Postgraduate research student
|Telephone||+44 (0)1326 371852|
|Location||Centre for Ecology and Conservation, Daphne du Maurier building, Cornwall Campus|
2009 MSc University of East Anglia
2008 BSc (Hons) University of Durham
Sett menus: The ecological and evolutionary origins and consequences of individual foraging behaviour in group living badgers
European Social Fund (ESF)
My PhD research is investigating individual and group foraging specialisation in the Eurasian badger (Meles meles). Intra-population variation in foraging niche has been recorded in a wide range of species, with potentially important implications for their ecology, evolution and conservation. However, despite the occurrence of this behaviour in an increasingly large number of species, little is known about its origins (social, genetic or environmental?) or consequences (does it affect fitness?). My research is aimed at answering these questions by combining data on individual diets derived through stable isotope analysis, with ecological information on badger individuals and groups.
Badgers are a reservoir of Mycobacterium bovis, the causative agent of bovine tuberculosis (TB). This research may therefore have important applications, through identifying which factors lead to individual badgers exploiting farm resources, bringing them into close proximity to cattle and increasing disease transmission risk.
My previous research has included: investigating the distribution of small mustelids in wet grassland managed for breeding waders and investigating the determinants of nest success in the African chameleon (Chamaeleo africanus) in southern Greece.