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Modelling and managing uncertain Antarctic species networks

Antarctic ecosystems are complex, and data is limited since it is expensive to collect. Species interact in food webs which can be modelled as mathematical networks. The relationships between species are not always known, or we might know they interact but not how strongly. Noisy (or imperfect) data can be used to model these species interactions to give more certainty about how the ecosystem works as a whole – although the worse the data is, the less information it contributes. …

Study level
Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Mathematical Sciences
Research centre(s)
Centre for Data Science
Centre for the Environment

Optimal ecosystem management in rapidly changing systems

Delays in acting in collapsing ecosystems can be catastrophic. With every passing year, the chances that the ecosystem has progressed past some point of no return increases. Yet the research and development needed to develop a new technology can take a long time. Balance between these two dynamic processes is needed to determine the optimal length and effort for developing new technologies. This project will develop a method for finding the optimal schedule for developing technological readiness, social acceptability, a …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Mathematical Sciences
Research centre(s)
Centre for Data Science
Centre for the Environment

How many species were saved by national parks?

National parks are the cornerstone of modern conservation efforts. They now cover more than 10% of the Earth’s land surface and are found on every continent and sea.We can prove that these national parks stop human destruction of habitat. We can prove that they benefit the lives and livelihoods of people who visit and surround them. However, we can't yet prove that they have stopped the extinction of a single species. This isn't because we don’t believe that they've helped. …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Mathematical Sciences

Optimal conservation management in uncertain Antarctic environments

Species and ecosystems in Antarctica are threatened. Optimal biodiversity conservation is an interdisciplinary field combining mathematical modelling and optimisation with ecology and conservation. We can use mathematics to understand the system, model how management actions might impact it, and then optimise which actions should be used. For example, we can explore where protected areas should be placed, how species should be managed, or how tourist impacts should be reduced. However, the complexities of conservation in Antarctica necessitate the application of …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Mathematical Sciences
Research centre(s)
Centre for Data Science
Centre for the Environment

Australian Ganoderma species for the production of bioactive metabolites and new functional materials synthesis

Fungi are essential components of all ecosystems in roles including symbiotic partners, decomposers and nutrient cyclers and as a source of food for vertebrates and invertebrates. While vital to soil health and organic matter turnover, fungi have great potential in sustainable design and medicine.Ganoderma strains in particular produce bioactive compounds and display growth characteristics that favour their use in medical and applied biotechnology. Some species produce triterpenoids, such as ganoderic acids, and have been used in traditional Asian medicine for …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Biology and Environmental Science
Research centre(s)
Centre for Agriculture and the Bioeconomy

Modelling and managing uncertain Antarctic species networks

Antarctic ecosystems are complex, and data is limited since it is expensive to collect. Species including penguins, seabirds, invertebrates, mosses, and marine species interact in food webs which can be modelled as mathematical networks. These networks can be large, span across terrestrial and marine systems, and are changing in response to environmental changes.These ecological networks can be modelled using differential equation predator prey models like Lotka-Volterra to describe these interactions. However, the relationships between species are not always known, or …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Mathematical Sciences
Research centre(s)
Centre for Data Science
Centre for the Environment

Considering economics when prioritising species conservation

There are limited funds available for saving threatened species globally. Investing that money wisely can help ecologists and the government achieve more bang for their buck, and help more species and ecosystems.We can use many approaches  to help guide those investment decisions, including mathematical optimisation and operations research. However better considerations of economic factors are needed in order to reflect the complexity of real ecosystems and governments.

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Mathematical Sciences
Research centre(s)
Centre for Data Science

Acoustic monitoring of Powerful Owls – how good is the species distribution model?

Study level
Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Faculty of Business and Law
School
School of Accountancy

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