How does habitat complexity drive motor ageing and fitness in wild mammals? (2015–2017)
Motor declines should dramatically impact an animal¿s growth, survival and reproduction by affecting how
they move through their habitats when foraging, seeking mates, or escaping from predators ¿ but we know
little about the environmental drivers of motor ageing in wild animals. Our study will show how habitat
complexity shapes motor ageing in wild dasyurid marsupials, via behavioural and physiological changes that
we predict will improve motor function, slow its decline and increase reproductive output. Our study
addresses an important gap in the field of evolutionary ecology, and because declines in muscle function will
affect the quality of every Australian's life, our work will have important economic and health implications.