Dr Aurore Ponchon

Dr Aurore Ponchon

Research Fellow


Contact Details

work +44 (0)1224 272693
The University of Aberdeen Zoology building office 417
Tillydrone Avenue
AB25 2TZ Aberdeen, Scotland, UK


I am a research fellow at the university of Aberdeen, currently working on the effects of climate change on fish growth rates, distributions and potential consequences on European fisheries production (Horizon 2020 European research project ClimeFish).

I started my education in La Rochelle University (France) in 2004, where I specialized very early in marine biology. I did several internships, carrying out studies on marine sea turtles and southern elephant seals. I did my PhD between 2010-2013 at the university of Montpellier (France). The goal was understanding the effects of information use in dispersal processes using the black-legged kittiwake a a model species. Then, I did two post-docs (2014-2016) which aimed at understanding the effects of inter-invidual variability on foraging and migration movements, the first one in black-legged kittiwakes and the second one on black-browed albatrosses.

I arrived in Aberdeen in 2017 as a Marie-Curie research fellow. My project aimed at developing new theory on the ecological and evolutionary consequences of information use in dispersal processes.


Research Overview

My core research interests aims at understanding how individual movements and behaviour affect population abundances and distributions in a context of natural and human-induced environmental changes. To do so, I am using a range of approaches, from collecting empirical data in the field (mainly tracking devices and capture-recapture data) to developing theoretical models (population dynamics models and individuals-based models). Overall, my goal is to better understand the processes observed in natural populations to be able to predict species responses to environmental change and human interactions, better protect threatened species and effectively control for invasive species.

My research mostly focuses on marine vertebrates (seabirds, fishes), but I am now involved in projects focusing in terrestrial species (plants, lizards, rats)

Current Research

I am currently interested in:

- Inter-individual variability, space use and interactions with human activities during foraging, dispersal and migration movements

- Ecological and evolutionary consequences of dispersal based on information use at the individual and population level

- Modelling alternative conservation actions to control invasive species or help threatened species

- Measuring the benefits of protected areas in species space use and connectivity

- Effects of climate change on fish growth, distribution and impacts on fisheries in European waters


Pr Paul Fernandes, University of Aberdeen, UK

Pr Justin Travis, University of Aberdeen, UK

Dr Thomas Cornulier, University of Aberdeen, UK

Dr Sandra Telfer, University of Aberdeen, UK

Dr Kevin Watts, University of Bristol, UK

Dr Thierry Boulinier, CEFE-CNRS-Universite Montpellier, Montpellier, France

Dr David Gremillet, CEFE-CNRS-Universite Montpellier, Montpellier, France

Dr Lia Montti, CONICET, Mar del Plata, Argentina

Dr Priscila Powell, Instituto de Ecologia Regional, University of Tucuman, Tucuman, Argentina

Diana Rodriguez, Instituto de Ecologia y Systematica, Havana, Cuba

Research Funding and Grants

2017: Marie-Sklodowska-Curie fellowship

2010: PhD fellowship from the French ministry of research



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  • Bigger juveniles and smaller adults: changes in fish size correlate with warming seas

    Ikpewe, I., Baudron, A., Ponchon, A., Fernandes, P.

    Journal of Applied Ecology, vol. 58, no. 4, pp. 847-856

    Contributions to Journals: Articles

  • Prioritising conservation actions for biodiversity: lessening the impact from habitat fragmentation and climate change  

    Synes, N. W., Ponchon, A., Palmer, S. C. F., Osborne, P. E., Bocedi, G., Travis, J. M. J., Watts, K.

    Biological Conservation, vol. 252, 108819

    Contributions to Journals: Articles

  • Effect of breeding performance on the distribution and activity budgets of a predominantly resident population of black‐browed albatrosses

    Ponchon, A., Cornulier, T., Hedd, A., Granadeiro, J. P., Catry, P.

    Ecology and Evolution, vol. 9, no. 15, pp. 8702-8713

    Contributions to Journals: Articles

  • Persisting Worldwide Seabird-Fishery Competition Despite Seabird Community Decline

    Gremillet, D., Ponchon, A., Paleczny, M., Palomares, M. D., Karpouzi, V., Pauly, D.

    Current Biology, vol. 28, no. 24, pp. 4009-4013

    Contributions to Journals: Articles

  • Survival estimates strongly depend on capture-recapture designs in a disturbed environment inducing dispersal

    Ponchon, A., Choquet, R., Tornos, J., McCoy, K. D., Tveraa, T., Boulinier, T.

    Ecography, vol. 41, no. 12, pp. 2055-2066

    Contributions to Journals: Articles

  • Spatial overlaps of foraging and resting areas of black-legged kittiwakes breeding in the English Channel with existing marine protected areas

    Ponchon, A., Aulert, C., Le Guillou, G., Gallien, F., Peron, C., Gremillet, D.

    Marine Biology, vol. 164, no. 5, 119

    Contributions to Journals: Articles

  • Intense prospecting movements of failed breeders nesting in an unsuccessful breeding subcolony

    Ponchon, A., Iliszko, L., Gremillet, D., Tveraa, T., Boulinier, T.

    Animal Behaviour, vol. 124, pp. 183-191

    Contributions to Journals: Articles

  • Migration, Prospecting, Dispersal? What Host Movement Matters for Infectious Agent Circulation?

    Boulinier, T., Kada, S., Ponchon, A., Dupraz, M., Dietrich, M., Gamble, A., Bourret, V., Duriez, O., Bazire, R., Tornos, J., Tveraa, T., Chambert, T., Garnier, R., McCoy, K. D.

    Integrative and Comparative Biology, vol. 56, no. 2, pp. 330-342

    Contributions to Journals: Articles

  • Breeding failure induces large scale prospecting movements in the black-legged kittiwake

    Ponchon, A., Chambert, T., Lobato, E., Tveraa, T., Gremillet, D., Boulinier, T.

    Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology, vol. 473, pp. 138-145

    Contributions to Journals: Articles

  • Predicting population responses to environmental change: the importance of considering informed dispersal strategies in spatially structured population models

    Ponchon, A., Garnier, R., Gremillet, D., Boulinier, T.

    Diversity and Distributions, vol. 21, no. 1, pp. 88-100

    Contributions to Journals: Articles

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