Thomas Foxley

My interests are in applied research that has practical conservation outcomes. I’ve been working in bat conservation since 2011, as a field assistant for the University of Bristol, as a consultant ecologist in the UK and on a large conservation project in Belize. I started my PhD in the UWE Bat Lab in January 2020, part-funded by Natural England.

The aim of my PhD is to develop an integrated approach to understanding the landscape ecology of greater horseshoe bats in Somerset. I’m using a number of spatial modelling procedures to map areas of important habitat for greater horseshoe bats and to understand how they connect. I’m ground-truthing my models with acoustic and telemetry studies.

A key output of my PhD will be developing a platform that makes my results accessible to policy makers such as local authorities and Natural England. This will enable local decision makers to develop a regional conservation strategy that minimises the impact of development on bat populations, maximises the effectiveness of conservation efforts and is based on the most up to date scientific knowledge.

I’m very excited to be undertaking this PhD as there is scope for it to have a big impact on bat conservation in England.