Behavioural Ecology Research Group

University of Queensland


New Masters Program in Conservation Biology

The School of Biological Sciences is offering a new masters program in Conservation Biology, with the first student intake beginning in July 2013. This is an accelerated program - a 1.5 year program (24 units of credit) to be completed in 12 months. The program will include field trips of about 1 week each to a field station on the Great Barrier Reef, subtropical rainforest and two sites in the Queensland outback in addition to shorter field trips. Courses will include the following: Conservation in context, Conservation and Wildlife Biology, Data Analysis for Conservation Science, Environmental Philosophy, International and National Conservation Policy, Human Dimensions in Conservation, Marine Conservation, Rainforest Conservation, Conservation Concerns: An Industry Perspective, Applied Fauna Conservation, Ecology and Management of Invasive Species, and Conservation Decision Making. Training in GIS and the use of the free statistical program R for statistical analysis will run through many of these courses. A limited number of Australian Government Commonwealth supported places are available for domestic students.
See Master of Conservation Biology (MConsBiol) or contact Ross Strong for more information. Masters Program in Conservation Biology

Possible PhD student and postdoctoral projects

We are looking for a postdoc and/or a PhD student to be a part of our project on social networks of eastern grey kangaroos, to start in either 2013 or 2014. This project has to date focused on the social network of over 200 female kangaroos that live in four main overlapping social communities at our study site at Sundown National Park. The association patterns of these females and their offspring have been documented monthly since the start of 2010, with this data collection to be continued through at least 2014 by personnel currently working on the project. We have also done a lot of work on patterns of vigilance behaviour and the feeding/vigilance trade-off. We are now keen to include the males in our study of the social network, and this is the PhD project topic on offer – it would involve questions relating to how the males’ social network patterns overlap those of the females, the factors affecting males’ association patterns, and how all of this relates to males’ reproductive success. A potential student would have to acquire their own PhD scholarship – either an Australian Postgraduate Award or equivalent for a domestic student, or a scholarship for an international student. The project would involve about 12 days of remote field work each month, plus some molecular lab work, so is only suitable for someone who really likes remote, rugged field work. A postdoctoral fellow would be expected to help with continued data collection, but the long-term data collected since 2010 would also be available for analysis of questions to be mutually agreed on. This data includes data on females’ association patterns, reproductive histories, monthly body conditions, microsatellite genotypes, food availability, plus many sorts of behavioural data. A postdoctoral candidate would need obtain their own postdoctoral funding, possibly by applying for an Australian Research Council DECRA fellowship in early 2013 for 2014.
Contact Anne Goldizen (+61 7 3365 4824) for further information.