Dr. Thomas Richardson

Research interests

My current research focuses on understanding the mechanisms governing social organisation in animal societies, through the use of a blend of experimentation and modern statistical analyses. I have a particular interests in the overlaps between spatial (at the level of individual trajectories), topological (at the level of the social network), and temporal (activity patterns at both individual and group levels) organisational levels in insect societies

The primary objective of the Marie Curie grant grant is to adapt the automated ant-tracking techniques (developed through a collaboration between the DEE and EPFL) for application to honeybee colonies. Such automated tracking will for the first time allow the collection of the activity patterns of multiple overlapping generations of individual worker bees. We hope to use this data to map the available pathways for transmission of disease or information within the colony. As honeybees are the pre-eminent global crop pollinators, and as their populations have suffered dramatic declines, this research should help increase our understanding of (some of) the processes involved in such declines.


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