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Jim Galloway

PhD student

 Stella Turk Building G3.06


University of Exeter, Penryn Campus, Penryn, TR10 9FE


I am 3rd year PhD student, funded by the BBSRC SWBio Doctoral Training Partnership.

My research while at the University of Exeter has been focussed on examining the effectiveness of animal camouflage, and most recently the roles of vision in directing colour change for improved camouflage. I work in the Sensory Ecology and Evolution Lab, under the supervision of Professor Martin Stevens.

I'm also co-supervised by Professor Tom Tregenza here in Penryn, and Professor Nick Roberts at the Ecology of Vision Lab at the University of Bristol.



2017-2018 MSc Evolutionary and Behavioural Ecology - University of Exeter (Penryn Campus)

2012-2015 BSc Biology (Hons) - Royal Holloway, University of London


Research interests

My research is focussed around the testing of the specific roles of animal vision in colour change for camouflage.

It is assumed that visual information guides the colour change for camouflage of many species. However, this hasn't been robustly tested. In order to understand vision's role in colour change for camouflage, I'm examining the various ways colour change for camouflage is contingent on visual information. Using shore crabs, I'm testing their visual capabilities, then relating these to the conditions where they change colour.

This is done through a combination of behavioural tests of vision, and digital image analysis that allows us to interpret colour change and the resulting camouflage based on what relevant predators might actually see, providing a measure of camouflage success.

By understanding what causes crabs to change colour, and what can stop them changing under conditions that should casue them to change can allow us to understand the role of vision, as well as other sensory modalities, in colour change for camouflage. Ultimately, we hope to understand the evolutionary relationship between phenotypic plasticities and the sensory systems that guide them.

Research projects


  • Galloway, J. A. M., Green, S. D., Stevens, M. & Kelley, L. A. (2020) Finding a hidden signal among noise: how can predators overcome camouflage strategies? Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B.


Supervision / Group

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