My research interests are in the fields of animal behaviour, ecology and conservation, with particular focus on the effects of human activities on wildlife, animal cognition and the behavioural ecology of large herbivores. I have studied African elephants for over a decade, addressing questions on foraging and movement ecology as well as investigating the detailed social and ecological knowledge of elephant family groups and their matriarchs. The research that I have conducted on elephant cognition has involved extensive use of acoustic playbacks, whereby animal vocalisations are broadcast to study the responses of elephants to social and ecological threats. More recently, I have applied these playback techniques to understand the effects of anthropogenic noise - a growing source of environmental disturbance - on animal behavior and wildlife ecology. I am also interested in the role that large herbivores play in ecosystem function and structure in natural and human altered habitats.
In todays busy online world, our brains are constantly stimulated by an onslaught of information. When faced with distractions such as ringing phones, noisy colleagues and floods of incoming emails, focusing on a complex...