Mr. Ben Walton, BA Hons Zoology, University of Cambridge
For my Ph.D. I will use state of the art bio-logging techniques to understand the dynamics of crop foraging baboons in South Africa, working in close collaboration with the SHOAL group at Swansea University (https://www.shoalgroup.org/members). High-resolution GPS and accelerometer data will give detailed insights into how baboons behave in and around commercial farmland, which in turn will inform and allow the testing of mitigation strategies. The research will also answer more fundamental questions relating to risk-taking, group dynamics, and nutritional and energetic tradeoffs in primates. This research is funded by the NERC DTP.
Previous to working at Durham I have been involved in a wide range of behavioural and conservation research.
- Lemur communication in Madagascar with the University of Cambridge
- Tit communication and ecology with the University of Oxford
- Chimpanzee cooperation, coordination, and reciprocity in Zambia with the University of St Andrews
- Research and conservation, Seychelles, including using digested VHF radio transmitters to investigate seed distribution by giant tortoises.
- I am interested in applying an understanding of animal behavior to conservation questions, especially through the use of emerging technologies.
- Walton, Ben J., Findlay, Leah J. & Hill, Russell A. (2021). Insights into short‐ and long‐term crop‐foraging strategies in a chacma baboon (Papio ursinus) from GPS and accelerometer data. Ecology and Evolution 11(2): 990-1001.
- Walton, Ben & Baxter, Richard P (2019). Antipredator response of free-roaming Aldabra giant tortoise (Aldabrachelys gigantea) with implications for responsible wildlife tourism in the Seychelles islands. Phelsuma 27(1): 1, 1-9.
- Walton, Ben & Kershenbaum, Arik (2019). Heterospecific recognition of referential alarm calls in two species of lemur. Bioacoustics 28(6): 592-603.
Available for media contact about:
- Anthropology: Human Wildlife Conflict
- Anthropology: Primate behaviour and conservation
Is supervised by
- Teaching assistant on the course "Human Evolution and Diversity" (ANTH1091)