We are offering two exciting opportunities to undertake PhD programs at the Fenner School of Environment and Society at The Australian National University. The scope of potential research is broad, but must have a clear focus on the ecology and conversation of threatened species in south-eastern Australia. High value is placed on field-based, empirical projects.
Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact Professor David Lindenmayer to discuss potential projects. The PhD scholars will be supervised by Professor, Dr Ben Scheele, Dr Natasha Robinson, and other researchers at the Fenner School of Environment and Society. Professor Lindenmayer’s group includes some of the Australia’s leading ecologists and conservation scientists. Research within the group addresses a diverse range of topics across mammals, frogs, birds, reptiles and plants. Past PhD graduates have a strong record of employment in academic, government and NGO sectors.
The successful applicants will be offered a PhD supplementary stipend of AUD$6000 p.a. additional to their PhD scholarship stipend from other sources. Operational funding of $8,000 and other support will be available for fieldwork and other expenses of the project. The supplementary stipend will be offered for three years with a possible six month extension.
See the ANU website for more details including, candidate requirements and how to apply. Information on stipend-scholarships is available here. Applications close 15 August 2017 for international students or 15 October 2017 for domestic students.
Many landscapes in Australia are fire-prone, and increasingly so. Altered fire regimes can have a serious negative impact on threatened plant species and ecological communities. A Threatened Species Recovery Hub project is working to better understand the effects of different fire regimes on threatened flora in order to improve fire management strategies and conservation outcomes.
Almost a quarter of Australia’s possums and gliders are listed as threatened under Australian environmental law, and many more are showing signs of decline. Dr Rochelle Steven from The University of Queensland believes people in the community can do a lot to support conservation, especially in urban areas.
The detection and monitoring of threatened species have been a strong area of research in the National Environmental Science Program and also the two national environmental research programs which preceded it. Hub Director Professor Brendan Wintle takes a look at what we’ve been achieving and why it is so important to the conservation of Australia’s threatened species.
In 2009, the Christmas Island blue-tailed skink and Lister’s gecko were headed for imminent extinction. Parks Australia acted quickly to collect remaining wild individuals in order to establish captive breeding programs on Christmas Island and at Taronga Zoo, Sydney, which have been highly successful. A Threatened Species Recovery Hub project team is working closely with Parks Australia to help secure a future for the two lizards beyond captivity.
The silver-headed antechinus and black-tailed dusky antechinus are carnivorous marsupials found in high-elevation forests in parts of central-eastern and south-eastern Queensland. They were only described in the past six years, but they are already listed as Endangered. Knowing where they occur is essential for effective conservation, but current distribution knowledge is patchy. To address this, PhD candidate Stephane Batista in partnership with the Queensland Herbarium and Queensland Department of Environment and Science is modelling the habitat where these threatened species are likely to occur, and is using detection dogs to rapidly survey these sites.