My main interests relate to the effects of land use on biodiversity, with my research focusing on the responses of biodiversity, and the complex ecological processes underlying them, to land management interventions and land use change at different spatial scales, and across taxonomic groups. Most recently my interest has been focusing on issues relating to sport hunting, land use and wildlife conservation.
Past projects have included long-term studies on the effects of arable field margin management on wildlife, landscape-scale studies of factors affecting the biodiversity of freshwater habitats, large-scale, multi-site projects on the impacts on biodiversity of set-aside and organic farming, and the impacts of agricultural and woodland management on butterflies and moths. I was also involved with developing protocols for the ecological monitoring of the Scottish beaver trial release, have worked on the ecology and conservation of rare freshwater invertebrates, and have led a review of threats to the welfare of wild UK vertebrates.
I have edited, with David Macdonald, two academic volumes which synthesize the results of the Wildlife Conservation Research Unit’s (WildCRU’s) agro-ecology studies over the last 25 years in the Wildlife Conservation on Farmland two-volume book set. I am keen on promoting research outcomes beyond the academic arena and have written a practitioner’s handbook which disseminates key results from our farmland studies in an accessible format (available here for download). View my other publications on my personal publication list.