About Me

I am interested in the mechanisms underlying animal movement and distributions, in particular, the movement of flying animals. The costs of flight are modulated by the physical environment, namely the weather, the landscape and the nature of the interactions between them. I use animal-attached technology to investigate how these factors affect the costs and patterns of avian movement and combine this with models to explore the ecological consequences of movement. Animal-attached loggers can now provide us with unprecedented information about wild animal behaviour, including its flexibility and costs, and I believe these data can play a vital role in the formulation of strategies for effective species-based conservation.

Tel: +44 (0)1792 604001

Areas of Expertise

  • Behavioural ecology
  • Movement ecology
  • Biotelemetry

Publications

  1. & Human-wildlife conflicts in a crowded airspace. Science 348(6234), 502-504.
  2. & Are bio-telemetric devices a drag? Effects of external tags on the diving behaviour of great cormorants. Marine Ecology Progress Series 519, 239-249.
  3. & TimeClassifier: a visual analytic system for the classification of multi-dimensional time series data. The Visual Computer 31(6-8), 1067-1078.
  4. & A risky business or a safe BET? A Fuzzy Set Event Tree for estimating hazard in biotelemetry studies. Animal Behaviour 93, 143-150.
  5. & From daily movements to population distributions: Weather affects competitive ability in a guild of soaring birds. Journal of the Royal Society Interface 10(88)

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Teaching

  • BIO229 Terrestrial vertebrates

    This module follows on from the introduction of vertebrates in the Level 4 Animal Diversity Form and Function module providing detail on form and function in vertebrates that spend all or part of their life cycle on land. Aspects of vertebrate morphology and physiology will be considered in terms of adaptation and evolutionary contraint. Practicals will provide an introduction to the anatomy of birds and mammals by means of dissection, avian flight (specifically the factors that have lead to differences in wing shape and flight performance), and an exploration of how climate affects population level processes in amphibia. Overall, students will gain an appreciation of the diversity of vertebrate types and an insight into the fundamental importance of metabolic rate in animals.

  • BIO308 Movement ecology

    This module will examine why, how, where and when organisms move. The lectures will draw on first principles of animal movement in order to examine the costs and benefits of different movement strategies, and how they apply to organisms from aphids to eagles. While the module will refer to movement in a wide variety of animals, many strands of behavioural ecology have been developed using birds as model organisms, several themes therefore feature birds (both marine and terrestrial) more than other organisms. Movement will be examined over a range of spatial and temporal scales, as recorded using some of the very latest technologies.

Supervision

  • Pathways of Introduction and Spread of Invasive Alien Species (AIS) in freshwater ecosystems. (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Professor Carlos Garcia De Leaniz
    Other supervisor: Professor Sofia Consuegra Del Olmo
  • Can vulture distributions be predicted by soaring conditions and body size? (current)

    Student name:
    MRes
    Other supervisor: Dr Luca Borger
  • 'The Applicability of Animal-Attached Tri-Axial Accelerometers and Machine Learning Techniques for Inferring the Behaviour of Wild Social Primates' (current)

    Student name:
    MRes
    Other supervisor: Dr Andrew King
  • A new perspective on angling, smart tag monitoring of angler and fish behaviour (current)

    Student name:
    MRes
    Other supervisor: Professor Rory Wilson
  • How flight performance characteristics and local airflow conditions affect nest site selection in cliff-nesting seabirds (current)

    Student name:
    MRes
    Other supervisor: Professor Rory Wilson
  • Understanding vulture space-use from fine to regional scales (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Dr Andrew King
  • Introduction and dispersal of aquaculture-related invasive species under climate change (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Professor Sofia Consuegra Del Olmo
    Other supervisor: Professor Carlos Garcia De Leaniz
  • Untitled (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Professor Sofia Consuegra Del Olmo
    Other supervisor: Professor Carlos Garcia De Leaniz
  • Life in the slow lane: The sloth niche, divine or dangerous; a case study in Costa Rica. (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Professor Rory Wilson
    Other supervisor: Dr Luca Borger
  • Understanding and predicting baboon space use in a human altered landscape (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Dr Andrew King
  • How does rain affect the flight costs and capacity in raptors? (current)

    Student name:
    MRes
    Other supervisor: Professor Rory Wilson
  • 'Informed movement, one step at a time: do animals have a fundamental step length?' (awarded 2016)

    Student name:
    MRes
    Other supervisor: Professor Rory Wilson
  • 'Decision-Making in a Central-Place Forager: A Case Study of the Harbour Seal (Phoca vitulina)' (awarded 2015)

    Student name:
    MSc
    Other supervisor: Professor Rory Wilson
  • 'How does the environment structure movement? A case study with Grain Weevils' (awarded 2014)

    Student name:
    MSc
    Other supervisor: Professor Rory Wilson
  • 'The movement ecology of Rhincodon typus. A new pitch on fish movement; what can accelerometry tell us about whale shark behaviour?' (awarded 2014)

    Student name:
    MRes
    Other supervisor: Professor Rory Wilson
  • 'A meta-analysis of fisheries co-management around the World.' (awarded 2014)

    Student name:
    MRes
    Other supervisor: Dr Mike Fowler

Research Groups

  • Swansea Lab for Animal Movement

    We research animal movement in its broadest sense, using individual-based approaches to examine the role of the environment in structuring the properties of animal movements and ultimately, distributions. We specialise in obtaining data using novel technologies which allow us to access information from particularly intractable species.