Summer Research Interning with Rebecca Turk

I am born and raised in Brisbane, currently studying a Bachelor of Applied Science majoring in Wildlife at UQ Gatton Campus. While I was on holiday in Japan a fellow student mentioned a Summer Research Project they thought I would be interested in, more specifically a chance to work on the South-East Queensland Invasive Bird Project with the Biodiversity Research Team. Seeking to develop some new skills and eager to gain more practical experience I sought some more information and sent in my application, and was ecstatic to get accepted!

The experience so far has been greatly rewarding and enjoyable with all of the Team being incredibly helpful and informative. My main responsibilities include travelling to our Cavity Nesting Species Project sites with Andrew and Carla to assist in checking our nest boxes and collecting data, in addition to also sorting through and cataloguing the camera trap data we have obtained in order to gain a better insight into cavity nesting species behaviour and their interactions with other species.

Additionally, other skills I have learned during my time here include how to use a GPS, improved bird identification skills through both visuals and calls, becoming more knowledgeable of my surroundings such as which trees are more likely to have cavities and what species may inhabit them, as well as gaining a better understanding and appreciation of how research is carried out and completed.

I’d like to thank Salit and the Team for allowing me this great opportunity, as working on this project has reinforced my interest in birds as well as invasive species, and granted me a better idea of what I would like to do after completing my degree.

Here are some photos from the camera trap project I have been working on.

Stay tuned for an update on nesting attempts in our Project Boxes!

Salit
Squirrel Glider (Petaurus norfolcensis) inspecting project nest box
Salit
Barn Owl (Tyto alba) perching on top of project nest box
Salit
Southern Boobook Owl (Ninox boobook) perching on top of project nest box
Salit
Juvenile Collared Sparrowhawk (Accipiter cirrocephalus) attempting to hunt an Indian Myna
Salit
Common Brush-tail Possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) investigating the inside of a project nest box


Summer Research Interning with Rebecca Turk

I am born and raised in Brisbane, currently studying a Bachelor of Applied Science majoring in Wildlife at UQ Gatton Campus. While I was on holiday in Japan a fellow student mentioned a Summer Research Project they thought I would be interested in, more specifically a chance to work on the South-East Queensland Invasive Bird Project with the Biodiversity Research Team. Seeking to develop some new skills and eager to gain more practical experience I sought some more information and sent in my application, and was ecstatic to get accepted!

The experience so far has been greatly rewarding and enjoyable with all of the Team being incredibly helpful and informative. My main responsibilities include travelling to our Cavity Nesting Species Project sites with Andrew and Carla to assist in checking our nest boxes and collecting data, in addition to also sorting through and cataloguing the camera trap data we have obtained in order to gain a better insight into cavity nesting species behaviour and their interactions with other species.

Additionally, other skills I have learned during my time here include how to use a GPS, improved bird identification skills through both visuals and calls, becoming more knowledgeable of my surroundings such as which trees are more likely to have cavities and what species may inhabit them, as well as gaining a better understanding and appreciation of how research is carried out and completed.

I’d like to thank Salit and the Team for allowing me this great opportunity, as working on this project has reinforced my interest in birds as well as invasive species, and granted me a better idea of what I would like to do after completing my degree.

Here are some photos from the camera trap project I have been working on.

Stay tuned for an update on nesting attempts in our Project Boxes!

Salit
Squirrel Glider (Petaurus norfolcensis) inspecting project nest box
Salit
Barn Owl (Tyto alba) perching on top of project nest box
Salit
Southern Boobook Owl (Ninox boobook) perching on top of project nest box
Salit
Juvenile Collared Sparrowhawk (Accipiter cirrocephalus) attempting to hunt an Indian Myna
Salit
Common Brush-tail Possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) investigating the inside of a project nest box


Carla Archibald’s Experience in Peru working with Macaws at the Tambopata Research Center

Earlier this year in January Carla traveled over to Peru to work with Macaws at the Tambopata Research Center. The Tambopata Research Centre (TRC) is nestled on the banks of the Tambopata River in the Madre De Dios Department of Peru, 6 hours by boat from civilisation. A Peruvian architect, Eduardo Nycander founded the research centre in 1989 just a 5 minute boat ride from the Collpa Colorado, the largest and most biodiverse known avian clay-lick in South America, and arguably the world. Close to 20 parrot species, including 6 macaw species consume this clay, normally right after sunrise. In 1999 Professor Donald Brightsmith, an ornithologist from Texas A&M University, became the director and expanded the centre’s focus to include how the macaws interact with their environment ecologically and physiologically.

During her time working at TRC she was able to apply some of the skills she has acquired while working on the Cavity Nesting Species project with the KARK Group. The opportunity to visit another lab and learn how other groups approach cavity nesting species is a fascinating and excellent experience we encourage all of our students to participate in. If you want to read more about Carla’s Experience in Peru working with Macaws and Tambopata Research Center please follow this link
 
Read More about Carla’s TRC Experience

CARLA

 


Amélie’s Australian Adventure: Her research internship with the KARK Group

I am currently studying Agronomy Engineering  in France. As a part of my studies I had the great opportunity to do an internship with A/ Prof Salit Kark at ARC CEED (Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions) at the University of Queensland from April to August 2015.

During this time, I got the chance to attend Kark group lab meetings and some CEED talks where I learnt a lot about species conservation and invasive species.

For my research, I was in charge of characterizing the vegetation on various sites, which are currently used for the Urban Bird Project. I learnt how to use ArcMap and IDRISI to create a vegetation index and land cover maps (with Matt’s help). I also made a fieldwork analysis conducted with Andrew and Carla, of the Queensland sites in order to characterize these areas and the trees present around the nest boxes. I learnt how to prepare and conduct a fieldwork plan and a lot of things on Australian’s birds and trees.

My time in Brisbane was an incredible one. It helped me in my near future to know what kind of subject I want to work on.

I’d like to thank Salit for the amazing opportunity she gave me, for her time and for her instructions. I’d like to thank as well all the group members that were really welcoming and made my internship an amazing one.

It was really an unforgettable experience; I already miss the people who surrounded me during these few months.

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Je suis actuellement en école d’ingénieur en Agronomie en France et j’ai eu l’opportunité, durant ma deuxième année d’étude, de faire une stage avec Salit Kark au sein du CEED (Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions). J’ai réalisé ce stage dans l’Université du Queensland à Brisbane d’avril à août 2015.

Durant cette période, j’ai eu la chance de participer aux réunions du groupe de Salit et d’assister aux conférences organisées par le CEED, ce qui m’a permis d’approfondir mes connaissances sur la conservation des espèces et la gestion des espèces invasives.

Mon stage consistait à caractériser la végétation et les environnements sur les différents sites où le projet d’étude des oiseaux en ville est mené. J’ai appris à me servir d’ArcMap et d’IDRISI afin de calculer des indices de végétation et de créer des cartes d’occupation des sols (avec l’aide de Matt). J’ai aussi mené une étude de terrain, en coopération avec Andrew et Carla, sur les sites du Queensland, afin de caractériser ces zones et de conduire une étude sur les arbres présents autour des nichoirs. J’ai appris beaucoup d’informations sur les arbres et les oiseaux en Australie, mais aussi à réaliser et à mener une étude de terrain.

Mon expérience à Brisbane fut extraordinaire. Cela m’a aidé pour construire mon projet professionnel et pour découvrir des problématiques qui m’intéressent.

J’aimerais remercier Salit pour l’incroyable opportunité qu’elle m’a donnée, pour son temps et ses instructions. J’aimerais aussi remercier les autres membres du groupe qui m’ont accueilli chaleureusement et qui ont rendu mon stage formidable.

C’est une expérience que je ne suis pas prête d’oublier. Les personnes qui ont partagés mon quotidien pendant ces quelques mois me manquent déjà.

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KARK Group Students Confirm

We have had 3 of our PhD students confirm their PhD candidature in the last month. Congratulations Andrew, Ruben and Hernan on your efforts and hard work in the past year and all the best for the remainder of your studies.
Confirm


Project nest boxes are in high demand!

The nesting season has already begun with the projects boxes becoming hot property for many species.  We have had the first successful nest of White-throated Treecreeper (Cormobates leucophaea) in one of our project boxes which is very exiting for our bird loving team! Bring on the 2015 breeding season! (Photo Credit: Andrew Rogers).

Looks like the Rainbow Lorikeets (Trichoglossus moluccanus) are ready to settle in …

Lori

… or maybe the Pale-headed Rosellas (Platycercus adscitus) have decided to take over! …

Rosella

… wait a second, you’re not a bird! (Common Brush-tail Possum, Trichosurus vulpecula)

Possum


“Navigating Norman Creek” Childrens Workshop

Community outreach is an important component of our teams focus and we encourage our group to get involved in as many ways as possible. Carla Archibald and Andrew Rogers, members of our Urban Birds project, had the opportunity to work with the Museum of Brisbane on an educational children’s workshop earlier this month. The workshop complimented an exhibition currently on show at Museum of Brisbane titled Navigating Norman Creek. Navigating Norman Creek features films by historian and creek resident Trish FitzSimons focusing on the history and ecological importance of Norman Creek. The workshop was held at Moorhen Flats along the bank of Norman Creek and a bright group of children plus parents joined Carla and Andrew for a leisurely stroll to celebrate the important role of Norman Creek for wildlife in Brisbane. The session was filled with exciting animals, as we were able to see and hear many of the resident birds that call Norman Creek home. We also learnt about mangrove ecology as well as observed some native wildlife in the Biodiversity Research Group’s nest boxes in Norman Park.

This was a great opportunity for our researchers to get involved with the community and projects outside of the University. If you would like further information about the exhibit please visit the website or pop into the Museum:

Opening Dates: 19 Jun – 11 Oct 2015
Website: www.museumofbrisbane.com.au/whats-on/navigating-norman-creek/

Photo Credit: Museum of Brisbane


Nest Box Installation Montage Clip 2014


Congratulations 2015 PhD Graduates

Congratulations to lab member Dr Tessa Mazor and fellow CEED PhD graduates on the completion of their respective projects. A PhD project can take many years to complete and is full of challenging problems that need innovative and comprehensive solutions. Tessa’s project focused on advancing conservation planning in the Mediterranean Sea, advancing the theory of systematic conservation planning and developing solutions with implications for the Mediterranean region. She has since started a postdoc at the CSIRO in Brisbane working on fisheries management and is soon expecting her first child. Well done Tessa! Good luck and all the best for your future endeavors, you have a bright future ahead of you!

Hats off to the 2015 Graduates!

GradsHats

Grads


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