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Dr Erica Morley

Dr Erica Morley

Dr Erica Morley
PhD, MSc, BSc

Honorary Senior Research Associate

Area of research

The impact of anthropogenic noise on non-marine UK species

Life Sciences Building,
24 Tyndall Avenue, Bristol BS8 1TQ
(See a map)

+44 (0) 117 39 41415


As part of the Bioacoustics and Behavioural Ecology research group I work on a Defra funded project examining the impacts of anthropogenic noise on non-marine UK wildlife. I am particularly looking at impacts on threatened species. This work constitutes an initial assessment of what is known about the impacts of anthropogenic noise on non-marine biodiversity in the UK.


PhD Research: Auditory mechanics in Drosophila melanogaster

My PhD research examined hearing in the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster with particular focus on receiver mechanics. Acoustic cues are important in the mating success of D. melanogaster. Males produce a species-specific courtship song by vibrating an outstretched wing in attempts to entice a female to mate. The particle velocity component of this stimulus can be heard by both males and females through the vibratory response of their antennae. Far from simply transducing mechanical displacements into neural signals the mechanosensory cells at the base of the antenna actively move the antenna to amplify quiet, low frequency sounds. My work focuses on further understanding the active auditory mechanics in the D. melanogaster auditory system with particular attention to directional sensitivity and the development of tools to stimulate the antenna at biologically relevant scales.


2011 - present Postdoctoral research assistant, Bioacoustics and Behavioural Ecology, University of Bristol
2007 - 2011 PhD Insect Bioacoustics, Univeristy of Bristol
2006 - 2007 MSc. Ecology (distinction), Bangor University
2006   Research assistant - Willow tit ecology, Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB)
2005 - 2006 Research assistant - Aquatic ecology, University of Bristol
2005   Field assistant - St Kilda Soay Sheep Project, University of Edinburgh
2004 - 2005 Research assistant - visual ecology of pollination, University of Bristol & University of Sydney
2001 - 2004 BSc. (hons) Biology, University of Bristol


  • Bioacoustics
  • Insect audition
  • Sound production
  • Drosophila melanogaster


  • Laser vibrometry
  • Particle image velocimetry
  • Atomic force microscopy



School of Biological Sciences

Research groups

Recent publications

View complete publications list in the University of Bristol publications system

Networks & contacts

  • Prof. Jérôme Casas & Thomas Steinmann IRBI Faculté des Sciences Université de Tours

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