I am interested in the behavioural ecology of social species, but specifically how we can use bio-logging devices and visualisation software to gain novel insights into animal behaviour. Having focused on social behaviour, foraging strategies and migration in past studies, I am now combining my interests to study the movement ecology of soaring species.
Soaring species rely on their aerial environment for movement and access to resources. In my PhD I am investigating the movement of these species at fine and regional scales. Specifically I am quantifying individual flight performance in Andean condors and Cape Griffon vultures using animal attached devices equipped with tri-axial accelerometry and magnetometry. Further to this I am studying the influence of social behaviour and personality on the movement patterns of these birds.
Areas of Expertise
Tag attachment: Attachment of specifically designed printed housings to the body feathers of Cape Griffon vultures; previous projects have involved suction cup attachment to marine mammals
Accelerometry: Use of Daily Diaries to qualify flight performance through derived measures of pitch and Roll, VeDBA and VeSPA
Geolocation: Use of BASTrac light level loggers to map the migration of Northern Gannets and associated software
Social behaviour: dyadic association and acoustic similarity in the formation of social dendrograms of marine mammals; in current studies of animal personality
Foraging Behaviour: use of Stable Isotope Analysis in the study of diet and foraging habitat