Project |01 Male African elephants
We know much less about male elephants than females, yet males could be more at risk from being involved in human-elephant conflict such as crop raiding. Watch this space for more project info as I return to working on African elephants (my first project with elephants was with Save the Elephants in Kenya). I'll be using all the ecological, behavioural and statistical knowledge I've gleaned and my awesome professional network to try to make more theoretical evolutionary ideas work for elephant conservation.
Extracting data on morphology, sexual state and more from photographs, by building on my previous work on those topics
Mapping male elephant social networks
Determining genetic relatedness between males
Recording vocal communication between males.
And more projects still to come.
Project |02 Elephant stress
I'm working on how anthropogenic and environmental stressors can affect elephant survival, reproduction and body size. I'm collaborating with Dr. Janine Brown of the Smithsonian Institute and Chatchote Thitaram of Chiang Mai University on endocrine analysis.
See the Myanmar Timber Elephant Project page for more details. I'm indebted to Myanma Timber Enterprise for access to the data and sites.
Project |03 Growth and body size
A great aspect of our data on elephants is that we can combine historical records and physiological data. I'm investigating how elephants trade-off growth and reproduction and how fast these huge animals actually growth. I work with Virpi and two excellent Master's students Jennie Crawley and Simon Chapman on this project.
Project |04 Parasites and life history
I'm working with PhD student Carly Lynsdale to investigate the patterns of parasite infection through life and whether it's affected by sex, birth decade and early life experiences of stress.
The Leverhulme Trust funds this research.