International Women’s Day 2020

International Women’s Day 2020: Life and Environmental Science Researchers

Dr Catherine Gutmann Roberts is a postdoctoral researcher in fish migration ecology. Postdoc researching migration ecology and phenology across a range of taxa, but with a keen interest in freshwater and diadromous fishes. She is interested in all aspects of aquatic ecology and conservation, enjoys working with citizen scientists (anglers) to collect data and samples. She also has a passion for science communication and public engagement in research.

Victoria Dominguez Almela is assessing the ‘dispersal-enhancing’ traits of non-native fish species in their invasion range to quantify the importance of trait plasticity in driving natural rates of diffusion. Progress to date has included completion of swimming performance using flume tanks (as shown in the picture) and functional response experiments. Results are promising, but work is still in progress!

Professor Amanda Korstjens and her mother pictured here, who was 78 years young when she went to Indonesia on a Student Environment Research Team (SERT) training trip with Bournemouth University students. Her research topics include: I. How climate and human disturbance influence primate distribution patterns and survival; 2. Eco-tourism, conservation, disease transmission and human-wildlife conflicts; 3. The evolution of mating strategies and female sexual signals, esp. in red colobus monkeys. You can find all her brilliant research activities on the Landscape Ecology and Primatology (LEAP) website: https://go-leap.wixsite.com/home

Professor Anita Diaz and some of the Purbeck Wildlife Student Environment Research Team (SERT) are based at Bournemouth University. The SERT project helps research what habitat management most helps wildlife conservation on the Purbeck Heaths National Nature Reserve. It runs each year, mentored by Anita Diaz and working in close collaboration with the National Trust. They also collaborate with a range of other conservation organisations including the RSPB and Back from the Brink.

The Nature Volunteers website https://www.naturevolunteers.uk/  is a HEIF funded project that connects people wishing to volunteer to help nature with volunteering opportunities offered by conservation organisations all over the UK. It is also a research tool that helps us, and conservation organisations understand what people who are new to nature volunteering are looking for and what encourages their engagement. ​

Dr Alice Hall is a postdoctoral researcher working at Bournemouth University. She specializes in marine biology and ecological engineering. Her work focuses on building multifunctional structures which can perform their primary function and also provide suitable habitat for marine life.  She is currently working on an Interreg Atlantic Project called 3DPARE which is 3D printing concrete artificial reef units for use in the Atlantic region.

Katie Thompson is doctoral researcher in African Elephant conservation. Her research focuses on ecosystem level conservation environmental education and sustainable development. Ultimately, she aims to use this knowledge to facilitate improving long term management of wildlife and their natural habitats, through high impact research and outreach activities. 

Professor Genoveva Esteban’s research interests focus on biodiversity at the microbial level in order to understand and predict the functioning of aquatic systems by characterising microbial biodiversity at local and regional scales, and by defining the role played by microbes in the natural environment and food webs. Her research is two fold: (1) she leads a successful programme that aims to link science with conservation through research on `cryptic’ biodiversity in freshwater ecosystems; (2) characterisation at molecular and morphological levels of the rare aquatic microbial consortia that thrive in wet woodlands, some being new species to science. She is also a dynamic Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Ambassador.

Jessica Bone is a marine biologist and Research Assistant for the Marineff project and based at Bournemouth University (UK) where she also studied both my Bachelors and Masters degrees in marine ecology. She has enjoyed the interdisciplinary element of Marineff as it has given her the opportunity to learn more about engineering and materials science which has complemented my contributions in designing the Marineff pool. She is also responsible for the Marineff newsletter. Having grown up and studied on the south coast of the UK, she champions British marine wildlife and has a soft spot for the intertidal invertebrates. She is also a secretary for the Poole Harbour Study Group.

Fusion Professorial Lecture: Addressing the environmental crisis

With so many reports and news stories about the environmental issues we currently face, including climate change, biodiversity loss and plastic pollution, which problems should cause us most concern and how can we tackle them?

A Bournemouth University (BU) academic will talk at RNLI College on Thursday 13 February to address these issues in the first of a series of free public lectures. BU’s Professor of Marine Biology and Conservation, Rick Stafford, will launch the Fusion Professorial Lecture Series with his talk, ‘Addressing the environmental crisis: from reusable coffee cups to political reform, what really works?’

Rick, from the Department of Life and Environmental Sciences, said: “It’s vital we address the environmental crisis properly in the very near future. This talk will bring together my research over the last two years and present a timely message that it’s not too late to act, and give a positive vision of what the future could be like if we do.”

Using his research, Rick will demonstrate that plastic pollution is a real threat, but has been overemphasised in order to maintain the economic and political status quo. His findings also show that climate change and biodiversity loss need large systematic changes in economic and political thinking to be successfully tackled, although nature-based solutions such as tree planting and a respect for nature are also important.

Rick will demonstrate the benefits to biodiversity and society of changing our approach to economics, and show that necessary changes will be advantageous to most people, both in developed and developing countries.

Rick added: “It’s very timely, and hopefully it will inspire people to support the necessary changes we need at local, national and international levels.”

The Fusion Professorial Lecture Series is free and open to the public, with six planned throughout the year, and cover a wide range of topics from BU academics.

Rick Stafford’s research began studying rocky shores, and developed into mathematical and computer models of animal behaviour. He currently works on topics as diverse as marine protected areas, fisheries, artificial reefs, as well as climate change and biodiversity loss.

The free to attend lecture takes place on Thursday 13 February, 6:30pm, and is ticketed. You can register for tickets on Eventbrite.

Article source: BU Research Blog

PhD student publication:

Integrating an individual-based model with approximate Bayesian computation to predict the invasion of a freshwater fish provides insights into dispersal and range expansion dynamics

First author Victoria Dominguez Almela has successfully published a paper in the Biological Invasions Journal.

The full link to the journal can be found here:

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10530-020-02197-6

You can read the abstract here:

“Short-distance dispersal enables introduced alien species to colonise and invade local habitats following their initial introduction, but is often poorly understood for many freshwater taxa. Knowledge gaps in range expansion of alien species can be overcome using predictive approaches such as individual based models (IBMs), especially if predictions can be improved through fitting to empirical data, but this can be challenging for models having multiple parameters. We therefore estimated the parameters of a model implemented in the RangeShifter IBM platform by approximate Bayesian computation (ABC) in order to predict the further invasion of a lowland river (Great Ouse, England) by a small-bodied invasive fish (bitterling Rhodeus sericeus). Prior estimates for parameters were obtained from the literature and expert opinion. Model fitting was conducted using a time-series (1983 to 2018) of sampling data at fixed locations and revealed that for 5 of 11 model parameters, the posterior distributions differed markedly from prior assumptions. In particular, sub-adult maximum emigration probability was substantially higher in the posteriors than priors. Simulations of bitterling range expansion predicted that following detection in 1984, their early expansion involved a relatively high population growth rate that stabilised after 5 years. The pattern of bitterling patch occupancy was sigmoidal, with 20% of the catchment occupied after 20 years, increasing to 80% after 30 years. Predictions were then for 95% occupancy after 69 years. The development of this IBM thus successfully simulated the range expansion dynamics of this small-bodied invasive fish, with ABC improving the simulation precision. This combined methodology also highlighted that sub-adult dispersal was more likely to contribute to the rapid colonisation rate than expert opinion suggested. These results emphasise the importance of time-series data for refining IBM parameters generally and increasing our understanding of dispersal behaviour and range expansion dynamics specifically.”

Read more about Victoria’s research here:

Resourcing the Future for Wildlife in Dorset

Resourcing the Future for Wildlife in Dorset:
Brian Heppenstall, Senior Ranger at BCP council
Wednesday, 12 February 2020 at 13:00 (GMT)

Bringing together conservation organisations and local business

The interest in the future of our wildlife and related environmental issues is driving a great deal of behavioural changes, for example 72% of miliennials are willing to spend more on products from companies committed to positive social and environmental impact. In the US, those companies whose employees were given time to undertake charitable environmental work, found that 76% of staff felt better about their employers.

It is no wonder then, that businesses are working to adopt green credentials, visible to both their customer base and their employees, in order to drive success.

Through networking and showcasing, delegates at this conference, will explore problems for local wildlife conservation. There will be a focus on local case studies, and opportunities to seek new collaborations and find potential solutions.

This years key speakers, Dr Anjana Khatwa and Ben Hoare, will address one of the most important resources within any sector – the workforce, and principally the issue of societal representation in the conservation sector.

This conference will therefore look at two strands:

  • Encouraging links between conservation organisations and business to encourage partnerships and the provision of support/resources in the mutual interest of preserving the local environment
  • Employability, skills and diversity within the conservation sector (in Dorset)

PROGRAMME

Introduction/welcome

 Refreshments available 

The Importance of Wildlife Conservation in Dorset

Professor Rick Stafford – Bournemouth University

The Future Workforce: The Impact of Work Placements

Julie Gill, Placement Coordinator – Bournemouth University

Frances Jenkins, Placement Coordinator – Kingston Maurward College

Case Study, Short Film: Hengistbury Head Placement Scheme

Does Nature Conservation Represent Society

Key Speaker: Ben Hoare, Editorial Consultant, BBC Wildlife Magazine

Privilege and Permission: Being Brown in a White Landscape

Key Speaker: Dr Anjana Khatwa, Learning and Earth Science Specialist

Go Wild – Collaborate!

Introduction by Luke Rake, Principal and CEO of Kingston Maurward College

Nature Volunteers: Matching opportunities with resources

Rachel James, Wild Paths, Dorset Wildlife Trust

Ali Tuckey, Durlston Country Park

Puff Storey, 3 Sided Cube, Tech For Good

Lottie Forte J.P. Morgan, Volunteering and Community Relations

Guest Speaker Panel Q&A

Networking Opportunity and Buffet


A full programme will be published to attendees nearer the conference

Please arrive at 13:00 for a prompt 13:15 start

Refreshments and a buffet dinner will be provided

Pre-booking of parking is required and once the spaces have been booked, no further parking on campus will be available.

 #rfwDorset


For futher information on this event please contact brian.heppenstall@bcpcouncil.gov.uk

 How to get to BU: Directions, parking & maps

 Accommodation: The University has preferential rates with a number of local hotels, please quote Bournemouth University when booking to access these rates.  (Preferential rates are subject to availability and will be advised by the hotel at the time of booking)

Carlton Hotel
East Cliff Court Hotel
Miramar Hotel
The Green House Hotel

 Please note that before placing an order, you will be asked to agree to Bournemouth University’s terms and conditions (see below). Please read these terms carefully and make sure you understand them before ordering any Products.

Bournemouth University’s Online Event Terms and Conditions

 Photos may be taken at the event. If you do not want to appear in any photos, please notify a member of staff at the event. For further information on the use of photos and videos, please refer to our privacy policyDo you have questions about Resourcing the Future for Wildlife in Dorset? Contact Brian Heppenstall, Senior Ranger at BCP council

Book your place here now:
https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/resourcing-the-future-for-wildlife-in-dorset-tickets-75832273371

Living Labs Roadshow, Bournemouth University, Lansdowne Campus

Share your sustainable ideas and real-world solutions at our Living Labs roadshows.

BU is launching its ‘Living Labs’ initiative with two roadshow events that all staff – both academic and professional & support – and students are invited to.

Living Labs embeds sustainability through knowledge, engagement, collaboration and innovation. Within a BU context they are an opportunity for staff and students to research and test sustainable solutions to real-world challenges using our facilities on campus.

Current examples of Living Labs are the vegan menu offers in the Terrace Café or the honeybee colony that live on top of the Fusion Building. Another is the Biodome which provides a year-round controlled climate so research can be carried out, and offers a permanent base for students and staff to conduct experiments into a range of forensic, ecological and wildlife projects.

The Living Labs roadshows are being held as we want to find out about all the brilliant ideas and concepts we know our staff and students have. Whether you have an idea for a new product or marketing campaign or would like to use data from the university grounds themselves for research, we want to hear from you.

The roadshows will introduce the Living Labs concept and share successful Living Labs projects at BU. The event will involve presentations from those who have been involved with past projects, in addition to a collaborative workshop to suggest, discuss and maybe start a new project. It will be an excellent opportunity to meet and innovate with members of the BU community.

There will be a replica roadshow Wednesday 11 December in CG11, Talbot Campus for those who cannot attend.

Book online now:
https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/living-labs-roadshow-lansdowne-campus-tickets-83824897525

Stepping into Nature – Dorset Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB)

Stepping into Nature aims to help people be happier and healthier by connecting with nature.

This 3-year project funded by the National Community Fund uses Dorset’s natural and cultural landscape to provide activities and sensory rich places for older adults, including those living with dementia and their care partners. Our nature-themed activities – both indoors and out – help people find new places to go, learn new skills and meet like-minded people.

Stepping into Nature’s main areas of activity are:

  • Working with local organisations such as Dorset Wildlife Trust, Dorset Forest School and Dorset History Centre to support and fund the delivery of inclusive activities inspired by or within nature.
  • Providing funding for communities and organisations to help create more inclusive, accessible and enjoyable green spaces.
  • Training staff and volunteers, particularly those within environmental organisations, to become dementia friendly.

There are some exciting activities you can get involved with throughout January:

Breaking Ground: Female Archaeologists at Avebury

28 October – 18 December 2019
Atrium Gallery, Poole House, Talbot Campus, Bournemouth University – open to all.

Last year this exhibition marked the 100 year anniversary of some women gaining the right to vote in Britain. It brings to light the contributions made by female archaeologists in the twentieth century at Avebury’s Stone Circles & Henge, National Trust World Heritage Site and the wider archaeology field.

Curated by BU’s Damian Evans and Bethan Bailey. Staff and students in the Department of Archaeology and Anthropology at Bournemouth University have had a long and fruitful association with the Avebury WHS, and worked closely with National Trust staff and with many farmers and landowners who have kindly facilitated surveys and investigations.

A selection of objects from the Alexander Keiller Museum’s collection have been scanned and 3D printed for this exhibition, part of an MRes project by Bethan Bailey to investigate how archaeological objects can be made accessible to people with mobility difficulties.

Out in the landscape of Avebury, BU has been involved in several projects, including:

Extensive Geophysical Surveys
Discovery and plotting of many previously unrecognized sites in partnership with the Deutsches Archäologisches Institute and the National Trust.

Between the Monuments / Living with the monuments
Investigating the character of human settlement in the Avebury landscape, Arts and Humanities Research Council funded collaboration.

Virtual Avebury
A 3D fully immersive VR simulation of prehistoric Avebury allows participants inside the model to experience the site as never before. Collaborative project with BU, National Trust Daden Ltd and Satsymph, funded by AHRC/ Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council.

Human Henge at Avebury
A multi-disciplinary Heritage Lottery Fund project investigating the value of historic landscapes as a way of the enhancing mental health well-being of people with long-term mental health issues.

The Breaking Ground exhibition was created by the Alexander Keiller Museum in Avebury who have kindly loaned it to the University for display. It has been produced in association with the National Trust and TrowelBlazers. We are delighted to host this celebrative exhibition; it will be on display in the Atrium Gallery, Poole House, Talbot campus until 18 December 2019.

Marineff Workshop

Copyright:
https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/marineff-workshop-tickets-71401488775

MARINEFF is a cross-channel EU funded project focusing on eco-engineering coastal infrastructure to increase marine biodiversity and enhance net gain. The project’s biannual workshops are aimed at a stakeholder audience of coastal managers, coastal engineers, maritime professionals, policy makers, local councils and port authorities to educate them about the project’s aims and goals and receive feedback from those in industry.

The MARINEFF project’s second biannual workshop will be held in the Education Room at Dinosaur Isle, Isle of Wight this autumn. It will introduce the MARINEFF project and all its work packages, and focus on ‘Vertipools’ in work package T2. Vertipools are a type of artificial rockpool created by Isle of Wight based subcontractor Artecology, which are retrofitted onto vertical coastal frontage, such as quays, pilings and sea walls. As a MARINEFF partner, Bournemouth University plan to deploy 150 Vertipools across three sites in an experimental array designed to determine the optimum spacing for maximising marine species colonisation.

The Workshop will include refreshments and a buffet lunch, several presentations in the morning and a field trip to Vertipools deployed along a wooden groyne on Sandown beach. The field site is a 2 minute walk from the Workshop venue.

Agenda

  • 10.30 – Arrival at Education Room, Dinosaur Isle. Tea and coffee
  • 11.00 – Introduction to MARINEFF – Jess Bone (15mins + 5 min questions)
  • 11.20 – Background on Vertipools and current site locations – Artecology (25mins + 5 min questions)
  • 11.50 – Existing data collected on Vertipools – Dr Alice Hall (15mins + 5 min questions)
  • 12.10 – The next steps – Vertipools & upscaling – Jess Bone/ Roger Herbert (15mins + 5 min questions)
  • 12.30 – Lunch
  • 13.30 – Walk to field site on Sandown beach – Artecology workshop tour
  • 15.30 – Return to Dinosaur Isle to collect belongings, end

Travel and Accommodation

We recommend attendees travel to Ryde via Wightlink ferry from Portsmouth as foot passengers, though cars can be driven over at a higher cost. Parking is limited to 16 spaces at the venue which is free. There are larger car parks local to the venue but standard Isle of Wight parking charges apply. There is a train service from Ryde to Sandown, the venue location. There are hotels in Sandown to suit a range of budgets. Regrettably we cannot reimburse travel and accommodation expenses or offer grants to cover associated costs.

Museum of the future

Event: Museum Of The Future

Copyright: palaeogo

When: 5/11/2019 @ 11am

Where: Bournemouth University, Talbot Campus

Augmented Reality (AR) promises to enrich user experience by enhancing the real-world objects with computer-generated, interactive digital assets. Apart from the entertainment aspect of AR, it now has a growing role in public engagement within natural parks and museums, also in conveying educational elements, especially as most visitors now carry smartphones.

The real-world objects with computer-generated, interactive digital assets. Apart from the entertainment aspect of AR, it now has a growing role in public engagement within natural parks and museums, also in conveying educational elements, especially as most visitors now carry smartphones.

For over two years our team have been developing tailored AR experiences for public engagement, with focus on extinct animals, within the PalaeoGo! project.

During this event they will share the lessons learnt with respect to the limits of current technology, the importance of making the assets realistic, and the ways of engaging the visitors even with a limited investment, to make an AR deployment a success.

The event will consist of three keynotes:

  • Prof Matthew Bennett – Creating Digital Assets
  • Peter Truckel – Animating Heritage
  • Prof Marcin Budka – Delivering The Vision

There will also be a hands-on session where you’re be able to play with various versions of the PalaeoGo! app.