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 Sarah Paul

Sarah Paul

PhD researcher

 

7-spot ladybird

7-spot ladybird.

Overview

I am interested in the way that maternal effects mediate reproductive responses not only to natural environmental fluctuations but also to the myriad of anthropogenically driven environmental changes such as invasive species, pollution, pesticide use, and climate change.

I am currently investigating how reproduction, including maternal effects, in the aposematic UK native ladybird Adalia bipunctata is influenced by the invasive Harmonia axyridis and native Coccinella septempunctata ladybirds. I focus on alterations in per offspring maternal investment in chemical defence and signalling honesty, both of which influence offspring survival. The main aim of my research is to understand the intrinsic and extrinsic factors that affect the levels of toxins in individuals, and the costs and benefits associated with being toxic, and being exposed to toxins in the diet within an intraguild predation system.

Follow me on twitter: @nonchalantnat

7-spot ladybird.

7-spot ladybird.

2-spot ladybird.

2-spot ladybird.

Research

Research projects

Project title: The price of defence – fitness consequences of intraguild predation amongst ladybirds

Funding body: NERC

Supervisor: Dr Jon Blount
Co-supervisor: Dr Martin Stevens
Collaborators: Dr Mike Birkett (Rothamsted Research), Dr Judy Pell (J.K. Pell Consulting) and Dr Jason Baverstock (Rothamsted Research)

Current Research:
My research lies at the intersection between maternal effects, aposematism, and sensory ecology. Maternal effects, where a mother’s phenotype influences offspring phenotype, enables female reproductive behaviour to respond to changes in the maternal and, if reliable cues exist, in the offspring environment in a way that maximises maternal fitness.

My PhD focuses on the costs of chemical defence in the context of intraguild predation, using the native/naturalised 2-spot ladybird (Adalia bipunctata) and 7-spot ladybird (Coccinella septempunctata), and the invasive harlequin ladybird (Harmonia axyridis) as a study system. All life stages of these ladybirds are under intense predation threat from a wide variety of different intraguild and extraguild predators. The harlequin ladybird in particular is highly competitive and polyphagous and will prey upon the eggs and larvae of both 2-spots and 7-spots. Each of these species is also chemically defended at each stage of its life cycle. The presence of these toxins and effects on interspecific ladybird predators is well documented, however many questions surrounding observed inter-individual toxin variation still remain. I focus on alterations in per offspring maternal investment in chemical defence and signalling honesty, both of which influence offspring survival.

The main aim of my research is to understand the intrinsic and extrinsic factors that affect the levels of toxins in individuals, and the costs and benefits associated with being toxic, and being exposed to toxins in the diet within an intraguild predation system.

Previous Research:
I previously worked on much larger and furrier species, making my first foray into the world of sensory ecology during my undergraduate thesis, where I studied the longevity of Eurasian otter (Lutra lutra) scent signals. I graduated from Cardiff University in 2010 (BSc Biology 1st Class) and I then spent two years as assistant project manager for the Cardiff University Otter Project and two months as the small mammal research scientist in Cusuco National Park, Honduras, for Operation Wallacea.

Publications:

Paul SC, Pell JK, Blount JD (2015) Reproduction in Risky Environments: The Role of Invasive Egg Predators in Ladybird Laying Strategies. PLoS ONE 10(10): e0139404. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0139404

Arshi Siddiqui , Omkar A Pervez, Paul C Sarah, and Mishra, Geetanjali  (2015) Predatory responses of selected lines of developmental variants of ladybird, Propylea dissecta (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) in relation to increasing prey and predator densities, Biocontrol Science and Technology, Vol. 25, Issue 9 DOI: 10.1080/09583157.2015.1024101

Chadwick A Elizabeth, Cable  Joanne, Chinchen  Alex, Francis  Janet, Guy  Edward, Kean F Eleanor, Paul C Sarah, Perkins E Sarah, Sherrard-Smith  Ellie, Wilkinson  Clare, and Forman W Dan (2013) Seroprevalence of Toxoplasma gondii in the Eurasian otter (Lutra lutra) in England and Wales Parasites &Vectors, DOI: 10.1186/1756-3305-6-75

Milcu Alex, Paul C Sarah, and Lukac, M. (2011) Belowground interactive effects of elevated CO2, plant diversity and earthworms in grassland microcosms, Basic and Applied Ecology, DOI: 10.1016/j.baae.2011.08.004

Publications

Key publications | Publications by category | Publications by year

Publications by category


Journal articles

Blount J, Paul SC, Stevens M, birkett M, Pell JK (In Press). Parental phenotype not predator cues influence egg warning coloration and defence levels. Animal Behaviour Full text.
Briolat E, Burdfield-Steel E, Paul S, Rönkä K, Seymoure B, Stankowich T, Stuckert A (2018). Diversity in warning coloration: selective paradox or the norm?. Biological Reviews Abstract.  Full text.
Paul S, Stevens M, Burton J, Pell J, Burkett M, Blount J (2018). Invasive egg predators and food availability interactively affect maternal investment in egg chemical defence. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution, 6 Abstract.  Full text.
Siddiqui A, Omkar, Paul SC, Mishra G (2015). Predatory responses of selected lines of developmental variants of ladybird, Propylea dissecta (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) in relation to increasing prey and predator densities. Biocontrol Science and Technology, 25(9), 992-1010. Abstract.
Paul SC, Pell JK, Blount JD (2015). Reproduction in Risky Environments: the Role of Invasive Egg Predators in Ladybird Laying Strategies. PLoS One, 10(10). Abstract.  Author URL.  Full text.

Publications by year


In Press

Blount J, Paul SC, Stevens M, birkett M, Pell JK (In Press). Parental phenotype not predator cues influence egg warning coloration and defence levels. Animal Behaviour Full text.

2018

Briolat E, Burdfield-Steel E, Paul S, Rönkä K, Seymoure B, Stankowich T, Stuckert A (2018). Diversity in warning coloration: selective paradox or the norm?. Biological Reviews Abstract.  Full text.
Paul S, Stevens M, Burton J, Pell J, Burkett M, Blount J (2018). Invasive egg predators and food availability interactively affect maternal investment in egg chemical defence. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution, 6 Abstract.  Full text.

2015

Siddiqui A, Omkar, Paul SC, Mishra G (2015). Predatory responses of selected lines of developmental variants of ladybird, Propylea dissecta (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) in relation to increasing prey and predator densities. Biocontrol Science and Technology, 25(9), 992-1010. Abstract.
Paul SC, Pell JK, Blount JD (2015). Reproduction in Risky Environments: the Role of Invasive Egg Predators in Ladybird Laying Strategies. PLoS One, 10(10). Abstract.  Author URL.  Full text.

Sarah_Paul Details from cache as at 2019-06-15 03:27:31

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