I started my research training in 2000, conducting an Honours project investigating activity patterns and foraging in Eurasian lynx. This was a joint project between Uppsala University, Sweden, and the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU). From that, I moved on to do a 4-year PhD (2002-2006) at Uppsala University, Sweden, working on a project that merged behavioural and population biology in a social bird species, the Siberian jay (Perisoreus infaustus). The focus of this work revolved around the influence of family group-living and sociality on classic behaviours, such as risk-taking, and how these factors interacted to determine population dynamics across a heterogeneous environment. Some of the output from this work can be found here found here , here and here.
Spending four years exploring the intriguing and complex behaviours and dynamics of jays, I developed a curiosity for the underlying mechanisms involved in determining complex behaviour and, ultimately, life-history traits. As a result, I decided to apply a quantitative genetic approach to the study of life-history. This sent me off on a Swedish Research Council funded postdoc to go to the University of Western Australia to work with Prof. Leigh Simmons on his lab-based population of Australian Field crickets (Teleogryllus oceanicus). More details of this work can be found here and here.
Upon completion of this work, I was fortunate enough to receive a three year Australia Research Council Postdoctoral Fellowship (ARC APD), as well as a Margaret Clayton Women in Research Postdoctoral Fellowship. I took up this work in 2012, at Monash University, Melbourne, Australia. More details on this project can be found under Current research.