I am over the moon to say I have accepted a 2-year position as Associate Lecturer in the School of Psychology & Neuroscience at the University of St Andrews. I will be covering Professor Karen Spencer's teaching while she is on research leave, and will be teaching Mechanisms of Behaviour, Communicating Psychology & Neuroscience and Methodologies of Psychology & Neuroscience.
IT'S DONE! After 4 wonderful years, I have finally submitted my PhD. 250+ pages, 45,000+ words and I am done. Now to sleep, watch crap TV and fret about what to do next...
Tuesday 5th February I started the wonderful journey up to Inverness to talk to the Inverness branch of the Scottish Ornithology Club about my PhD. The journey up was beautiful as we had just had snow. Going over the Cairngorns was magnificent; such a good view I could get any work done. Oops! The Inverness branch was extremely welcoming and ask some great questions. Really thought provoking, and some great ideas for future research. On Wednesday I then went to Thurso for give a talk to the Caithness Branch. Never been that far north on the UK mainland and it was beautiful. The flow country was stunning, and I even managed to stay at Dunnets Head (the most northern point of mainland UK). Thursday I then made the trip across to Orkney, some where I have been meaning to go for a long time. I was meet by a member of the SOC (also a member of the Orkney ringing group) who acted as my tour guide and showed me Skae Brae, the Standing Stones and we did a road trip around the island. It was really nice to talk to the Orkney branch out blue tits, a bird they don't experience very often (I know... blue tits are considered rare up there, how bizarre). Overall the trip was amazing, and it really drove home how much I actually new about my research... but as they say "the more you know, the more you know you don't know" and this is certainly true!
Such a great idea by the BOU! A conference, all done on twitter. No conference and travel fees. Zero carbon. I had to take part. Check out my thread on how ambient temperature effects when blue tits build their nest, but not what nest they build. To see more talks at the conference check out #BOU18TC or my twitter feed
I was able to present my current research on the effect of temperature on when a blue tit builds their nest and what they put in their nest at the Scottish, Ecology, Environment, and Conservation Conference 2018 and University of St Andrews.
I won runner up for my 5 minute talk, which I am very happy about.
As part of my funding I am encouraged to take a 3 month internship in industry, leaving my PhD behind during this time. I was fortunate enough to get a position at the Stirling office of Natural Power. During my 3 months I analysed hen harrier data from a wind farm Natural Power were the consultants on. The data provided an insight into how breeding success and nest site selection of hen harriers is affected by wind turbines.
My internship lasted from September to December 2018.
I was honoured to be invited back by Scottish Ornithology Club to talk about my latest research.
Presented the work I carried out at Advanced Facility of Avian Research at the University of Western Ontario at the European Ornithologist Union conference, hosted by University of Turku.
Presented the work I carried out at Advanced Facility of Avian Research at the University of Western Ontario at Easter ASAB, hosted by University of Liverpool.
I had the pleasure of visiting the Advanced Facility for Avian Research, at the University of Western Ontario for two months (January to February) to work with Professor David Sherry. I worked with R. Jeff Martin (MSc student) and Tanya T. Shoot (UG student) investigating the effects of temperature on how zebra finches build nests.
Spent a great day teaching children about the birds they would expect to find in their garden. I was able to help Jeroen Minderman and Shirley Millar ring great tits, blue tits, golden finches and blackbirds while showing the birds to the school children and talking to them about bird biology.
Thanks to Karen Spencer for arranging the day.
After such a roaring success presenting my research to the St Andrews Branch of the Scottish Ornithology Club, I was asked to present to the Dundee Branch. The group provided me with dinner and asked many interesting questions. Hoping to go back next year to fill them in on all I have found.
As part of the Autumn Festival hosted by St Andrews Botanic Gardens I helped with a ringing demonstration, run by the Tay Ringers Group. We talked to the children and their parents about which birds we had caught, how we could age and sex them, and why bird ringing is important. From a personal note I enjoyed the day even more as we caught a few of the blue tits I had rung in the nest earlier in the year. I felt like a proud mother.
The Healy Lab had a stall at Explorathon, hosted at The Byre Theater. The exhibit followed the same format as The Edinburgh Science Festival and The Dundee Science Festival and was just as much of a success.
I was asked to give a talk to the St Andrews branch of the Scottish Ornithology Club on my current research into blue tits and their nest building. The meeting was fantastic, with lots of input from the local community.
Talk title: Does temperature effect the nest a bird builds?