Knowledge for a sustainable world

BSc, PhD

Dr Barbara Tiddi joined the University of Greenwich in 2023. In her previous appointments, Barbara was a Lecturer in Conservation Science at the Bristol Zoological Society, and an Associate Lecturer in Biological Anthropology in the School of Anthropology and Conservation at the University of Kent. Before that, she was based for six years at the German Primate Center (DPZ) as postdoctoral fellow in the Cognitive Ethology Lab where she investigated the adaptive function of female sexual signals in Neotropical primates. Barbara received her PhD in Natural Sciences and Psychology from Liverpool John Moores University (UK), and a BSc in Biological Sciences and Applied Ecology from the University of Rome “La Sapienza” (Italy).

Much of Barbara’s previous work has focused on investigating how specific features of primate social systems shape their behavioural responses in a way that deviates from what broadly predicted by ecological and economic models used in the study of animal behaviour. Her collaborative work with the Argentinean National Research Council (CONICET) has also contributed to address the issue of primate-human interaction within the context of parasite infections and social connectivity. Her research has been largely based on fieldwork in Argentina and Costa Rica.

Barbara’s current interests broadly focus on two areas:  1) understanding how research in animal behaviour can contribute to practical aspects of conservation (e.g., wildlife reintroduction), and 2) implementing self-sustainable community-led conservation initiatives to promote conservation and sustainable habitat management.  Her most recent work in collaboration with the Distance State University of Costa Rica (UNED) has centred on evaluating the effectiveness on threatened amphibian populations of water supplementation via capacity-building of local communities.

Pest Behaviour

NRI Programme Leader for Biology

Previous Funded Research Projects

  • 2012 Volkswagen Stiftung Evolutionary Biology Postdoctoral Fellowship, “Sexual behavior and social constraints in a New World primate”.
  • 2011 Leakey Foundation Research Grant, “Female mating strategies in tufted capuchin monkeys (Sapajus nigritus)”.
  • 2011 German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) Fellowship, “Adaptive function of female sexual calls in tufted capuchin monkeys (Sapajus nigritus)”.
  • Agostini, I., Vanderhoeven, E., Pfoh, R., Beldomenico, P., and Tiddi, B. (2023) Experimental evidence of parasite-induced behavioural alterations modulated by food availability in wild capuchin monkeys. Scientific Reports: e3083.
  • Pfoh, R., Tiddi, B., Di Bitetti, M.S. and Agostini, I. (2021) Grooming site preferences in black capuchin monkeys: hygienic vs. social functions revisited. American Journal of Primatology: e22920.
  • Wheeler, B.C., Fahy, M., and Tiddi, B. (2019) Experimental evidence of heterospecific alarm signal recognition via associative learning in wild capuchin monkeys. Animal Cognition, DOI: 10.1007/s10071-019-01264-3.
  • Tiddi, B., Pfoh, R., and Agostini, I. (2019) The impact of food provisioning on parasite infection in wild black capuchin monkeys: a network approach. Invited article contribution for the special issue “Social network analysis on primates” edited by Drs Ivan Puga-Gonzalez, Sebastian Sosa, Cedric Sueur. Primates 60: 297-306.
  • Bernaldo, E., Wheeler, B.C., Heistermann, M., Hammerschimdt, K., and Tiddi, B. (2018) Do sexual calls in female black capuchin monkeys (Sapajus nigritus) vary with fertility? An acoustic analysis. American Journal of Primatology 9: e22920.
  • Tiddi, B., Heistermann, M., Fahy, M., and Wheeler, B.C. (2018) Resource defence polygyny in primates? Female response to experimental manipulation of male resource control. PLoS ONE 13(5): e0197020.
  • Kean, D., Tiddi, B., Schino, G., Heistermann, M., and Wheeler, B.C. (2017) Feeling anxious? The mechanisms of vocal deception in tufted capuchin monkeys. Animal Behaviour 130: 37- 46.
  • Tiddi, B., Polizzi di Sorrentino, E., Fischer, J., and Schino, G. (2017) Acquisition and functional consequences of social knowledge in macaques. Royal Society Open Science 8; 4(2):160639.
  • Tiddi, B., Wheeler, B.C., and Heistermann, M. (2015) Female behavioral proceptivity functions as a probabilistic signal of fertility, not female quality, in a New World primate. Hormones and Behavior 73:148-155.
  • Pasquaretta, C., Levé, M., Claidière, N., van de Waal, E., Whiten, A., MacIntosh, A.J.J., Pelé, M., Bergstrom, M.L., Borgeaud, C., Brosman, S.F., Crofoot, M.C., Fedigan, L.M., Fichtel, C., Hopper, L.M., Mareno, M.C., Petit, O., Schneoll, A.V., Polizzi di Sorrentino, E., Thierry, B., Tiddi, B., and Sueur, C. (2014) Social networks in primates: smart and tolerant species have more efficient networks. Scientific Reports 4:7600.


  • IUCN SSC (Species Survival Commission) Primate Specialist Group Neotropics member
  • Primatological Society of Great Britain (PSGB) Conservation Working Party

Institutional services:

  • Reviewer Editor on the Editorial Board of Behavioral and Evolutionary Ecology, Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution
  • Peer Reviewer: Leakey Foundation, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Animal Behaviour, International Journal of Primatology, American Journal of Primatology, Ethology, Behaviour, Behavioural Processes, Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology.
Send an Email