Howard Freeman

Graduate Laboratory Assistant
School of Life Sciences
Postgraduate Research Student
School of Life Sciences
 Howard Freeman



My research interests lie in the behavioural physiology, and behavioural ecology of fish, and the implications for effective fisheries management and conservation. I believe that the most effective form of conservation is that achieved through research and effective communication of findings to key stakeholders and the general public. I completed my Bsc dissertation on evidence for selective tidal-stream transport in marine zooplankton, with a focus on supply side ecology. I completed my MRes thesis on the drivers of diel vertical migration in plaice, and the potential implications for management.


  • MRes Marine Biology Plymouth University (2017)

  • Bsc Marine Biology Plymouth University (2016)

Research and professional activities


What makes a habitat a home: What are the defining habitat characteristics of nursery habitats for juvenile European Sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax).

Mortality in the early life stages of target fisheries species can have a dramatic effect on recruitment patterns. For those that utilise estuarine nursery habitats, evidence suggests these have the potential to stabilise recruitment, offering a place for larvae to develop. Therefore, it is important to understand what drives nursery selection and settlement, survival on the nursery, and the resultant effect on recruitment. Sea bass are a particularly at-risk species, being fished outside their

Supervisor: Dr Thomas Cameron , Dr Leanne Hepburn , Dr Ewan Hunter , Dr Martin Taylor

Research interests

Behavioural physiology

I am very interested in how the internal processes of an animal manifest themselves as perceived behaviours, and how environmental factors interact with this. For example, the effect of temperature on metabolism and vertical migration.Understanding the connection between internal processes and behaviours such as habitat usage and vertical migration may allow us to better characterise decision making processes and understand what conditions best promote an animals development and survival. This m

Movement ecology

I am interested in how and why animals move throughout their habitat; what environmental parameters drive movement behaviours and what are the benefits to doing so, and what are the implications for management and conservation of the species. Understanding a species movement is a valuable tool for identifying areas of critical habitat use for protection and management.



Colchester Campus

Working pattern: