Thesis: The spatio-temporal response of reptiles, ants and termites to urbanisation in Perth, W.A.
Urbanisation is driving declines in species richness and diversity globally. Urbanisation leaves remnant patches of native vegetation surrounded by a built up and human dominated matrix. These remnants provide an opportunity for conservation of biodiversity within urban areas. However, the long-term persistence of biodiversity within these remnants is threatened by reductions in habitat area, increasing isolation and habitat degradation. Conservation in these remnants is hampered by a lack of understanding of the responses of wildlife to urbanisation, particularly for more cryptic species such as reptiles ants and termites. This project will investigate how intrinsic factors of remnants such as area, age and habitat structure as well as broader landscape determine patterns of species and functional richness urban remnants.
Why my research is important
Global urban land is rapidly expanding, yet we still have a limited understanding of the important factors and processes that drive patterns of biodiversity in remnants. This is becoming increasingly important as urban land is rapidly encroaching on protected areas around the world. A greater understanding of these factors is required if we are to maximise biodiversity conservation in urban areas in the long-term