Toni Romani is a wildlife biologist with extensive experience studying large European carnivores and their relationship to their preys. Toni studied at the University of Udine (Italy) and has developed an innovative approach to studying wildlife through the interpretation of tracks and signs based on the CyberTracker standard. He is currently a PhD student at the Faculty of Artes Liberales and teaches a Primatology master’s program at University of Girona (Spain) entitled ‘Tools and methods of research in primatology’.
Toni focuses his research on the topic of ground nesting (GN) behaviour of chimpanzees in the Northern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Great apes typically construct night nests in which to sleep. In most cases these are arboreal, but gorillas also often sleep terrestrially in GNs. Chimpanzees in over most of their range, nest exclusively in trees, but in a few regions, such as Bili-Uéré and Ituri Forests in Northern DRC, they also use GN. He will investigate factors which may impact the likelihood that chimpanzees will sleep on the ground, including: seasonality; sex; human disturbance; habitat type; vectors and parasite; abundance of predators and other dangerous animals. Culture may also be involved, but we must be careful in our efforts to disentangle this from ecological, morphological and genetic explanations.