Anna Bird

Lecturer in Geology

Faculty of Science and Engineering

01482 466340

Anna Bird is a lecturer in metamorphic geology who also works on Quaternary sediments.

Her interests are isotopic geochemistry and geochronology applied to timing orogenic events, provenance and as tracers of sediment transport, crustal and mantle processes.


Research Interests

  • Isotope geochemistry and geochronology to answer fundamental geological questions like the timing(s) of orogenic events, and provenance of sediments

  • Crustal and mantle geological processes

Research groups

  • Institute of Energy and Environment

  • Collisional Orogeny in the Scandinavian Caledonides (COSC-2): Drilling the basal Caledonian decollement and into the basement of the Fennoscandian Shield. Part of the Geochronology Working Group


Nie, J., Song, Y., Möller, A., Stockli, D.F., Peng, W., Stevens, T., Bird, A., Oalmann, J., Liu, S., Horton, B.K., Fang, X. 2014, 'Provenance of the upper Miocene-Pliocene Red Clay deposits of the Chinese Loess Plateau, EPSL

Bird, A.F., Thirlwall, M.F., Strachan, R.A., Manning, C.J. 2013, 'Lu-Hf and Sm-Nd mineral ages indicated two phases of Caledonian garnet growth in north Sutherland, Scotland: implications for regional tectonic models', Journal of the Geological Society, 170, 301-317

Stevens, T., Adamiec, G., Bird, A.F., Lu, H. 2013, 'An abrupt shift in dust source on the Chinese Loess Plateau revealed through high sampling resolution OSL dating', Quaternary Science Reviews, 85, 121-132

Stevens, T., Carter, A., Watson, T.P., Vermeesch, P., Andò, S., Bird, A.F., Lu, H., Garzanti, E., Cottam, M.A., Sevastjanova, I. 2013, 'Genetic linkage between the Yellow River, the Mu Us desert and the Chinese Loess Plateau', Quaternary Science Reviews, 78, 355-368

Nie, J., Peng, W., Pfaff, K., Moeller, A., Garzanti, E., Andò, S., Stevens, T., Bird, A., Chang, H., Song, Y., Liu, S., Ji, S. 2013, 'Climate control on heavy mineral assemblages in Chinese loess and red clay', Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 381-382, 110-118

Full list


Programmes taught on (2019)

Modules list

  • Rocks, Minerals and Fossils

  • Global Environments

  • 3D Earth

  • Exploring Worlds Around Us

  • Interpreting Environments

  • Igneous and metamorphic rocks

  • Geoscience Field-skills

  • Earth Evolution

  • Quaternary Geoscience

  • Geology Mapping Project

Research PhDs

Anna Bird welcomes applications in metamorphic geology, geochronology, loess, regional tectonics.

Completed PhDs

  • Stephanie Walker, Geochronology in a poly-orogenic basement terrane: The Caledonides of Shetland, co-supervised by Matthew Thirlwall (RHUL) and Rob Strachan (Portsmouth), RHUL PhD candidate (2013–2017)

Current PhD supervisions 

  • Rachael Gosling, Investigating the structural expression of passive margin sedimentary basin development in a metamorphic basement, co-supervised by Rob Strachan (Portsmouth) and Martin Smith (BGS), University of Hull PhD candidate/Graduate Teaching Assistant

  • Yiman Fang, Multiple Scenario Approach reconstructions of vegetation response to past climate change in China, co-supervisor with Jane Bunting and Michelle Farrell (Coventry), University of Hull PhD candidate

Teaching awards and accolades

  • Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

Professional highlights

Academic qualifications

  • PhD Earth Sciences, Age resolution of peak metamorphism within the Caledonides of northern Scotland and Shetland, supervised by Prof Matthew Thirlwall and Prof Rob Strachan (Portsmouth), Royal Holloway, University of London (2011)

  • BSc (Hons) in Geology, Thesis: Geology of the Island of Kythira, Greece, supervised by Prof John Underhill, University of Edinburgh (2006)

External roles

  • Associate Editor for Geological Society of America Bulletin (2017- )

  • Leader of organising committee for Trans-Iapetus Workshop 2017, two-day conference followed by two-day field trip

  • Chair of the Metamorphic Studies Group (MSG), (March 2016- )

  • Subject Editor in Geochronology and Isotopic Geochemistry for Journal of the Geological Society of London (2013- )

  • Chair of University of Hull Geochemistry Group (HUGG) (2015-2017)

Awards and accolades

  • International Continental Drilling Program (ICDP), $1,000,000 full contribution requested for Collisional Orogeny in the Scandinavian Caledonides (COSC-2): Drilling the basal Caledonian decollement and into the basement of the Fennoscandian Shield. Part of the Geochronology Working Group.

  • University of Hull Initial Investment Fund, £437,000 investment in a LA-QQQ for the Faculty of Science and Engineering

  • Named 2014 young author of the year by the Journal of the Geological Society for 'Lu-Hf and Sm-Nd dating of metamorphic garnet: evidence for multiple accretion events during the Caledonian orogeny in Scotland', co-authored by M F Thirlwall, R A Strachan and C J Manning

  • NERC research grant, 2008, full studentship

  • Kirsty Brown Memorial Award, 2008, funding for field work