Mapping for conservation


Tuesday 14 Mar 2017

Charles Sturt University (CSU) research is investigating the best way to apply species distribution modelling to support plant and animal conservation.

Bachelor of Science (Honours) student, Mr Liam Grimmett's research is comparing different species Bachelor of Science (Honours) student Mr Liam Grimmettdistribution models to get a better understanding of how and when to apply particular models.

"Species distribution modelling is important in understanding the biodiversity and conservation of plants and animals," Mr Grimmett said.

"It's a useful mapping tool to assist ecologists in working out where a particular species might be found and how to conserve them."

The research through CSU's School of Environmental Sciences will examine which models work best to predict the distribution of species such as the Barking Marsh Frog and the Patternless Legless Lizard.

Research supervisor Dr Rachel Whitsed from the Institute for Land, Water and Society (ILWS) said, "The aim of this research is to find the most suitable methods to model the distribution of these different species.

"There is no one size fits all model and ecologists will generally use the model they are most comfortable with. Mr Grimmett's research will help guide how models work rather than just applying them."

Mr Grimmett studied a Bachelor of Science at CSU before continuing with a Master of GIS and Remote Sensing.

"When I started studying at Charles Sturt University I knew I enjoyed science, although I wasn't sure what career path I wanted to take," Mr Grimmett said.

"The University's Bachelor of Science enabled me to get an understanding of the different of fields in science.

"After taking an internship with the Nature Conservation Trust sparked an interest in environmental analysis and mapping which led to the Master of GIS and Remote Sensing and now my Honours research."

Mr Grimmett's goal is to move into higher level analysis work and further research by continuing on with a PhD.


ends

Media contact: Ms Emily Malone and Ms Fiona Halloran, (02) 6933 2069

Media Note:
Bachelor of Science (Honours) student Mr Liam Grimmett and his supervisor Dr Rachel Whitsed will be available for interview at 10am on Wednesday 15 March at building 762, near car park 3 at CSU in Albury-Wodonga, off Elizabeth Mitchell Drive in Thurgoona. Contact CSU Media to attend.