My PhD project, titled "Nutrient-specific foraging and the role of spiders as aphid predators", involves the use of metabarcoding, analytical biochemistry, bioinformatics and advanced statistical modelling to investigate nutrient-specific foraging, with a focus on the predation of aphids by spiders in agricultural systems. My PhD is funded as part of BBSRC’s SWBio doctoral training partnership.
(Also supervised by Dr Carsten Müller and Dr James Bell).
I graduated from Cardiff University in 2014 with a BSc in Biology, having particularly focused on ecological interactions and community ecology. My dissertation compared earthworm communities in different farmland habitats and crop types. I spent a year carrying out invertebrate surveys and monitoring blackbird and song thrush chicks and nests to assist a study on bird diet and habitat use in fragmented farmland habitats. I completed an MRes in Biosciences at Cardiff University in 2016, during which I explored the invertebrate communities of rot-holes in beech trees and how they differ with tree and rot characteristics. I also determined the volatile profiles of the heart-rot habitats of the endangered violet click beetle, Limoniscus violaceus.