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Open especially for Pint of Science, the not-for-profit café and bike workshop Roll for the Soul hosts a night on a variety of animals, surely none of them can ride a bike, but we're thrilled to hear what they are all about. Please note that this event takes place on the ground floor and is accessible for those with impaired mobility. The bar is up some stairs, but staff can offer table service for those with impaired mobility.
The astounding diversity and disparity of fossil arthropods
When we talk of biodiversity, only one thing should come to mind: arthropods. This group of animals, including beetles, lobsters and spiders, represents 80% of all known species alive on the planet today. But what about those that aren’t alive today? If we consider that palaeontology = biology x history, then all the diversity we see today is just a snapshot of the diversity on geological timescales. In this talk, we’ll discover what constitutes a species, explore the different forms of extinct arthropods and ultimately find out why they’ve dominated the planet for half a billion years.
Beacons and Decoys - How Bat Echolocation has Shaped Echoes of Flowers and Insects
We know that by interacting, organisms affect each other’s looks and behaviour. In extreme cases, species can affect each other’s evolution to the point where one cannot survive without the other. Other animals evolve mechanisms to avoid their predators. Marc will show how animals and plants co-evolve by introducing his research on bats. In this presentation, we will meet a Cuban vine that attracts echolocating pollinators, learn how deaf moths can trick their bat predators, and uncover why the rare Barbastelle bat can break through the auditory defences of its eared moth prey.
From Avon Gorge to Madagascar: around the world with Bristol Zoo conservation projects
While most people are aware of Bristol Zoo as a fun day out, many are unaware of the vast scientific work behind the scenes. I will discuss conservation projects that the zoo is involved with, such as saving abandoned penguin chicks in South Africa. Additionally, I will share how our research is helping improve evidence based conservation. I will wrap up discussing my own research interests, investigating how field work and the laboratory can be used to study how environmental and genetic factors shape sexually selected traits and associated female preferences in stalk-eyed flies.