Alex Morris

PhD Student
Animal & Veterinary Sciences
Disease Systems

Research interests 

I graduated in Zoology from Liverpool John Moores University in 2015. My final year research project sought to understand avoidance behaviours of slugs to their parasitic nematodes. In 2017 I graduated with an MRes Infectious Diseases from University of Edinburgh, where I worked on a project whilst part of the Pedersen lab looking at the transmission dynamics of parasites in a multi-host wild rodent population. 

My current PhD project aims to investigate whether behaviour change in livestock can be used as an indicator of parasite infection. I use social network analysis to identify changes in animal social structures as well as looking at changes in animal activity levels and feeding behaviours to determine early signs of parasitism in lambs.

My research interests include:

  • How parasitism affects host behaviour
  • How parasitism can affect social network structures of animals
  • Statistical modelling that predicts parasite infection
  • Parasite control strategies

PhD Title

  • Behavioural Signatures of Parasitism

Masters by Research Title

  • Transmission and Infection Dynamics of Trypanosoma spp in a multi-host wild rodent population

Teaching and demonstrating on the following undergraduate courses:

  • Evolution in action (University of Edinburgh)
  • Origin and diversity of life (University of Edinburgh)
  • Research skills and data analysis (SRUC)

Selected publications

  • Morris, A., Green, M., Martin, H., Crossland, K., Swaney, W.T., Williamson, S.M. and Rae, R., 2018. A nematode that can manipulate the behaviour of slugs. Behavioural processes151, .73-80.
  • Wynne, R., Morris, A., Rae, R. 2016. Behavioural avoidance by slugs and snails of the parasitic nematode Phasmarhabditis hermaphrodita. Biocontrol Science and Technology. 26(8), 1129 - 1131.

Alex Morris

PhD Student

Address: SRUC, Roslin Institute Building, Easter Bush, Midlothian, EH25 9RG