John Marzluff studies how humans affect birds through habitat fragmentation and increased urbanization, as well as the challenges of conserving birds on islands. He focuses primarily on corvids—that is, ravens, crows, and jays—but he has also worked with falcons and hawks throughout the world. Conversely, he is also interested in all the ways that birds affect people—how, for instance, birds influence art, or language.
In addition to his research, he has written several popular science books about crows, including, most recently, Gifts of the Crow: How Perception, Emotion, and Thought Allow Smart Birds to Behave Like Humans. In recognition of his work, he has been awarded the H.R. Painton Awards from the Cooper Ornithological Society, as well as the Washington State Book Award for general non-fiction.