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Claudia A Martin

Claudia A MartinClaudia Martin laughs as she hugs a swan






In 2016 I graduated with a BSc (Hons) in Biology from Cardiff University, where I developed a keen interest in evolutionary and conversation biology. As part of my degree I incorporated a Professional Training Year working for Slimbridge Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust, through which I developed advanced avian identification, handling and monitoring skills. This work involved practical management of the SSSI and Ramsar designated reserve for species of conservation priority. For my dissertation I conducted an experimental investigation of ecosystem resilience to climate change by monitoring the ecological impact of prolonged drought on upland streams.


I have since worked with Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust using Population Viability Analysis to project genetic diversity and population viability for the endemic Madagascar Pochard (Aythya innotata) through a captive breeding programme and population reintroductions.


Current Research

Genomic signatures of adaptation in an island bird.


I will be using cutting edge genomic tools in combination with ecological fieldwork to enhance understanding of evolutionary adaptation in wild animals. Using genomic data, it is now possible to not only identify the genes under natural selection, but also their function and the ecological factors that drive selection.

Using Berthelot’s pipit (Anthus berthelotti) as a model system, I aim to identify the genetic and ecological basis of natural selection for this island endemic species. Specifically; which genes and biological processes are under natural selection? Moreover, many island birds are becoming endangered due to habitat degradation and climate change, so understanding their ecology and evolution is of paramount conservation concern.


Supervisory Team

Primary Supervisor: Dr Lewis Spurgin (UEA)

Co-Supervisors: Prof David S Richardson (UEA), Dr Brent Emerson (IPNA CSIC, CASE Partner)


Other relevant activities

Postgraduate demonstrator assisting undergraduate students with statistical analysis using R Programming Language, marker for module assessments and private tutor for A Level Biology.