DATE: Friday, 29th June 2018
LOCATION: Geelong Campus at Waurn Ponds – room ka4.207 (green room)
Melbourne Campus at Burwood –Burwood Corporate Centre and Warrnambool Campus, Room J2.22
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ABSTRACT. Most birds are diurnal and conspicuous by sight or sound, and they can give us unique and rapid information about the ecosystems they inhabit. Many birds play strong roles in shaping those ecosystems and keeping them healthy, and Richard will mention some his research in that area, including the roles of despotic species. Top predators such as forest owls can be used as umbrella species to guide forest management, as Richard has done in Victorian forests. He will also touch on counting birds (twice over a million together), survey methods, hollows, Orange-bellied Parrots, retrospective research, waterbirds and fire ecology. People notice birds and value them aesthetically or as sources of inspiration, food, feathers and environmental information. Many people travel to see birds and this can help encourage local communities to conserve habitats in developing countries. Richard will provide glimpses of his recent travels in Madagascar, India, Papua New Guinea and South America, and a vision to help us live better together.
BIO.Richard is an ecologist with special interests in forests, fire, wetlands, threatened species, migration and conservation. He worked for the Victorian Government for many years, mainly at the Arthur Rylah Institute for Environmental Research. He then established a consultancy (Eco Insights), conducting strategic projects in Australia and Papua New Guinea. He holds adjunct positions at three universities (La Trobe, Charles Sturt and Melbourne), and was awarded the D.L. Serventy Medal in 2014. Richard developed the timed area-search method for counting bush-birds and instigated many long-term monitoring programs on bush birds and waterbirds. He is known for his work on despotic birds, insects and tree dieback, and on contentious issues such as duck hunting, fire and logging. His team’s work on forest owls led to 170,000 ha of state forest being protected to conserve those birds and the ecosystems on which they depend. He and his family love to travel and today he will tell us about his work and how birds and people can shape our shared global environment. Birds provide a unique window on the natural world, and can help us conserve its extraordinary diversity.
Appointments with guest speaker may be made via hojess@@deakin.edu.au