Social interactions are among the most fascinating aspects of animal behaviour. In an international project, we study the diversity of mating and parental behaviour in birds. The PhD project we are to initiate will focus on the demographic drivers of sex role reversal in shorebirds (plovers, sandpipers and allies), when females compete for mates and males provide parental care. Our team is carrying out cutting edge research in ecology, behaviour and evolution (see references below, and our websites), our recent studies suggest that sex role reversal occur in species where males are the more common sex, however, the processes that generate such male-skewed sex ratios are largely unknown. The successful candidate will carry out field study of the sex role reversed, polyandrous Bronze-winged Jacana in India, and join an international team of scientists working on shorebird ecology, behaviour and conservation.

This exciting project will collect data on the breeding behaviour, offspring sex ratio, and survival of males and females in a closely monitored population of jacanas. Based on these data the Student will use demographic modelling to estimate the adult sex ratio of the population, and test which demographic parameters are the most important determinants of the sex ratio. The project will also contribute to our largescale comparative studies that will investigate yet untested aspects of breeding behaviour and demography in shorebird species worldwide. The Student is also expected to promote biodiversity conservation using shorebirds as key organisms, see the ÉLVONAL SHOREBIRD SCIENCE at

Supervisors: Prof. András Liker (Veszprém, Hungary), Prof Tamás Székely (Bath, UK), Dr Vojtěch Kubelka (Debrecen, Hungary)


We welcome applications from self-funded students and students seeking their own funding from external sources. The studentship will be based at University of Pannonia, Veszprém, Hungary, and involve inputs from colleagues at University of Bath (UK) and University of Debrecen (Hungary).

For full information, see the attached pdf. Brozne-winged jacana mating systems_PhD_Hungary