Dr Rosa Menendez Martinez


Research Overview

Rosa is an insect ecologist interested in the effects of human induced environmental change (climate change and land use changes) on insect diversity and the ecosystem functions they drive. Butterflies and dung beetles are her primary groups of interest and she carries out research in both temperate and tropical regions. Her research also has a conservation focus, aiming to provide advice on the best management practices for promoting the conservation of insects.

Published research

Rosa’s research has made significant advances in the understanding of how climate change affects insect diversity, including evidence that recent changes in climate correlate with changes in species richness, using butterflies in the UK as the model system. This work also quantified the extent to which biodiversity changes, at a community level, appears to be lagging behind climate change and provided the first experimental test that species are exhibiting climate-lags. She has published several papers on how insects are responding to climate warming and how habitat fragmentation affects species persistence (see link to publications).

Current research themes include:

  • Species altitudinal distributions: range shifts in response to climate warming.
  • Host-parasitoid interactions: potential disruption due to climate warming.
  • Biodiversity and ecosystem functioning: effects of climate change/habitat loss on functional diversity.


Rosa’s primary administrative responsibility in the department is as Part II Director of Studies for LEC-Biology degrees.

Rosa is currently:

  • associate editor of the journal Ecological Entomology
  • regular research review panel member for the Spanish Research Council


Rosa’s teaching includes:

Linking species thermal tolerance to elevational range shifts in upland dung beetles
Birkett, A.J., Blackburn, G.A., Menendez Martinez, M.R. 27/11/2017 In: Ecography.
Journal article

Recovery of mammal diversity in tropical forests: a functional approach to measuring restoration
Derhé, M., Murphy, H., Preece, N., Lawes, M., Menendez Martinez, M.R. 27/09/2017 In: Restoration Ecology.
Journal article

Do natural enemies really make a difference?: field scale impacts of parasitoid wasps and hoverfly larvae on cereal aphid populations
Ramsden, M., Menendez Martinez, M.R., Leather, S., Wackers, F.L. 05/2017 In: Agricultural and Forest Entomology. 19, 2, p. 139-145. 7 p.
Journal article

Associational resistance or susceptibility: the indirect interaction between chemically-defended and non-defended herbivore prey via a shared predator
Nesbit, C., Menendez Martinez, M.R., Roberts, M.R., Wilby, A. 12/2016 In: Oikos. 125, 12, p. 1802-1811. 10 p.
Journal article

Measuring the success of reforestation for restoring biodiversity and ecosystem functioning
Derhé, M., Murphy, H., Monteith, G., Menendez Martinez, M.R. 12/2016 In: Journal of Applied Ecology. 53, 6, p. 1714-1724. 11 p.
Journal article

The effects of land use change on native dung beetle diversity and function in Australia’s Wet Tropics
Kenyon, T., Mayfield, M., Monteith, G., Menendez Martinez, M.R. 11/2016 In: Austral Ecology. 41, 7, p. 797-808. 12 p.
Journal article

Complementarity of dung beetle species with different functional behaviours influence dung–soil carbon cycling
Menendez Martinez, M.R., Webb, P., Orwin, K.H. 01/2016 In: Soil Biology and Biochemistry. 92, p. 142-148. 7 p.
Journal article

Selection of aphid prey by a generalist predator: do prey chemical defences matter?
Nesbit, C.M., Wilby, A., Roberts, M.R., Menendez Martinez, M.R. 12/2015 In: Ecological Entomology. 40, 6, p. 767-775. 9 p.
Journal article

Optimizing field margins for biocontrol services: the relative role of aphid abundance, annual floral resources, and overwinter habitat in enhancing aphid natural enemies
Ramsden, M., Menéndez, R., Leather, S., Wackers, F. 1/01/2015 In: Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment. 199, p. 94-104. 11 p.
Journal article

Cambio en los rangos altitudinales de insectos en Sierra Nevada: evidencias del cambio climático
González-Megías, A., Menendez Martinez, M.R., Tinaut, A. 2015 In: La huella del cambio global en Sierra Nevada. Consejería de Medio Ambiente y Ordenación del Territorio. Junta de Andalucía. p. 118-120. 3 p.

Climate change and elevational range shifts: evidence from dung beetles in two European mountain ranges
Menéndez, R., Gonzalez-Megias, A., Jay-Robert, P., Marquez-Ferrando, R. 06/2014 In: Global Ecology and Biogeography. 23, 6, p. 646-657. 12 p.
Journal article

Woodland structure, rather than tree identity, determines the breeding habitat of Willow Warblers Phylloscopus trochilus in the northwest of England
Stostad, H.N., Menéndez, R. 2014 In: Bird Study. 61, 2, p. 246-254. 9 p.
Journal article

Los Escarabeidos Coprófagos
Ávila , J.M., González Megías, A., Márquez Ferrando , R., Menéndez, R. 2013 In: Los insectos de Sierra Nevada 200 años de historia. Asociación Española de Entomología p. 365-376. 12 p. ISBN: 978-84-616-3513-9.

The enhancement of conservation biological control through targeted landscape management
Ramsden, M., Menéndez, R., Leather, S., Wäckers, F. 2013 In: Environmental management on farmland. Warwick : ASSOCIATION OF APPLIED BIOLOGISTS p. 119-126. 8 p.

Climate change effects on above- and below-ground interactions in a dryland ecosystem
Gonzalez-Megias, A., Menéndez, R. 19/11/2012 In: Philosophical Transactions B: Biological Sciences. 367, 1606, p. 3115-3124. 10 p.
Journal article

Effect of additional resources on aphidopohagous parasitoid wasp activity on field margins in arable landscapes
Ramsden, M., Menendez Martinez, R., Leather, S., Wäckers, F. 2012 In: Working Group “Landscape Management for Functional biodiversity. p. 161-165. 5 p.

Changes in the composition of British butterfly assemblages over two decades.
Gonzalez-Megias, A., Menéndez, R., Roy, D., Brereton, T., Thomas, C.D. 07/2008 In: Global Change Biology. 14, 7, p. 1464-1474. 11 p.
Journal article

Escape from natural enemies during climate-driven range expansion: a case study
Menéndez, R., Gonzalez-Megias, A., Lewis, O.T., Shaw, M.R., Thomas, C.D. 06/2008 In: Ecological Entomology. 33, 3, p. 413-421. 9 p.
Journal article

Regional hotspots of butterfly diversity in a protected area: Are they indicators of unique assemblages and areas with more species of conservation concern?
Gutiérrez, D., Menéndez, R. 11/2007 In: Acta Oecologica. 32, 3, p. 30113-311. 29803 p.
Journal article

Direct and indirect effects of climate and habitat factors on butterfly diversity.
Menéndez, R., González-Megías, A., Collingham, Y., Fox, R., Roy, D.B., Ohlemüller, R., Thomas, C.D. 03/2007 In: Ecology. 88, 3, p. 605-611. 7 p.
Journal article

How are insects responding to global warming?
Menéndez, R. 2007 In: Tijdschrift voor Entomologie. 150, 2, p. 355-365. 11 p.
Journal article

Can occupancy patterns be used to predict distributions in widely separated geographic regions?
Menéndez, R., Thomas, C.D. 09/2006 In: Oecologia. 149, 3, p. 396-405. 10 p.
Journal article

Species richness changes lag behind climate change.
Menéndez, R., González Megías, A., Hill, J.K., Braschler, B., Willis, S.G., Collingham, Y., Fox, R., Roy, D.B., Thomas, C.D. 22/06/2006 In: Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. 273, 1593, p. 1465-1470. 6 p.
Journal article

Habitat-based conservation priorities for carabid beetles within the Picos de Europa National Park, northern Spain.
Gutiérrez, D., Menéndez, R., Méndez, M. 02/2004 In: Biological Conservation. 115, 3, p. 379-393. 15 p.
Journal article

Shifts in habitat associations of dung beetles in Northern Spain : climate change implications.
Menéndez, R., Gutierrez, D. 2004 In: Ecoscience -Quebec-. 11, p. 329-337. 9 p.
Journal article

Welcome to the North? : butterflies and climate change.
Menéndez, R., Thomas, C. 2004 In: Yorkshire Wildlife Magazine.
Journal article

Migration and Allee effects in the six-spot burnet moth Zygaena filipendulae.
Menéndez, R., Gutiérrez, D., Thomas, C.T. 06/2002 In: Ecological Entomology. 27, 3, p. 317-325. 9 p.
Journal article

Metapopulations of four lepidopteran herbivores on a single host plant, Lotus Corniculatus.
Gutiérrez, D., León-Cortés, J.L., Menéndez, R., Wilson, R.J., Cowley, M.J.R., Thomas, C.D. 05/2001 In: Ecology. 82, 5, p. 1371-1386. 16 p.
Journal article

Metapopulation structure depends on spatial scale in the host-specific moth Wheeleria spilodactylus (Lepidoptera: Pterophoridae).
Menéndez, R., Thomas, C.D. 12/2000 In: Journal of Animal Ecology. 69, 6, p. 935-951. 17 p.
Journal article

Heterotrophic succession within dung-inhabiting beetle communities in northern Spain.
Menéndez, R., Gutiérrez, D. 10/09/1999 In: Acta Oecologica. 20, 5, p. 527-535. 9 p.
Journal article

Stability of butterfly assemblages in relation to the level of numerical resolution and altitude
Gutierrez, D., Menendez Martinez, M.R. 07/1998 In: Biodiversity and Conservation. 7, 7, p. 967-979. 13 p.
Journal article

Phenology of butterflies along an altitudinal gradient in northern Spain
Gutierrez, D., Menendez Martinez, M.R. 02/1998 In: Journal of Zoology. 244, 2, p. 249-264. 16 p.
Journal article

Patterns in distribution, abundance and body size of carabid beetles (Coleoptera: Caraboidea) in relation to dispersal ability
Gutierrez, D., Menendez Martinez, M.R. 12/1997 In: Journal of Biogeography. 24, 6, p. 903-914. 12 p.
Journal article

Altitudinal effects on habitat selection in dung beetles (Scaraboidea: Aphodiidae) in the northern Iberian peninsula
Menendez Martinez, M.R., Gutierrez, D. 01/1996 In: Ecography. 19, 3, p. 313-317. 5 p.
Journal article

Effects of ovule position on seed maturation and seed weight in Ulex europaeus and U. gallii (Fabaceae).
Gutierrez, D., Menendez Martinez, M.R., Obeso, J.R. 1996 In: Canadian Journal of Botany. 74
Journal article

Distribution and abundance of butterflies in a mountain area in the northern Iberian peninsula
Gutierrez, D., Menendez Martinez, M.R. 09/1995 In: Ecography. 18, 3, p. 209-216. 8 p.
Journal article