Student project and volunteer opportunities
The Forest Biodiversity and Community Dynamics Research team in the Faculty of Science at the University of Melbourne is looking for a graduate research student to undertake a PhD or MPhil project focused on predicting foraging resource variability over time and space for the endangered south-eastern red-tailed black cockatoo (Calyptorhynchus banksii graptogyne). The project will involve fieldwork but also a substantial modelling component. This research will be critical for understanding the impact of climate variability and change on this iconic species but also for helping managers implement climate-smart conservation planning.
The successful student will be working with a collaborative team of researchers and forest managers from the University of Melbourne, Arthur Rylah Institute and Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning. The project has a 3.5 year fully funded scholarship and funding for field expenses and operating. We are looking to fill the position for this is exciting project immediately.
If interested, please contact Craig Nitchke (email@example.com) and provide your CV and most recent academic transcript.
Masters and Honours: Research Projects
Fire & Fragmentation Project: several projects available
Start dates are flexible, so please contact Julian any time if you are interested.
A key knowledge gap is how the characteristics of fragmented landscapes (e.g. patch size and isolation) interact with the characteristics of fire regimes (e.g. fire size, patchiness and spatial distribution) to influence animal conservation. The broad objective of this project is to determine how both fragmentation and aspects of the fire regime influence the occurrence and movement potential of reptiles, mammals, birds and invertebrates.
We have project opportunities focused on each animal group. Data will be collected from sites previously established in western Victoria and eastern South Australia as part of the larger project.
Fire, Landscape Pattern & Biodiversity: "Fire and the ecology of flying insects"
Please contact Alan for further information.
Flying insects (e.g. butterflies, moths, beetles, flies) are an important part of forest ecosystems. They contribute to ecosystem function through services such as pollination, provide a large food resource for vertebrate fauna, and are extremely interesting in their own right. This project will examine how fire affects the abundance and community composition of flying insects. Fieldwork will be conducted in the beautiful Otway Ranges and forms part of a larger project examining the impacts of fire on micro-bats.
If you are interested in pursuing Masters or Graduate-Diploma level coursework subjects in fire-related disciplines, more information is available here.
Most of our research involves fieldwork and a range of volunteer opportunities are available, particularly during spring and autumn. Currently we are working in the Otway Ranges, the Central Highlands and the heathy woodlands of SW Victoria and SE South Australia. Over the next 6 months need help for:
Experience isn't essential but we prefer week-long commitments, and reasonable fitness is required for walking to sites over steep, rough terrain. Tolerance for early starts, leeches, March flies, ticks and mosquitoes (not normally all at once!) is an advantage. We have well-stocked first aid kits and are first aid trained.
We provide food and accommodation. If you are interested in helping out, please fill out the form below.