White-Faced Darter Dragonfly Ecology in the Italian Alps

w/ Dr. Achaz von Hardenberg

White-faced darter (Leucorrhinia dubia) are a lowland peatbog specialist dragonfly which is currently classified as endangered on the British Red Data list although their status varies across their European range. Previous projects at the University of Chester have established a monitoring protocol to survey each life-stage of the white-faced darter and established habitat relationships at both broad and fine scales in Britain which represents the North-west range limit of this species. This project would use this protocol to monitor white-faced darter close to the Southern limit of its range in Northern Italy. The project will use a multi-life-stage approach and incorporate repeated visits along with collecting habitat data. This will allow us to identify important habitat associations and compare these to Northern populations. This project will involve fieldwork in the Italy and students should be expected to be based there during the field season. This project would suit a student who is keen to work in the field and the ability to drive would help in this regard. It will require good networking skills and the ability to work independently. The ability to speak Italian would be beneficial but not essential.