Dr. Nigel Mann
Courses Spring 2014:
114 Science 1
I received a BSc (Hons) degree in Zoology at the University of Manchester in England and a PhD at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. To improve my proficiency at teaching in tertiary education, I then obtained a degree in teaching at Strathclyde University in Scotland. For most of my research career I have, in a broad sense, investigated the evolutionary adaptiveness of animal behaviour, with my work intersecting the fields of ornithology, ecology and ethology. My earlier studies focused on behavioural development, using zebra finches as a model species and then continuing with post-doctoral work on brown-headed cowbirds at Indiana University. I eventually turned my attention to investigating monogamous breeding systems, and especially to the evolution and function of song duetting in birds. I focus especially on understanding the acoustic signaling system of tropical wrens, and this work takes me periodically to many countries in South and Central America.
I have also contributed to great green macaw conservation in Costa Rica, and recently began a project studying how avian reproductive success might be negatively affected by certain ecotourism practices. I am currently planning to carry out research into how intensive deer browsing activity affects habitat structure and avian breeding populations. Aside from birds, I have also participated in a long term field study investigating the vocal behaviour and ecology of the little-studied Bolivian grey titi monkey (Callicebus donacophilus).
I have taught in many different types of establishment to many types of student. Apart from conventional college and university teaching, I have also worked for a distance-learning establishment (the UK’s Open University), where my classes were filled with returning, non-conventional, students and have taught many month-long tropical biology courses (currently over 20 of these), working for four different organisations, in Costa Rica, Peru, Madagascar and Uganda. I have also taught in several Scottish High Schools.
Courses I have taught at SUNY Oneonta include General/introductory Biology, Evolution, Natural History of Vertebrates, Ecology, Ornithology, Rain Forest Ecology and Conservation and Animal Behavior.