I completed my BSc in Biology at University of Aveiro, Portugal. In my bachelor thesis I studied the incubation pattern of the Eurasian oystercatcher in a agricultural landscape. During my MSc thesis at Wageningen University, I investigated the effects of experimental light on activity patterns of insects and bats. Therefore my interests englobed the ecology and conservation of several groups of animals, namely birds, bats and insects.
PhD project: The ecology of insects in nature-based farming systems
Prolific use of synthetic crop protection products and agricultural intensification contributed in a large scale to the decline of insects and other arthropods. Changes in farming practices need to occur, however it is not completely clear which management practices should be altered in order to restore and support conservation of biodiversity. Thus, I aim to study arthropod populations in different agricultural habitats and management types. Additionally, it is important to provide agronomic motives to farmers in order to encourage a shift towards a nature-based farming. Therefore, I seek to understand how crop yield is affected by ecosystem services provided by two insect groups, natural enemies of insect pests and pollinators. Moreover, the decline of arthropods has also negatively affected birds, since many forage on invertebrate prey. Hence, I intend to research the relationship between birds and arthropod populations in a nature-based farming system. This knowledge can be further used to conserve and increase arthropod biodiversity in agricultural landscapes.