Biography

 I am a molecular ecologist with primary interests in the use of neutral molecular markers and functional genes to address questions in evolutionary and behavioural ecology. I mainly use model avian systems, including species such as the Seychelles warbler, Berthelot’s pipit and red junglefowl, to investigate the adaptive significance of reproductive and life history strategies, to study host-parasite co-evolution and to investigate stress and senescence in wild populations. The conservation of endangered island bird species (e.g. the Seychelles warbler) is also an important part of my work.

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ResearcherID

Career History

  • Professor in Evolutionary Ecology and Conservation, University of East Anglia (2013)
  • Lecturer then Reader, University of East Anglia (2009 - 2013)
  • NERC Research Fellow, University of East Anglia. (2004 - 2007)
  • Marie Curie Research Fellowship, University of Lund (2001 - 2003)
  • Research Associate, University of Sheffield (1997 - 2001)
  • Ph.D. University of Leicester (1997)
  • B.Sc Applied Biology, Manchester Metropolitan University (1991)

All Publications

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Wright, D. J., Brouwer, L., Mannarelli, M., Burke, T., Komdeur, J., Richardson, D. S.

(2016)

Social pairing of Seychelles warblers under reduced constraints: MHC, neutral heterozygosity, and age

in Behavioral Ecology

27.

pp. 295-303

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)


Gilroy, D., Van Oosterhout, C., Komdeur, J., Richardson, D. S.

(2016)

Avian β-defensin variation in bottlenecked populations: the Seychelles warbler and other congeners

in Conservation Genetics

17.

pp. 661-674

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)


Komdeur, J., Burke, T., Dugdale, H. L., Richardson, D. S.

(2016)

Seychelles warblers: Complexities of the helping paradox

Cambridge University Press

pp. 197-217

ISBN 9781107043435

(Chapter (peer-reviewed))


Bebbington, K., Spurgin, L., Fairfield, E., Dugdale, H. L., Komdeur, J., Burke, T., Richardson, D. S.

(2016)

Telomere length reveals cumulative individual and transgenerational inbreeding effects in a passerine bird

in Molecular Ecology

25.

pp. 2949–2960

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)


Fourcade, Y., Richardson, D. S., Keišs, O., Budka, M., Green, R., Fokin, S., Secondi, J.

(2016)

Corncrake conservation genetics at a European scale: the impact of biogeographical and anthropological processes

in Biological Conservation

198.

pp. 210-219

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)


Gonzalez Quevedo, C., Phillips, K., Spurgin, L., Richardson, D.

(2015)

454 screening of individual MHC variation in an endemic island passerine

in Immunogenetics

67.

pp. 149-162

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)


P. Padilla, D., Spurgin, L. G., Fairfield, E. A., Illera, J., Richardson, D. S.

(2015)

Population history, gene flow, and bottlenecks in island populations of a secondary seed disperser, the southern grey shrike (Lanius meridionalis koenigi)

in Ecology and Evolution

5.

pp. 36-45

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)


Gonzalez-Quevedo, C., Spurgin, L. G., Illera, J. C., Richardson, D. S.

(2015)

Drift, not selection, shapes toll-like receptor variation among oceanic island populations

in Molecular Ecology

24.

pp. 5852-5863

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)


Hammers, M., Kingma, S. A., Bebbington, K., van de Crommenacker, J., Spurgin, L. G., Richardson, D. S., Burke, T., Dugdale, H. L., Komdeur, J.

(2015)

Senescence in the wild: Insights from a long-term study on Seychelles warblers

in Experimental Gerontology

71.

pp. 69-79

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)


Phillips, K. P., Mortimer, J. A., Jolliffe, K. G., Jorgensen, T., Richardson, D.

(2014)

Molecular techniques reveal cryptic life history and demographic processes of a critically endangered marine turtle

in Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology

455.

pp. 29-37

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)


Collet, J. M., Dean, R. F., Worley, K., Richardson, D. S., Pizzari, T.

(2014)

The measure and significance of Bateman's principles

in Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences

281.

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)


Wright, D. J., Spurgin, L. G., Collar, N. J., Komdeur, J., Burke, T., Richardson, D. S.

(2014)

The impact of translocations on neutral and functional genetic diversity within and among populations of the Seychelles warbler

in Molecular Ecology

23.

pp. 2165-2177

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)


Gonzalez Quevedo, C., Davies, R. G., Richardson, D. S.

(2014)

Predictors of malaria infection in a wild bird population: landscape-level analyses reveal climatic and anthropogenic factors

in Journal of Animal Ecology

83.

pp. 1091–1102

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)


Spurgin, L. G., Illera, J. C., Jorgensen, T. H., Dawson, D. A., Richardson, D. S.

(2014)

Genetic and phenotypic divergence in an island bird: isolation by distance, by colonization or by adaptation?

in Molecular Ecology

23.

pp. 1028-1039

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)


Phillips, K., Jorgensen, T., Jolliffe, K. G., Richardson, D.

(2014)

Potential inter-season sperm storage by a female hawksbill turtle

in Marine Turtle Newsletter

140.

pp. 13-14

UEA Repository

(Article)


Spurgin, L., Wright, D., Van der Velde, M., Collar, N., Komdeur, J., Burke, T., Richardson, D.

(2014)

Museum DNA reveals the demographic history of the endangered Seychelles warbler

in Evolutionary Applications

7.

pp. 1134–1143

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)


Fourcade, Y., Keišs, O., Richardson, D., Secondi, J.

(2014)

Continental-scale patterns of pathogen prevalence: a case study on the corncrake

in Evolutionary Applications

7.

pp. 1043–1055

Full Text

(Special issue)


Phillips, K., Jorgensen, T., Jolliffe, K., Henwood, J., Richardson, D., Jolliffe, S.

(2013)

Reconstructing paternal genotypes to infer patterns of sperm storage and sexual selection in the hawkshill turtle

in Molecular Ecology

22.

pp. 2301-2312

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)


Perez-Rodrigues a Ramirez, A., Richardson, D., Perez-Tris (Madrid), J.

(2013)

Evolution of parasite island syndromes without long-term hot population isolation: parasite dynamics in Macronesian blackcaps Sylvia atricapilla

in Global Ecology and Biogeography

22.

pp. 1272–1281

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)


MacColl, A., Stevenson, I., Richardson, D.

(2013)

Melanocortin-1-receptor (MC1R) variation is not associated with parasite burdens in neotropical bird, the bananaquit (Coereba flaveola)

in Biological Journal Of The Linnean Society

108.

pp. 882-888

Full Text UEA Repository

(Article)


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Key Research Interests

 

Current Research Projects

  • The evolution of cooperative breeding
  • The benefits of mate choice
  • The role of the Major histocompatibility complex (MHC) in sexual selection and parasite resistance
  • The role of drift and selection in shaping genetic variation within and among bird populations on island archipelagos
  • Population genetics and conservation of endemic bird species (e.g. the Seychelles warbler, the Cape Verde warbler)
  • Telomeres as bioindicators of the costs of life history components
  • Tansgenerational impacts of ageing in wild populations
  • Mating systems and conservation genetics in marine turtles
  • Work on the Seychelles warbler is undertaken in collaboration with Nature Seychelles

 

Life in our research group

We use a powerful combination of fieldwork and molecular techniques to investigate a range of questions in evolutionary and behavioural ecology. Fieldwork focuses mainly on birds in exotic island locations which provide excellent self-contained natural laboratories in which to work. Lab work is undertaken in the extensive, well equipped molecular ecology labs at UEA. We are a dynamic, international group of students and postdocs that share interests, enthusiasm and social life! We have our own lab meetings and journal clubs to keep up with our research areas, but also engage with the seminars in BIO and beyond. Recent academic highlights have included the Annual ‘Rebellion’ student conference organised by the Centre for Ecology, Evolution and Conservation here at UEA (of which we are part), and a trip to Lisbon for the 2013 European Society for Evolutionary Biology conference.

PhD Positions

Click here for current PhD opportunities in Biological Sciences. But feel free to email me to discuss projects outside these areas and alternative sources of funding.

Postdocs & Fellows

I am always happy to discuss possibilities for postdoctoral work and collaborations. Possible funding routes include applying for fellowships, e.g. EU Marie Curie fellowships, with me acting as sponsor, or grant applications with you as a named postdoc.

External Activities and Indicators of Esteem

  • NERC, BBSRC and Leverhulme Trust grant reviewer (2004 - present)
  • Consultancy for Nature Seychelles (2001 - present)
  • Advisor to the Republic of Seychelles Government (Dept. Environment) 

Enterprise and Engagement Activities

  • Public lectures for numerous NGOs including RSPB, British Trust for Ornithology, Nature Seychelles (2001 - present)

Administrative Posts

  • Organisms and Environment Theme Leader
  • Member of the BIO Executive (UEA)
  • Biodiversity Theme Leader in ELSA (Earth & Life Sciences Alliance, Norwich Research Park)
  • UEA Ringing Group Founding member