The Animal Ecology Group is a cooperative assembly of research groups within the Univesity of Vigo. Our research questions fall under four general themes:

Soil ecology

Behavioural ecology

Life-history evolution

Evolutionary ecology of earthworms


Current members
  Jorge Domínguez Alberto Velando
   Manuel Aira Sin-Yeon Kim
  María Gómez-Brandón

Jose C. Noguera

Hugo Martínez  Náyade Álvarez Quintero
Natalia Ribao Alberto da Silva


See our last publications:

2018 1 Noguera, J.C., Metcalfe, N.B., Monaghan, P. 2018 Experimental demonstration that offspring fathered by old males have shorter telomeres and reduced lifespans. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B. 285, 20180268
  2 Domínguez J, Aira M, Porto PG, Díaz-Cosín D, Pérez-Losada, M. 2018 Multigene phylogeny reveals two new isolated and relic earthworm genera (Oligochaeta: Lumbricidae). Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 182, 258-274
  3 Oro D, Álvarez D, Velando A. 2018. Complex demographic heterogeneity from anthropogenic impacts in a coastal marine predator. Ecological Applications [In press]
  4 Morales J, Lucas A, Velando A. 2018. Maternal programming of offspring antipredator behavior in a seabird. Behavioral Ecology [In press]
  5 Conde A., Dominguez J. 2018. Scaling the chord and Hellinger distances in the range [0,1]: An option to consider. Journal of Asia-Pacific Biodiversity. [In press]
  6 Hellwig, N., Gómez-Brandón, M., Ascher-Jenull, J., Bardelli, T., Anschlag, K., Fornasier, F., ... & Broll, G. 2018. Humus Forms and Soil Microbiological Parameters in a Mountain Forest: Upscaling to the Slope Scale. Soil Systems, 2(1), 12.
  7 Morales J, Velando A. 2018. Coloration of chicks modulates costly interactions among family members. Behavioral Ecology [In press]

Noguera JC, Aira M, Pérez-Losada M, Velando A. 2018. Glucocorticoids modulate gastrointestinal microbiome in a wild. Royal Society Open Science [In press]

2017 1 Noguera JC., Kim, S-Y, Velando A. 2017. Family-transmitted stress in a wild bird. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA 114:6794-6799
  2 Kim, S-Y, Costa MM, Esteve-Codina, A, Velando A.  2017. Transcriptional mechanisms underlying life-history responses to climate change in the three-spined stickleback. Evolutionary Applications 10:718-730
  3 Díaz-Real J, Kim S-Y, Velando A. 2017. Plumage colour and the expression of stress-related genes in gull chicks. Journal Avian Biology 48, 1216-1225
  4 Velando A, Costa MM,  Kim, S-Y. 2017. Sex-specific phenotypes and metabolism-related gene expression in juvenile sticklebacks. Behavioral Ecology 28, 1553–1563
  5 Kim S-Y, Metcalfe NB, da Silva A., Velando A. 2017. Thermal conditions during early life influence seasonal maternal strategies in the three-spined stickleback. BMC Ecology 17:34
  6 Noguera JC. 2017. Interacting effects of early dietary conditions and reproductive effort on the oxidative costs of reproduction. PeerJ 5:e3094
7  Domínguez J, Sanchez-Hernandez JC, Lores M 2017. Vermicomposting of Winemaking By-Products. In: Charis M. Galanakis (Ed.) Handbook of Grape Processing By-Products: Sustainable Solutions, Academic Press
8 Sanchez-Hernandez JC, Domínguez J. 2017. Vermicompost derived from spent coffee grounds: assessing the potential for enzymatic bioremediation. In: Charis M. Galanakis (Ed.) Handbook of Coffee Processing By-Products Sustainable Applications, Academic Press
  9 Noguera, J.C., Metcalfe, N.B., Monaghan, P. 2017. Postnatal nutrition influences male attractiveness and promotes plasticity in male mating preferences. The Science of Nature 104:102.



Noguera JC, Metcalfe NB, Reichert S, Monaghan P. 2016. Embryonic and postnatal telomere length decrease with ovulation order within clutches. Scientific Reports 6, 25915



Domínguez, J.,  Martínez-Cordeiro & Lores, M. 2016. Earthworms and Grape Marc: Simultaneous Production of a High-Quality Biofertilizer and Bioactive-Rich Seeds. In: Antonio Morata and Iris Loira (Eds.) “Grape and Wine Biotechnology”, Intech Open Science. Rijeka, Croacia. pp. 167-183. ISBN 978-953-51-2693-5. Available from:



Velando A, Moran P, Romero R, Fernandez J, Piorno V. 2016. Invasion and eradication of the American mink in the Atlantic Islands National Park (NW Spain): A retrospective analysis. Biological Invasions. doi:10.1007/s10530-016-1326-8



Barros, A, Romero R, Munilla I, Pérez C, Velando A. 2016. Behavioural plasticity in nest-site selection of a colonial seabird in response to an invasive carnivore. Biological Invasions 18:3149–3161
5 Aira, M, Olcina, J, Pérez-Losada, M, Domínguez J. 2016. Characterization of the bacterial communities of casts from Eisenia andrei fed with different substrates.  Applied Soil Ecology 98, 103-111.

Aira, M, Tato, A, Domínguez, J. 2016. Microbial community structure and nutrient dynamics in forest soils colonized by bracken fern (Pteridium aquilinum) PeerJ Preprints 4:e1863v1

  7 Kim S-Y, Metcalfe NB, Velando A. 2016. A benign juvenile environment reduces the strength of antagonistic pleiotropy and genetic variation in the rate of senescence. Journal of Animal Ecology, 85, 705-714.
8 Kim S-Y, Velando A. 2016. Unsociable juvenile male three-spined sticklebacks grow more attractive. Behavioural Ecology and Sociobiology, 70, 975-980

Munilla I, Genovart, M, Paiva, VH,  Velando, A. 2016. Colony foundation in an oceanic seabird. PlosOne 11, e0147222


Kim S-Y. 2016. Fixed behavioural plasticity in response to predation risk in the three-spined stickleback. Animal Behaviour, 112, 147-152


Kim S-Y & Velando A. 2016. Genetic conflict between sexual signalling and juvenile survival in the three-spined stickleback.  BMC Evolutionary Biology, 16:52



 Römbke, J, Aira, M, Backeljau, T, Breugelmans, K, Domínguez J, et al. 2016. DNA barcoding of earthworms (Eisenia fetida/andrei complex) from 28 ecotoxicological test laboratories. Applied Soil Ecology 104, 3-11

  13 Díaz-Real J, Kim S-Y, Velando A. 2016 Hatching hierarchy but not egg-related effects governs behavioral phenotypes in gull chicks. Behavioral Ecology doi:10.1093/beheco/arw110
  14 Pazzini Eckhardt, D,  Antoniolli, Z,  Schiedeck, G, Almeida Santana, N,  Redin, M, Domínguez, J  &  Seminoti Jacques, RJ 2016 Vermicompostagem como alternativa para o tratamento de resíduos nas propriedades rurais do sul do Brasil. In: Tales Tiecher (Ed.) “Manejo e conservação do solo e da água em pequenas propriedades rurais no sul do Brasil: práticas alternativas de manejo visando a conservação do solo e da água”. UFRGS – Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul. Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul, Brasil. pp. 87-99. ISBN: 978-85-9489-010-8