I have broad interests mostly centred around behaviour. My current projects involve the co-evolution of behaviour between predators and prey and the social dynamics of secondary contact and speciation.
Eye colouration as a signal
Eyes are constrained in their physical appearance, and so provide reliable cues to find predators and prey. Most animals therefore try to hide or camouflage their eyes, but many species across the entire animal kingdom also display brightly coloured or conspicuous eye colouration. We have very little idea about the function of salient eyes, and so along with Darren Croft and Safi Darden we are investigating this in Trinidadian guppies. Guppies are capable of rapidly changing their iris colouration between black and silver (see photo in the banner of this page), which they do under multiple contexts. Our research is investigating whether this colour change is used in signalling to both conspecific and heterospecific fish.
The evolution of sociality and signalling in prey
Predatory juvenile wolf fish (Hoplias malabaricus): strong evidence that if there is a god, he probably dislikes guppies