CIE Seminar Series 2016 – The squeeze is on: Fire-climate feedbacks and impact on vegetation in a biodiversity hotspot

Joe FontaineSPEAKER: Dr Joe Fontaine, Lecturer in Environment and Conservation Sciences, Murdoch University, WA

DATE: Friday, 5th August 2016
LOCATION: Melbourne Campus at Burwood, Burwood Corporate Centre (BCC)
TIME: 1:30pm
Seminar will also be video linked to the following campuses: Geelong Campus at Waurn Ponds, Room KA4.207 and Warrnambool Campus, Room J2.22

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ABSTRACT: Realisation that climate change is manifested via events rather than a slowly moving mean is increasing. In particular, the interaction of disturbances (i.e. drought and fire) is receiving more attention as instances and their impacts become more common and widespread.

A biodiversity hotspotEmpirical examples as well as conceptual frameworks are important knowledge gaps requiring attention in order to better inform policy and management. Southwestern Australia, already drying and warming presents a unique opportunity to study drought-fire interactions and their consequences for a host of vegetation types, lifeforms, and settings.

Using a series of examples spanning heathland-woodland-forest Dr Joe Fontaine will share some of the recent work he and collaborators have achieved including a conceptual model exploring drought-fire interactions and consequences for plant populations in fire prone systems.

BIO: Dr Joe Fontaine is a disturbance ecologist based in Perth, WA. He studies a range of urban and natural resource management related issues (especially fire) in urban, heathland and woodland portions of WA as well as western North America.

He is particularly interested in disturbance interactions and urbanisation.

Appointments with guest speaker may be made via Timothy Doherty.