Lab Members

Lab Head

Miya Warrington

Miya Warrington is a Research Fellow with the Department of Biological and Medical Sciences at Oxford Brookes University (UK), and is also an adjunct professor with the Natural Resources Institute at the University of Manitoba (Canada). She was previously a postdoctoral researcher with the Department of Biological Sciences at University of Manitoba (Canada), an assistant professor at St.George's University (Grenada, West Indies). She completed her PhD at Macquarie University (Australia). Her work explores animal sociality, acoustic communication and adaptation to human activities and climate change.

Her work leverages two long-term study populations: 1) Cape ground squirrels in South Africa, (co-PI with Prof. Jane Waterman (University of Manitoba, Canada), and, 2) Siberian jays in Swedish Lapland (co-PI with PD Dr. Michael Griesser,  University of Konstanz, Germany). 

Co-Principal Investigators

Michael Griesser

Michael Griesser is Heisenberg Fellow at the Department of Biology at the University of Konstanz (Germany), and is associated with the Center for the Advanced Study of Collective Behavior at the University of Konstanz, and the Department of Collective Behaviour, Max Planck Institute of Animal Behaviour. He was previously an SNF Research Professor at the University of Bern and the University of Zurich (Switzerland) where he worked at the Department of Anthropology and the Department of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies. He was before that Assistant Professor at the Swedish Agricultural University, Uppsala (Sweden). His work explores animal sociality, animal linguistics and climate adaptation in boreal environments. A main part of his work leverages his long-term study populations of Siberian jays in Swedish Lapland. He is the PI of the Siberian jay project since 2004 and Director since 2012.

Jane Waterman

Jane Waterman is a Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Manitoba (Canada).  Jane has studied many species of ground squirrels over the last 40 years including Columbian ground squirrels, Richardson's ground squirrels, Barbary ground squirrels and Cape ground squirrels. She is the founder and director of the Cape ground squirrel project at SA Lombard Nature Reserve in South Africa, and has also studied Cape ground squirrels in Kalahari and Namib Desert of Namibia. She also studies polar bears in the Canadian Arctic. Her work focuses on the  selective factors that influence the evolution of sociality and mating systems by studying animal behaviour, physiology and population dynamics, while integrating both field and laboratory techniques. 

For more information: Waterman Lab


Prof. Nigel Bennett

Nigel Bennett is the PI of the mole-rat project and has collaborated with the Cape ground squirrel project for 20 years, acting especially as our physiology and molecular expert. He is also a world expert on the sociobiology, reproductive physiology, endocrinology and physiology in African mammals, and in particular mole-rats and worked on these animals for 39 years. 

Daniel W. Hart

Dr Daniel Hart’s research focuses on evolutionary biology and application, namely using knowledge of the evolutionary biology (namely, ecology, behavioural ecology, physiology, immunology and endocrinology) of mammals to improve treatments of human medical conditions and predict future consequences of climate change. His primary research model is the African mole-rat family, as they are fascinating non-model mammals helpful in understanding the evolution of social living, ageing, oxygen limitation, reproduction, pain receptors and cancer biology.


Under construction

Past Students

Charlotte Stewart, M.Res. -- Keeping Up With the Capes: Following Behaviours in A Socially Living African Ground Squirrel

Ramon Williams, M.Sc. -- 

Ramon Williams has completed his Master of Natural Resource Management at the University of Manitoba under the supervision of Miya Warrington and Nicola Koper. Ramon's thesis focused on the Distribution, Diversity, and Abundance of Grenadian Terrestrial Birds, Including Endemic and Restricted-range Species. Together with Miya and Nicola, Ramon published the report from his master's research: Avian use of anthropogenic and natural habitats in a Small Island Developing State.