Students on the MRes Tropical Forest Ecology get involved with a wide variety of thesis projects in a wide variety of places.  Your choice of thesis project is driven first and foremost by your interests. You won’t be assigned a project; rather, we will work with you to find a project and a supervisor with complementary skills and expertise. 

Where students conduct their research

We encourage students to take advantage of the world’s tropical forests and to get out there and collect field data. 

Map showing locations of research including South America, Madagascar, Asia and Australia

What topics do students work on for their theses?

Beyond a reasonable expectation that you will work on something ecological somewhere in the tropics, we don’t place limits on you.  Past students on the course have conducted a wide variety of research projects ranging from intensive field campaigns to more desk-based computational challenges, on topics as varied as physiology, genomics and community ecology, and on taxa as diverse as soil microbes to fish to birds. 

Student looks through binoculars

Example projects from previous years include:

  • Comparative stand dynamics of tropical savanna and forest trees in Australia
  • Using mammal trapping and camera trap data to validate the Madingley Model for a Bornean rainforest
  • Quantifying changes in orangutan feeding ecology, distribution, abundance and health due to deforestation in Malaysian Borneo
  •  The importance of vertebrates in regulating herbivory pressure along a gradient of logging intensity
  •  Leaf thermoregulation in the semi-arid tropics
  • Alterations in avian physiology and behaviour across a gradient of fragmentation
  • Forest edge influence on species richness and functional characteristics of epiphytic orchids in oil palm plantations
  • Testing the bisexual advantage model in male rhesus macaques
  • Land-use induced shifts to the ecology and behaviour of bearded pigs (Sus barbatus)
  • Biotic and abiotic factors associated with the amphibian pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in Ecuador
  • Using environmental DNA to monitor the presence of tropical otters in lotic systems
  • Effects of microclimate on the distributions of mosquitoes across a tropical forest-oil palm land-use gradient
  • Small carnivore response to disturbance-mediated shifts in prey distribution throughout Bornean rainforests
  • Investigating the resilience of termite communities to selective logging and climatic changes in Malaysian Borneo
  • The dietary impacts of deforestation on Macaca fascicularis (Long-tailed macaque) using metabarcoding
  • The conceptual model as a tool for quantitative modelling in adaptive management: a case study from Cambodia