I am currently a PhD student at the University of Porto, integrated in the BIODIV Doctoral Programme (Thesis title: “Analysis of the mechanistic link between micro-climate and macro-biogeographic patterns of intertidal rocky shore organisms”). During my Msc I worked on the characterization of the hydrogen metabolism in marine cyanobacteria.
My main research interest is the study of how environmental factors influence species’ distributions across multiple scales, with a special focus on temperature. Recent work from this research group has revealed striking temperature differences in intertidal micro-habitats (i) during aerial exposure (i.e., during low-tide) and/or (ii) facing opposing directions (i.e., North vs. South) but just few meters apart. To better understand how this can influence intertidal organisms, I am presently working as a member of a team that is deploying bio-mimicking temperature sensors throughout NW Europe. This network of sensors is already providing high-resolution data on the temperatures intertidal organisms have to withstand, at various micro-habitats on shores from NW Ireland to SW Portugal. Knowledge of the mechanistic link between micro-climate and macro-biogeography will allow improved forecasts of upcoming climatic-driven ecosystem impacts.