We are delighted to be joined this April by Neha Awasthi, who is doing her PhD at the Wildlife Institute of India, focused on Kanha Tiger Reserve in central India. Kanha Tiger Reserve in India is known for its long history of annual management fire practices, past village’s relocation, invasion and multi-predator system.
Most knowledge of large herbivore ecology in India derives from studies in African Savannah habitats. However, tropical forest of India sustains species rich and abundant ungulate assemblages without clear evidence of competition for resources, requiring more specific study. Neha aims to study mechanisms of coexistence between sympatric ungulates and shed further insight on how different ungulate species partition resources.
Neha, is learning tools and techniques for species distribution models with Dr. Regan Early and the rest of the research group, particularly focusing on joint species distribution models, as well as sharing her knowledge and perspectives on large mammal conservation. These jSDMs could help shed light on co-occurrence pattern of ungulates and the factors influencing them, which in turn could be leveraged for more effective conservation.
Prior to starting her PhD, Neha did her masters in Zoology from India. She is currently engaged as Senior Research Fellow in long term monitoring project of Tigers from Wildlife Institute of India. She has also worked with organisations such as Greenpeace International and Centre for Science and Environment.