WHY ARE INSECTS IMPORTANT?
Flying insects are fascinating creatures that, despite their miniature brains, can navigate through complex, changing environments. Their amazing mini-brain, with less than a million neurons, allows them to remember complex routes and visual patterns and they demonstrate the capacity for learning more abstract concepts. We work on a range of projects centred on comparative sensory ecology using a range of anatomical, physiological and behavioural methods. Current projects include understanding the sensory basis of foraging in a range of key pollinator species including bumblebees and butterflies, exploring the sensory and neural mechanisms behind learning and memory in these species and elucidating the mechanisms behind dung beetle navigation.