Academic Background

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.