Hi there! My name is Robyn Womack, and I’m a twenty-something zoology fanatic and PhD student based in Glasgow, UK and originally from the Isle of Wight. I have a broad interest in everything zoological – from palaeontology to parasitology.
Writing & Journalism
I am currently a member of the University of Glasgow’s postgraduate research blog team, writing and editing posts on a range of topics aimed at PhD students at the university. I have also written a number of articles surrounding my research and would like to sink my teeth into general science writing in the near future.
Feeling Stressed? Top tips for feeling less overwhelmed this winter – UofG PGR Blog, December 2017
How do Birds Tell the Time? – The Countryman Magazine, 2017
Why Malaria Parasites Keep Track of Time – the GIST Magazine, May 2017
The Early Bird Catches the Worm – New Nature Online, January 2017
Science Communications & Outreach
I am an active member of the science community on Twitter (@RobynJWomack), from chatting about birds and biological clocks via rotation accounts such as #SciParty (2017), and BioTweeps (2017), to moderating and presenting during the first Twitter conference of the British Ornithologists’ Union (December 2017). The recent hashtag #ReviewforScience, where hundreds of scientists on Twitter shared their uses for everyday items in their research, was coined by Dani Rabaiotti after my tweet about a tea strainer review went viral. The response to the hashtag was subsequently covered by the Washington Post, BBC Radio Four, Science Magazine and Teen Vogue, among others!
I also enjoy science outreach outside of the Internet – taking part in events such as the Middle of Scotland Science Festival (2017) doing a bird ringing demonstration and as an organiser for Pint of Science (2018). I am part of a team running monthly nature-themed sessions for kids age 5-13 at the RSPB Lochwinnoch Explorers. We run activities on a wide range of topics, from slugs and snails to dinosaurs!
I am also a member of the communications team for the Institute of Biodiversity, Animal Health & Comparative Medicine, writing spotlight articles on PhD students and research staff for the institute website.
Research & Teaching
After graduating in Zoology from Aberystwyth University, I continued on to study my PhD at the University of Glasgow. I research the biological clocks of birds, and particularly how the mechanisms of the avian body clock interact with features of the environment, such as light pollution.
My research involves a large nest box system at the Scottish Centre for Ecology and the Natural Environment (SCENE) and a range of field skills from mist-netting and ringing birds (as a BTO trainee) to blood sampling. I also have other previous experience in the field from volunteering on a conservation project (2014), as an avian ecology research assistant for the Madrid Natural History Museum (2015) and at my local zoo.
I have been involved in the supervision of student projects and also worked as a graduate teaching assistant on tutorials covering animal diversity and environmental biology topics.
I have also been involved in a publication on quantitative genetics in salmon species (Jacobs et al., 2017).
Speaking: Doctoral Training Partnership Event, Avian Genomics Symposium – European Ornithology Union in Turku, Finland (2017) and have more events in 2018.
If you’d like to get in contact with me you can do so via email: email@example.com
Alternatively, you can find me on Twitter at @RobynJWomack.