Dr. Matthew Lewis

Dr Matthew Lewis

Stable isotope ecology, behavioural ecology and human-wildlife conflict

+27 21 650 1628


I am an ecologist with a strong interest in animal behaviour, habitat and resource use, and how competition for resources brings animals and humans into conflict. My research largely involves the use of stable isotope analysis (SIA), often in conjunction with other methods, to answer questions related to these themes. For my doctoral research, I used behavioural observations and SIA to investigate how chacma baboons on the Cape Peninsula use marine food resources, and how this affects other aspects of their ecology. As a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Department of Archaeology at UCT, I used stable isotope mixing models to quantify diets of Late Stone Age humans in the Cape Peninsula and surrounds. I am currently involved in projects on a range of species and topics, including human-baboon conflict, variation in cape clawless otter diet in human-altered environments, trophic ecology of broadnose sevengill sharks and dietary profiles of archaeological humans. Going forward, my focus will be primarily on human–wildlife conflict research and the application of SIA to understand such conflict and inform mitigation strategies.