- PhD Candidate
- (+61 8) 9480 3921
- Seed ecology
- Ecosystem level distribution
- Aquatic systems
- The Kimberley
- Conservation biology
2006-2008: Bachelor of Science (BSc.) Conservation Biology program (Majors: Conservation Biology and Botany), University of Western Australia.
2009: Honours in Conservation Biology and Management. Thesis title: ‘Phylogenetic analysis of mycorrhizal fungi associated with Western Australian Caladenia (Orchidaceae)’. University of Western Australia. Supervisors: Prof. Kingsley Dixon, Ryan Phillips and Dr Matthew Barrett.
Title: Seed biology, dispersal and functional ecology of Western Australian Nymphaeaceae.
University: School of Plant Biology, University of Western Australia
Supervisors: Prof Kingsley Dixon, Dr David Merritt, Dr Renee Tuckett
Description: Cosmopolitan in distribution and admired as ornamental plants the world over, the basal angiosperms Nymphaeaceae (Water Lilies) have long been of interest to botanists and horticulturists. Despite the family’s popularity and well resolved taxonomy, surprisingly little research has been conducted regarding seed biology, dispersal and ecology.
I will research key seed traits; dormancy, longevity and desiccation tolerance, as well as dispersive ecology and water and substrate constraints to distribution. The focus will be Western Australian Nymphaeaceae, a significant centre of diversification. Dispersal vectors and ecological factors relating to distribution will be examined through field collection and experimental work, utilising state of the art seed science facilities at Kings Park and Botanic Garden.
The study will examine unresolved questions surrounding seed traits of early angiosperms including seed embryo development, desiccation tolerance and dormancy type, and thus improve knowledge regarding evolution of angiosperm seeds. This project will contribute significantly to the current understanding of seed biology and ecology in the family, as well as determining protocols for long-term seed storage of aquatic species. Both fields are in experimental infancy, and increasing knowledge will aid global conservation efforts such as the Millennium Seed Bank Project. Understanding seed biology and storage behaviour is critical to adequately conserve the seed of aquatic species in Western Australia, many of which face threats associated with expanding development in the Kimberley.