Media and news

November 2022: Laura was interviewed for a piece in The Atlantic about vocal mimicry

Laura’s attempt at a great bowerbird bower, complete with wooden birds with googly eyes!

May 2021: In collaboration with Then Try This (formerly FoAM Kernow), we ran a Royal Society funded outreach event looking at how bowerbirds build their bowers. Participants were tasked with building and decorating a bower, and then gave us feedback on the challenges they faced. Find out how they got on here!


January 2021: Our recent paper on testing motion dazzle using a citizen science game was covered in Forbes.

November 2020: National Geographic featured an article on animal illusions that covered our research on great bowerbirds.


You lookin’ at me?

August 2019: Paper by masters student (now PhDing!) Madeleine Goumas in Biology
 showed that gulls are sensitive to gaze direction, and that this may be used to avoid food pilfering. Media coverage was a bit bonkers and Madeleine’s paper was covered in national and international media including The Guardian, BBC News, The Independent, The Times, BBC Breakfast television and Sky news.

July 2017: New paper in Biology Letters with Nicky Clayton shows that California scrub-jays hide cache their food in substrate that matches the food colour when they can hear a potential thief. Camouflaging their food in this way is likely to make it harder for the thief to find.


Choices, choices…

April 2017: I was honoured to receive ASAB’s Christopher Barnard award for Outstanding Contributions by a New Investigator. Not only did I get some funding towards my research, I also got the pleasure of giving a plenary at the ASAB Easter conference in Liverpool. It seemed like the perfect opportunity to test out a long-held desire to incorporate 3d images into a talk…

3d specs appeal

The audience getting an idea of what a female bowerbird sees

January 2017: Our new paper on how male great bowerbirds build their courts is published in Royal Society Open Science

ct recons

Rebuilding the illusion: front view (left) and top down view (right). Notice the big pile of objects to replace on the right hand side of the right photo!

September 2016: Dazzle Bug used in a camouflage exhibit “Camouflage: in plain sight” in Anchoranchorage-museum-playage Museum

September 2015: Article for The Conversation about motion dazzle

August 2015: Article for Biosphere magazine, “In the field: the creative avian architect” Biosphere screen shot

November 2014: Inside the colourful world of animal vision, published in The Conversation

April 2014: Flashes of colour and chromatic adaptation may enhance sexual signal and hold female attention for male great bowerbirds, published in ABC Science

March 2014: How animals could help reveal why humans fall for illusions, published in The Conversation, The Guardian, and Oxford University Press blog

Animal illusion and confusionDecember 2013: Visual illusion and confusion review covered in The Independent on Sunday

December 2012: Bowerbird visual illusions are individually distinct and consistent covered by National Geographic

January 2012: Bowerbirds use visual illusions to promote mating success covered in BBC news, The Guardian, New York Times, Discover Magazine, The Australian, The Age, Cosmos Magazine, Scientific American online

Bowerbirds and vocal mimicry: BBC news (repertoire sharing), BBC news (repertoire composition), The Scotsman, The Herald, NERC Planet Earth, BBC Radio Scotland, BBC Radio Three Counties