Italy to Sydney

Visiting PhD student Claudia Ciarelli

By Claudia Ciarelli

Hello, I’m Claudia Ciarelli and I am a visiting PhD Student at the Poultry Research Foundation and School of Life and Environmental Sciences within The University of Sydney.

After completing my masters at the University of Perugia, Italy in 2020 (Msc Animal Science), I started my PhD at the University of Padova, Italy (DAFNAE) under the supervision of Prof. Gerolamo Xiccato and co-supervisor Prof. Angela Trocino.

My research is focused on determining the welfare, behaviour, and production of laying hens reared in cage-free systems. Here in Sydney, through the Erasmus program, I am collaborating with lead researcher Dr Wendy Muir on an exciting project funded by Australian Eggs. Our project aims to identify the determinants associated with floor egg production on Australian farms, with a view to identifying management strategies empowering farmers to reduce the number of floor eggs. Through this project, I will gain insight into the local farming and monitoring strategies here in Australia allowing me to draw comparisons with European practices. The analysis of this important data will contribute both to my PhD thesis and to a proposed scientific paper. As a lover of great food (an Italian) I feel a great sense of pride to be working as a poultry researcher because my work contributes to global egg production. It’s crucial we obtain this highly nutritious food in a safe manner that respects animal welfare and farmers. In short: eggs are egg-cellent!