Dr. Olivia Bates

The underlying theme of my research focuses around social insects; their ecology and behaviour. During my masters, I worked on how thermal gradients on mountain systems affect bumblebee communities in the artic. I am currently working on invasive species for my PhD with Cleo.

The topic of my PhD work broadly falls under the title ‘Invasive species response to novel climates’, with the aim of investigating this on both macroe and micro – climate scales. I have performed a range of macro-ecological modelling and field observations in order to address this question.

Currently I am investigating niche dynamics during invasive processes, using ants as model species to testing how different factors affect the extent of niche shifts between native and non-native populations. The aim of this is to facilitate mechanistic studies of what invasive species do that allow them to be so successful, investigating the interactions within the colony and their environment


2019- present PhD student in Cleo Bertelsmeier’s group, University of Lausanne.
2018-2019Research Assistant with Lars Chittka at Queen Mary College London

Research Assistant with Nikolai Windbichler at Imperial College London
2017-2018MRes in Ecology Evolution and Conservation at Silwood Park, Imperial College London 

Research projects: 
Pollinator dynamics in an Arctic system: A study on bumblebee phenology and distributions in Arctic Sweden,  supervised by Richard Gill, Imperial College London in collaboration with CIRC at Abisko Research Station

COLONY vs. CERVUS: A systematic comparison of two methods of parentage assignment using microsatellite data, supervised by Jinliang Wang, Institute of Zoology, London
BSc (hons.) in Biology at Imperial College London
Research project:

 Determining the Genetic Basis of Egg Spot Patterning of the House Sparrow, supervised by Julia Schroeder 

Dissertation title: Defining Parasitic Manipulation: A Comparison of the Mechanisms for Behavioral Modulations used Across Parasite Taxa,  supervised by Lauren Cator 

contact: olivia.bates[@]unil.ch