student profile: Ms Amelia Saul


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Thesis work

Thesis title: Incorporating time and density into alien management - finding the good in the bad

Supervisors: Peter BANKS , Charlotte TAYLOR

Thesis abstract:

Many alien species have caused major ecological and economic damage worldwide, however not all aliens have negative impacts. Density and time since introduction are two parameters likely to affect the magnitude of alien impacts and hence influence management actions. For example, alien impacts often show nonlinear density-damage relationships and are only problematic at high alien densities. Alien impacts can also be most damaging soon after arrival while native species are naïve to the novel threats. However, recent work has highlighted that aliens can also have positive impacts in ecosystems, and I propose that these should also be influenced by alien density, and time since introduction. There should be a density-benefit relationship whereby aliens (or any species) can perform beneficial ecosystem services, which then contribute to their net ecosystem impact. Similarly, over time, net negative impacts may lessen as positive ecosystem impacts develop via new, positive interactions with local species. I will investigate these concepts and test their predictions using a series of manipulative field experiments. This project will serve to improve conservation actions, as it will provide a theoretical basis for efficient, cost-effective management of alien species.

Selected publications

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Journals

  • Clissold, F., Kertesz, H., Saul, A., Sheehan, J., Simpson, S. (2014). Regulation of water and macronutrients by the Australian plague locust, Chortoicetes terminifera. Journal of Insect Physiology, 69, 35-40. [More Information]

2014

  • Clissold, F., Kertesz, H., Saul, A., Sheehan, J., Simpson, S. (2014). Regulation of water and macronutrients by the Australian plague locust, Chortoicetes terminifera. Journal of Insect Physiology, 69, 35-40. [More Information]

Note: This profile is for a student at the University of Sydney. Views presented here are not necessarily those of the University.