Owain Barton (PhD student)

The scope of my research is broad and explores a variety of topical issues including population dynamics and landscape ecology. I will be observing a largely isolated population of Fallow deer (Dama dama) in North Wales using motion-capture camera traps. I intend to identify the landscape scale drivers of occupancy and activity, as well as observing behavioural responses to anthropogenic disturbance. The project is supported by a KESS 2 ( scholarship and will operate in collaboration with the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust ( to inform sustainable ungulate management.

Amy Gresham (PhD student)

My NERC Envision funded PhD focuses on linking the behaviour of an expanding population of fallow deer (Dama dama) to their effects on woodlands in the Elwy Valley, North Wales. The aim of the project is to establish how the behaviour and diet of the deer is influenced by habitat structure and human activity. I will be studying deer behaviour using  remotely activated cameras, while diet data will be extracted from faecal samples using genetic metabarcoding. Woodlands will be characterised on the basis of vegetation diversity, structure and canopy composition. Additionally, seasonal dietary analysis will be carried out to investigate how diet composition varies throughout the year and whether this is linked to variation in browsing impacts.

Jenny Amphaeris (PhD student)

I am undertaking an interdisciplinary PhD between linguistics and biological sciences funded by Bangor University’s College of Arts and Humanities.I am reassessing definitions of language in light of developments in both cognitive science and animal communication research. The aim is to streamline terminology use and language conceptualisation across disciplines by constructing a new theoretical framework for language and determining if, and how, other species might fit into this.

David Keeble (MSc-Res student)

My research aims to understand the ecological predictors of elephant habitat use and presence in Kibale National Park, Uganda. I will be using a data set from 1970 to 2019 from eight different sites in Kibale and aim to add to the existing knowledge of the elephants in Kibale whilst also providing more groundwork for future studies. Kibale is a unique location where both forest and savanna elephants live and interact, and understanding the impacts they have on the forest is key to its survival. The main factor I will be focusing on is the effect the herbaceous layer has on elephant presence, in particular the sub-woody shrub Acanthus pubescens.

Will Justus (MSc-Res student)

I’m interested in exploring the behaviour of woodland mammals in North Wales with a particular focus on interspecific interactions to assess risk of bovine tuberculosis (TB) transmission. My research will model the activity of Eurasian badgers, fallow deer, and red foxes using camera traps. I’d like to see if these species are active in the same areas during the same time of day, and to what extent they overlap with livestock. I also plan to conduct a review that explores the prevalence of TB across mammals in Europe.

Group alumni

Rhea Burton-Roberts (PhD 2022) The influence of resource variability on the movement behaviour of African elephants (Loxodonta africana) across spatiotemporal scales. Rhea is a lecturer in zoology at Bangor University

Bethan Pugh (MSc-Res 2022) Effectiveness of invasive species management: how control effort influences mink presence in North Wales

Alex Harcourt (MSc-Res 2021)Interspecific Differences in Treefrog Response to Artificial Light at Night and Spectral Manipulation

Jess Chapman (MSc-Res 2021)Road noise alters foraging duration and vigilance behaviour of three common tit species

Ellie Roylance-Casson (MSc-Res 2021)Rensch’s Rule and the Drivers of Sexual Dimorphism in Ungulates

Phoebe Sadler (MSc-Res2020)Sexual dimorphism in the common hippopotamus

Dan Smith (MSc-Res2020)Have stripe patterns influenced the social behaviour and cohesion of the plains zebra (Equus quagga)?

Will Connock (MSc-Res2020)Zebra stripes, the ectoparasite hypothesis: using behavioural measures to determine ectoparasitic burdens in plains zebra in Addo Elephant National Park, South Africa

Rhodri Evetts (MSc-Res2020)The Origin of Zebra Stripes: Does Striping Provide a Fecundity Advantage?

Owain Barton (MSc-Res2018)An integrated approach to high-resolution modelling of a species range expansion using presence-only data: a case study on roe deer (Capreolus capreolus)