Nau mai, haere mai! Welcome to the Invertebrate Behavioural Ecology & Conservation lab led by Chrissie Painting.
I’m a behavioural ecologist with a particular interest in what drives diversity in exaggerated traits, such as weapons and ornaments. This fits into a central goal of evolutionary biology which is to understand patterns in the variation of animal phenotypes. My rangahau (research) is primarily on arthropods including beetles, harvestmen, spiders and fiddler crabs, which has seen me undertake projects around the world. I have a broad interest in many aspects of natural history, but I tend to be drawn to peculiar-looking creatures that have so far escaped scientific attention.
I’m a Lecturer in the Environmental Research Institute at the University of Waikato and an Associate Investigator at the Centre of Research Excellence Te Pūnaha Matatini. I’m also a current Rutherford Postdoctoral Fellow doing exciting sexual selection research on NZ giraffe weevils. I’d love to hear from you if you’re looking for collaborations or postgraduate opportunities in behavioural ecology, entomology or conservation.
I’m passionate about creating an inclusive and equitable research environment, especially for early career researchers and parents. I was a founding committee member of the University of Auckland Faculty of Science Postdoctoral Society, and am currently an Associate Editor at the New Zealand Journal of Zoology and on the editorial board for Behavioral Ecology.
Google scholar citations – here
Academic Work History
2019 – present: Lecturer, University of Waikato
2016 – 2019: Research Fellow, University of Auckland (Dr Greg Holwell)
2015 – 2016 : Research Fellow, National University of Singapore (A/P Daiqin Li)
2014: Postdoctoral Research Assistant, Australian National University (Prof Pat Backwell)
2013-2014: Postdoctoral Research Fellow, University of Auckland (Dr Greg Holwell)
2009: Lab Technician, Ministry of Primary Industries (previously Ministry of Agriculture & Forestry)