Graduate Research School For Candidates Prospective Candidates Available Projects Identifying environmental and biological drivers of the success and failure of coral recruits

Identifying environmental and biological drivers of the success and failure of coral recruits

Title of Project

Identifying environmental and biological drivers of the success and failure of coral recruits

Advisor/s

Carly Randall, Andrew Heyward, Line Bay, Andrew Negri, David Bourne, Mia Hoogen boom

College or Research Centre

AIMS@JCU

Summary of Project

Current restoration and adaptation research at AIMS is focused on identifying thermally tolerant coral stock and to develop aquaculture propagation methods for a diversity of coral species for cost-effective, large-scale field-based restoration. This project will test coral restoration and re-seeding methods across environmental gradients in the Keppel Island group. A range of aquaculture-based coral-reef restoration methods, including coral spawning and fragmentation, will be used to produce corals in the National Sea Simulator at AIMS. Student 1 (commencing January 2020) will investigate the environmental and biological drivers of post-settlement mortality, by monitoring environmental conditions and evaluating deployed coral juveniles at sites established across an environmental gradient. This student will have a largely field-based and ecologically-focused project that integrates benthic community ecology and environmental science. Student 2 (commencing January 2021) will address differences in settlement and post-settlement survival dynamics among substrate types and forms, and among species, primarily in the laboratory. Broadly, this student will have a mixed lab and field-based project that draws on highly controlled lab manipulations aimed at accelerating growth and maximizing survival.

Key Words

Restoration ecology; coral restoration; coral reproduction; coral reef ecology; outplanting

Would suit an applicant who

Essential - A bachelor’s degree with Honours and preferably a master’s degree in marine biology or a related field - Experience designing and conducting laboratory and/or field experiments with marine or aquatic species, with a sound understanding of complex experimental design - Skills in the analysis of statistical data, preferably with R - Sound oral and written communication skills with the ability to interact effectively with other team members - An interest in coral aquaculture/husbandry Desirable - Experience with scientific publishing - Experience conducting surveys and collecting census data in the field, preferably in the marine environment - Knowledge of coral species of the Great Barrier Reef - Knowledge of, and experience with, the sexual reproduction of corals - The desire and ability to be registered on the AIMS dive register

Updated: 2 months ago