Archive for May, 2015

V for Vulture

V for Vulture

By EcoEvo@TCD | Research

I have recently returned from a field trip to Swazliand where I was working with my long-time collaborator Prof Ara Monadjem to tag two African White-backed Vultures with high-spec trackers. These devices were purchased with a $20,000 grant from the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund and are currently sending their locations every minute via the mobile phone network. Up to now we have no idea where the Swazi population of this species forages and this is something the tracking data will reveal. With only a few weeks of tracking data we can see the birds have already ventured into Mozambique and South Africa.   Author Adam Kane, kanead[at]tcd.ie [&hellip

Time for the pheasant

Time for the pheasant

By EcoEvo@TCD | News

A reminder for the photo competition. We’ll extend the deadline until the 10th June. You can submit one photograph to this album here. Just log in with username ecoevoblog and password is the same. Don’t make it obvious that it’s your image in case it biases the judge. The theme is ‘Fowl Play’.  Author: Adam Kane, kanead[at]tcd.ie, @P1zPalu

PLANTPOPNET – a global Plant Population Dynamics Network

PLANTPOPNET – a global Plant Population Dynamics Network

By EcoEvo@TCD | Research

The environment is changing around us at accelerated rates. Scientists and policy makers have come to realize that large-scale international collaboration and global data syntheses are needed in order to understand universal drivers of current global changes. A response to this need was the emergence of several coordinated distributed experiments worldwide in the last decades. In essence, these globally replicated studies are networks of ecologists around the world, who conceptualize the ecological research questions or participate by following a standardized protocol. Because understanding of ecological phenomena often necessitates long-term observations and experiments, data collection is usually replicated [&hellip

Birds near airports work the early shift for the dawn chorus

Birds near airports work the early shift for the dawn chorus

By EcoEvo@TCD | Research

Early morning flights are a pain: nobody likes rolling out of bed at the crack of dawn. But if you’ve spent a few bleary-eyed mornings at airports, spare a thought for the local residents. Birds rely on their song to find a mate and keep intruders out of their territory: not an easy task when you’re competing with the roar of a 747 taking off at 290 km/h. Now, research by scientists in Spain and Germany has found that birds living near major airports sing earlier in the morning to avoid being drowned out by aircraft noise. Researchers [&hellip

Wild Goose Chase – cannon netting on the Inishkea Islands

Wild Goose Chase – cannon netting on the Inishkea Islands

By EcoEvo@TCD | Research

Last March we had the fantastic opportunity to assist with cannon netting Barnacle Geese on the Inishkea Islands, a wild Atlantic outpost off the coast of Co. Mayo. This research was part of Dr David Cabot’s long term study of the Inishkea Barnacle Goose population, which breed in Greenland and return to the west coast of Ireland each winter. Dr Cabot has been studying this population since 1961, providing the longest running dataset of any Arctic migrant breeding in Europe. He established the project as an undergraduate in our very own Zoology Department in Trinity (back in [&hellip

Before training your dragon, print a 3D tail for him

Before training your dragon, print a 3D tail for him

By EcoEvo@TCD | Perspectives

3D printing (or additive manufacturing, AM) describes any of the various processes used to make a three-dimensional object. In 3D printing, additive processes are used, in which successive layers of material are laid down under computer control. While its limitless potential in manufacturing, the construction industry, transportation and human health has been widely recognized, 3D printing also plays a significant role in animal protection and conservation. Several cases of using 3D printing for animal assistance have been reported during the past few years. Although artificial limbs have been used to help poor dogs and other animals who lost their legs, 3D printing makes the [&hellip

Looks can be deceiving

Looks can be deceiving

By EcoEvo@TCD | Research

We are all taught not to judge a book by its cover, it’s what inside that counts. Our new paper published in PeerJ shows that the same is true for tenrecs. These cute Madagascar natives are often used as an example of a mammal family with high morphological diversity. It’s easy to see why: there are tenrecs which resemble shrews, moles, hedgehogs and even otters. These differences are even more remarkable when you consider that tenrecs are more closely related to elephants and aardvarks than they are to any of the small, “insectivore” mammals. One of only [&hellip

Everything’s Better Down Where It’s Wetter: Benthic Ecology Meeting 2015

Everything’s Better Down Where It’s Wetter: Benthic Ecology Meeting 2015

By EcoEvo@TCD | Seminars

Conference attendance can really impact your development as a Ph.D. student and give you great ideas for future collaboration and research. In March, I was lucky enough to attend the 2015 Benthic Ecology Meeting (or Benthics) in Quebec City, Canada.  The Benthics meeting focuses on the ecology of the bottom layer of water systems, and this conference is mainly marine in focus. There were lots of great talks, one epic toboggan race, and nearly unlimited opportunities for networking and discussion. A quick overview of my three favourite talks is below. Check out what you missed and hope [&hellip

Pint of Science Ireland

Pint of Science Ireland

By EcoEvo@TCD | News

This May, 80 of Ireland’s leading scientists will bring their research to 8 pubs in 3 cities for 3 fun-filled nights of science! Part of the international festival, Pint of Science Ireland takes science out of the lab and mixes it into some of the most interesting, engaging and unusual evenings you will ever spend in a pub. Whether you’re a researcher, student or science-newbie, the festival is a great opportunity to hear about the latest scientific research and chat with Ireland’s top scientists over a pint. Running in Galway, Limerick and Dublin from the 18th to [&hellip