The Ecosystem Ecology team investigates the landscape processes that influence the function and persistence of native ecosystems. Fire, drought, climate change, altered hydrological dynamics, weed invasion, fragmentation, urbanisation and altered fauna communities interact with plant traits in complex and powerful ways that can lead to change in the structure, composition, function and condition of ecosystems. Often these changes threaten the values that we attach to ecosystems. Our science aims to understand processes so that we can develop appropriate management responses that optimise conservation outcomes.

Ecosystem processes are the interactions between diverse ecological communities and the external and internal factors that drive dynamic processes within those communities. These interactions can be stabilising or disruptive, they can operate in synergistic or competitive, and diffuse or catastrophic ways. Their action can result in cyclical, chaotic, continuous or step-wise ecosystem change.

Global change processes – climate change, fragmentation, urbanisation, altered hydrological and fire regimes, failure of ecosystem function following from keystone species loss, soil degradation and the introduction of pest animal and plant species – further interact with these ecosystem processes, often to the detriment of the resilience and condition of ecosystems. Understanding how these processes function and interact leads to fascinating science but is also critical for the management of ecosystems for conservation, ecosystem services and risk abatement.

The Ecosystem Ecology currently focuses on three main areas: fire ecology, tree decline and ecosystem change, and plant-animal (pollination, dispersal, herbivory) interactions. The team works in urban bushlands, less disturbed 'intact' vegetation, and restoration sites. It employs tools from community ecology, population ecology, fire science, population genetics, seed science and ecophysiology – and collaborates closely with other sections of Kings Park Science, as well as researchers at UWA, Murdoch University and the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions.

Please contact Dr Ben Miller with any enquiries relating to Ecosystem Ecology.

Event disruptions

Poolgarla Parkland will be fenced off and there will be additional foot traffic and noise around Poolgarla Family Area from Monday 28 November to Friday 2 December 2022 due to the Danjoo Koorliny event.

Naturescape summer opening hours

Summer opening hours for Rio Tinto Naturescape Kings Park will be taking effect from 5 November 2022.

Polyphagous Shot-Hole Borer

The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) is responding to the confirmed detection of an exotic beetle, the Polyphagous Shot-Hole Borer (PSHB) in the Perth metropolitan area.

Read all notices ...

Dreaming of a Blue Christmas

The Festive Floral Spectacle celebrating our blue kangaroo paw has launched in the State Buildings!

Flowers in Focus 2022 winners

Thank you to everyone who entered our Flowers in Focus photography competition this year.

New Bold Park Management Plan

The Bold Park Management Plan 2022 - 2027 has been published by BGPA after a period of extensive public consultation

Read all news ...

Read about weather and warnings ...

All events …