Research

I’m interested in all things marine ecology & fisheries science, from microplastics to fishing fleets, invasive marine species to marine protected areas.

Obviously I can’t do everything in one PhD, so I’ve focused on an area I’m really passionate about – marine capture fisheries. My PhD seeks to understand how climate change will impact South West UK fisheries. Using a socio-ecological framework, I’ll be taking a whole systems view to this problem by trying to understand the impacts on fish and people.

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Megrim

In this project I’m looking at not only how climate change will affect fish stocks themselves, but also how fishing communities reliant on these resources will be affected. I’ll be primarily focusing upon how changes in sea temperature will affect fisheries, rather than other climate change impacts such as storm severity.

Some of the key questions that I’ll be trying to answer in my project are:

  • How could fish abundances and distributions be affected by warming sea temperatures in the future
  • How do local fishing communities perceive climate change and its potential impacts on their livelihoods
  • What level of adaptive capacity do fishers have in order to cope with potential future changes to their fishing resources as a result of climate change

As such, this project is multi-disciplinary and will require inputs from a range of stakeholders throughout, from climate and social scientists to fishers and fishing industry representatives.

I’m lucky to be funded by NERC through their GW4+ DTP, and my project partner organisations include University of Bristol, MetOffice and Cefas. I’m always on the lookout for inputs from other areas/sectors, particularly the fishing community, so please get in touch if you or someone you know may be interested in getting involved in this project!

Before coming to Exeter, I studied Biology with Conservation and Biodiversity at Sheffield University. My third year and Master’s projects all focused upon marine ecology and fisheries, which you can find out more about here and here.

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