Mairenn Collins Attwood

Mairenn is part of the Spottiswoode group in Zoology at the University of Cambridge, researching evolution in avian brood parasites – birds that lay their eggs in the nests of other birds ( She completed a Master’s degree with the same group last year, working on the interaction between fork-tailed drongos and African cuckoos in Zambia. Before this, Mairenn worked on various ecology projects, including the impact of parasitic plants on invasive Oxalis, the function of buccal oscillations in túngara frogs, and interactions between pollen beetles and rock roses. She was also an intern with the Insect Ecology group in Cambridge, examining invertebrate diversity across ancient and recently planted woodland. In her final year undergraduate project, she investigated behavioural responses to kleptoparasitism risk in sticklebacks, supervised by Professor Nick Davies. Across these diverse taxa, interactions between individuals and species emerged as a central research interest.

She currently works as a co-director of content at Climate Science (, a charity empowering people to learn about solutions to the climate crisis. Alongside this, she supervises undergraduate students in conservation science and evolution.