Dr Tom Fairchild

Research Officer, Biosciences

Telephone number

+44 (0) 1792 987795

Welsh language proficiency

Basic Welsh Speaker
Staff Office - 024
Ground Floor
Margam Building
Singleton Campus


I graduated from Bangor University with a Master of Oceanography degree in 2011, and graduated from my MSc in Marine Environmental Protection at Bangor in 2012. I focused on the interaction between the physical and biological environments, examining using physical proxies to predict species occurrence in Cardigan Bay for my M.Ocean, and examined the effects of hydro-electric discharge regimes on river invertebrates and salmonid populations in the Isle of Man for my MSc.

During my MSc. I also undertook work for NRW (formally Countryside Council for Wales) on a high profile invasive sea-squirt (Didemnum vexillum) removal project in Holyhead Marina, and have worked between my MSc and PhD for Welsh Government as a Fisheries Science officer.

I however have always had a keen interest in both macro- and micro-algae, and I have had the chance to develop my passion with a PhD in biodiversity-ecosystem function relationships here at Swansea University, under the guidance of Dr. John Griffin and Dr. Mike Fowler. My research focuses on how intertidal algae communities are formed in the intertidal, and how different aspects of spatial scale affect the relationship between the diversity and composition of these communities and the ecosystem functions they perform.  I also have a keen interest in applying new technology to problems, and have developed methods to quantify size, 3D-shape and roughness of rock-pools, which can help me to understand the distribution of macro-algae in the pools, using a photographic technique called photogrammetry.

Areas Of Expertise

  • Coastal Ecology
  • Functional Ecology
  • Phycology
  • Ecosystem functioning and services