Image of Professor Andy Radford

Professor Andrew Radford

Professor of Behavioural Ecology

Tel: +44 117 394 1197
Email: andy.radford at

Welcome | Research Overview | Funding Sources| Recent News| Opportunities | Selected Publications


Image of Prof. Andy Radford

Hello! I am a behavioural biologist based at the School of Biological Sciences, University of Bristol.

I hope you enjoy browsing the website, finding out about the exciting questions we ask and study systems we work on.

If you would like to know more or would like the opportunity to work with us, don’t hesitate to get in touch.


Close up of pied babbler, Turdoides bicolor Close up of dwarf mongoose, Helogale parvula

One main theme of our research concerns the behaviour and vocalisations of social animals. Using a combination of observational data, sound recordings and a variety of experimental manipulations, we work on several different bird, mammal, fish and invertebrate study systems in captivity and around the world (South Africa, Australia, Panama, Trinidad), including the Dwarf Mongoose Research Project which we established in 2011. We are also now starting to work with robots!

Close up of shore crab, Carcinus maenas Close up of social fish!

The second major theme of our research concerns the potential impact of anthropogenic noise. Using a combination of laboratory and field experiments (in Scotland, France, French Polynesia and Australia), we are considering how this global pollutant affects the behaviour, physiology and development of a variety of fish and invertebrate species.


We are extremely grateful to the following for funding:

Funding sources


  • Welcome to Laura Richardson who is working as a PDRA on the Ecocean-sponsored project ‘Scientific dissemination of ecosystem restoration projects’ with Steve and Andy.
  • New paper published in Nature: Kennedy, P., Higginson, A.D., Radford, A.N. & Sumner, S. (2018) Altruism in a volatile world. 555: 359–362.
  • New paper accepted in PNAS: Gordon, T.A.C., Harding, H., Wong, K., Merchant, N., Meekan, M.G., McCormick, M., Radford, A.N. & Simpson, S.D. Habitat degradation negatively affects auditory settlement behaviour of coral reef fishes.
  • Congratulations to Isla Davidson on being awarded a NERC GW4+ DTP PhD Studentship to study ‘Multimodal communication in a changing world’ at the University of Bristol.
  • New paper accepted in Animal Behavour: Dawson Pell, F.S.E., Potvin, D.A., Ratnayake, C.P., Fernández-Juricic, E., Magrath, R.D. & Radford, A.N. (2018) Birds orient their heads appropriately in response to functionally referential alarm calls of heterospecifics.
  • Steve and Andy have been awarded £80k to work with a French eco-restoration company (Ecocean) on a project entitled 'Scientific dissemination of ecosystem restoration projects’.
  • Congratulations to Josh Arbon on being awarded a BBSRC DTP PhD Studentship to work with Dr Alex Thornton at the University of Exeter.
  • Congratulations to Matthew Lavelle who has successfully defended his Masters by Reseach thesis – The Effects Of Light And Noise Pollution On Tree Leaf Fall And Cricket Behaviour'. Thanks to Dr Mark Steer (University of the West of England) and Prof. Nick Roberts for acting as examiners.
  • Tim Gordon has provided an eloquent contribution to a Science Café by BBC Radio Wales on underwater sound; he can be heard from 22:00 onwards in the recording.
  • Andy has presented a week’s worth of Radio 4’s Tweet of the Day. Listen to the podcast.
  • New paper published online early in Behavioral Ecology: Christensen, C. & Radford, A.N. Dear enemies or nasty neighbours? Causes and consequences of variation in the responses of group-living species to territorial intrusions.
  • Andy has given a keynote talk on 'Consequences of out-group conflict' at the excellent CBEN Conference 2017 on Evolution and Cooperation held in Leiden. Thanks to the organisers for the invite and for the stimulating interdisciplinary programme.
  • Congratulations to Robin Southon who has successfully defended his PhD thesis – 'The Adaptive Value Of Males In Simple Eusocial Insect Societies'. Thanks to Dr Elli Leadbeater (Royal Holloway, University of London) and Prof. Innes Cuthill for acting as examiners.
  • New paper published with lots of media attention: Kern, J.M. & Radford, A.N. (2017) Reduced social-information provision by immigrants and use by residents following dispersal. Current Biology 27: R1266–R1267.
  • Emma, Harry, Isla, Sophie, Steve, Tim and Andy all presented work at the Indo-Pacific Fish Conference in Tahiti.
  • Congratulations to Robin Southon on submitting his PhD thesis entitled 'The Adaptive Value of Males in Simple Eusocial Insect Societies'.
  • Welcome to Josh Arbon and Emily Richens who have both started their Masters by Research with Andy in Bristol.
  • Welcome to Kieran McCloskey (PhD) and Emma Weschke (Masters by Research) who have joined the group (based in Exeter with Steve Simpson) to work on impacts of anthropogenic noise in fish.
  • New paper published complete with front cover: Marshall, A.R., Brown, G. & Radford, A.N. Individual confidence-weighting and group decision-making. Trends in Ecology & Evolution 32: 636–645.
  • New paper published: Herbert-Read, J.E., Kremer, L., Bruintjes, R., Radford, A.N. & Ioannou, C.C. Anthropogenic noise pollution from pile-driving disrupts the structure and dynamics of fish shoals. Proceedings of the Royal Society, Series B 284: 20170660.
  • Ines, Patrick, Robin and Emma all presented work at the excellent Behaviour 2017 Conference in Estoril, Portugal.
  • Congratulations to Tim Gordon on winning first prize for the best student presentation at the FSBI 50th Anniversary Symposium.
  • Congratulations to Isla Davison on winning third prize for her oral presentation at the FSBI 50th Anniversary Symposium .
  • Harry, Isla, Sophie, Tim, Will and Andy all presented work at the excellent FSBI 50th Anniversary Symposium in Exeter, which was masterfully organised and run by Steve Simpson.
  • New paper published: Nedelec, S.L., Mills, S.C., Radford, A.N., Beldade, R., Simpson, S.D., Nedelec, B. & Côté, I.M. Motorboat noise disrupts co-operative interspecific interactions. Scientific Reports 7: 6987.
  • New paper published: Collier, K., Radford, A.N., Townsend, S.W. & Manser, M.B. Wild dwarf mongooses produce general alert and predator-specific alarm calls. Behavioral Ecology 28: 1293–1301.
  • New paper published: Nedelec S.L., Radford A.N., Pearl L., Nedelec B., McCormick M.I., Meekan M.G. & Simpson S.D. Motorboat noise impacts parental behaviour and offspring survival in a reef fish. Proceedings of the Royal Society, Series B 284: 20170143.
  • Welcome back to Dr Sophie Nedelec, who will be working as a NERC-funded PDRA on the impacts of anthropogenic noise on reproduction and survival.
  • Congratulations to Harry Suter on the award of an ASAB Undergraduate Project Scholarship to investigate 'Intra-population variation in behavioural responses to anthropogenic noise: the importance of personality and repeated exposure' as part of the Dwarf Mongoose Research Project.
  • Congratulations to Isla Davidson on the award of an FSBI grant to study ‘Alarm-calling behaviour in coral reef fish in response to predator threats’.
  • New paper published: Kern, J.M., Laker, P. & Radford, A.N. Contextual variation in alarm-call responses of dwarf mongooses (Helogale parvula). Animal Behaviour 127: 43–51.
  • Congratulations to Emma Eastcott on the award of an ASAB conference grant to attend Behaviour2017 in summer 2017.


    If you are interested in potential PhD, Masters or intern opportunities, then please feel free to email through a cover letter and cv. Specific projects will be advertised here when available; self-funded applicants welcome to apply any time.

    We are always keen to host fellows (those funded by Marie Curie, NERC and the Swiss National Science Foundation have recently finished their fellowships with us) or to discuss new collaborative ideas, so don’t hesitate to get in touch.

    We often take on research assistants to help with our work, including at various fieldsites and in the Bristol-based aquarium facility; specific positions will be advertised here.


    Full list of publications with links to pdf files.