Past Research Students
Whatever of my work is judged worthy of publication, I do not want my name to appear there. (Pierre de Fermat, 1637)
I am an Associate Professor at the Dept of Biosciences in Swansea University, with a research focus on how species interactions and stochastic
environmental variability combine to influence different types of ecological stability.
Recent and ongoing research projects include: (i) investigating eco-evolutionary dynamics in stage-structured populations, collaborating with Steve Sait (University of Leeds) and his Podia moth system (NERC funded) (ii) understanding the frequency distributions arising from different methods of generating coloured, stochastic environmental variation (with Lasse Ruokolainen); (iii) identifying and correcting the bias that arises in population models during statistical estimation of environmental covariates (with Andreas Lindén); (iv) developing and applying non-linear statistical models to demonstrate how coexistence can be influenced by long term climate change in sympatric, competing bird species (with Nils Chr. Stenseth and Joel Durant), (v) investigating fisheries discards as a coloured resource for endangered Mediterranean seabird populations (with Daniel Oro), (vi) Contrasting different intrinsic dynamics with linear and non-linear methods in classical Diversity–Biomass Stability models, (with Veijo Kaitala, Jouni Laakso and Lasse Ruokolainen), (vii) Integrating ecosystem resilience into coastal planning for the persistence of natural flood protection and wetland ecosystem services, as part of the RESILCOAST project with colleagues at Bangor and Cardiff Universities.
Before moving to Swansea, I worked with the Population Ecology Group at IMEDEA in Mallorca (2009-12), whose work focuses on the demography of endangered species, with particular emphasis on Mediterranean seabirds and reptiles. I am interested in the best ways to address species- and spatial interactions with environmental variation in ecology. I aimed to link the theoretical work with the PEG's more applied approach to population biology, through mathematical modelling, time-series anaylsis and the development of appropriate statistical models.
Prior to this, I worked in the Integrative Ecology Unit in Helsinki with Profs. Esa Ranta & Veijo Kaitala, looking at density dependent dispersal and the Allee effect; interactions between maternal effects and dispersal and rewiring small world dispersal networks amongst other things. I was also interested in the effects of long- and short-term environmental change on population dynamics - how the colour and strength of environmental variation can affect population dynamics and extinction processes.
I carried out my undergraduate and PhD research at the University of Glasgow, with Prof. Graeme Ruxton & Dr. Jan Lindström. My PhD. thesis is titled 'Interactions between density dependence and dispersal', and I used mathematical models and computer simulations to look at a variety of subjects within theoretical ecology. In particular, I was interested in studying the Allee effect, competition within communities and lynx population dynamics, all within a spatial context. As well as the modelling, I carried out some experimental and statistical work assessing wing production and density dependence in the pea aphid, Acyrthosiphon pisum.
I am currently (co-) supervising the following Postgrad students:
I supervised Lasse Ruokolainen from November 2005 to October 2009 for his PhD. thesis, titled Ecological communities in variable environments: dynamics and diversity under coloured environmental stochasticity which was concerned with developing models that examined species/community fluctuations and persistence in variable environments, using Niche and Neutral theory. Lasse succcessfully defended in October 2009 against his opponent, Dr. Andrew Beckerman.
Lindy Whitehouse studied for her MRes thesis with me from 2013-14, investigating "How successful are fisheries community co-management schemes? A meta-analysis of socio-economic and biological indicators across the globe". Lindy is now studying for her PhD at the University of Regina, Canada.
Feel free to e-mail me: firstname.lastname@example.org
Last updated 06/06/2013