David Jacoby’s research seeks to use electronic tracking devices and network analyses of animal movements to understand connectivity and grouping behaviour in ecological communities. Aggregation, collective movement and social interactions, often very difficult to measure in wild animals, can fundamentally impact the persistence and vulnerability of a species, so understanding the mechanisms behind such behaviour is crucial to mitigate against threats.
He has a particular interest in the marine environment where often basic ecological knowledge of a species or system is hard to obtain. He believes tracking technologies, in combination with increasingly sophisticated spatial and temporal modelling techniques, can be applied to aid the monitoring and enforcement of highly dynamic and sometimes heavily exploited marine organisms. Specifically, he is interested in the dynamics and drivers of social networks in structuring marine predator communities and currently runs projects in the British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT), The Canaries, Palmyra Atoll and Bimini, The Bahamas.