Dr Matthew McLennan

Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellow


Matt's research concerns interactions between humans and wildlife and conservation outside of Protected Areas, and how animals respond to human-driven landscape changes. He is particularly interested in coexistence between great apes and humans in Africa and great ape behavioural ecology. Since 2006 he has studied a population of chimpanzees in unprotected forest fragments in an agricultural landscape at Bulindi, western Uganda. Matt is a member of the IUCN/SSC Primate Specialist Group.

Education and work

  • 2013-present: Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellow
  • 2011-2013: Honorary Research Associate
  • 2010: PhD Anthropology - Oxford Brookes University (Thesis title: Chimpanzee Ecology and Interactions with People in Unprotected Human-Dominated Landscape at Bulindi, Western Uganda).
  • 2003: MSc Primate Conservation - Oxford Brookes University
  • 1998: BA Anthropology - University of Durham


  • Journal articles

Journal articles

  • McLennan, M.R. and Hockings, K.J. (2014) Wild chimpanzees show group differences in selection of agricultural crops. Scientific Reports, 4, 5956.
  • Hockings, K.J., McLennan, M.R. and Hill, C. (2014). Fear beyond predators. Science, 344(6187), 981.
  • McLennan, M.R. (2014)Chimpanzee insectivory in the northern half of Uganda’s Rift Valley: do Bulindi chimpanzees conform to a regional pattern? Primates, 55(2), 173–178.
  • McLennan, M.R. (2013). Diet and feeding ecology of chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) in Bulindi, Uganda: foraging strategies at the forest-farm interface. International Journal of Primatology, 34(3), 585-614.
  • McLennan, M.R. and Hill, C.M. (2013) Ethical issues in the study and conservation of an African great ape in an unprotected, human-dominated landscape in western Uganda. In: Ethics in the Field: Contemporary Challenges, ed. J. MacClancy and A. Fuentes. Oxford: Berghahn.
  • Junker, J., Blake, S., Boesch, C., Campbell, G., du Toit, L., Duvall, C., Ekobo, A., Etoga, G., Galat-Luong, A., Gamys, J., Ganas-Swaray, J., Gatti, S., Ghiurghi, A., Granier, N., Hart, J., Head, J., Herbinger, I., Hicks, T.C., Huijbregts, B., Imong, I.S., Kuempel, N., Lahm, S., Lindsell, J., Maisels, F., McLennan, M.R., Martinez, L., Morgan, B., Morgan, D., et al. (2012) Recent decline in suitable environmental conditions for African great apes. Diversity and Distributions, 18(11), 1077-1091.
  • McLennan, M.R., Hyeroba, D., Asiimwe, C., Reynolds, V. and Wallis, J. 2012. Chimpanzees in mantraps: Lethal crop protection and conservation in Uganda. Oryx, 41(4), 598-603.
  • Priston, N.E.C. and McLennan, M.R. 2013. Managing humans, managing macaques: Human-macaque conflict in Asia and Africa. In: The Macaque Connection: Cooperation and Conflict Between Humans and Macaques, ed. S. Radhakrishna, M.A. Huffman and A. Sinha. Springer: New York. pp. 225-250.
  • McLennan, M.R. and Hill, C.M. 2012. Troublesome neighbours: Changing attitudes towards chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) in a human-dominated landscape in Uganda. Journal for Nature Conservation, 20(4) 219-227.
  • McLennan, M.R. and Huffman, M.A. 2012. High frequency of leaf-swallowing and its relationship to intestinal parasite expulsion in village chimpanzees at Bulindi, Uganda. American Journal of Primatology, 74(7), 642-650.
  • Hockings, K.J. and McLennan, M.R. 2012. From forest to farm: Systematic review of cultivar feeding by chimpanzees -- management implications for wildlife in anthropogenic landscapes. PLoS ONE, 7(4), e33391.
  • McLennan, M.R. and Plumptre, A.J. 2012. Protected apes, unprotected forest: Composition, structure and diversity of riverine forest fragments and their conservation value in Uganda. Tropical Conservation Science, 5(1), 79-103.
  • McLennan, M.R. 2011. Preliminary observations of hand-clasp grooming by chimpanzees at Bulindi, Uganda. Pan Africa News, 18(2), 18-20.
  • McLennan, M.R. 2011. Tool-use to obtain honey by chimpanzees at Bulindi: New record from Uganda. Primates, 52(4), 315-322.
  • McLennan, M.R. 2010. Case study of an unusual human-chimpanzee conflict at Bulindi, Uganda. Pan Africa News, 17(1), 1-4.
  • McLennan, M.R. and Hill, C.M. 2010. Chimpanzee responses to researchers in a disturbed forest-farm mosaic at Bulindi, western Uganda. American Journal of Primatology, 72, 907-908.
  • Plumptre, A.J, Rose, R, Nangendo, G., Williamson, E.A., Didier, K., Hart, J., Mulindahabi, F., Hicks, C., Griffin, B., Ogawa, H., Nixon, S., Pintea, L., Vosper, A., McLennan, M.R., et al. 2010. Eastern Chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii) Status Survey and Conservation Action Plan 2010-2020. Gland, Switzerland: IUCN. 52pp.
  • McLennan, M.R. 2008. Beleaguered chimpanzees in the agricultural district of Hoima, western Uganda. Primate Conservation, 23, 45-54.