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Caves Hold the Clues to Demise of the Neanderthals

Laura Deeprose – Lancaster University Supervisors: Peter Wynn Phil Barker Melanie Leng Summary The disappearance of the Neanderthals, a hominin species similar to ourselves, is a hotly debated topic, with some scientists suggesting that the cause was the arrival of anatomically modern humans whilst others say it was related to climate change. Although climate variations […]

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Sea level and Salinity Drive Evolution in Stickleback Fish

Laura Dean – University of Nottingham Supervisors: Andrew MacColl Suzanne McGowan Xu Chen Summary Many of the lochs of North Uist, Scotland, contain newly evolved species-pairs of three-spined stickleback: anadromous (large, salt water tolerant), heavily armoured fish living alongside smaller, freshwater relatives. Due to changing sea-level, low-lying coastal lagoons often experience periods of isolation from […]

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Dragons Feel the Heat: Thermal Vulnerability of Lizards

James Hicks – University of Nottingham Supervisors: Adam Algar Andrew MacColl Ahimsa Campos-Arceiz Summary Climate change is having an ongoing effect on ectotherm (cold-blooded) ecology but habitat conversion to plantation in SE Asia has a faster thermal impact on their immediate environment. Lizards’ morphological traits are known to be capable of evolving within decades and […]

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Adaptation to Environmental Stress by Evolution of Non-Genotypic Heterogeneity Within Microbial Populations

David Foster – University of Nottingham Supervisors: Simon Avery Steve McGrath Paul Dyer Kirk Semple Ricky Wildman Summary Genetic variation within populations helps a microbial species to survive environmental stresses, as variants may be better adapted to the alternative conditions. Experiments with single-cell microorganisms have shown that individual cells within a population also have markedly […]

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Flow Modification in a Tidal Farm and Potential Effects on Marine Habitats

Dan Potter – Lancaster University Supervisors: Andrew Folkard Suzana Ilic David Evans Stephen Quayle Summary The project aims to investigate the interaction of tidal stream turbine farms used for electricity generation with the surrounding marine environment. The change in behaviour of the ambient flow and the impact of these changes on the wider marine environment […]

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Bedload Transport of Sediment Mixtures in Shelf Seas

Connor McCarron – Bangor University Supervisors: Katrien Van Landeghem Jaco Baas Laurent Amoudry Ian Taylor Alan Roberts Summary The morphology of the seabed is controlled primarily by bedload sediment transport processes while the UK’s shelf seas are comprised of mixed sediments (i.e. sand and gravel) due to deposition of reworked sedimentary material by paleo-glacial processes. […]

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Mixing in the Surface Mixed Layer of Temperate Shelf Seas

Brian Scannell – Bangor University Supervisors: Tom Rippeth Mattias Green Jeff Polton John Siddorn Summary The ocean plays a vital role in our climate, absorbing and transporting heat and carbon; the exchanges of heat and gases such as CO2 between the atmosphere and the ocean are directly influenced by sea surface temperature, which in turn […]

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