Diamanto Mamuneas (PhD Student)
e-mail: dmamuneas [at] rvc.ac.uk

Research Overview
Animals form congregations because they benefit from this as individuals; for example due to reduced predation risk or local resource enhancement. However, group living and movement also poses a problem: given that individuals benefit most from being with others, how do they successfully stay within the group? And when are they best able to employ optimal strategies to obtain resources or avoid costs as a coordinated unit? Simple rules may have evolved to govern individual behaviour for maintaining coherence and emergent order in situations where there may otherwise be conflicts of interest. I am interested in what these rules are and how they lead to the kind of complex behaviours people are familiar with such as fish shoaling or synchronised surfacing – as well as human equivalents and more complex cooperation in both these and other taxa. I am currently using three-spined sticklebacks in lab-based experiments and considering whether personality traits influence leadership/followership, what other factors correlate with these traits and what combinations of traits would produce the best outcome for a group, from the perspective of individual costs and benefits.

2011-Present: BBSRC funded PhD student

Structure and Motion Laboratory, Royal Veterinary College, University of London (Supervisors Andrew King and Andrew Spence), and Evolutionary Ecology GroupDepartment of Zoology, University of Cambridge (co-supervisor Andrea Manica).


2010-2011: MSc in Cognitive & Evolutionary Anthropology 

The Institute of Cognitive & Evolutionary Anthropology, University of Oxford.


2007-2010: BA (Hons) Biological Sciences, Mathematics, Physical & Life Sciences Division

Department of Zoology and Department of Plant Sciences, University of Oxford.

Grants & Awards
  • (2013) Society for Experimental Biology Annual Main Meeting, Valencia, Spain (Poster)
  • (2012) 10th Annual London Evolutionary Research Network Conference, London, UK (Talk
  • (2012) VIth European Conference on Behavioural Biology, Essen, Germany (Talk)
  • (2012) Royal Veterinary College, University of London, UK (Internal seminar)
Mamuneas, D., Spence, A. J., Manica, A., King, A. J. (2015) Bolder stickleback fish make faster decisions, but they are not less accurate. Behavioral Ecology6: 91-96. http://www.plosone.org/article/fetchObject.action?uri=info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0081116&representation=PDF [Video: example[BBC News Wales] [BBC Radio Wales] [BEEP! podcast]
King, A. J., Fürtbauer, I., Mamuneas, D., James, C., Manica, A. (2013). Sex-differences and temporal consistency in stickleback fish boldness. PLoS ONE 8(12): e81116 http://www.plosone.org/article/fetchObject.action?uri=info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0081116&representation=PDF [Planet Earth]  [Wales Online] [WIRED]