Adaptive colouration

Animals exhibit tremendous diversity in colouration. Our research examines the evolution of animal colouration in light of the perceivers of such signals (for instance predators, prey and potential partners) using insects, birds and fish as model systems.





Animal Personality

Humans are not the only animal with distinct personalities. Our research investigates the evolution of animal personalities in a suite of different taxa.







Brain Evolution

The brain is the organ that controls behaviour. Interestingly, brain anatomy varies enormously among animals at all taxonomic levels. Our research seeks to explain brain anatomy diversity from an evolutionary and functional perspective. To do this, we use unique artificial selection guppy populations selected for brain size and for social behaviour to perform experimental studies of brain evolution and look across species using state-of-the-art phylogenetic techniques.






Animals process information from the world around them. Our research investigates how animal cognition functions and evolves and the mechanisms behind variation in cognition between individuals, populations and species.





Collective Behaviour

Animal groups display spectacular forms of coordinated behaviour. We examine how the social interactions between individuals produce this coordination from both mechanistic and functional perspectives.





Foraging Decisions

Why do animals eat one kind of plant and not another? Why is there so much variation in these types of decisions? We investigate interactions between herbivores and plants to understand animal foraging decisions in mammals and insects.





Sexual Selection

To successfully reproduce, animals often compete with rivals for access to mating opportunities and/or actively choose their mating partners.  Our research uses experimental and comparative approaches to study evolutionary responses in morphology and behaviour to sexual competition and choice.




Social Behaviour

Animals must balance the costs and benefits of living together. Our research examines the evolutionary origins and impacts of social behaviours, focusing on topics ranging from the role of sociality in domestication to the evolutionary origins of cooperation.