Postdoctoral fellows

Dr Anina Coetzee

Dr Anina Coetzee
PhD (Stellenbosch)

John Day Building Room 2.18


Anina Coetzee (née Heystek) combines her interests in bird and plant ecology through her studies on bird pollination. She was introduced to the field of pollination and the amazing fynbos during her undergraduate studies at Stellenbosch University. Anina completed her PhD at the end of 2015 - her research investigated the distribution of nectar resources for nectar-feeding birds at multiple spatial scales under the guidance of Prof. Anton Pauw and Dr Phoebe Barnard (SANBI). She tested the effect of sunbird behaviour on flower evolution through field experiments and developed models to investigate the role that pollination plays in structuring Proteaceae communities. With the use of atlas data and through questionnaires Anina determined the availability of resources for nectar-feeding birds at landscape scale and within urban areas and how the birds respond to this.

Her postdoctoral research fellowship started at the Percy FitzPatrick Institute at the beginning of 2016. Currently, she is investigating the influence of sunbird pollinators and land use change on flower colour polymorphisms in the Erica genus. She is hosted by Prof Claire Spottiswoode and Dr Colleen Seymour (SANBI).

MSc Students
Monique du Plessis: The effect of sugar water feeders on sunbirds and bird-pollinated plants (Co-supervisors: Claire Spottiswoode, Colleen Seymour (SANBI))
Samantha McCarren: The role of UV in bird-pollination systems (Co-supervisor: Jeremy Midgley)

Peer-reviewed Publications

Geerts, S., Coetzee, A., Rebelo, A.G. and Pauw, A. 2020. Pollination structures plant and nectar-feeding bird communities in Cape fynbos, South Africa: implications for the conservation of plant-bird mutualisms.  Ecological Research.  DOI: 10.1111/1440-1703.12148

Coetzee, A., Barnard, P. and Pauw, A. 2018. Urban nectarivorous bird communities in Cape Town, South Africa, are structured by ecological generalisation and resource distribution. Journal of Avian Biology.   DOI: 10.1111/jav.01526

Heystek, A. and Pauw, A. 2014. Does competition for pollinators contribute to structuring Erica communities? Journal of Vegetation Science 25: 648-656.

Heystek, A., Geerts, S., Barnard, P. and Pauw, A. 2014. Pink flower preference in sunbirds does not translate into plant fitness differences in a polymorphic Erica species. Evolutionary Ecology 28: 457-470.