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Beth Mortimer

Animal biologist

I’m interested in some of the unusual senses that animals have – specifically the ability to sense ‘silent’ vibrations. These vibrations move along surfaces and diverse animals from spiders to elephants to humans can use these vibrations as an information source. My interest started on this topic following a Biology degree. I then went into research on spider silk (PhD), using approaches from materials science to answer biological questions about silk. I now lead a research group studying how animals use vibrations for information, studying elephants, spiders, insects and crabs. We also look at how we can develop new technologies inspired by animal senses, for applications within robotics and conservation.