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David Sherry


  • Advisor
  • Brain, Mind & Consciousness




David Sherry’s research examines the adaptive specialization of memory and the brain in birds.  His work with food-storing birds and avian brood parasites has identified selective pressures that shape cognition and its underlying neural mechanisms.  This research has shown that memory and the brain can be rapidly modified on an evolutionary time scale to support the cognitive components of foraging, reproduction, and migration.

David Sherry is a principal investigator and co-founder of the Advanced Facility for Avian Research, a Canada Foundation for Innovation New Initiatives project at Western University.  He has served as an editor of the journals Behaviour and Animal Behaviour, and as a member of the Editorial Board of the Royal Society journal Biology Letters. His current research uses radio-tracking, neuroanatomical techniques, and comparative behavioural methods to examine interactions between memory systems, the hippocampus of migratory sandpipers, and the cognitive aspects of winter social organization in birds.


  • Elective Member, American Ornithological Society
  • Distinguished University Professor, Western University
  • Comparative Cognition Society 2021 Research Award

Relevant Publications

  • Sherry, D.F. Grella, S.L., Guigueno, M.F., White, D.J. & Marrone, D.F. (2017). Are there place cells in the avian hippocampus? Brain Behavior & Evolution 90, 73-80.
  • Sherry, D.F. & MacDougall-Shackleton, S.A. (2015). Seasonal change in the avian hippocampus. Frontiers in Neuroendocrinology, 37, 158-167.
  • Sherry, D.F. (2006). Neuroecology. Annual Review of Psychology 57, 167-197.
  • Sherry, D.F., Forbes, M.R.L., Khurgel, M. & Ivy, G.O. (1993). Females have a larger hippocampus than males in the brood-parasitic brown-headed cowbird. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 90, 7839-7843.
  • Sherry, D.F., & Schacter, D.L. (1987). The evolution of multiple memory systems. Psychological Review, 94, 439‑454.

Support Us

CIFAR is a registered charitable organization supported by the governments of Canada, Alberta and Quebec, as well as foundations, individuals, corporations and Canadian and international partner organizations.

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