• Keiko in December 1998
    19 Oct 2016 • Perspectives

    Freeing Willy: the $20 million failed experiment

    In 1993 Free Willy leapt onto cinema screens around the world. The story about a young boy who saves a killer whale from a run-down theme park was an instant hit for Warner Bros. However for Keiko, the whale who played Willy, the story did not have a Hollywood ending. While Willy jumped to freedom as the credits rolled, Keiko remained in captivity. What followed was a global effort to return Keiko to the wild at all costs, even to Keiko himself. Keiko, a male killer whale (Orcinus orca), was born in the North Atlantic off Iceland, [&hellip

  • Professor William Campbell with Professors Celia Holland (front right) and Yvonne Buckley (front left). Back row L-R Professor Holland's parasitology research group: Dr Peter Stuart, Gwen Deslyper, Maureen Williams, Rachael Byrne and Paula Tierney
    17 Oct 2016 • News

    Studying worms – a Nobel calling

      “Parasites are not generally regarded as being loveable. When we refer to people as parasites we are not being complimentary, we are not praising them. We tend to think that a parasite is the sort of person who goes through a revolving door on somebody else’s push. This is unfair. It’s unfair to real parasites… It is time for parasites to get a little more respect!”                                                        – Professor William C. [&hellip

  • BESMacroNetworking
    26 Jul 2016 • Perspectives

    Formally informal conferences

      One of my favourite parts of working as a researcher during the summer (aside from quiet campuses with less students around) definitely has to be the “conference season”. Indeed, I don’t need to convince many people that conferences are one of the lively and exciting parts of doing science that rightly mix traveling, networking (and sometimes drinking) and learning about so many new things (and sometimes hangovers). One of the problems though is that they can sometimes be overwhelming. It’s hard to find a balance between the right amount of networking (how many friends/collaborators do I [&hellip

  • interview-1018333_960_720
    29 Apr 2016 • Perspectives

    Making the most out of a post doc interview

    Making the most out of a post doc interview (Even when you don’t get/want the job!) So you’ve just finished your PhD and sent out a frantic flurry of post doc applications, amidst all of the excitement, you’re invited to interview; how should you proceed?  Below are some of the things I learned from my first post doc interview recently:   A couple of weeks ago I embarked on a new first for me; my first interview! I grant you that it is unusual to be having one’s first interview at the age of 26; I had [&hellip

  • image[3]
    19 Apr 2016 • Seminars

    School of Natural Sciences Postgraduate Symposium 2016: Part 3/3

    Aoibheann Gaughran (@Aoibh_G) Supervisor: Nicola Marples Title: How population density influences social mammal ecology: A case study of the European badger.  The local density of a population of social mammals can affect many aspects of its ecology including social structure, mating systems, dispersal behavior, territorial behavior and the dynamics of disease. Scientists and policy-makers need a comprehensive understanding of the local population density as this may dictate the most effective management strategy. The European badger provides a particularly good species to investigate the effects of population density on other density parameters because its density varies by orders of [&hellip

  • P1050740
    19 Apr 2016 • Seminars

    School of Natural Science Postgraduate Symposium 2016: Part 2/3

    Aoife Delaney (@Ifa_Dee) Supervisor: Jane Stout Title: Do principals of cross congruence apply in a naturally disturbed habitat? Cross congruence is a measure of the degree to which diversity (number or composition of species) of different taxa follow broadly similar patterns in response to environmental conditions. In situations where cross congruence is strong, measuring the diversity of a single taxon can provide information regarding overall diversity, and this has led to the development of indicator taxa. Indicator taxa may be used to indicate general patterns of biological diversity or environmental conditions, often with the inference that where the environmental conditions are [&hellip

  • phd012113s
    19 Apr 2016 • Seminars

    School of Natural Sciences Postgraduate Symposium 2016: Part 1/3

    School of Natural Sciences Postgraduate Symposium 2016: Part 1/3 #zoobotpgsymp, not an infection transmitted by botflies, but the hashtag of the annual Botany-Zoology postgraduate symposium, hosted by the School of Natural Sciences, which took place on the 14th of April. This year’s symposium hosted 15 student speakers over 2 sessions of talks as well as two pleniaries delivered by our guest speakers: Dr Nina Alphey (University of Oxford, Imperial College London) and Dr Rob Thomas (University of Cardiff). For those of you who are interested in exactly what we work on here at EcoEvo@TCD, here are the abstracts [&hellip

  • Picture 3
    5 Mar 2016 • Perspectives, Research

    Room for one more?: Egg fostering in seabirds

      When attempting to conserve a rare animal population sometimes every individual counts. Conservationists regularly go the extra mile to protect their study species. The conservation efforts implemented for the Little Tern (Sternula albifrons) in Britain and Ireland demonstrate the success these efforts can have. This species nests on shingle beaches and had experienced catastrophic population declines due to increasing development and use of beaches by people. Little Tern adults are very vulnerable to disturbance and their eggs are particularly vulnerable to walker’s boots! Thankfully a network of wardened colonies, run by a mixture of conservation organisations [&hellip

  • Peter
    29 Feb 2016 • Perspectives, Research

    The Evolution and Laboratory of the Technician.

    First in a series of posts on life after an undergraduate degree, Alison Boyce gives an account of the life of a scientific technician. Science, engineering, and computing departments in universities employ technicians. Anyone working or studying in these areas will have dealt with a technician at some point but most will be unaware of a technician’s route into the position and their full role in education and research. Technical posts are varied e.g. laboratory, workshop, computer. Funding for technical support is afforded by the Higher Education Authority (HEA) to provide assistance in undergraduate teaching. This is [&hellip

  • Screen Shot 2016-02-03 at 16.30.27
    24 Feb 2016 • Perspectives

    The expanding tropics 

    It was a spring day in April 2004 when Qiang Fu first noticed the anomoly in the data. On either side of the equator – in a belt strecthing from 15 to 45 degrees latitude – the lower atmosphere was warming more than anywhere else on the planet. Fu, a professor at the University of Washington in Seattle, was stumped.   It wasn’t until a year later that Fu realized what he had discovered: evidence of a rapid expansion of the tropics, the region that encircles Earth’s waist like a green belt. The heart of the tropics [&hellip