Anita is an Estuarine & Marine Ecologist, with specialist expertise on estuarine and marine fish communities, including their structure and functioning, their status and distribution in relation with habitat characteristics and human pressures, their monitoring and ecological assessment. She is also a quantitative ecologist, with expertise on experimental/sampling strategies and design, statistical analysis and modelling of ecological data.
Anita is currently an independent ecological consultant with a wealth of experience in designing, managing and delivering research and consultancy projects to a wide range of clients within this field, having formerly been employed as the Senior Fish and Numerical Ecologist at the Institute of Estuarine and Coastal Studies (IECS) at the University of Hull (2011-2019).
She has provided scientific and technical advice to the UK Government and its statutory agencies (e.g. Defra, Natural England, Environment Agency, Marine Management Organisation, Joint Nature Conservation Committee, Scottish Natural Heritage), the industry and developers (e.g. Associated British Ports, E.ON, SSE, RWE npower, Oil & Gas UK, Able UK) on the status and condition of marine and estuarine habitats and species (including fish and shellfish and their essential habitats, fishery, benthic fauna and birds), on the ecological value of marine habitats in support of marine planning programmes and on the potential risks and impacts to the marine environment of a range of human activities, including offshore wind farms, port developments, gas storage facilities, etc. Anita has also been involved in EU projects, including the current Horizon 2020 project CERES (Climate change and European aquatic RESources) and FP7 projects DEVOTES (Developing innovative tools to understand marine biodiversity and good environmental status), TIDE (Tidal River Development), and WISER (Water bodies in Europe: Integrative Systems to assess Ecological status and Recovery).
Anita has published her research in peer reviewed international journals and books, and has presented it to a variety of audiences at international conferences, meetings, stakeholder events, etc. She has substantial experience in peer reviewing manuscripts for international journals, is an Associate Editor of Estuarine Coastal and Shelf Sciences and an elected council member of the Estuarine and Coastal Sciences Association (ECSA).