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Faculty of Health and Life Sciences

Dr Ana Nuno

Dr Ana Nuno

Research Fellow

 The Farmhouse 


The Farmhouse, University of Exeter, Penryn Campus, Cornwall, TR10 9FE, UK



2013 PhD Conservation Science (Imperial College London, UK) 
2007 MRes Biodiversity and Conservation (University of Leeds, UK) 
2005 BSc Biology (University of Porto, Portugal)


2014 Visiting researcher at Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions, Australia 
2008-2009 Intern at Convergence Centre/GAIA (NGO), Aldeia das Amoreiras, Portugal
2005-2006 Research Assistant at Mammal Research Institute, Bialowieza, Poland

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Research interests

My research interests are focused at understanding human-wildlife interactions and anthropogenic drivers of biodiversity change in order to minimize conflict and support the sustainable use of wildlife resources. Particularly, I am interested in the application of more holistic approaches to support decision-making under uncertainty in conservation, such as adaptive management and management strategy evaluation. I am very keen to do some more work on bringing together biological and social data into unified frameworks, which I believe is essential to fully understanding and addressing conservation issues.

Research projects

Socio-economic aspects of turtle conservation in the Cayman Islands

Funding Body: The Darwin Initiative

The Cayman Islands once hosted one of the world’s largest turtle rookeries. For 500 years, turtle fishing underpinned economy and culture: the turtle is a national emblem enshrined in the flag and currency and turtle meat is considered a national dish. Nesting was nearly extirpated through harvesting so in 1968 a commercial captive breeding operation – Cayman Turtle Farm – was established to provide meat, reduce demand on wild stocks, and replenish them through releases. The farm is now owned by the CI government and legal protections for wild turtles were instituted in 1978.

However, uncertainty about the conservation effectiveness of ongoing interventions, hard-to-quantify illegal harvest, little knowledge about cultural and socio-economic drivers and increasing conflicts between different stakeholders affect the managers’ ability to make robust decisions about the conservation and exploitation of turtles in the study area. This project with Dr Annette Broderick, Professor Brendan Godley and the Cayman Islands Department of Environment aims to assess socioeconomic drivers in the demand for turtle meat in Cayman including the role of the Cayman Turtle Farm in meeting this demand and the vulnerability of wild stocks to illegal take. Resulting knowledge will be used to inform management and reduce threats to wild marine turtles.

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