A/Prof. Peter Biro



Associate Professor In Behavioural Ecology


Faculty of Sci Eng & Built Env


School of Life & Env. Sciences


Geelong Waurn Ponds Campus


+61 3 522 72426


2011 to present:  Assoc. Prof. and ARC Future Fellow, Deakin University

2010 Senior Lecturer and ARC Future Fellow, UNSW.

2009 Lecturer, University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), Australia.

2006 Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Fellow, UTS.

2006 Endeavour Research Fellow, UTS.

2003 NSERC Postdoctoral fellow, University of Manitoba, Canada.

Read more on Peter's profile

Research interests

Research interests

  • animal behavior, physiology, population ecology, statistics


My research is currently exploring linkages between animal physiology, behaviour, life-history, and natural and human-caused selection in fish and other organisms.

In particular, I want to know what promotes the existence (& maintenance) of consistent individual differences in behavior, often termed ‘personality’ or ‘temperament’, and what this means for predator-prey interactions, and for practical issues such as sampling bias and the effects of human harvesting of animal populations.

Units taught

Animal Behaviour SLE224

Animal Diversity SLE204

Statistics SLE251

Research groups

Postdoctoral fellows

Dr Kerry Fanson (2012  - present)         Metabolism and animal personality

Dr Vincent Careau  (2013 - present)     Behavior, metabolism, thermal sensitivity

Dr Bart Adriaenssens (2010-2011)      Metabolism and animal personality


Research Associates

Francesca Santostefano    Guppy personality, honest signals and mating effort



David Mitchell  (PhD 2015 - present)  Evolutionary and developmental effects of predation risk on behavior

Portia Sampson    (honours 2011)   Growth-personality links in crayfish, and implications for fishing harvest


Filter by


Spontaneous activity rates and resting metabolism: support for the allocation model of energy management at the among-individual level

P Biro, F Thomas, B Ujvari, B Adriaenssens, C Beckmann

(2020), Vol. 126, pp. 32-39, Ethology, Chichester, Eng., C1


Rare and unique adaptations to cancer in domesticated species: an untapped resource?

Frdric Thomas, Mathieu Giraudeau, Nolwenn Dheilly, Flora Gouzerh, Justine Boutry, Christa Beckmann, Peter Biro, Rodrigo Hamede, Jerome Abadie, Sophie Labrut, Margaux Bieuville, Dorothe Misse, Georgina Bramwell, Aaron Schultz, Guillaume Le Loc?H, Orsolya Vincze, Benjamin Roche, Franois Renaud, Tracey Russell, Beata Ujvari

(2020), pp. 1-10, Evolutionary applications, Chichester, Eng., C1


Temporal autocorrelation: A neglected factor in the study of behavioral repeatability and plasticity

D Mitchell, A Dujon, C Beckmann, P Biro

(2020), Vol. 31, pp. 222-231, Behavioral Ecology, C1


Meta-analytic insights into factors influencing the repeatability of hormone levels in agricultural, ecological, and medical fields

Kerry Fanson, Peter Biro

(2019), Vol. 316, pp. R101-R109, American journal of physiology. Regulatory, integrative and comparative physiology, Bethesda, Md., C1


The influence of environmental gradients on individual behaviour: individual plasticity is consistent across risk and temperature gradients

Tomas Cornwell, Ian McCarthy, C Snyder, Peter Biro

(2019), Vol. 88, pp. 511-520, Journal of animal ecology, Chichester, Eng., C1


Obesity paradox in cancer: is bigger really better?

B Ujvari, C Jacqueline, D Misse, V Amar, J Fitzpatrick, G Jennings, C Beckmann, S Rome, P Biro, R Gatenby, J Brown, L Almeida, F Thomas

(2019), Vol. 12, pp. 1092-1095, Evolutionary applications, Chichester, Eng., C1


Behavioral, energetic, and color trait integration in male guppies: testing the melanocortin hypothesis

F Santostefano, K Fanson, J Endler, P Biro

(2019), Vol. 30, pp. 1539-1547, Behavioral ecology, Oxford, Eng., C1


Cancer is not (only) a senescence problem

F Thomas, F Vavre, T Tissot, M Vittecoq, M Giraudeau, F Bernex, D Misse, F Renaud, N Raven, C Beckmann, R Hamede, P Biro, B Ujvari

(2018), Vol. 4, pp. 169-172, Trends in cancer, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, C1


Metabolic scope as a proximate constraint on individual behavioral variation: effects on personality, plasticity, and predictability

P Biro, T Garland, C Beckmann, B Ujvari, F Thomas, J Post

(2018), Vol. 192, pp. 142-154, American naturalist, Chicago, Ill., C1


Chronic exposure to increased water temperature reveals few impacts on stress physiology and growth responses in juvenile Atlantic salmon

J Tromp, P Jones, M Brown, J Donald, P Biro, L Afonso

(2018), Vol. 495, pp. 196-204, Aquaculture, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, C1


Bayesian updating during development predicts genotypic differences in plasticity

Judy Stamps, Peter Biro, David Mitchell, Julia Saltz

(2018), Vol. 72, pp. 2167-2180, Evolution, Chichester, Eng., C1


Curvilinear telomere length dynamics in a squamate reptile

B Ujvari, P Biro, J Charters, G Brown, K Heasman, C Beckmann, T Madsen

(2017), Vol. 31, pp. 753-759, Functional ecology, London, Eng., C1


Cancer: a disease at the crossroads of trade-offs

C Jacqueline, P Biro, C Beckmann, A Moller, F Renaud, G Sorci, A Tasiemski, B Ujvari, F Thomas

(2017), Vol. 10, pp. 215-225, Evolutionary applications: evolutionary approaches to environmental, biomedical and socio-economic issues, London, Eng., C1


Changes in diet associated with cancer: an evolutionary perspective

F Thomas, S Rome, F Mery, E Dawson, J Montagne, P Biro, C Beckmann, F Renaud, R Poulin, M Raymond, B Ujvari

(2017), Vol. 10, pp. 651-657, Evolutionary applications, London, Eng., C1


Is behavioural plasticity consistent across different environmental gradients and through time?

D Mitchell, P Biro

(2017), Vol. 284, pp. 1-8, Proceedings of the Royal Society B: biological sciences, London, Eng., C1


Avian nest abandonment prior to laying-a strategy to minimize predation risk?

M Flegeltaub, P Biro, C Beckmann

(2017), Vol. 158, pp. 1091-1098, Journal of ornithology, Berlin, Germany, C1


The importance of cancer cells for animal evolutionary ecology

F Thomas, C Jacqueline, T Tissot, M Henard, S Blanchet, G Loot, E Dawson, F Mery, F Renaud, J Montagne, C Beckmann, P Biro, R Hamede, B Ujvari

(2017), Vol. 1, pp. 1592-1595, Nature ecology and evolution, London, Eng., C1


Cancer and life-history traits: lessons from host-parasite interactions

B Ujvari, C Beckmann, P Biro, A Arnal, A Tasiemski, F Massol, M Salzet, F Mery, C Boidin-Wichlacz, D Misse, F Renaud, M Vittecoq, T Tissot, B Roche, R Poulin, F Thomas

(2016), Vol. 143, pp. 533-541, Parasitology, Cambridge, Eng., C1


Individual boldness traits influenced by temperature in male Siamese fighting fish.

M Forsatkar, M Nematollahi, P Biro, C Beckmann

(2016), Vol. 165, pp. 267-272, Physiology and behavior, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, C1


Personality and individual differences in plasticity

J Stamps, P Biro

(2016), Vol. 12, pp. 18-23, Current opinion in behavioral sciences, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, C1



C Atherton

(2016), pp. 1-1, Axon : creative explorations, Canberra, A.C.T., J3


Stress-induced peak (but not resting) metabolism correlates with mating display intensity in male guppies.

P Biro, K Fanson, F Santostefano

(2016), Vol. 6, pp. 6537-6545, Ecology and evolution, Chichester, Eng., C1


Towards powerful experimental and statistical approaches to study intraindividual variability in labile traits

D Mitchell, B Fanson, C Beckmann, P Biro

(2016), Vol. 3, pp. 1-10, Royal society open science, London, Eng., C1


Fishing directly selects on growth rate via behaviour: implications of growth-selection that is independent of size.

P Biro, P Sampson

(2015), Vol. 282, pp. 1-6, Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological sciences, London, Eng, C1


Using repeatability to study physiological and behavioural traits: ignore time-related change at your peril

P Biro, J Stamps

(2015), Vol. 105, pp. 223-230, Animal behaviour, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, C1


Hierarchical analysis of avian re-nesting behavior: mean, across-individual, and intra-individual responses

C Beckmann, P Biro, K Martin

(2015), Vol. 69, pp. 1631-1638, Behavioral ecology and sociobiology, New York, N.Y., C1


Individual and sex-specific differences in intrinsic growth rate covary with consistent individual differences in behaviour

P Biro, B Adriaenssens, P Sampson

(2014), Vol. 83, pp. 1186-1195, Journal of Animal Ecology, C1


Individual variation in thermal performance curves: swimming burst speed and jumping endurance in wild-caught tropical clawed frogs

V Careau, P Biro, C Bonneaud, E Fokam, A Herrel

(2014), Vol. 175, pp. 471-480, Oecologia, Heidelberg, Germany, C1


Individual (co)variation in thermal reaction norms of standard and maximal metabolic rates in wild-caught slimy salamanders

V Careau, M Gifford, P Biro

(2014), Vol. 28, pp. 1175-1186, Functional ecology, Oxford, England, C1


Are most samples of animals systematically biased? Consistent individual trait differences bias samples despite random sampling

P Biro

(2013), Vol. 171, pp. 339-345, Oecologia, C1


How does temperature affect behaviour? Multilevel analysis of plasticity, personality and predictability in hermit crabs

M Briffa, D Bridger, P Biro

(2013), Vol. 86, pp. 47-54, Animal Behaviour, C1


On the Validity of a Single (Boldness) Assay in Personality Research

C Beckmann, P Biro

(2013), Vol. 119, pp. 937-947, Ethology, C1


Predictability as a personality trait: Consistent differences in intraindividual behavioral variation

P Biro, B Adriaenssens

(2013), Vol. 182, pp. 621-629, American Naturalist, C1


Personality and plasticity: Consistent responses within-, but not across-temperature situations in crabs

P Biro, J O'Connor, L Pedini, P Gribben

(2013), Vol. 150, pp. 799-811, Behaviour, Leiden, The Netherlands, C1-1


Boldness, trappability and sampling bias in wild lizards

A Carter, R Heinsohn, A Goldizen, P Biro

(2012), Vol. 83, pp. 1051-1058, Animal Behaviour, C1


Do rapid assays predict repeatability in labile (behavioural) traits?

P Biro

(2012), Vol. 83, pp. 1295-1300, Animal Behaviour, C1


Introgression of domesticated alleles into a wild trout genotype and the impact on seasonal survival in natural lakes

W Vandersteen, P Biro, L Harris, R Devlin

(2012), Vol. 5, pp. 76-88, Evolutionary applications, Hoboken, N. J., C1


Unpredictable animals: Individual differences in intraindividual variability (IIV)

J Stamps, M Briffa, P Biro

(2012), Vol. 83, pp. 1325-1334, Animal Behaviour, C1


'Personality' in two species of temperate damselfish

A Eriksson, D Booth, P Biro

(2010), Vol. 420, pp. 273-276, Marine Ecology Progress Series, C1-1


Small within-day increases in temperature affects boldness and alters personality in coral reef fish

P Biro, C Beckmann, J Stamps

(2010), Vol. 277, pp. 71-77, Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, C1-1


Do consistent individual differences in metabolic rate promote consistent individual differences in behavior?

P Biro, J Stamps

(2010), Vol. 25, pp. 653-659, Trends in Ecology and Evolution, C1-1


Performance of tropical fish recruiting to temperate habitats: Role of ambient temperature and implications of climate change

W Figueira, P Biro, D Booth, V Valenzuela

(2009), Vol. 384, pp. 231-239, Marine Ecology Progress Series, C1-1


Repeatability of foraging tactics in young brook trout, Salvelinus fontinalis

P Biro, M Ridgway

(2008), Vol. 122, pp. 40-44, Canadian Field-Naturalist, C1-1


Rapid depletion of genotypes with fast growth and bold personality traits from harvested fish populations

P Biro, J Post

(2008), Vol. 105, pp. 2919-2922, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, C1-1


Are animal personality traits linked to life-history productivity?

P Biro, J Stamps

(2008), Vol. 23, pp. 361-368, Trends in Ecology and Evolution, C1-1


Early microhabitat use by age 0 year brook charr Salvelinus fontinalis in lakes

P Biro, C Beckmann, M Ridgway

(2008), Vol. 73, pp. 226-240, Journal of Fish Biology, C1-1


Direct manipulation of behaviour reveals a mechanism for variation in growth and mortality among prey populations

P Biro, M Abrahams, J Post

(2007), Vol. 73, pp. 891-896, Animal Behaviour, C1-1


Mechanisms for climate-induced mortality of fish populations in whole-lake experiments

P Biro, J Post, D Booth

(2007), Vol. 104, pp. 9715-9719, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, C1-1


Estimation of gillnet efficiency and selectivity across multiple sampling units: A hierarchical Bayesian analysis using mark-recapture data

P Askey, J Post, E Parkinson, E Rivot, A Paul, P Biro

(2007), Vol. 83, pp. 162-174, Fisheries Research, C1-1


Asymmetric impact of piscivorous birds on size-structured fish populations

C Beckmann, P Biro, J Post

(2006), Vol. 84, pp. 1584-1593, Canadian Journal of Zoology, C1-1


Behavioural trade-offs between growth and mortality explain evolution of submaximal growth rates

P Biro, M Abrahams, J Post, E Parkinson

(2006), Vol. 75, pp. 1165-1171, Journal of Animal Ecology, C1-1


Ontogeny of energy allocation reveals selective pressure promoting risk-taking behaviour in young fish cohorts

P Biro, J Post, M Abrahams

(2005), Vol. 272, pp. 1443-1448, Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, C1-1


Over-winter lipid depletion and mortality of age-0 rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss)

P Biro, A Morton, J Post, E Parkinson

(2004), Vol. 61, pp. 1513-1519, Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, C1-1


Predators select against high growth rates and risk-taking behaviour in domestic trout populations

P Biro, M Abrahams, J Post, E Parkinson

(2004), Vol. 271, pp. 2233-2237, Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, C1-1


Density-dependent mortality is mediated by foraging activity for prey fish in whole-lake experiments

P Biro, J Post, E Parkinson

(2003), Vol. 72, pp. 546-555, Journal of Animal Ecology, C1-1


From individuals to populations: Prey fish risk-taking mediates mortality in whole-system experiments

P Biro, J Post, E Parkinson

(2003), Vol. 84, pp. 2419-2431, Ecology, C1-1


Population consequences of a predator-induced habitat shift by trout in whole-lake experiments

P Biro, J Post, E Parkinson

(2003), Vol. 84, pp. 691-700, Ecology, C1-1


Staying cool: behavioral thermoregulation during summer by young-of-year brook trout in a lake

P Biro

(1998), Vol. 127, pp. 212-222, Transactions of the American Fisheries Society, Abingdon, Eng., C1-1


The central-place territorial model does not apply to space-use by juvenile brook charr Salvelinus fontinalis in lakes

P Biro, M Ridgway, D Noakes

(1997), Vol. 66, pp. 837-845, Journal of Animal Ecology, C1-1


Does the rate of foraging attempts predict ingestion rate for young-of-the-year brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) in the field?

P Biro, M Ridgway, R McLaughlin

(1996), Vol. 53, pp. 1814-1820, Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, C1-1


Individual Variation in Foraging Movements in a Lake Population of Young-of-the-Year Brook Charr (Salvelinus Fontinalis)

P Biro, M Ridgway

(1995), Vol. 132, pp. 57-74, Behaviour, C1-1


Funded Projects at Deakin

Australian Competitive Grants

Linkages between productivity and consistent behavioural traits in fish: implications for harvesting, climate impacts, and selective breeding for aquaculture

A/Prof Peter Biro

ARC Fellowships - Future Fellowships

  • 2013: $97,935
  • 2012: $188,508
  • 2011: $147,018

Can consistent individual differences in metabolic rate explain animal personality? Implications for fish and aquaculture in a warming climate

A/Prof Peter Biro

ARC - Discovery Projects

  • 2013: $77,774
  • 2012: $74,893
  • 2011: $75,166


Principal Supervisor

David Mitchell

Thesis entitled: Individuals to populations: Linking hierarchical levels of phenotypic assortment.

Doctor of Philosophy (Life & Env), School of Life and Environmental Sciences