Since joining IBERS in 2006, Peter Dennis has developed collaborative research composed of projects and PhD studentships dealing with grazing impacts on wildlife in the uplands, environmental and management drivers of soil chemistry and vegetation dynamics in the uplands (CIRRE and BEAA-IBERS projects listed below), biodiversity indicators in low-input farming systems and valuation of biodiversity and its role in ecosystem service provision. PD previously served as a Senior PDRS at the Macaulay Institute where he was a Wildlife and Landscape Ecologist, specializing in grazing ecology and entomology. He was the scientific co-ordinator of the SEERAD Grazing and Upland Bird (GRUB) project. This research addressed long-term ecological effects of changes in upland farming, with emphasis on factors affecting the breeding success of insectivorous birds. He also oversaw the biological monitoring of two of the UK Environmental Change Network sites situated in Scotland, culminating in a major contribution to the EC ALTER-Net (A Long-term Biodiversity, Ecosystem and Awareness Research Network) Research Activity on “Biodiversity Assessment and Change”. He has also served on management and steering committees of Local Biodiversity Partnerships and Biological Record Centres, including the preparation of Local and National Biodiversity Action Plans. He currently serves as secretary of the UK Biodiversity Science Committee, on the Wales Biodiversity Partnership - Upland Ecosystem Group, on the steering committee of the ECN Snowdon LTER site and Welsh Environmental Change Biodiversity Network for Countryside Council for Wales and is a member of the Environmental Change University Partnership.
|Selected research publications:|
Carroll, M.J., Dennis, P., Pearce-Higgins, J. & Thomas, C.D. (2011) Maintaining northern peatland ecosystems in a changing climate: effects of drainage and drain blocking on soil moisture and craneflies. Global Change Biology 17: 2991-3001.
McGovern, S., Evans, C., Walmsley, C. & McDonald, M. (2011) Identifying drivers of species compositional change in a semi-natural upland grassland over a 40 year period. Journal of Vegetation Science 22: 346-356.
Pearce-Higgins, J.W., Dennis, P., Whittingham, M.J. & Yalden, D.W. (2010) Impacts of climate on prey abundance account for fluctuations in a population of a northern wader at the southern edge of its range. Global Change Biology 16: 12-23.
Dennis, P., Skartveit, J., McCracken, D.I., Pakeman, R.J., Beaton, K., Kunaver, A. & Evans, D.M. (2008) The effects of livestock grazing on foliar arthropods associated with bird diet in upland grasslands of Scotland. Journal of Applied Ecology 45: 279-287.
Bredemeier, M., Dennis, P., Sauberer, N., Petriccione, B., Török, K., Cocciufa, C., Morabito, G. and Pugnetti, A. (2007) Biodiversity assessment and change – the challenge of appropriate methods. In: Hester, R.E. and Harrison, R.M. (Editors) Biodiversity under Threat. Issues in Environmental Science and Technology, Vol. 25. Royal Society of Chemistry, Cambridge, pp. 217-251.
Evans, D.M., Redpath, S.M., Evans, S.A., Elston, D.A., Gardner, C.J., Dennis, P. and Pakeman, R.J. (2006) Low intensity, mixed livestock grazing improves the breeding abundance of a common insectivorous passerine. Biology Letters 2 (4): 636-638.
Littlewood, N.A., Dennis, P., Pakeman, R.J. and Woodin, S.J. (2006) Moorland restoration aids the reassembly of associated phytophagous insects. Biological Conservation, 132: 395-404.
|Selected research contract reports:|
Herzog F., Balázs K., Dennis P., Friedel j., Jeanneret P., Jongman R., Kainz M., Pointereau P. (eds) (2012) Biodiversity indicators for European farming systems: Guidebook and factsheets. Zurich, ART Publication Series 17. http://www.biobio-indicator.org/deliverables.php.
Dennis, P., Bogers, M.M.B., Bunce, R.G.H., Herzog, F. and Jeanneret, P. (2012). Biodiversity in organic and low-input farming systems. Handbook for recording key indicators. Wageningen, Alterra, Alterra-Report 2308, 92 pp.
Christie, M., Hyde, A., Cooper, R., Fazey, I., Dennis, P., Warren, J.M., Colombo, S. & Hanley, N. (2011). Economic Valuation of the Benefits of Ecosystem Services delivered by the UK Biodiversity Action Plan (Defra Project SFFSD 0702). Institute of Biological Environmental and Rural Sciences, Aberystwyth University, pp. 162.
Dennis, P., Herzog, F. and Jeanneret, P., (Editors), Arndorfer, M., Bogers. M., Bunce, R.G.H., Bailey, D., Choisis J.-P., Choisis N., Cuming, D., Ehrmann, O., Fjellstad, W., Franck, T., Fraser, M.D., Friedel, J., Geijzendorffer, I., Gomiero, T., Jongman, R., Kainz, M., Kölliker, R., Last L., Lüscher, G., Moreno, G., Nicholas, P., Paoletti, M.G., Papaja-Hülsbergen, S., Pelosi, C., Pointereau, P., Sarthou, J.-P., Schneider, M., Siebrecht, N., Targetti, S., Viaggi, D., Wilkes J. and Wolfrum, S. (2011) BIOBIO: Indicators for biodiversity in organic and low-input farming systems. Work Package 2. Selection and field validation of candidate biodiversity indicators, including field manual. Handbook for testing candidate indicators of organic/low-input farming and biodiversity. Work Package 2. Conceptual foundations, indicator selection, sampling protocols and evaluation. Third draft - Final version of report Deliverable 2.2 to European Commission. Aberystwyth University, Aberystwyth, 12 August 2010.
Wade, T., Dennis, P., Lucas, R. and Disney, M. (2009). Airborne measurements and remote sensing for validation and up-scaling models of ecological processes from experimental sites to geographic regions. Report on NERC/Natural England UKPopNet second workshop, 12-13 March 2009. Geosciences, University of Edinburgh. Pp: 36. Available at: http://www.geos.ed.ac.uk/abs/research/micromet/Current/airborne/knowledge_exhange/Workshop_2_Report_20090427_3.pdf.
Dennis, P. (Editor), Arndorfer, M., Balázs, K., Bailey, D., Boller, B., Bunce, R.G.H., Centeri, Cs., Corporaal, A., Cuming, D., Deconchat, M., Dramstad, W., Elyakime, B., Falusi, E., Fjellstad, W., Fraser, M.D., Freyer, B., Friedel, J.K., Geijzendorffer, I., Jongman, R., Kainz, M., Marcos, G.M., Gomiero, T., Grausgruber-Gröger, S., Herzog, F., Hofer, G., Jeanneret, P., Kelemen, E., Kölliker, R., Moakes, S.R., Nicholas, P., Paoletti, M.G., Podmaniczky, L., Pointereau, P., Sarthou, J.-P., Siebrecht, N., Sommaggio, D., Stoyanova, S.D., Teufelbauer, N., Viaggi, D., Vialatte, A., Walter, T., Widmer, F., Wolfrum, S. (2009) BIOBIO: Indicators for biodiversity in organic and low-input farming systems. Work Package 2. Conceptual foundations, indicator selection, sampling protocols and evaluation. Fourth draft - Final version of report Deliverable 2.1 to European Commission. Aberystwyth University, Aberystwyth, 19 November 2009.
Dennis, P., Lucas, R., Disney, M., Wade, T. and Bott, R. (2009) Airborne measurements and remote sensing for validation and up-scaling models of ecological processes from experimental sites to geographic regions. Report on NERC/Natural England UKPopNet workshop, Gregynog Hall, 9-10 December 2008. Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences, Aberystwyth University, pp. 31.
Wright, I.A., Pakeman, R.J., Dennis, P., Dalziel, A.J. and Milne, J.A. (2006). The effects of cattle on the natural heritage of Scotland. Scottish Natural Heritage Commissioned Report No. 203 (ROAME No. F04AA103).
|Current research projects:|
Identifying key environmental factors affecting primary productivity and ecosystem services in the uplands. Funded: Supervisor of PhD studentship, other supervisors: Ed Rowe, CEH Bangor and Karen Heppingstall, CCW. Funded: IBERS-NERC CEH PhD studentship : 2013-2016.
Consultation: Grazing and environmental change monitoring in Epping Forest, Open Spaces Department, City of London, 2010-2012.
Sustainable organic and low-input dairy production FP7-KBBE-2010.1.2-02. WP 3 Environmental assessment – facilitating improvements and communication in organic and low input multi-functional dairy systems. Funded: EC FP7, 2010-2013.
BioBio: Indicators for biodiversity in organic and low-input farming systems KBBE-2008-1-2-01. Funded: EC FP7, 2009-2012 [Project website].
Remote sensing platform for validation and up-scaling models of ecological processes from experimental sites to geographic regions. Funded NERC UKPopNet 2008-2009 [Project website].
Grip blocking effects on peatland moisture, carbon storage and invertebrates. Co-supervisor of PhD studentship, lead supervisor: Chris Thomas, University of York; CASE partner James Pearce-Higgins, RSPB, Edinburgh. Funded: NERC CASE studentship, 2008-2011.
Using systematic review methodology to establish an evidence base for implementation of the Environment Agency Wales Climate Change Strategy. PI: Andrew Pullin, Bangor University. Funded: NERC KT project, 2008-2010.
Economic Valuation of the Benefits of the UK Biodiversity Action Plan. PI: Mike Christie, IBERS. Funded: Defra 2007-2008 [Project website].
Long term impacts of environmental change on the soils and vegetation of Snowdon. Supervisor of PhD studentship, other supervisors: Morag McDonald, Bangor University; Chris Evans, CEH Bangor and Clive Walmsley, CCW, Bangor. Funded: CCW studentship, 2007-2010.
|Links to recent research projects:|
PROBECO Processes and Biodiversity in Native Woodland Ecosystems. Funded: SEERAD 2002-2004.
ALTER-Net A Long-term Biodiversity, Ecosystem and Awareness Research Network of Excellence. Funded: EU 2003-2006.
Savanna management and grasshoppers. Funded Royal Society and RSA National Research Foundation.