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BSc-MSc Thesis and Internship Projects, Wageningen University

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Dairy cow behaviour studies supported by automated tracking and sensor data
At Dairy campus in Leeuwarden dairy cows are kept in in group housing systems (cubicle houses, free-stalls) and equipped with sensors to monitor their activities and positions. High quality video recordings can be collected and t ...
Supervisor: Bonne Beerda, Wijbrand Ouweltjes
Department: Behavioural Ecology
Animal Communication: Songbird vocal communication
Birdsong is among the best studied signalling systems in animals. In most species in the temperate zones, only the males sing, mainly to advertise and defend a territory and to attract a female. Song can reflect a range of differe ...
Supervisor: Marc Naguib
Department: Behavioural Ecology
Songbird behaviour: personality traits and social interactions
There exists close collaboration between the BHE chair group and the Netherlands Institute of Ecology in Wageningen (NIOO-KNAW) and this allows students to contribute to ongoing projects with songbirds. Details on the available pr ...
Supervisor: Marc Naguib and Kees van Oers (NIOO-KNAW)
Department: Behavioural Ecology
Animal Communication: Breeding behaviour and communication in wild Australian zebra finches
NEW: The project takes place in the Australian outbacks at Fowlers gap Arid Zone Research Station in NSW where a team of researchers and students (from WUR, Macquarie University, Sydney and Hamburg University) studies the ecology  ...
Supervisor: Marc Naguib
Department: Behavioural Ecology
Influence of dog-directed parenting styles on the owner-dog relationship and dog welfare
Dog owners may interact with their dogs along so called ‘parenting styles’, but do these really exist in the owner-dog relationship and if so how do these influence the dog and its welfare? Parenting styles are determined by the c ...
Supervisor: Ineke van Herwijnen, Bonne Beerda
Department: Behavioural Ecology
Reproductive microbiome of house sparrows
General background Animals live and evolve in a microbial world. Thus, it is hardly surprising that every animal hosts a diversity of microbial communities (i.e. microbiomes) in and on their bodies. Importantly, microbiomes are e ...
Supervisor: Dr. Melissah Rowe
Department of Animal Ecology
Netherlands Institute of Ecology, NIOO-KNAW

Department: Behavioural Ecology
What determines predation risk of wild birds’ nests? – A field study in Africa
Nest predation is a major cause of reproductive failure in birds. Therefore birds are predicted to adopt behavioural strategies to avoid predation. In this project you will determine what cause predation: assessed factors include  ...
Supervisor: Sjouke A. Kingma
Kat L. Bebbington

Department: Behavioural Ecology
Does predation risk promote cooperation in wild birds? – an experimental study
One major proposed benefit of cooperation in animals is that cooperation may reduce predation risk. More individuals may be more vigilant and may detect predators earlier, or they may be more successful in mobbing predators and ch ...
Supervisor: Sjouke A. Kingma
Kat L. Bebbington

Department: Behavioural Ecology
Spatial Behaviour: Great tit (Parus major) personality in space
Type: Spatial data analysis of previously collected data (Encounternet) Topic: Spatial associations may reflect social behaviour � preferences or avoidance of conspecifics or certain phenotypes, but may also be affected by envi ...
Supervisor: Lysanne Snijders
Department: Behavioural Ecology
(FIELDWORK SWEDEN) The ontogeny of trust
Siberian jays can use warning calls to deceive neighbours and access their food. Similar to humans, jays have evolved a strategy to avoid deception: they are more likely to trust individuals with members from their own group, rath ...
Supervisor: Filipe Cunha
Department: Behavioural Ecology
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