Dr. Madeleine F. Scriba

My research deals with the function of sleep as this is one of the biggest biological questions so far still unresolved. I’m working with barn owls as a model species, because birds are the only other taxonomic group showing the same sleep states than mammals and offer therefore a great opportunity for comparative research. For my thesis I worked on establishing a non-invasive method to record the brain activity of birds in the field. Because of technological constraints, so far nearly all sleep studies were done in a laboratory environment and this may yield misleading results. I think by studying animals in the ecological context in which sleep evolved this might lead to more insight into the function of sleep.

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