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I am an ecologist with a life-long passion for natural history who specialises in studying animal behaviour. In particular, I am interested in what information animals base their decisions on and the ecological and energetic consequences of those decisions. During my career I have amassed an extensive project management and fieldwork portfolio encompassing a wide range of ecological methods and species.

Flower meddow

I am fortunate to have worked with researchers from many great research groups and institutions including: The University of Pretoria, The University of Cape Town, The University of St Andrews, The Royal Veterinary College, The University of Edinburgh, The Univeristy of Lethbridge, The University of Durham, The University of New Brunswick, Wild CRU Oxford, CEH Banchory and CEH Merlewood.

Current focus:

  1. Understanding how floral attributes such as nectar sugar concentration and flower shape influence sunbird foraging behaviour.
  2. Understanding what birds need to learn to be able to build a good nest and what information they use to decide what nest material to choose. For example how they go about choosing material with appropriate structural properties.

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June 2013: SULSA Leaders award– £15,567.88

This funding was awarded based on the candidates leadership ability. It supports their personal development through training, work placements and grant writing time.


2015: Certificate in field botany (Distinction). The Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh.

2013: PRINCE2 practitioner -project management.

2010: PhD, The University of Edinburgh, UK: Factors influencing the foraging decisions of Rufous Hummingbirds.

2005: B.Sc. (Hons), 2/1, Geography with Biology. The University of Durham, UK.

Key Skills:

  • Project management
  • International/ interdisciplinary collaboration 
  • Leadership, including: supervision and mentoring 
  • Design and implementation of field and laboratory experiments/ surveys
  • Behavioural ecology/ animal behaviour/ field biology
  • Botany / Ornithology
  • Data analysis
  • Scientific writing/ publication in peer reviewed journals
  • Public and media engagement 
  • Dissemination of research through social media
  • Innovation e.g. novel uses of technology such as pattern recognition software 

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