Senior Research Fellow
Alastair is an arachnologist from Scotland with a first degree for Glasgow University followed by a PhD at Paisley College of Technology on the community ecology of arachnids in a Highland glen. His professional work after this was in education, specialising in sustainable development education, but his interest in spiders was never completely extinguished. His work with the RSPB, before he retired, took him to the Falkland Islands where he began a long term project into the larger arachnids of the islands, adding South Georgia as it became clear how closely related the spider communities were. This continuing project has, to date, doubled the number of spider species known on the islands to 46. Two species have been added to South Georgia’s shorter list, now at 6 species. The main focus at present is describing the 14 new species found from both island groups, with analysis of the distribution and ecology of all the species just beginning. Alastair is currently president of the British Arachnological Society.