Abdlrahman Abdlrahman (PhD, 2011)

Abdlrahman has now returned to Lybia to resume his lectureship at the Protection dept .faculty of Agriculture Omar Mukhtar University.


My research focuses on insect herbivore communities and what determines their composition. I am especially interested in how the characteristics of plants determine what species feed on them and where. For example, on altitudinal transects, it is likely that not only the environment will change, but the characteristics of the plants themselves (leaf size, nutritional content, toughness, number of buds). These changes in the vegetation have important consequences for the insects feeding upon them.

The relative palatability of a species also influences the probability that it will be attacked by the local insect herbivores. For example, a highly nutritious plant surrounded by heavily-defended plants is likely to be severely damaged, while a heavily-defended plant will be ignored by the local herbivores.

My project will not only involve characterising the vegetation and the insect herbivore communities, but also collecting information on plant traits, conducting laboratory feeding trials, measuring damage rates on plants in the field and carrying out transplant experiments.