Dr Erin Siracusa
Postdoctoral Research Associate
Washington Singer 124
Washington Singer Laboratories, University of Exeter, Perry Road, Prince of Wales Road, Exeter, EX4 4QG, UK
I am a behavioural ecologist broadly interested in the ecology and evolution of social behaviour. For almost all organisms (including seemingly solitary ones!) an important aspect of their environment is the conspecifics with which they might compete, cooperate, mate, or otherwise interact. I am interested in the potential for these social interactions to shape the behaviour, life history and fitness of individuals. By studying these patterns I hope to gain a deeper understanding of the processes leading to the evolution of complex social systems.
My research is primarily focused on free-living populations of mammals, and uses a combination of long-term data analysis, behavioural observations, and field experiments to address these questions.
I did my PhD on the Kluane Red Squirrel Project, a long-term research initiative studying the ecology and evolution of red squirrels in the southwest Yukon, and continue to collaborate with researchers on that project.
I am now working on a collaborative project studying a free-ranging population of rhesus macaques on Cayo Santiago, an island off the coast of Puerto Rico. I am interested in using this study system to explore how social behaviour might contribute to the process of senescence.
2008-2012: BSc(Hons) Biology & English, St. Lawrence University, United States
2013-2018: PhD Integrative Biology, University of Guelph, Canada
2020-Present: Postdoctoral Research Associate, University of Exeter
2019-2020: Postdoctoral Researcher & Kluane Red Squirrel Project Coordinator, University of Guelph
Research group links
My broad interests lie in the evolution of social behaviour. My previous work has explored social interactions in “solitary” species and used this to test important questions about the mechanisms underlying conflict resolution and the evolution of cooperation. I am currently interested in how social behaviour might contribute to our understanding of senescence by exploring how and why social behaviour changes across the lifespan.
I am currently a Postdoctoral Research Associate working with Dr. Lauren Brent, Dr. James Higham and Dr. Noah Snyder-Mackler on a collaborative project studying how social behaviour changes with age using a free-living population of rhesus macaques on the island of Cayo Santiago off the coast of Puerto Rico. Changes in behaviour with age, particularly social behaviour, is an understudied aspect of senescence and using this long-term study of macaques I hope to uncover both the causes and consequences of changes in social behaviour across the lifespan. Importantly we hope to explore how social aging affects other morphological, physiological, and demographic patterns of senescence to better elucidate the role of social relationships in the aging process.
Publications by category
Publications by year
Erin_Siracusa Details from cache as at 2021-06-16 07:52:56