Desert island biogeography: vertebrate dynamics after fire-induced fragmentation of habitat in central Australia [ 2004 - 2008 ]

Research Grant

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Researchers Dr CR Dickman

Brief description Recent wildfires in the Simpson Desert have burnt over three million hectares of hummock grassland, creating an archipelago of unburnt spinifex islands amid extensive areas of bare sand. Small mammals and reptiles are now confined to these refugia. This project seeks to characterise the patchy distributional pattern of terrestrial vertebrates among spinifex islands, and to experimentally evaluate factors (grazing, predators, food) influencing community recovery. Using an extensive prefire database, the project provides an unique and novel opportunity to chart and model responses of terrestrial vertebrates to wildfire, and to provide guidance for sustainable use of biodiversity in central Australia.

Funding Amount $600,000

Funding Scheme Discovery Projects

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