A PhD top-up stipend plus additional funding is available for an independent Australian domestic postgraduate to work with conservation practitioners and ecologists in both academia and the government on assessing the impacts of fire on threatened ecological communities to evaluate where and how to manage degraded communities. This opportunity is to conduct applied research intended to have real-world outcomes in terms of informing NSW Government priorities for protecting and managing threatened ecological communities.
We recently published a study titled "Species co-occurrence analysis predicts management outcomes for multiple threats" (Tulloch AIT, Chades I, Lindenmayer DB) in Nature Ecology and Evolution: http://go.nature.com/2Cvq2Ck Despite decades of studying species’ responses to environmental change and, more recently, the threatening processes that destroy their populations and habitats, we know almost nothing about how most communities … Continue reading Turning small data on species responses to management into big rewards for recovering communities
My new position with The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) involves some exciting research in northern Republic of Congo and Tanzania to develop a planning framework emphasizing a spatially-explicit scenario analysis approach to conservation and economic development planning, in partnership with the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF), World Resources Institute (WRI) and Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) and with support … Continue reading Switching focus from biodiversity to ecosystem function to conserve developing landscapes
In December 2016 we published some exciting new research that combines network analysis with community dynamics to find monitoring or management surrogates in changing landscapes, such as those responding to fire or restoration of vegetation. In Tulloch, A. I. T., Chadès, I., Dujardin, Y., Westgate, M. J., Lane, P. W. and Lindenmayer, D. (2016), Dynamic species co-occurrence … Continue reading How to efficiently select an optimal set of complementary surrogate species
Ayesha Tulloch, Australian National University; James Watson, The University of Queensland; Jeremy Ringma, The University of Queensland; Megan Barnes, The University of Queensland, and Richard Fuller, The University of Queensland Australia is renowned globally for its vast expanses of untouched wilderness. But for anyone who has travelled across its breadth, the myth of Australia’s pristine … Continue reading Unique Australian wildlife risks vanishing as ecosystems suffer death by a thousand cuts
We have a new paper out in the Journal of Applied Ecology, about preventing the death by 1000 cuts of our ecosystems through an understanding of the importance of small patches. It has received encouraging support from international conservation groups and researchers. Our research shows that in addition to declines in the extent of almost … Continue reading The importance of small patches of habitat for conservation
Conservation organisations and resource managers regularly use maps of threats to prioritize effort. In response to increasing reliance on threat maps for making conservation decisions, we just published an exciting paper in the journal Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, titled "Why do we map threats? Linking threat mapping with actions to make better conservation decisions". In this article, we argue that a decision-theoretic approach that identifies and evaluates threat management options is the logical way of dealing with threats to biodiversity.
Conservation managers designing and implementing threatened species management actions, frequently face the same dilemma: should they invest in projects that result in certain gains, or invest in projects with greater expected net benefit but higher risk of failure? The answer lies in the managers' and decision-makers' willingness to accept uncertainty in the outcomes of management - their aversion to risk. We have a new publication in Conservation Biology that presents the first examination of the issue of manager’s risk aversion in relation to prioritisation of threatened species recovery projects.
Recent rainfall in the Simpson Desert prompted me to spend some time out there in April with Prof Chris Dickman and his 'Ratcatchers' from the Desert Ecology Research Group from the University of Sydney. It was my 10 year anniversary since my last trip there and much has changed in that time. When I last visited the … Continue reading Simpson Desert stories
Conservation funds are limited, and management agencies either explicitly or implicitly prioritize funding allocation among threatened species. Traditionally, agencies have often aimed to maximize the number of species they can help conserve. Recently many have argued that conserving phylogenetic diversity should be the goal, to ensure that as much of the Earth’s genetic library as possible is retained. In our paper, we find ways of efficiently balancing these two goals, to conserve the greatest possible combination of species and phylogenetic diversity with limited budgets. You can find the paper here. If you don’t have access to the journal Biological Conservation, please get in touch and I can send you a copy!