Biological Sciences

Browse student projects below. You can get in touch with any student by clicking the arrow in a profile and filling out the form.

In southern Africa, the overpopulation of elephants in fenced reserves is a major problem. Wildlife managers are exploring contraception in male elephants as a means of controlling populations. This study aims to look at the behavioural implications of laparoscopic vasectomies and gonadotropin-releasing hormones (GnRH) on male African elephants (Loxodonta africana).

Contact Amy

The prevalence of the saline extremophile Cochlearia danica, has been increasing along with the mass industrial developments in recent years, due to the exponential increase of car densities. The research aims to discover whether increased grit spread to meet social demand, has been promoting growth in the species.

Contact Daniel

Ageing populations are responsible for the increased use in pharmaceuticals which are excreted into the environment potentially causing detrimental damage to terrestrial agricultural plants. This study looks at the effects of the antidepressant fluoxetine on the growth, development and antioxidant enzyme activity of wheat (Tricticum aestivum) and radish (Raphanus rasphanistrum).

Contact Heidi

This project reviews a large clinical data set to identify if there is a unique coefficient factor for people of different races which could be used as an effective preventative measure to reduce under/over diagnosis; and improve the overall care that is offered to patients, in addition to other benefits.

Contact Rebecca

Invertebrates are an integral part of soils and leaf litter, they are important in determining the quality of habitats. The proposed research aims to assess which habitat has the greatest biodiversity and assist in conservation efforts of Park Hall Country Park.

Contact Baylee

Introducing different forms of predator manipulation to captive Meerkats (Suricata suricatta) at Rodbaston Animal Zone to investigate whether sentry duty level increases or decreases under the influence of predator manipulation to determine if sentry duty urgency is a response to perceived threat or possibly manifestations of an animal’s motivation levels.

Contact Lauren

Four swab types were used to recover salivary DNA from skin, in the context of sexual offences. This was to determine which swab recovered the optimal DNA yield and if deposition in the morning and afternoon affected this. Techniques like DNA isolation, quantification, and DNA profiling were used.

Contact Gabrielle

Given the importance attached to animal welfare in the modern era, it is more important than ever to understand the behaviours of domesticated animals. The proposed research aims to unearth any differences in behaviours of ex-commercial hens from a caged or free range background when introduced to a new environment.

Contact Eloise

Does the application of grit to roads have an impact on garden and roadside grasses and soils around Tamworth, Staffordshire? Plant chlorophyll activity was measured and invertebrate numbers recorded. Adaptations to stress were measured to gain insight on chlorophyll fluorescence which gives us insight on that location of grass’ health.

Contact Luke

In a world where conservation is a growing concern the desire to understand animals' requirements is increasing leading to further research. The aim of this research is to look at the effects of increasing food on the behaviour of the male zebra shark (Stegostoma fasciatum) at Alton Towers Resort.

Contact Shannon

The focus of microplastics on marine life and how they are entering the food chain has been increasing. This study hopes to identify whether Eisenia fetida would ingest microplastics using polyester threads and polyethylene glitter to show that microplastics could potentially enter the terrestrial food chain via terrestrial invertebrates.

Contact Caroline

Enrichment is essential to promote natural behaviours and reduce stereotypical behaviours in captive animals. The Research investigating whether olfactory scents (lemon & chamomile) have any effect on the activity levels of the Bornean Orangutans at Dudley Zoological Gardens, and whether this type of enrichment has a positive effect on their welfare.

Contact Amber

There is little research on enrichment devices in coatis and the lag-times of them, therefore this study aims to identify whether simple or complex enrichment devices are more effective. The results of this study will be used to form an enrichment plan for the coatis at Rodbaston Animal Zone.

Contact Holly

The two-sympatric species of crocodilians (Melanosuchus niger & Caiman crocodilus) show an overlapping distribution throughout much of the Amazon basin, sharing the same resources such as prey.  Investigating how the two species may use different parts of the river system, could this highlight habitat utilisation as a means of co-existence?

Contact Eleanor

Investigate if increasing numbers of visitors or associated noise levels induces greater vigilance levels. Vulpes zerda have disproportionately large ears with large auditory bullae giving them an acute sensitivity to sound making them a better choice than primates and big cats which were the focus of previous zoo visitor studies.

Contact Jacqueline

Zinc is a highly toxic metal. It is added to protect our metal street furniture from environmental effects, such as weather and corrosion. But, over time, it leaks into the soil. How much harm does this do? Using plants and fluorescence to measure it, this project aims to find out.

Contact Marinda

The aim of this project is to study a wide range of horses that differ in many ways such as: life stage, work load, health and other factors. I aim to find out if horse shoes affect the growth of a horse’s hoof or the way that the hoof forms.

Contact Dina

Communication between animals is well understood, but similar knowledge between plants is lacking. It is normally assumed that plants have limited ability to respond to signals presented from other organisms, is this a good assumption? We explored the communication between the same and different species when under artificial destruction.

Contact Laura

Olfactory enrichments are often dismissed for use on primates as they are considered to have a limited sense of smell. This study aims to determine if the application of Peppermint, Lavender and Snake odour increases the frequency of active behaviours in a group of Stump-tailed Macaques (Macaca arctoides).

Contact Angela

There are now 8.5 million dogs in the UK and rescue centres and veterinarians are advising dog owners to have their dogs neutered under 1 years old, primarily to prevent unwanted pregnancies. This study aims to identify whether early neutering may increase the chance of developing joint disorders.

Contact Charlotte

Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) is the most common cause of deaths worldwide. This research project investigates the use of aged garlic extract (AGE) as a dietary supplement, to help improve CVD indicators. These being total cholesterol, triglyceride and blood pressure. The effectiveness of AGE to control these indicators will be assessed.

Contact Louis

How many insects, Chiroptera and Arthropoda species, are enticed into a trap by artificial lighting of different colours?  Does this affect bat feeding behaviours in an urban area, for example, does blue light attract more insects and will this lure bats to feast in these conditions?

Contact Connor

Caffeine plays a major role is today’s society. This research aims to identify whether caffeine can affect our blood glucose or cholesterol levels and allow people to bemore  aware of the effects it can have on their health. Cholesterol testing can determine an individuals' risk of developing CHD.

Contact Will

Benthic Macro-Invertebrates are widely used as a biological indicator to assess the Biotic health of rivers and streams. Three locations on the River Trent in Staffordshire will be surveyed to assess any detrimental effects that agricultural and industrial pollutants may have upon Macro-Invertebrate communities.

Contact Robert

Decomposing bodies are important resources for many species of invertebrate. The succession of invertebrates on a body can be affected by several factors, which can in turn affect the estimation of post mortem interval. In this study I investigated how burial depth affects the colonisation of animal remains by invertebrates.

Contact Victoria

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