Andrew Tongue

University of Birmingham

Project

Feeling the heat: Birds as bioindicators of flame retardant emissions from landfill

Supervisors

Professor Stuart Harrad (Birmingham) Dr James Reynolds (Birmingham) Dr Kim Fernie (Environment Canada).

PhD Summary

There is a significant reservoir of brominated flame retardants (BFRs) associated with waste electronics and soft furnishings that accumulate in UK landfills. This project will test the hypothesis that landfills represent an important source of bioaccumulative BFRs to UK wildlife. This will be achieved by comparing concentrations of BFRs in gull (Larus spp.) eggs and tissues from landfill sites compared to both urban and rural locations. The project incorporates substantial components of both fieldwork and environmental analytical chemistry. I will also be working closely with Environment Canada, aiming to undertake collaborative research in aninternational context.

What inspires you?

Moving to a new house at age six where I became obsessed with the birds in the garden.

Previous Activity

Consultant Ornithologist, RPS Group Plc Senior Research Assistant, RSPB Centre for Conservation Science

Why did you choose Docotoral Research?

To develop my scientific skillset. This particular project is of great interest to me from an ornithological science perspective.

Why did you choose a CENTA Studentship?

Location; project; supervisors and the chance – with this project - to undertake research in North America.

What are your future plans

I hope to develop the skills to progress in the field of conservation biology.