I am interested in understanding how species respond to the various driving factors of global change at different population, spatial and temporal scales. In particular, my research focuses on how vertebrate species are affected by climate change, changes in land use, development of renewable energy sources, and modified predator and prey communities from a population biology and behavioural ecology perspective. I am also interested in methodologies that can improve effectiveness of wildlife monitoring or that allow us to discern finer-scale effects of global change factors than those detectable through traditional approaches.

Some of the topics I am working on or have worked on in the past include:
    • The response of vertebrate populations to (i) long term weather patterns, (ii) difference  in land use and pollution, and (iii) demographic processes resulting from population growth, decline and interaction with other species.
    • Using physiological parameters of top predators as a fine-scale, integrative measure of an ecosystem’s quality.
    • Understanding activity patterns and developing survey methodologies for rare species.
    • Effects of agricultural practices and altered predator communities on threatened bird populations.
    • Interactions between wind energy development and bird communities.

What's new?

Sep 2015
In 2014 Cork was the county with most Dippers ringed across all of Ireland and the UK!
BTO ringing report here
July 2015
On Mooney Goes Wild (RTE Radio 1), talking about wolves with John O'Halloran.
Listen here
Jan 2015
Giving a presentation at the IRSG conference: From recovery to uncertainty, changing fortunes for Cinereous Vultures in southern Spain.
Jan 2015
After 8 months looking at the interactions between wind farms and Hen Harriers, it's back to the PhD and Dippers!
Aug 2014
The Dipper project shows the effects of climate change on the documentary Creedon's Weather (RTE Television).
More info here
May 2014
I'm putting the PhD on hold to take on a short research officer position looking at the interactions between Hen Harriers and wind farms in Ireland.
Project website
Feb 2014
The Dipper project on Mooney Goes Wild (RTE Radio 1) with Pat Smiddy, Barry O'Mahony and myself.
Listen here

Nov 2013
Giving a presentation at the 6th Irish Ornithological Research Conference: Hen Harrier nesting behaviour: data from nest cameras
Oct 2013
I'm at the SOC annual conference in Scotland talking about raptors: From Merlin to Harpy Eagles, case studies in raptor conservation.
Sep 2013
Starting a PhD at UCC looking at the effects of global change on Dipper populations.
Project website

 A short clip of the species I am currently working on, the White-throated Dipper.
 Contact information
: dfernandezbellon [at] gmail.com // dfernandezbellon [at] ucc.ie
address: Darío Fernández-Bellon
              G16, Cooperage (UCC)
              Distillery Fields, North Mall
              Cork, Ireland
 My profile on:


last updated: October 2015