Amber de Vere

Role

Programme Manager: FdSc Applied Animal Behaviour and Conservation and BSc (Hons) Applied Animal Behaviour and Welfare (top-up)

Lecturer for modules including:

  • Animal Welfare and the Law,
  • Animal Cognition and Neuroscience,
  • Animal Welfare & Ethics, Statistics.

Selection of Supervised Undergraduate Projects

Selection of supervised undergraduate projects:

  • What factors are associated with public perception of enclosure size and quality for pinnipeds, and how does this compare to legal requirements?
  • Do pinnipeds in a mixed species enclosure exhibit individual and species-specific social preferences?
  • What messaging factors about the impact of unsustainable palm oil affect commitment to relevant behaviour change?
  • Is agricultural information sufficient motivation for the public to limit or avoid the consumption of animal products?
  • Do owner personality traits affect their perception that their black and white argentine tegu (Salvator merianae) can form an emotional attachment?
  • Does human interaction have an impact on donkey (Equus asinus) welfare?

Research Interests

Research Interests

My research has focused primarily on pinniped behaviour and personality. I am interested in the cross-species evolution of personality traits and how these are linked to welfare outcomes in both wild and captive populations. I began work in this field while completing my M.A. and Ph.D. in the Marine Mammal Behavior and Cognition Laboratory at the University of Southern Mississippi, under Dr. Stan Kuczaj, Dr. Lauren Highfill, and Dr. Lucas Keefer. During my Ph.D., I focused particularly on California sea lion and harbour seal personality, assessed via behavioural and trait rating assessments. I am currently working on expanding this research to further populations to work towards a validated assessment of pinniped personality, as has been achieved for several other species.

My human research concerns the psychological and demographic factors that appear to influence environmental- and animal welfare-related behaviours. For example, consuming animal products has significant environmental and animal welfare impacts, but this behaviour is typically extremely resistant to modification. In my research, we have explored how the type of messaging contributes to participants’ willingness to change these types of behaviours.

I have a number of other research interests, including how the behaviour of individuals influences their interaction with anthropogenic impacts, visitor effects on zoo animal behaviour and space usage, and comparative cognition for species subject to different ecological factors.

Please contact me at amber.devere@plumpton.ac.uk if you would like to discuss any particular research interests or the undergraduate courses we offer.

Education & Publications

B.A. Biological Sciences (Oxford University)

M.A. Brain & Behavior Psychology (University of Southern Mississippi)

Ph.D. Brain & Behavior Psychology (University of Southern Mississippi)

Selected Publications

de Vere, A.J. (2018). Visitor effects on a zoo population of California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) and harbour seals (Phoca vitulina). Zoo Biology, 37(3), 162-170.

de Vere, A.J., Lilley, M.K., Frick, E. (2018). Anthropogenic Impacts on the Welfare of Wild Marine Mammals. Aquatic Mammals, 44(2), 150-180.

Lilley, M.K., de Vere, A.J., Yeater, D.B., Kuczaj, S.A. (2018). Characterizing curiosity-related behavior in bottlenose (Tursiops truncatus) and rough-toothed (Steno bredanensis) dolphins. International Journal of Comparative Psychology, 31, 1-15.

de Vere, A., Lilley, M., Highfill, L. (2017). Do pinnipeds have personality? Broad dimensions and contextual consistency of behavior in harbor seals (Phoca vitulina) and California sea lions (Zalophus californianus). International Journal of Comparative Psychology, 30, 1-15.

Frick, E., de Vere, A., Kuczaj, S. (2017). What do we want to know about personality in marine mammals? In: Volume on Personality in Non-Humans, (Eds. J. Vonk, A. Weiss), Springer.

de Vere, A., Kuczaj, S.A. (2016). Where are we in the study of animal emotions? WIREs Cognitive Science, 7(5), 354-62.


Jenny Watkins

Role

Undergraduate Lecturer: FdSc Applied Animal Behaviour and Conservation and BSc (Hons) Applied Animal Behaviour and Welfare (top-up)

Lecturer for modules including: Animal Biology, Animal Health and Welfare, Wildlife Conservation, Animal Cognition and Neuroscience, Behavioural Ecology, Applied Sampling Methods in Conservation.

Selection of Supervised Undergraduate Projects

Selection of supervised undergraduate projects:

  • Are public opinions of trophy hunting, canned hunting, and their impact on conservation in South Africa affected by knowledge levels?
  • Do owls and falcons exhibit footedness when catching prey?
  • What factors influence the UK public’s perception of the reintroduction of the Eurasian lynx?
  • How can UK wildlife rehabilitation centres prepare wild caught British passerines for re-release?

Research Interests

Research Interests

I completed my Ph.D. on the lateralisation of auditory learning and processing in the domestic chick, under Dr. Andrew. After my Ph.D. I was appointed as a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Sussex, focusing on the lateralisation of visual functioning in zebrafish. I have since specialised in teaching animal health and biology, with a further interest in wildlife conservation leading to a long-standing relationship with Mankwe reserve in South Africa. I have supervised student projects on a variety of topics, but remain particularly interested in brain lateralisation.

Education & Publications

B.Sc. Zoology (University of Edinburgh)

Ph.D. Neuroscience (University of Sussex)

PGCE (University of Brighton)

Selected Publications

Watkins, J., Miklosi, A., Andrew R.J. (2004) Early asymmetries in the behaviour of zebrafish larvae. Behavioural Brain Research, 5(151), 177-183.


Jes Hooper

Role

Undergraduate Lecturer: FdSc Applied Animal Behaviour and Conservation and BSc (Hons) Applied Animal Behaviour and Welfare (top-up)

Lecturer for modules including:

  • Management of Animal Collections,
  • Principles of Conservation, Human-Animal Interactions,
  • Animal Behaviour and Communication,
  • Applied Sampling Methods in Conservation.

Selection of Supervised Undergraduate Projects

Selection of supervised undergraduate projects:

  • What are the perspectives on social media surrounding civet coffee (Kopi Luwak) and how do these attitudes affect Asian palm civet welfare and conservation?
  • Do zoo visitors affect the social dynamics of captive Sulawesi Macaques (Macaca nigra)?
  • What are the social dynamics of a captive troop of Colobus monkeys (Colobus guereza) and does social status influence parental care?
  • What factors influence the attractiveness of educational signage in zoos?

Research Interests

Research Interests

I am interested in conservation, anthrozoology, wildlife rehabilitation, and welfare. My experience includes working as a field assistant for illegal primate pet research in Mexico City, where I also collected observational and physiological data of wild Atelinae and Alouatta sp. in protected and fragmented habitats. In addition, I spent four years as the primate behaviourist and enrichment coordinator at the Ecoparque el Fenix Monkey Sanctuary in Mexico. As part of my work here, I delivered educational workshops to both the public and staff in the field to highlight the conservation and welfare impacts of the illegal primate pet trade. In addition, I acted as a welfare advisor to local zoos and animal collections, alongside designing and implementing enrichment for the primate population. Since returning from Mexico, I continued to work closely with primates as a zoo keeper as Drusilla’s Park Zoo, as well as overseeing the zoo’s research objectives, before moving to Plumpton College.

Education

FdSc. Animal Science (University of Brighton)

B.Sc. (top-up) Animal Science and Management (Royal Agricultural University)

M.Sc. Primate Conservation (Oxford Brookes University)


Emma Quigley

Role

Undergraduate Lecturer: FdSc Applied Animal Behaviour and Conservation and BSc (Hons) Applied Animal Behaviour and Welfare (top-up)

Lecturer for modules including:

  • Companion Animal Behaviour Counselling,
  • Applied Animal Behaviour Management,
  • Animal Learning & Training.

Area of Expertise

Area of Expertise

I specialise in domestic animal behaviour, training and welfare. I have worked in the animal industry for over 15 years in a range of different careers. This included time spent working in police boarding kennels which involved working with dangerous and banned dog breeds which have been seized by the police. After this I worked in animal rescue working alongside animal rescue organisation such as the RSPCA to oversee the rehabilitation and rehoming of animals especially dogs and cats. I have also worked in several livery and competition yards with a variety of horses managing and resolving behaviour problems. For the last few years I have worked as an animal behaviour consultant dealing with behaviour problems in cats and dogs.

Education

B.Sc. (Hons) Animal Behaviour & Welfare (Anglia Ruskin University)

PGCE (University of Greenwich)

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