Increasing our understanding of trophic interactions and how organisms interact with their environment is pivotal within conservation ecology. My PhD research investugates the diet of a rare woodland bird, the Hawfinch (Coccothraustes coccothraustes) using DNA metabarcoding. My main aims are to elucidate dietary information from UK Hawfinch populations. I also want to compare diets from UK birds with mainland European populations. In doing so, we aim to understand how Hawfinch are interacting with their environment, and whether food choice is a limiting factor for declining UK populations.
My research is funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) and is conducted in collaboration with the Royal Society for the Protecton of Birds (RSPB)
Professor William Symondson (Cardiff University)
Dr Pablo Orozco-ter Wengel (Cardiff University)
Dr Ian Vaughan (Cardiff University)
Mr Paul Bellamy (RSPB)
After graduating with a BSc Hons in Zoology with Professional Training Year from Cardiff University in 2014, an interest in ecological conservation led me to undertake an Masters of Research (MRes) at the University of Leeds, where I undertook two research projects, exploring the demographic history of the Caspian seal (Pusa caspica) and exploring ovipositor length of Eupristina verticillata in introduced and native ranges of Ficus Microcarpa