Dr Andy Foggo

Dr Andy Foggo

Associate Professor in Ecology

School of Biological and Marine Sciences (Faculty of Science and Engineering)

Dr Andy Foggo can be contacted through arrangement with our Press Office, to speak to the media on these areas of expertise.
  • Biodiversity
  • Ecology
  • Biostatistics
  • Applied statistics
  • Multivariate statistics
  • Plant-grazer interactions


After deciding to read Zoology at Oxford for my undergraduate level studies and following a path which saw me becoming interested in the biodiversity of less popular, less charismatic groups of organisms during my D.Phil., I spent a few years post-doc.ing, ending up on a junior research Fellowship at my old Oxford College. That post was the starting point of my involvement in the ecology of forest canopy insect faunas and ultimately led to an application for a job here in Plymouth which resulted in my first full-time academic post. I was one of six founder members of the Benthic Ecology Research Group which morphed over time into the Marine biology and Ecology Research Group with 16 full-time academics; the move to Plymouth gave me the impetus to rekindle a boyhood fascination with marine biology. I am now fully converted into an ex-entomologist interested in the broad ecology of aquatic systems, and have swapped terrestrial forests for marine ones, focusing on the interactions occurring between seaweeds and the fauna they support. My activities now are split between my teaching/admin roles and my research. 

For almost a decade now I have also worked with the clinical trials unit at Derriford Hospital as a contributor to the management of clinical trials into treatments for Parkinson's Disease; I was diagnosed with PD myself over a decade ago.


Associate Professor in Ecology, University of Plymouth (2015 - )

Lecturer in Ecology, University of Plymouth (1996-2015)

Drapers Company Junior Research Fellow, St Anne's College, Oxford (1995-1996)

Postdoctoral Research Assistant, University of Oxford (1993-1994)

Postdoctoral Research Assistant, University of Cambridge (1993)

DPhil, University of Oxford (1992)

Wiener Anspach Research Fellow, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium (1989-1990)

BA, University of Oxford (1987)



Teaching interests

In terms of teaching, I lead the postgraduate module in research skills and methods and deliver a significant part of that module dealing with numerical techniques and study designs. I lead the dissertation module for the MRes in Marine Biology as a hang over from leadership of that programme. I'm also involved in teaching on the degrees forming the Marine Biology undergraduate scheme, delivering materials related to natural history and taxonomy, biostatistics, and the ecology of biodiversity. My major administrative role has now switched to being Admissions Tutor for the Marine Biology degree scheme, 3 courses which collectively received over 600 applications for the present academic year.

Staff serving as external examiners

External Validator: School of Biological Sciences, University of Surrey at Roehampton.

External Examining: University of Oxford (D.Phil), University of Surrey (PhD), Bangor University (PhD), Swansea University (PhD)



Research interests

My main research interests are divided into two main areas within aquatic ecology. One deals with grazer - alga interactions and in particular the role of induced and constitutive defences in seaweeds as mediators of trophic interactions and carbon export potential in a changing biosphere. I collaborate with Dr Dan Smale of the MBA, Drs Tony Knights and Louise Firth and Professor Jason Hall-Spencer here at Plymouth, and Dr. Albert Pessarrodona at UWA in Perth. I also have interests that stem from application of numerical and statistical techniques to ecological questions, these include studies of spatial distributions and macroecology in marine, estuarine and freshwater habitats such as diversity patterns in the deep sea (in collaboration with Professor Kerry Howell), patterns of invasion of freshwater systems by alien macrophytes (with Professor David Bilton) and studies of non-native seaweeds in coastal habitats. Currently I am supervising 2 PhD students as co-supervisor: Sam Tasker is working on invasion of freshwaters by the alien New Zealand stonecrop, Crassula helmsii and Franz Bauer is studying Biodiversity of the marine built environment and its ecosystem functioning.

Research groups

Other research

For almost a decade now I have also worked with the clinical trials unit at Derriford Hospital as a contributor to the management of clinical trials into treatments for Parkinson's Disease; I was diagnosed with PD myself over a decade ago. Currently I have an interest in the use of pre-symptomatic brain imaging (scans taken for other purposes) in the prediction of PD using machine learning / AI (principle researchers Dr Stephen Mullin and Ms Megan Courtman)

Research degrees awarded to supervised students

G.M. Prowse. PhD, 2003 (DoS)

M.T. Frost. PhD, 2003 (supervisor)

R. Power. M.Phil. (2004) DoS

L. MacAbendroth PhD 2005 (supervisor)

C.S. Mesher PhD 2009 (DoS)

S.L. deAmicis PhD 2012 (DoS)

N. Biber 2017 PhD (supervisor)

Grants & contracts

2013: Scaling empirically derived ocean acidification responses to naturally assembled systems. NERC £90,846. Co-I

PI - Rastrick, Co-I's: Solan, Hauton, Mark, Hall-Spencer, Foggo, Whitelely, Steel, Parker & Scott

2013: Influence of population connectivity on depth-dependent diversity of deep-sea marine benthic biota
£1,121,585. Co-I

PI - Howell 



Key publications

Key publications are highlighted

Tasker SJL, Foggo A & Bilton DT (2024) 'Are impacts of the invasive alien plant Crassula helmsii mediated by detritus? A litter experiment in a temperate pond' Hydrobiologia , DOI Open access
Bauer F, Knights AM, Hanley ME, Griffin JN, Foggo A, Brown A & Firth LB (2024) 'Topography-based modulation of environmental factors as a mechanism for intertidal microhabitat formation: A basis for marine ecological design' Marine Pollution Bulletin 202, Author Site , DOI Open access
Tasker SJL, Foggo A, Scheers K, van der Loop J, Giordano S & Bilton DT (2023) 'Nuanced impacts of the invasive aquatic plant Crassula helmsii on Northwest European freshwater macroinvertebrate assemblages' Science of the Total Environment 913, , DOI Open access
Hanley ME, Firth LB & Foggo A (2023) 'Victim of changes? Marine macroalgae in a changing world' Annals of Botany , DOI Open access
Amstutz A, Firth LB, Foggo A, Spicer JI & Hanley ME (2023) 'The north–south divide? Macroalgal functional trait diversity and redundancy varies with intertidal aspect' Annals of Botany , DOI Open access
Leathers T, King NG, Foggo A & Smale DA (2023) 'Marine heatwave duration and intensity interact to reduce physiological tipping points of kelp species with contrasting thermal affinities' Annals of Botany 133, (1) 51-60 Publisher Site , DOI
Firth LB, Foggo A, Watts T, Knights AM & deAmicis S (2023) 'Invasive macroalgae in native seagrass beds: vectors of spread and impacts' Annals of Botany , DOI Open access
Stevens KN, Creanor S, Jeffery A, Whone A, Zajicek J, Foggo A, Jones B, Chapman R, Cocking L & Wilks J (2022) 'Evaluation of Simvastatin as a Disease-Modifying Treatment for Patients With Parkinson Disease' JAMA Neurology , DOI Open access
Mabey AL, Catford JA, Rius M, Foggo A & Smale DA (2022) 'Herbivory and functional traits suggest that enemy release is not an important mechanism driving invasion success of brown seaweeds' Biological Invasions 24, 3919-3934 , DOI Open access
Tasker SJL, Foggo A & Bilton DT (2022) 'Quantifying the ecological impacts of alien aquatic macrophytes: a global meta-analysis of effects on fish, macroinvertebrate and macrophyte assemblages' Freshwater Biology Publisher Site , DOI Open access
Wright LS, Pessarrodona A & Foggo A (2022) 'Climate‐driven shifts in kelp forest composition reduce carbon sequestration potential' Global Change Biology , DOI Open access
Frontier N, Mulas M, Foggo A & Smale DA (2021) 'The influence of light and temperature on detritus degradation rates for kelp species with contrasting thermal affinities' Marine Environmental Research 173, 105529-105529 Publisher Site , DOI
Wright LS & Foggo A (2021) 'Photosynthetic pigments of co-occurring Northeast Atlantic Laminaria spp. are unaffected by decomposition' Marine Ecology Progress Series 678, 227-232 , DOI Open access
Firth LB, Curd A, Hawkins SJ, Knights AM, Blaze JA, Burrows MT, Dubois SF, Edwards H, Foggo A & Gribben PE (2021) 'On the diversity and distribution of a data deficient habitat in a poorly mapped region: The case of Sabellaria alveolata L. in Ireland' Marine Environmental Research 169, 105344-105344 , DOI Open access
Frontier N, de Bettignies F, Foggo A & Davoult D (2021) 'Sustained productivity and respiration of degrading kelp detritus in the shallow benthos: Detached or broken, but not dead' Marine Environmental Research 166, 0-0 , DOI Open access
Firth LB, Harris D, Blaze JA, Marzloff MP, Boyé A, Miller PI, Curd A, Vasquez M, Nunn JD & O’Connor NE (2021) 'Specific niche requirements underpin multidecadal range edge stability, but may introduce barriers for climate change adaptation' Diversity and Distributions 27, (4) 668-683 Publisher Site , DOI Open access
Redfern JC, Foggo A & Mieszkowska N (2021) 'Handling the heat: Responses of two congeneric limpet species to environmental temperature differences' Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology 536, (0) 151500-151500 Publisher Site , DOI Open access
Vanderzwalmen M, McNeill J, Delieuvin D, Senes S, Sanchez-Lacalle D, Mullen C, McLellan I, Carey P, Snellgrove D & Foggo A (2020) 'Monitoring water quality changes and ornamental fish behaviour during commercial transport' Aquaculture 531, 735860-735860 , DOI Open access
Carroll C, Webb D, Stevens ??? KN, Vickery J, Eyre V, Ball S, Wyse R, Webber M, Foggo A & Zajicek J (2019) 'Simvastatin as a neuroprotective treatment for Parkinson’s disease (PD STAT): protocol for a double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled futility study' BMJ Open , DOI Open access
Biscéré T, Zampighi M, Lorrain A, Jurriaans S, Foggo A, Houlbrèque F & Rodolfo-Metalpa R (2019) 'High p CO 2 promotes coral primary production' Biology Letters 15, (7) 20180777-20180777 , DOI Open access
Epstein G, Foggo A & Smale DA (2019) 'Inconspicuous impacts: Widespread marine invader causes subtle but significant changes in native macroalgal assemblages' Ecosphere 10, (7) , DOI Open access
Chaverra A, Wieters E, Foggo A & Knights AM (2019) 'Removal of intertidal grazers by human harvesting leads to alteration of species interactions, community structure and resilience to climate change' Marine Environmental Research , DOI Open access
Biber NFA, Foggo A & Thompson RC (2019) 'Characterising the deterioration of different plastics in air and seawater' Marine Pollution Bulletin , DOI Open access
Pessarrodona A, Foggo A & Smale D (2018) 'Can ecosystem functioning be maintained despite climate-driven shifts in species composition? Insights from novel marine forests' Journal of Ecology 107, (1) 91-104 , DOI Open access
Hereward H, Foggo A, Hinckley S, Greenwood J & Smale D (2018) 'Seasonal variability in the population structure of a habitat-forming kelp and a conspicuous gastropod grazer: Do blue-rayed limpets (Patella pellucida) exert top-down pressure on Laminaria digitata populations?' Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology 506, 171-171 , DOI Open access
Allen R, Foggo A, Fabricius K, Balistreri A & Hall-Spencer JM (2016) 'Tropical CO2 seeps reveal the impact of ocean acidification on coral reef invertebrate recruitment' Marine Pollution Bulletin , DOI Open access
Hargrave MS, Foggo A, Pessarrodona A & Smale DA (2016) 'The effects of warming on the ecophysiology of two co-existing kelp species with contrasting distributions' Oecologia , DOI Open access
Milazzo M, Cattano C, Alonzo SH, Foggo A, Gristina M, Rodolfo-Metalpa R, Sinopoli M, Spatafora D, Stiver KA & Hall-Spencer JM (2016) 'Ocean acidification affects fish spawning but not paternity at CO2 seeps' Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 283, (1835) 0-0 , DOI Open access
Harvey BP, McKeown NJ, Rastrick SPS, Bertolini C, Foggo A, Graham H, Hall-Spencer JM, Milazzo M, Shaw PW & Small DP (2016) 'Individual and population-level responses to ocean acidification' Scientific Reports 6, (0) 0-0 , DOI Open access
DeAmicis SL & Foggo A (2015) 'Long-Term Field Study Reveals Subtle Effects of the Invasive Alga Sargassum muticum upon the Epibiota of Zostera marina' PLoS ONE , DOI Open access
Rodolfo-Metalpa R, Montagna P, Aliani S, Borghini M, Canese S, Hall-Spencer JM, Foggo A, Milazzo M, Taviani M & Houlbrèque F (2015) 'Calcification is not the Achilles' heel of cold-water corals in an acidifying ocean' Glob Chang Biol 21, (6) 2238-2248 Author Site , DOI Open access
Garilli V, Rodolfo-Metalpa R, Scuderi D, Brusca L, Parrinello D, Rastrick SPS, Foggo A, Twitchett RJ, Hall-Spencer JM & Milazzo M (2015) 'Physiological advantages of dwarfing in surviving extinctions in high-CO2 oceans' Nature Climate Change , DOI Open access
Rastrick SPS, Calosi P, Calder-Potts R, Foggo A, Nightingale G, Widdicombe S & Spicer JI (2014) 'Living in warmer, more acidic oceans retards physiological recovery from tidal emersion in the velvet swimming crab, Necora puber' J Exp Biol 217, (Pt 14) 2499-2508 Author Site , DOI
Holt RE, Foggo A, Neat FC & Howell KL (2013) 'Distribution patterns and sexual segregation in chimaeras: implications for conservation and management' ICES Journal of Marine Science 70, (6) 1198-1205 Publisher Site , DOI
Foster NL, Foggo A & Howell KL (2013) 'Using species-area relationships to inform baseline conservation targets for the deep North East Atlantic' PLoS One 8, (3) Author Site , DOI Open access
Rodolfo-Metalpa R, Houlbreque F, Tambutte E, Boisson F, Baggini C, Patti FP, Jeffree R, Fine M, Foggo A & Gattuso J-P (2011) 'Coral and mollusc resistance to ocean acidification adversely affected by warming' NATURE CLIMATE CHANGE 1, (6) 308-312 , DOI Open access
Howell KL, Mowles SL & Foggo A (2010) 'Mounting evidence: near-slope seamounts are faunally indistinct from an adjacent bank' MARINE ECOLOGY-AN EVOLUTIONARY PERSPECTIVE 31, 52-62 , DOI
Bilton DT, McAbendroth LC, Nicolet P, Bedford A, Rundle SD, Foggo A & Ramsay PM (2009) 'Ecology and conservation status of temporary and fluctuating ponds in two areas of southern England' AQUATIC CONSERVATION-MARINE AND FRESHWATER ECOSYSTEMS 19, (2) 134-146 , DOI
Griffin JN, Mendez V, Johnson AF, Jenkins SR & Foggo A (2009) 'Functional diversity predicts overyielding effect of species combination on primary productivity' OIKOS 118, (1) 37-44 , DOI
Coleman RA, Ramchunder SJ, Davis KM, Moody AJ & Foggo A (2007) 'Herbivore-induced infochemicals influence foraging behaviour in two intertidal predators' Oecologia 151, (3) 454-463 Author Site , DOI
Hall-Spencer J, Rogers A, Davies J & Foggo A (2007) 'Deep-sea coral distribution on seamounts, oceanic islands, and continental slopes in the Northeast Atlantic' Conservation and Adaptive Management of Seamount and Deep-Sea Coral Ecosystems 81, 135-146 Open access
Foggo A, Bilton DT & Rundle SD (2007) 'Do developmental mode and dispersal shape abundance-occupancy relationships in marine macroinvertebrates?' Journal of Animal Ecology 76, (4) 695-702
Rundle SD, Bilton DT, Abbott JC & Foggo A (2007) 'Range size in North American Enallagma damselflies correlates with wing size' Freshwater Biology 52, (3) 471-477
Foggo A, Higgins S, Wargent JJ & Coleman RA (2007) 'Tri-trophic consequences of UV-B exposure: plants, herbivores and parasitoids' Oecologia 154, (3) 505-512
Coleman RA, Ramchunder SJ, Davis KM, Moody AJ & Foggo A (2007) 'Herbivore-induced infochemicals influence foraging behaviour in two intertidal predators (vol 151, pg 454, 2007)' OECOLOGIA 152, (4) 805-805 , DOI
Coleman RA, Ramchunder SJ, Moody AJ & Foggo A (2007) 'An enzyme in snail saliva induces herbivore-resistance in a marine alga' FUNCTIONAL ECOLOGY 21, (1) 101-106 , DOI
Hall-Spencer J, White N, Gillespie E, Gillham K & Foggo A (2006) 'Impact of fish farms on maerl beds in strongly tidal areas' Marine Ecology-Progress Series 326, 1-9 Open access
Griffiths BS, Caul S, Thompson J, Birch ANE, Scrimgeour C, Cortet J, Foggo A, Hackett CA & Krogh PH (2006) 'Soil microbial and faunal community responses to bt maize and insecticide in two soils' J Environ Qual 35, (3) 734-741 Author Site , DOI
Mcabendroth L, Ramsay PM, Foggo A, Rundle SD & Bilton DT (2005) 'Does macrophyte fractal complexity drive invertebrate diversity, biomass and body size distributions?' Oikos 111, (2) 279-290
Mcabendroth L, Foggo A, Rundle SD & Bilton DT (2005) 'Unravelling nestedness and spatial pattern in pond assemblages' Journal of Animal Ecology 74, (1) 41-49
Prowse G, Galloway, T.S., Foggo & A. (2005) 'Insecticidal activity of garlic juice in two dipterian pests' Agricultural and Forest Entomology 7, 1-6
Frost MT, Attrill MJ, Rowden AA & Foggo A (2004) 'Abundance-occupancy relationships in macrofauna on exposed sandy beaches: patterns and mechanisms' Ecography 27, (5) 643-649
Borell EM, Foggo A & Coleman RA (2004) 'Induced resistance in intertidal macroalgae modifies feeding behaviour of herbivorous snails' Oecologia 140, (2) 328-334
FOGGO A, FROST MT & ATTRILL MJ (2003) 'Abundance-occupancy patterns in British estuarine macroinvertebrates' Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser 265, 297-302 , DOI
Foggo A, Rundle SD & Bilton DT (2003) 'The net result: evaluating species richness extrapolation techniques for littoral pond invertebrates' Freshwater Biology 48, (10) 1756-1764
Foggo A, Attrill MJ, Frost MT & Rowden AA (2003) 'Estimating marine species richness: an evaluation of six extrapolative techniques' Marine Ecology-Progress Series 248, 15-26
Rundle SD, Foggo A, Choiseul V & Bilton DT (2002) 'Are distribution patterns linked to dispersal mechanism? An investigation using pond invertebrate assemblages' Freshwater Biology 47, (9) 1571-1581
Foggo A, Ozanne CMP, Speight MR & Hambler C (2001) 'Edge effects and tropical forest canopy invertebrates' Plant Ecology 153, (1-2) 347-359
Bilton DT, Foggo A & Rundle SD (2001) 'Size, permanence and the proportion of predators in ponds' Archiv fur Hydrobiologie 151, (3) 451-458
Speight MR, Hails RS, Gilbert M & Foggo A (1998) 'Horse chestnut scale (<i>Pulvinaria regalis</i>) (Homoptera: Coccidae) and urban host tree environment' ECOLOGY 79, (5) 1503-1513
Foggo A (1996) 'Patterns of herbivory by the ash bud moth Prays fraxinella: Implications for the silviculture of ash in Europe' FOREST ECOLOGY AND MANAGEMENT 84, (1-3) 231-240 , DOI
Foggo A (1996) 'Long- and short-term changes in plant growth following simulated herbivory: Adaptive responses to damage?' ECOLOGICAL ENTOMOLOGY 21, (2) 198-202 , DOI
Reid CM, Foggo A & Speight M (1996) 'Dead wood in the Caledonian pine forest' FORESTRY 69, (3) 275-279 , DOI
Brodie J, williamson C, Smale DA, Kamenos NA, Mieszkowska N, Santos R, Cunliffe M, Steinke M, Yesson C & Anderson KM (2014) 'The future of the northeast Atlantic benthic flora in a high CO2 world' Ecology and Evolution 4, (13) 2787-2798 Publisher Site , DOI Open access
Louise BF, Clubley C, McGrath A, Renshaw E, Foggo A, Wilson ADM, Gribben PE, Flower AEA, Burgess J & Heesch S (2023) 'If You Can't Beat Them, Join Them: Enemy Shells as Refugia from Grazing &amp; Competition PressureS' Oceanography and Marine Biology CRC Press 329-362 Publisher Site , DOI
Rundle SD, Bilton DT & Foggo A (2007) 'By wind, wings or water: body size, dispersal and range size in aquatic invertebrates' Body Size: The Structure and Function of Aquatic Ecosystems Cambridge University Press 186-209 Publisher Site , DOI
Rundle SD, Bilton DT & FOGGO A (2007) 'Body size, range size and dispersal in aquatic invertebrates' in Hildrew AG; Raffaelli DG; Edmunds-Brown R Body size: the structure and function of aquatic ecosystems Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 186-209
Foggo A, Ozanne CMP, Speight MR & Hambler C (2001) 'Edge effects and tropical canopy invertebrates' in Linsenmair KE; Davis AJ; Fiala B; Speight MR Tropical Forest Canopies: Ecology and Management 347-359
Foggo A, Ozanne CMP, Speight MR & Hambler C (2001) 'Edge effects and tropical forest canopy invertebrates' Tropical Forest Canopies: Ecology and Management Springer Netherlands 347-359 Publisher Site , DOI
Conference Papers
Mesher C, Foggo A & Spicer JI (2009) 'Understanding physiological tolerance through thermal limits of three amphipod species' S170-S170 , DOI
Presentations and posters
North T, Grose J, Eyre V, Webb D, Chapman R, Foggo A, Webber M & Carroll C North T, Grose J, Eyre V, Webb D, Chapman R, Foggo A, Webber M & Carroll C 'Exploring the experience and challenges for PD STAT clinical trial participants: a qualitative study' Author Site , DOI


Conferences organised

Organising Committee Member: Aquatic Habitats as Ecological Islands. BES/FBA/MBA sponsored meeting 2000

Organising Committee Member: Climate Change and Aquatic Systems: Past, Present & Future. BES/FBA/MBA sponsored meeting 2004