Dr Peter Dennis


Dr Peter Dennis

Reader in Ecology of Grazed Ecosystems

Department of Life Sciences

Contact Details


Peter joined the research and teaching staff of Aberystwyth University in September 2006 and is part of the DoLS Ecology Group. Research interests include the "Ecology of Grazed Ecosystems (montane, upland and lowland wetland habitats)", "Monitoring and assessment of biodiversity in a changing environment" and "Environmental and management drivers of soil chemistry and vegetation dynamics in the uplands". Peter contributes to teaching of IBERS undergraduate and postgraduate students, a Postgraduate Certificate of Teaching in Higher Education was conferred and a Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy awarded in 2009. Served for two years as Senior tutor for Part Two undergraduates.


Module Coordinator
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Overseas Teaching

IAMZ- CIHEAM, Zaragosa, Spain - EU sponsored International Masters in Livestock Production, 'Environmental effects of livestock grazing systems'.

External Examiner

2016 - 2019: School of Geography and Environmental Sciences, Ulster University, Coleraine Campus - MSc Environmental Management; Environmental Management with/and Geographic Information Systems (GIS); Environmental Toxicology and Pollution Monitoring.

2011-2016: School of Applied Sciences, Bournemouth University - Postgraduate Framework (MSc Applied Sciences by Research and MSc Biodiversity Conservation)


Research interests within the DoLS Ecology Group include:

  • Ecology of grazed ecosystems (montane and upland semi-natural habitats):
    • Grazing impacts on montane and upland food webs and wildlife
    • Development of biodiversity indicators for low-input
    • European farming systems
  • Monitoring and assessment of biodiversity in a changing environment
    • Long Term Ecosystem Research networks
    • Biodiversity and ecosystem processes (services) in the uplands and mountains
    • Environmental and management drivers of soil chemistry and vegetation dynamics in the uplands.

Currently serves on the Ecosystem Functioning Working Group of GEO BON (Earth Observation - Biodiversity). Served as Secretary of the UK Biodiversity Science Committee 2012-16, the Welsh Biodiversity Partnership, Upland Ecosystem Group; the steering committee of the Environmental Change Network, Snowdon monitoring site for Natural Resources Wales. Recent projects have focused on the selection of biodiversity indicators as measures of the sustainability of farming (EU BioBio), and most recently collaborative research has aimed to integrate biodiversity into environmental impact measures, to include with social and economic measures within Life Cycle Analyses of a healthy diet (Expert advisor to Defra project “Evidence to define the sustainability of a healthy diet”, Defra and Institute of Food Research, December 2010 to July 2011) and in organic dairy production across Europe (Co-I on EU SOLID project). PD previously served as a Senior PDRS at the Macaulay Institute where he was a Wildlife and Landscape Ecologist. He was the scientific co-ordinator of the five year “GRUB” research project. This research addressed long-term ecological effects of changes in upland farming, with emphasis on factors affecting the breeding success of insectivorous birds. He also oversaw the biological monitoring of two of the UK ECN sites in Scotland.


Kenobi, K, Read, W, Bowgen, KM, Macgregor, CJ, Taylor, RC, Cámaro García, WCA, Hodges, C, Dennis, P & Holloway, P 2023, 'Lasso penalisation identifies consistent trends over time in landscape and climate factors influencing the wintering distribution of the Eurasian Curlew (Numenius arquata)', Ecological Informatics, vol. 77, 102244. 10.1016/j.ecoinf.2023.102244
Stiles, W, Rowe, E & Dennis, P 2018, 'Nitrogen and phosphorus enrichment effects on CO2 and methane fluxes from an upland ecosystem', Science of the Total Environment, vol. 618, pp. 1199-1209. 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2017.09.202
Lüscher, G, Nemecek, T, Arndorfer, M, Balázs, K, Dennis, P, Fjellstad, W, Friedel, JK, Gaillard, G, Herzog, F, Sarthou, J-P, Stoyanova, S, Wolfrum, S & Jeanneret, P 2017, 'Biodiversity assessment in LCA: a validation at field and farm scale in eight European regions', International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment, vol. 22, no. 10, pp. 1483-1492. 10.1007/s11367-017-1278-y
Trydeman Knudsen, M, Hermansen, JE, Cederberg, C, Herzog, F, Vale, J, Jeanneret, P, Sarthou, J-P, Friedel, JK, Balázs, K, Fjellstad, W, Kainz, M, Wolfrum, S & Dennis, P 2017, 'Characterization factors for land use impacts on biodiversity in Life Cycle Assessment based on direct measures of plant species richness in European farmland in the 'Temperate Broadleaf and Mixed Forest' biome', Science of the Total Environment, vol. 580, pp. 358-366. 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.11.172
Herzog, F, Lüscher, G, Arndorfer, M, Bogers, M, Balázs, K, Bunce, RGH, Dennis, P, Falusi, E, Friedel, JK, Geijzendorffer, IR, Gomiero, T, Jeanneret, P, Moreno, G, Oschatz, M-L, Paoletti, M, Sarthou, J-P, Stoyanova, S, Szerencsits, E, Wolfrum, S, Fjellstad, W & Bailey, D 2017, 'European farm scale habitat descriptors for the evaluation of biodiversity', Ecological Indicators, vol. 76, pp. 205-217. 10.1016/j.ecolind.2017.01.010
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