Saints Talk: Professor Christian Rutz Studying wildlife responses to reduced human activity during Covid-19 lockdown

Saints Talk: Professor Christian Rutz

The Development team are delighted to invite you to their next Saints Talk live online lecture by Professor Christian Rutz on ‘Studying wildlife responses to reduced human activity during Covid-19 lockdown’.

Earlier this year, many countries around the world were forced to go into lockdown to control the spread of Covid-19. Brought about by the most tragic circumstances, this period of unusually reduced human mobility — which Professor Rutz’s team recently coined “anthropause” — provides an unprecedented opportunity to study human-wildlife interactions. How do animals behave when there are fewer humans out and about? Do they “reclaim” habitats they would normally avoid? Do terrestrial and marine animals respond in the same manner?

In this talk, Professor Rutz will explain how the International Bio-Logging Society, which he is serving as Founding President, recently launched a global research initiative to investigate wildlife behaviour before, during and after Covid-19 lockdown. Specifically, the team is using data collected by so-called “bio-loggers” — miniature animal-attached tracking devices that record detailed information about an animal’s movements and activity patterns. The scientific insights gained during this devastating crisis will allow us to develop innovative strategies for sharing space on this increasingly crowded planet, with benefits for both wildlife and humans.

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