Dr. Reinder Radersma

Dr. Reinder Radersma

Dr Reinder Radersma


Name: Dr. Reinder Radersma
Position: Postdoctoral Researcher


I obtained my BSc and MSc in Forest and Nature Conservation at Wageningen University (NL) with minors in Environmental Ethics and Earth System Science respectively. During my Master’s I undertook an exploratory study on the development of a tritrophic biomass flow model for Hustai National Park (Mongolia) and investigated habitat selection and fuelling in wintering Bewick’s swans (at the Netherlands Institute of Ecology). I did my PhD at the University of Groningen (NL) on the ecological and evolutionary consequences of brood sex ratio variation in Great tits. Link to thesis: http://irs.ub.rug.nl/ppn/338646280 . In 2011 I visited the EGI for a meta-analysis on sex allocation and in 2012 I started as a postdoc on the “social network project”.

Research Activities

My prime interest is the interdependence of behaviour and evolution. Currently I am working on genetics and social structure in tit species. A particular dynamic relationship is present between genes and social structure, because gene flow is strongly influenced by the social structure of a species while genes have the ability to dictate social behaviour. We collect data on the social structure of various passerines (Great tits, Blue tits, Marsh tits and Nuthatches) by registering visits to feeding stations at the individual level with radio frequency identification tags. For Great tits a SNP-chip was developed and for three years most breeding pairs were genotyped. Combining the social network data and the genotypes enables us to address questions regarding genetics and social structure. This project is part of a large project on the role of social processes in evolutionary ecology funded by an ERC grant awarded to Prof Ben Sheldon.

Recent papers

Radersma R, Tinbergen JM and Komdeur J. 2011. Do brood sex ratio, nestling development and sex affect fledging timing and order? An experimental study on great tits. Animal Behaviour. 81(1): 69-75. doi:10.1016/j.anbehav.2010.09.007

Van Gils JA, Munster VJ, Radersma R, Liefhebber D, Fouchier RAM and Klaassen M. 2007. Hampered foraging and migratory performance in swans infected with low-pathogenic avian influenza A virus. PLoS ONE. 2(1): e184. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0000184