Dr Rhys Jones
PhD Supervisors: Prof Mike Bruford and Dr Jo Cable (Cardiff University)
Rhys' PhD research bridged the disciplines of herpetology, parasitology and evolutionary biology. He initially identified novel methods to both obtain non-invasively collected tissue to construct phylogeographies of all three of our British snake species, providing evidence that the British Adder occupied a niche in Britain during the last ice age. He also evaluated the success of reptile translocation programmes. This was accomplished by non-invasive sampling of slow worms and monitoring their gastro-intestinal parasite fauna over an 18 month period. This led to recommendations for optimal mitigation strategies and the discovery of a parasite species new to the UK that was affecting reptile populations.