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Professor Gareth Jones

Professor Gareth Jones

Professor Gareth Jones
B.Sc.(Lond.), Ph.D.(Stir.)

Professor of Biological Sciences

Area of research

Ecology and behaviour of bats

Office Life Sciences: 2A06
Life Sciences Building,
24 Tyndall Avenue, Bristol BS8 1TQ
(See a map)

+44 (0) 117 39 41192


Topics I am interested in:

  • Echolocation
  • Conservation biology
  • Social behaviour
  • Molecular ecology: phylogeny, population structure and kinship
  • Interactions between echolocating bats and prey that can hear ultrasound

Common noctule (Nyctalus noctula)


I graduated from the University of London with a degree in Ecology, and then did my PhD on the behavioural ecology of birds at Stirling. I came to Bristol in 1985 to work on aerodynamics of bat flight, and was then awarded a Royal Society University Research Fellowship to combine my interests in ecology, behaviour and bat biology. I have worked on bats on 5 continents, with recent studies based in China, Madagascar, Malaysia, Malawi and Colombia. In 2010 I was awarded the Gerrit S. Miller Award at the University of Toronto in recognition of "outstanding service and contribution to the field of chiropteran biology." My recent research has focussed on conservation biology, especially global change biology and molecular ecology. 

lesser horseshoe bats

Activities / Findings

  • Past climates shaped the current hotspots of genetic diversity for the grey long-eared bat, one of the UK’s rarest mammals, but future climate change threatens these biodiversity hotspots (Razgour  et al. (2013) Ecology Letters DOI: 10.1111/ele.12158).
  • Climate change has major implications for the future distributions of bats in Europe (Rebelo et al. (2010) Global Change Biology 16: 561-576) and Southeast Asia (Hughes et al. (2012) Global Change Biology 18: 1854-1865.
  • Street lighting, including novel LED technologies, can have adverse effects on bats (Stone et al. (2012) Global Change Biology 18: 2458-2465. 
  • A trade-off occurs at the genetic level between vision and echolocation in bats (Shen et al. (2013) PLoS ONE 8(7): e68867.
  • Molecular methods can be used succesfully to identify insect species in bat droppings (Zeale et al. 2011) Molecular Ecology Resources 11: 236-244. 


I teach Evolution and Diversity of Mammals (Level 1), Evolutionary Biology (Level 2) and a field course called  'Bats, Bugs and Biodiversity'. 



  • Bats
  • conservation
  • molecular ecology
  • global change


  • Field experiments
  • GIS
  • molecular biology
  • recording and analysis of ultrasound


Recent publications

View complete publications list in the University of Bristol publications system

Networks & contacts

  • Copenhagen university
  • Queen Mary University of London
  • East China Normal University
  • University of Porto
  • University of Naples

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