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Our scientific outputs reach far and wide

They found that despite the incredible diversity of species (~600 species) produced for restoration plantings, a relative small handful (52) of species dominated seedling production.  Most of these species had characteristics of early successional species such as small animal dispersed seeds, and low wood densities which demonstrates some of their similarities to natural forest recovery.

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"Climate responsive urban planning and design is, therefore, key to secure a healthy urban lifestyle"

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Willingness to reforest at landscape scales depends, to a large extent, on restoration costs, opportunity costs, and a reliable and reasonable carbon price. Finding the most beneficial restoration methods is essential.

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"How urban spaces perform during disease outbreaks now also demands our close attention."

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"...However, the implications of the development of highway and dams for forest integrity, biodiversity and ecosystem services remained largely unreported".

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Biodiversity hotspots that have given species a safe haven from changing climates for millions of years will come under threat from human-driven global heating, a new study has found.

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We urge that ungazetted protected forests be given equal priority to gazetted protected forests in regard to conservation planning for road development, and also that gazetted forests be expanded in the Leuser Ecosystem and Batang Toru area to hedge against further incursions.

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Sophisticated modelling was used to determine not only the likely routes travelled by Aboriginal people tens of thousands of years ago, but also the sizes of groups required for the population to survive in harsh conditions.

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This study is the first to demonstrate innovation ability across task complexity in an Australian rodent and provides promising avenues for future studies of innovation.

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Influence of floods on the Australian biota should be considered an ongoing ecological and evolutionary driver, and one that is likely to intensify as extreme floods are expected to become more frequent under climate change.

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Our results also show that it is not enough to focus management and conservation actions on riparian zones, but that conservation strategies should be expanded to entire catchments as well.

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The forest-transformation narrative was presented as a complement to the forest-transition narrative, appearing particularly suited to Southeast Asia. There, planted areas are extensive and expansive, but related net tree cover gains are rare and tenuous, reflecting political-economic trends in forest management.

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This study showed that genome skimming provides well resolved nuclear and plastid phylogenies that provide valuable insights into the complex evolutionary relationships of Nepenthes.

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Maps of mangroves have often been limited to showing the presence or absence of mangrove trees and seldom have studies shown an important indicator of ecosystem integrity such as vegetation cover.

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We urge that ungazetted protected forests be given equal priority to gazetted protected forests in regard to conservation planning for road development, and also that gazetted forests be expanded in the Leuser Ecosystem and Batang Toru area to hedge against further incursions.

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Given the pace of climate change, it is imperative that we inform and accelerate adaptation progress in all regions around the world.

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A celebration of the exceptional contribution Australian sites make to humanity's collective legacy, it is also an entreaty to preserve them for future generations.

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Persistent effects of fragmentation on tropical rainforest canopy structure after 20 yr of isolation

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A simple thing like designing an area to make it more walkable can boost local business profits.

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The science says one of our most endangered bird species – the black-throated finch – is at serious risk under the present Adani plan to dig up the Galilee Basin for coal.

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Professor Steve Williams, a co-author of the Report, has been monitoring rainforest biodiversity for over 20 years across the whole Wet Tropics region. The long-term monitoring of the rainforest vertebrates has observed a systematic decrease in the abundance and distribution of many Wet Tropics endemic species.

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Australia heavily relies on the work of Indigenous rangers to meet our conservation targets, but they’re being short-changed by federal government funding.

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An accurate understanding of the impacts of climate change on terrestrial vegetation is essential for managing risks associated with human-caused climate change: gauging the historic response of terrestrial photosynthesis is an important step in this direction

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Peter Hitchcock was one of Australia’s most remarkable environmentalists, with national and global contributions to forest conservation, rainforest protection, World Heritage, and national parks.

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Recognized as World Expert in Conservation of Natural Resources.

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Antioxidant supplementation during tropical summer appears to mitigate the negative impact of heat stress on DNA integrity but not concentration nor motility of boar spermatozoa; which may provide one solution to the problem of summer infertility in the pig.

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We believe that future liana research will benefit from new technologies such as high‐quality aerial photography taken from drones when the aim is to detect the relative burden of lianas on individual trees.

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Tropical fire ants (Solenopsis geminata), originally from central and South America, are a highly aggressive, invasive ecological pest. Our new research has shed light on how they successfully establish new colonies

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For time immemorial, many wildlife species have survived by undertaking heroic long-distance migrations. But many of these great migrations are collapsing right before our eyes.

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The endangered African wild dog (AWD; Lycaon pictus) is a highly social canid living in packs with a separate male and female hierarchy. Immobilisation, handling and translocations are acute stressors for AWDs, however such interventions are often needed for species management.

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We are living in the most explosive era of infrastructure expansion in human history.  The most ambitious scheme is China’s Belt & Road Initiative, which will involve 7,000 planned infrastructure and extractive-industry projects that span much of the planet.

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There is a global shift of forest management to local levels to better reconcile local livelihoods and biodiversity conservation. We argue that achieving such outcomes will require embedding science in landscape-scale management systems.

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Made from discarded plastic bottles—to underscores the growing threat of micro-plastics in our environment and bodies.

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The results indicate that the risk of Fusarium wilt negatively impacting banana growth differs between soils of the main Australian banana-growing region.

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The landscape sustainability discourses studied here suggests that landscape approach “learners” must focus on ways to remedy poor governance if they are to achieve sustainability and multi-functionality.

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What links Brazil and Madagascar? Both are renowned for their biodiversity and face the prospect of an autocratic leader bent on destroying their nation's environment for short-term gain.

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Incorporating complex social system into metaecosystem approaches will be more useful towards a better understanding of our changing world.

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Can the Land of a Million Elephants Survive the Belt and Road? Chinese-funded projects in Laos could hasten the eradication of the elephant population

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Relative to controls, drought‐affected individuals of different tree species variously exhibited trait measures consistent with increasing hydraulic safety.

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That, essentially, is one of the key conclusions of a new landmark study of the Leuser Ecosystem in northern Sumatra, Indonesia — the last place on Earth where orangutans, tigers, elephants, and rhinos still survive together.

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Sperm banking and AI could benefit endangered African wild dog conservation. However, it is unclear whether their dominance hierarchy causes a decrease in reproductive and sperm quality parameters in subordinate males that typically do not breed.

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By 2070, there will be no suitable tiger habitats remaining in the Bangladesh Sundarbans.  Climate change will have a more pronounced effect on tiger habitats than that of sea level rise in the area.

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We found that planned and ongoing road and rail-line developments will have many detrimental ecological impacts, including fragmenting large expanses of intact forest.

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Home to such unusual creatures as Tree-Kangaroos and Birds of Paradise, New Guinea is exceptional not only for the uniqueness of its fauna and flora but also its astonishing cultural diversity — with more than 700 indigenous societies and languages.

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Summer infertility continues to undermine pig productivity, costing the pig industry millions in annual losses.

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This week marks the twentieth birthday for the towering crane that stands at the heart of James Cook University’s Daintree Rainforest Observatory (DRO) at Cape Tribulation

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Clarivate Analytics has published the list of the top 1% of the globe’s researchers, based on data related to how often other researchers cite their published work.

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A brief review of ongoing Brazilian national initiatives that would allow the construction of a general biomonitoring network scheme in protected areas; with additional focus on linking independent monitoring schemes.

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Scientists must call out — not merely greenwash — infrastructure building that will ruin environments, lives and economies, urges William Laurance.

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Research co-led by a James Cook University professor suggests the Amazon rainforest is changing fast—but not fast enough to keep up with climate change.

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The Best Australian Science Writing 2018 draws on the knowledge and insight of Australia’s brightest authors, journalists and scientists to challenge perceptions of the world we think we know.

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Production of many crops, including bananas, is threatened worldwide by the spread of pathogenic strains of Fusarium oxysporum, the causal agent of Fusarium wilt. Though not all soil attributes can be managed, pH, organic matter content and availability of nutrients show promise for manipulation to reduce disease severity and mitigate risk.

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The social impacts of roads, particularly on indigenous people, have not been adequately quantified. In reality, indigenous people are rarely consulted in the planning phase of road projects despite the fact that they have rights to self-determination and consultation involving the development of indigenous lands and resources, including road construction...

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Working on  Yellow Crazy Ants in Tropical Northern Australia and working closely with a broad range of stakeholders on this important issue.

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Earth's environmentally riskiest venture ever undertaken?

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Scientists Warn That World’s Wilderness Areas Are Disappearing

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As oil palm plantations continue to expand in Latin America, identifying critical transitions in land use, at which animal communities can be drastically altered, is crucial for conservation planning.

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The Rising Stars Early Career Researcher (ECR) Leadership Program provides advanced professional development to fast-track the careers of JCU's future research leaders. It is an elite program with a cohort of 5-10 ECRs selected biennially on a competitive basis.

The Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) is an academic research communication competition developed by The University of Queensland (UQ), Australia. JCU has a proud history of participating in the event.

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Follow archaeologist Professor Sean Ulm's journey from growing up in a small country town in coastal eastern Australia to collaborating with Aboriginal communities across northern Australia to help tell the incredible epic story of Australia's past.

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“This new protected area not only brings more key wildlife habitat under protection, but also protects vital forested watersheds that provide important ecosystem services to the people of Terengganu,” Sheema Abdul Aziz, a conservation ecologist and president of the Malaysia-based conservation research NGO Rimba, said in a statement.

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This and many of the other of NSHE's arguments are outlandish and easily countered. The best analogy I can use is this: using NSHE's logic, someone could cut off your head and there would only be minor damage, because far less than 1 percent of your tissue would be destroyed.

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If Orinoco oil palm cultivation surpasses 75 percent of the total area, mammal populations will suffer drastic and accelerated declines, a new study warns. A “sustainable” level of cultivation would need to reserve 55 percent of the land for natural ecosystems. Palm cultivation in the country’s eastern grassland plains has already exceeded these limits.

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Rhinos in Australia might seem like an insane proposition – after all, we’ve had historically bad luck with introduced species. But on reflection it’s not quite as crazy as it sounds.

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We found removing rare species at any cover threshold produced characteristic species appearing to correspond to landscape scale changes and better predicted species cover in grasslands and shrublands. However, in woodlands it made no difference.

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This paper contributes to the debate on why scientists need to learn to program, not only to challenge prevailing approaches to mangrove research, but also to expand the temporal and spatial extents that are commonly used for mangrove research.

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A project as sweeping as China’s multitrillion-dollar "Belt and Road" initiative has the potential to shake up global trade and geopolitics. But its toll on the environment may be just as significant.

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KUALA TERENGGANU, 15 August – Malaysia’s Terengganu state government announced today that it has designated 10,386 hectares of land formerly slated for logging as a new protected area for conservation. This new state park in the Kenyir region of Terengganu is phase one of a much larger conservation project that lies within a globally important Tiger Conservation Landscape and critical wildlife corridor.

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"Screen, not just green’ infrastructure projects to help economies and the environment"

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Debugging diversity ‐ a pan‐continental exploration of the potential of terrestrial blood‐feeding leeches as a vertebrate monitoring tool.

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We need to make our urban areas more welcoming to wildlife.

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Global forest discourses must connect with local forest realities.

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We are living in the most explosive era of infrastructure expansion in human history. To meet the United Nations’ development goals, we would need to invest tens of trillions of dollars in new roads, railways, energy ventures, ports, and other projects by 2030.

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A pair of proposed hydroelectric dams that will encroach on the habitats of critically endangered primates—in Guinea and Indonesia—are receiving fierce criticism from conservation groups, who fault what they call inadequate scientific review of the harmful effects of these big infrastructure projects'

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An Interview with Bill Laurance: A Life of Fragmentation

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New research has revealed a deadly disease that threatens the survival of the world's frogs originated from East Asia, and global trade was almost certainly responsible for the disease's spread.

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China is planning a series of massive infrastructure projects across four continents, an initiative that conservation biologist William Laurance described as “environmentally, the riskiest venture ever undertaken.”

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Research shows for the first time that colonisation of Australia by 50,000 years ago was achieved by a globally significant phase of purposeful and coordinated marine voyaging.

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The rapid expansion of oil palm cultivation in the Neotropics has generated great debate around possible biodiversity impacts.

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It’s being called the biggest infrastructure project in human history, the likes of which Planet Earth has never seen before.

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Into the sinkhole. Ecologist Mick Brand and meteorologist Costijn Zwart of James Cook University in Townsville, Australia, abseil a boat into a 40-metre sinkhole in Arnhem Land to investigate the area’s geological record.

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Susan Laurance describes the excitement of working on the frontiers of science. She describes the incredible experiment to create drought conditions in the Daintree Rainforest and what we can learn about how climate change is affecting our environment.

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Conserving Species in a Fragmented World: The Established Researcher.

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TESS team shows that road improvement enhances smallholder productivity and reduces forest encroachment in Ghana.

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Newly Discovered Orangutan Species Requires Urgent Habitat Protection.

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China-backed Sumatran dam threatens the rarest ape in the world.

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Crushed rocks to boost crops,

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Chocolate: brought to you by bugs!

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Innovation Award winner, Prof. Bill Laurance, affirms the importance of protecting the planet's most ancient ecosystems.

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Many believe that Australia's draft 'Strategy for nature' doesn't cut it.

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Africa's great migrations are failing.

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Warning signals may aid in identifying the proximity of ecological communities to biodiversity thresholds from habitat loss—often termed “tipping points”—in tropical forests.

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TESS article on Amazonian rainforest fragmentation is selected as one of the world's top 20 conservation papers of 2017

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The Amazon rainforest is one of the last great wildernesses. A new road project threatens a flood of illegal road building, logging, poaching, and droughts. So why build it?

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Looking back at past sea level rises.

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Highlighting governance challenges in Indonesia.

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Assessing nature's values to people.

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