Background and activities
My research is focused on the evolutionary understanding of animal behaviour. I have conducted research on several issues related to parental care and sexual selection, and the interplay between the two processes. In addressing these topics, I have studied a wide range of fish and bird species. My current research is focused on three main issues: (1) Sex role dynamics, (2) Female ornamentation in relation to male mate choice and female‐female competition, and (2) Social and genetic mating systems; all of these relating to the larger issue of animal signaling. My current main model species is the two‐spotted goby (Gobiusculus flavescens), a small but ecologically important marine fish. The research is focused on reproductive dynamics, including behavioral and ecological factors that promote or restrain reproduction. I have also recently initiated a project on coral reef fish coloration, diversity and speciation. While the majority of my work has aimed to understand basic biological phenomena and processes, I am also involved in projects related to conservation biology and climate change. A current main focus is the effects of coral bleaching and coral mortality on reef fishes. My research involves collaboration with specialists around the world, and with students, post‐docs and senior researchers at my NTNU lab.
You find more info about the research in my lab at the Sex Roles Lab website (link to the right).
Teaching and supervision
I enjoy teaching and teach at all levels, from introductory undergraduate to PhD level. Topics for courses include general animal behaviour, communication and reproductive behaviour, sexual selection, and the theory and philosophy of biological science. I also enjoy supervising MSc and PhD students.
Teaching April 2016 - March 2017
None - on sabbatical leave from 1 April and for a year.
Teaching fall 2017
BI1003 Evolution, Behaviour og Ecology
First-year course in evolution, behaviour and ecology - the very first biology course in the study program of the Department. I am responsible for teaching behaviour, life history (and a bit evolution), alternating with Professor Gunilla Rosenqvist (I do odd-number years, she does even-number years). The course is tought in Norwegian, and includes lectures and a project on an assigned topic (group work). The course manager is Professor Lars Söderström.
How To Do Science
Introductory course for the MSc in biology. I am responsible for teaching Theory of Science. The course is taught in English. The course manager is Associate Professor Thorsten Hamman.
BI3052 Study Design
This is a fairly new MSc course aimed to provide an extensive and hands-on introduction to good study design for MSc projects and in general. I teach the course together with professors Jon Wright (course manager) and Christophe Pélabon. My part of the course is on "Testing Hypotheses in Science", "Experimental vs Observational Studies", and "Laboratory vs Field Studies". The course is taught in English, and involves extensive student-teacher interaction and group assignments.
Teaching spring 2018
BI 2045 Communication and Reproductive Behaviour
This course explores communication, sexual selection and reproductive behaviour in animals - and a little bit in plants. It fits into the curriculum towards the end of a BSc degree. The course is based on lectures and a supervised literature review project, and is taught in English (provided foreign-speaking course participants). The course starts on Tuesday 17 February. More info about the course can be obtained at trondamundsen.com, from the NTNU studies catalogue, and - once you have signed up for the course - at it:s learning.
MN 8000 Doing science: methods, ethics and dissemination
This course provides a down-to-earth introduction to the fundamental issues of doing science - the challenges and potentials of the scientific endeavour. It also deals with contemporary controversial issues related to the interaction between science and society. The course is a PhD course that is mandatory for all PhD candidates at the Faculty of Natural Sciences and Technology (the "NT Faculty"), normally to be taken at the start of the PhD study. The course is intensive course and is taught during January - February. MN 8000 is a collaborative effort by all departments at the faculty, with teachers from all departments as well. The course includes plenary sessions for all students (e.g. scientific writing, dissemination, history of science) and seminar sessions focusing on fundamental issues of doing science. These seminars are split by topic/department. I am responsible for the seminars for biology and biotechnology candidates (and potentially for biophysics). The course manager is Professor Signe Kjelstrup.
I like communicating science to lay audiences, and do so through lectures, newspapers, magazines, radio, etc. I also provide research news (mostly from research by others but sometimes also my own) on my twitter account https://twitter.com/Trond_Amundsen and sometimes also on my Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/trond.amundsen.940; open profile).
Scientific, academic and artistic work
A selection of recent journal publications, artistic productions, books, including book and report excerpts. See all publications in the database
- (2016) Mate choice plasticity in a coral reef fish. Behavioral Ecology. vol. 27 (5).
- (2014) Context Consistency and Seasonal Variation in Boldness of Male Two-Spotted Gobies. PLoS ONE. vol. 9 (3).
- (2014) Mate competition and resource competition are inter-related in sexual selection. Journal of Evolutionary Biology. vol. 27 (3).
- (2014) Within-season variation in sexual selection in a fish with dynamic sex roles. Molecular Ecology. vol. 23 (14).
- (2013) Nest distribution affects behaviour and mating success in a marine fish. Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology. vol. 67 (4).
- (2013) Elevated CO2 affects embryonic development and larval phototaxis in a temperate marine fish. Ecology and Evolution. vol. 3 (11).
- (2013) Effects of habitat complexity on mating behavior and mating success in a marine fish. Behavioral Ecology. vol. 24 (2).
- (2013) Operational sex ratio but not density affects sexual selection in a fish. Evolution. vol. 67 (7).
- (2012) Large males fight and court more across a range of social environments: an experiment on the two spotted goby Gobiusculus flavescens. Journal of Fish Biology. vol. 81 (1).
- (2012) Measuring mating competition correctly: available evidence supports operational sex ratio theory. Behavioral Ecology. vol. 23 (6).
- (2012) Sex roles and mutual mate choice matter during mate sampling. American Naturalist. vol. 179 (6).
- (2009) Do operational sex ratio and density affect mating behaviour? An experiment on the two-spotted goby. Animal Behaviour. vol. 78 (5).
- (2009) First record of a Kabatana sp. microsporidium infecting fish in the Atlantic Ocean. Diseases of Aquatic Organisms. vol. 20 (2).
- (2009) Multiple mating and a low incidence of cuckoldry for nest-holding males in the two-spotted goby, Gobiusculus flavescens. BMC Evolutionary Biology. vol. 9.
- (2009) Female ornamentation and egg carotenoids of six sympatric gobies. Journal of Fish Biology. vol. 75 (10).
- (2009) Temporal variability in a multicomponent trait: nuptial coloration of female two-spotted gobies. Behavioral Ecology. vol. 20 (2).
- (2008) Female aggressive response and hormonal correlates - an intrusion experiment in a free-living passerine. Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology. vol. 62.
- (2008) Hormonal regulation of female nuptial coloration in a fish. Hormones and Behavior. vol. 54 (4).
- (2006) Seasonal change in female choice for male size in the two-spotted goby. Animal Behaviour. vol. 72.
- (2006) Presence of same sex individuals negatively affects egg maturation in female guppies (Poecilia reticulata). Behaviour. vol. 143.