Moshe Zaguri

Email: moshe.zaguri@mail.huji.ac.il

 

 

Growing up in a kibbutz in northern Israel, nature was an integral part of my childhood, and from a young age, I was always fascinated by its beauty and complexity. Working in the savannas of Africa and in the Negev desert in Israel I become very much aware of the delicate balance of natural ecosystems, and of their natural threats as well as anthropogenic stresses. With this in mind, I chose to study a combined program of life and environmental sciences in my undergraduate degree and continued for master's degree in ecology at the Hebrew University.

 

Currently, I'm a PhD candidate at the Ecology, Evolution and Behavior department in the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and a member of Dr. Dror Hawlena's Lab for the study of risk management by animals. In my PhD I try to further develop and empirically test a new conceptual framework - the Defense Physiology Theory (DPT) that focuses on the evolutionary conserved physiological stress response to predation risk, and link principles of nutritional ecology and ecological stoichiometry to explain how changes in species interactions may affect ecosystem functioning. I am focusing my investigation on the detritus-based food-chain that includes the desert isopod and its main predator the golden Israeli scorpion. I explore how isopods perceive and assess the risk of scorpion predation,

how this risk alters their function, and consequently how the carbon and nitrogen cycling within the environment is modified due to isopod's risk managment.

 

Over the last years, my concern for the environment led me to take part in several new environmental issues. When I noticed that my model animal (the desert isopods) was disappearing rapidly from its natural habitat, I performed a wide-scale survey in the Negev Desert to test possible consequences of global warming on the local isopod population, and to look for population restoration techniques. I also reached out to the Evrona Nature Reserve after the recent oil disaster and I managed an emergency experiment to check the possibility of biological restoration. This led to important decisions and was praised by the Ministry of Environmental Protection and the National Park Authorities.  I established a community garden in the Jerusalem neighborhood where I live and these days I'm coordinating its maintenance and continual expansion.

 

Curriculum Vitae