Animal behaviour

Social behaviour, ecology and conservation

Investigating the interactions between social behaviour, ecology and cognition

Our key areas of interest are the evolution of animal societies and the interactions that occur within these societies and their link to emotion, cognition and communication. 


By studying these interactions, we can help certain species in terms of wildlife conservation and the improvement of animal welfare in captive settings. Although there is a focus on studies of primates (including humans), our research extends to other species including banded mongoose and birds.

We are using observational, experimental and modelling approaches in our research. We carry out several international collaborative projects on topics ranging from the regulation of social relationships to more recent developments in evolutionary psychology and cognitive evolution.

Impact case study: Community development and capacity building as key aspects of conservation strategy

Current collaborations

  • Caribbean Primate Research Center
  • University of Amsterdam
  • McGill University
  • St Andrews University
  • University of Exeter
  • Bielefeld University
  • University of Cambridge
  • Durham University
  • University of Venda
  • Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology
  • Sumatran Orangutan Conservation Program
  • Orangutan Information Centre
  • University of Kent
  • Bournemouth University
  • University of Amsterdam


Search publications written by members of this group.

Search for a research paper

15 papers found

  • Journal article

    A global risk assessment of primates under climate and land use/cover scenarios

    Carvalho JS, Graham B, Rebelo H, Bocksberger G, Meyer CFJ and Wich S and Kühl HS

    Publish date:2019

  • Journal article

    Anthropogenic influences on the time budgets of urban vervet monkeys.

    Thatcher H and Downs CT and Koyama NF

    Publish date:2019

  • Journal article

    Behavioural changes in African elephants in response to wildlife tourism

    Szott I and Pretorius Y and Koyama N

    Publish date:2019

  • Chapters

    Comparison of Plant Diversity and Phenology of Riverine and Mangrove Forests with Those of the Dryland Forest in Sabah, Borneo, Malaysia

    Matsuda I, Nakabayashi M, Otani Y, Wai YS, Tuuga A, Wong A, Bernard H and Wich SA and Kubo T

    Publish date:2019

  • Journal article

    Detecting ‘poachers’ with drones: Factors influencing the probability of detection with TIR and RGB imaging in miombo woodlands, Tanzania

    Hambrecht L, Brown RP and Piel A and Wich S

    Publish date:2019

  • Journal article

    Gouldian finches are followers with black-headed females taking the lead

    O'Reilly AO and Hofmann G and Mettke-Hofmann C

    Publish date:2019


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