Happy World Wildlife Day!

03 March 2017

It's World Wildlife Day again

This year I've put together a piece for The Conversation about World Wildlife Day. Read it by following the link here.



Far far away in a snowy backwater

02 March 2017

It's warm inside, but outside it's freezing - literally

I'm very luckky to be spending some time in the Evans Lab this March, with my first experience of a -10 C cycle ride in Canada today. We're working up the next gen sequencing data generated last year for investigating hybridisation of Xenopus laevis and Xenopus gilli

Ben visited the MeaseyLab back in June 2015, when he delivered a workshop on next gen sequencing analysis. Ben's work at McMaster University, Hamilton Ontario, has already included processing of lots of next gen datasets. Handling all the data is quite a task!

  Frogs  Xenopus

OTS monitoring at Cape Point

26 February 2017

Organisation for Tropical Studies help monitor the Cape Clawed frog

The Organisation for Tropical Studies (OTS) comes twice a year to the Cape region to conduct Faculty Field Projects (FFP). We have been using their flare and enthusiasm to help monitor the Cape Platanna, Xenopus gilli, in the Cape of Good Hope.

Seen above, setting traps can be hazardous. First you have to separate the traps from each other. Then you can get stuck in deep mud. Lastly, you have to set them into the water, which means getting your feet wet. Reminds me of last February...

This year we had a meeting with a film crew from 50:50 who used the opportunity to interview some of the students about their role in the project.

  Frogs  Xenopus

Corey & Alex's big day

15 February 2017

Congratulations to Alex & Corey

Today was a big day in the MeaseyLab with the defence of two MSc theses right on the deadline for submission before the graduation ceremony in March 2017. Both Corey and Alex did an excellent job, with in-depth explanations of their subject matter.  

Both started in February 2015 and handed in their theses during December 2016. 

Corey Thorp, who back in November won the best MSc presentation, was co-supervised by Mhairi Alexander and James Vonesh for his MSc thesis entitled: "The impact of Xenopus laevis on aquatic ecosystems." We've enjoyed having Corey in the lab, it's been a lot of fun and has often involved him getting wet.

NB No postgraduates were harmed during the making of this image, although 1 did get wet

Alex Rebelo spent many long hours chasing animals up and down, and around and round a track. The product, a thesis entitled: "Investigating the morphology, locomotory performance and macroecology of a sub-Saharan African frog radiation (Anura: Pyxicephalidae)." While Alex's seclusion with frogs often made him lose his voice, we thoroughly enjoyed watch him metamorphose - no more the tadpole.

  Frogs  Lab  News

Giovanni wins the prize

27 January 2017

Giovanni wins the top prize for best student presentation at the 13th Herpetological Association of Africa conference

Yes, Gio has stolen the show again in amazing style for his presentation: 

"Never underestimate your opponent: Adaptive phenotypic response in a recent amphibian invader"

Gio wins the top prizeSeen here Gio accepting the cash prize from HAA chair, Graham Alexander.

  Frogs  prizes