanding the foundation of collaborators for landbird conservation.
  • Established a network of volunteer-based migration monitoring stations in the coastal, grassland and boreal biomes of B.C. that still provide essential baseline information on population health and a conservation voice in remote regions formerly focused on resource acquisition.


2019 - 2020          ITC Level 2 Landscape Horticulture

  • UBC Botanical Garden, Vancouver, BC. 

1998 - 2001          Ph.D. in Physics and Environmental Studies

  • Royal Military College of Canada, Kingston, Ontario. 
    Thesis topic: “Sensor fusion for the localisation of birds in flight”

1985 - 1987          M.Sc. in Applied Ecology 

  • University of British Columbia, Vancouver, B.C.  
    Thesis topic: “Sublethal effects of Fenitrothion on forest songbird populations”


  • Night migration of birds and bats
  • COSEWIC and recovery of species at risk
  • Federal government environmental policies
  • Radar-acoustic tracking of birds and bats
  • Wind turbine environmental impact
  • Fuel management and the forest microclimate
  • Soil and vegetation management
  • Ecological risk assessment


Patents for an adaptation of marine surveillance radar for 3-D positioning of birds in flight; automated acoustic location and fusion with radar; and a non-lethal, environmentally benign means of teaching birds to avoid a defined area.

Invited presenter: 

  • 2016 – Canadian Renewables Mission, March 20-23, Santiago, Chile
  • 2015 – “Crossing Environment Canada’s org-structure to test the potential of a Drone to fill gaps in our monitoring” Environment Canada’s Managers Forum – Innovation, Vancouver, Canada
  • 2013 – “Improving Avian Environmental Assessments with Radar”, Oral presentation, Windaba, Cape Town, South Africa
  • 2013 – “Air as a resource for humans and night migrating birds”, Oral presentation, Association of Professional Biologists Conference, Richmond, B.C.
  • 2012 – “Migration corridors: a study of frame bias in the migration monitoring of landbirds”, Poster presentation, 5th North American Ornithological Congress, Vancouver, B.C.
  • 2011 – “The importance of ‘shore’ in offshore”, Poster presentation, Canadian Wind Energy Association Conference, Vancouver, B.C.
  • 2009 – “Bats of Northern B.C.”, Oral presentation, Western Bat Working Group, Huston, Texas

Abbott, C.L., R.L. Millikin, M.J. Hipfner, S. Hatch, I. Motohiro, Y. Watanuki and T.M. Burg. 2014. Genetic structure of rhinoceros auklets, Cerorhinca monocerata, breeding in British Columbia, Alaska and Japan. Marine Biology 161:275-283.

Becker F.K., R.L. Millikin and AJ. Leslie. 2020. Using radar technology to assess visual monitoring accuracy of Cape Vulture movements. Ostrich, 91:1, 83-90, DOI: 10.2989/00306525.2019.1664673

Drever, M.C., D. Chabot, P.D. O’Hara, J.D. Thomas, A. Breault, and R.L. Millikin. 2015. Evaluation of an unmanned rotorcraft to monitor wintering waterbirds and coastal habitats in British Columbia, Canada. 10/2015, DOI: 10,1139/juvs-2015-0019.

Drever, M.C., M.J.F. Lemon, R.W. Butler and R.L. Millikin. 2014. Monitoring populations of Western Sandpipers and Pacific Dunlins during northward migration on the Fraser River Delta, British Columbia, 1991-2013, Journal of Field Ornithology 03/2014; 85(1). DOI: 10.1111/jofo 12045.

Millikin, R.L., A. Jenkins, G. Benn and J. du Pressis. 2013. The first application of radar for Environmental Impact Assessment in South Africa. Presentation to Windaba, Cape Town, South Africa. 

Millikin, R.L., R. Joy, J. Komaromi, M. Harrison, N. Mahony and W.M. Vander Haegen. 2020. Recovery of peripheral Sage Thrashers under climate change. Conservation and Science Practice. https://doi.org/10.1111/csp2.290 

Millikin, R.L. 2012. Frame bias in landbird monitoring. Poster presentation at the 5th North American Ornithological Congress, Vancouver, B.C., Canada.

Millikin, R.L. 2004-2012. Client EA reports and conference proceedings are available on request.

Millikin, R.L. 2008. Bats of Northeastern B.C. Poster presentation at CanWEA, Vancouver, B.C., Canada

Millikin, R.L. 2008. Identification and location of an object via passive acoustic detection. Journal of Acoustical Society of America. 01/2008; 123(3). DOI: 10,1121/1 2901301

Millikin, R.L. 2007. Radar-acoustic monitoring in the environmental assessment of wind farms. Oral presentation, CanWEA, Toronto, Ont., Canada.

Millikin, R.L. 2007. Avoidance of wind turbines. Radar-acoustic fusion. Invited speaker at the Radar symposium, Wilson Society, 22-25 March, Wakefield, Massachusetts.

Millikin, R.L. 2006. Bird and bat response to turbines. TSBBWG Newsletter Volume 3, Number 1.

Millikin, R. L. 2005. Migration Monitoring with Automated Technology. USDA Forest Service General Technical Report PSW-GTR-191. 

Millikin, R.L. 2002. Sensor fusion for the localization of birds in flight. Ph.D. Dissertation, Royal Military College of Canada, Kingston, Ontario, 240 pp.

Millikin, R.L. and J.R. Buckley, 2001. Use of an adapted marine radar for the short-range detection and tracking of small birds in flight. IGARSS 2001 International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium, July 9-14, Sydney, Australia.

Millikin, R.L. 2000. Efficacy of the suppression and conditioning apparatus and the consequent behavior modification in birds – Vancouver Landfill Experiment. Contract to Transport Canada, Ottawa.

Millikin, R.L. 2000. Problem Analysis – Impact of Noise on Airport Avifauna. Contract to Department of National Defense, Ottawa.

Millikin, R.L. 2000. Pre-construction ecological risk assessment of wind turbines on birds and bats in the Kingston Area.  Mechanical Engineering Report #000503, Royal Military College, Kingston, Ontario May 2000.

Millikin, R.L. 1999. Introduction to Environmental Assessment, Correspondence Course GEE285. Contract to the Office of Continuing Studies, Royal Military College.

Millikin, R.L. and T.S. Bowden 1997. Birds, bright lights and buildings. Wingspan.

Burgess, N.M., S.B. Holmes, B.D. Pauli and R.L. Millikin 1995. Potential indirect impacts of Btk on insectivorous birds: Canadian concerns and research response. In. T-Y Feng et al (eds.), Bacillus thuringiensis Biotechnology and Environmental Benefits, Vol I, 505-519.

Millikin, R.L. 1993. Utilization of residual patches of old-growth Douglas-fir by forest birds. Proceedings of the Forest Ecosystem Dynamics Workshop. Canadian Forest Service, Victoria, B.C.

Millikin, R.L. 1992. Methodology for monitoring forest birds in the context of wildlife diversity in B.C. forests. In: Methodology for monitoring wildlife diversity in B.C. forests. Proceedings of a workshop. B.C. Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks.

Millikin, R.L. and J.N.M. Smith 1990. Sublethal effects of Fenitrothion on forest passerines. Journal of Applied Ecology 27: 983-1000.

Millikin, R.L. 1990.  Effects of fenitrothion on the arthropod food of tree-foraging forest songbirds. Canadian Journal of Zoology 68: 2235-2242.

Millikin, R.L. 1988.  A comparison of spot, transect and plot methods for measuring the impact of forest pest control strategies on forest songbirds. Information Report FPM-X-83.

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