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Research interests

Peregrines: analysing their movements and the diet 

Where do peregrines go when they leave their nests?

Over the past ten years I have organised the ringing of over 170 peregrines, mainly as three week old chicks and some as adults, in the west region of the UK. These have been given pale blue colour rings with two black letters. I have heard back from over 15% of these individuals, with some moving into the east and north of the country. 

By the end of this Masters I will:

Have analysed ten years of recoveries of peregrines from my blue colour ringing project and one other colour ringing projects (Gloucestershire ). The recoveries will be mapped and statistically tested to find out whether local peregrines have been helping spread the population east or not, and how far individuals are travelling. Satellite data from an adult urban peregrine may also be analyse, although won't be the main subject for the project.

What do urban-dwelling peregrines eat?

Additionally I will be analysing twenty years of prey data from Exeter in Devon, comprising over 5,000 prey items, and comparing it with some overlapping data from Bath, Bristol and Derby. The results of this work will be applicable to urban sites such Norwich, Bath, Taunton and York, where the peregrines share similar tastes. This will build on previous descriptive results I have published.

By the end of the Masters I will:

Have analysed twenty years of urban peregrine prey data from Exeter, Devon. This is the longest running diet study in Europe, and probably the world. Analysis will set out to look at seasonal changes in the diet and whether species diversity has altered over the past twenty years. This analysis will help inform what is also happening at other urban locations such as Cheltenham.

More about me as a naturalist and learning professional:

I am a freelance naturalist, broadcaster and learning consultant engaging a wide range of audiences with nature and science. Activities range from tour guiding around the world, dawn chorus walks listening to birdsong, taking schools fossil hunting and sweep netting with families through grassland. I have done extensive work with the BBC as a contributor, consultant and reporter. I have most recently been working with the Wildfowl and Wetland Trust developing high quality learning resources for schools. I am currently developing a learning resources for schools as part of the Gwent Levels Living Levels project in South Wales. 

Previous work in the School of Biological Sciences and School of Earth Sciences:

Previously (2014 - 2017) I have worked as a Senior Teaching Associate in the School of Biological Sciences, training demonstrators, overseeing level 1 practicals, tutoring undergraduates and overseeing some field courses.

Prior to this role I worked full time as a Learning Officer for the Bristol Dinosaur Project (2010 - 2013)in the School of Earth Sciences, reaching out to 12, 000 school children and the local community. The Bristol Dinosaur was a unique early dinosaur found in the Bristol and South Wales region. Important collections have been escavated and are now stored at Bristol Museum and the School of Earth Sciences. My role enabled myself and postgradutes to visit schools and other venues so others could learn more about it. Other outputs included interpretation panels, a book produced by young parents and a peer-reviewed paper. 




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