Mhairi Reid

Mhairi Reid


My research focuses on understanding the early evolution of birds, in particular the Australaves (Cariama, flacons, parrots and passerines). By establishing a new and comprehensive phylogeny I will be able to better understand their early evolutionary history particularly the affinities of extinct, fossil groups with distinct ecomorphologies, their implications for the evolution of ecological traits, and the extent to which morphological character states support key nodes in the molecular phylogeny of Telluraves. This project is supervised by Prof. Roger Benson and is funded by NERC through the Doctoral Training Partnership in Environmental Research.

I previously studied at the University of Cape Town, South Africa where my MSc focused on the sedimentology and taphonomy of a Palaeozoic echinoderm obrution deposit. I have also done extensive work on dinosaur footprints from Lesotho.

Abrahams, M ., Sciscio, L., Reid, M.,  Bordy, EM. (2020) Large tridactyl dinosaur tracks from the Early Jurassic of southern Gondwana–uppermost Elliot Formation, Upper Moyeni, Lesotho. Annales Societatis Geologorum Poloniae

Reid, M., Taylor, W., Brett, C.E., Hunter, A. (2019) Taphonomy and paleoecology of an ophiuroid-stylophoran obrution deposit from the lower Devonian Bokkeveld Group, South Africa. PALAIOS.

Reid, M., Bordy E.M., Taylor, W., le Roux, S.A, du Plessis, A. (2019) Micro X-ray computed tomography dataset of fossil echinoderms in an ancient obrution bed: a robust method for taphonomic and paleoecologic analyses. GigaScience.

Reid, M., Hunter, A. W., Taylor, W., Bordy E. (2019) A new genus of Protasteridae from the Lower Devonian Bokkeveld Group of South Africa. Palaeontologia Africana

Browning C., Reid, M. (2017) Lithostratigraphy of the Kweekvlei Formation (Witteberg Group), South Africa. South African Journal of Geology. South African Journal of Geology; 120 (3): 421–432. doi:

Sciscio, L., Bordy, E.M., Reid, M., Abrahams, M. (2016) Sedimentology and ichnology of the Mafube dinosaur track site (Lower Jurassic, eastern Free State, South Africa): a report on footprint preservation and palaeoenvironment. Peer J: doi: 10.7717/peerj.2285

Reid. M., Bordy, E.M., Wendy, T. (2015) Taphonomy and sedimentology of an echinoderm obrution bed in the Lower Devonian Voorstehoek Formation (Bokkeveld Group, Cape Supergroup) of South Africa. Journal of African Earth Sciences. doi:10.1016/j.jafrearsci.2015.04.009.