BSc(Hons) UWA 1992, PhD UWA 2001
Mike was born in England and migrated with his family to Australia in 1976. He went to school in Perth and undertook both his undergraduate and postgraduate degrees at UWA, graduating with a BSc(Hons) in Botany and Zoology in 1992 and in 2001 a PhD, his thesis titled “The short-term impacts of logging on the jarrah forest avifauna”.
Mike worked as a Rainforest Ecology faculty at the Centre for Rainforest Studies in the Wet Tropics of Queensland for 2.5years, before returning to Perth and working as an environmental consultant for 3 years before returning to research at Murdoch University in 2005. Mike moved to UWA in 2009 and is currently managing an ARC Linkage project examining cockatoos and water.
Mike is primarily interested in understanding human impacts on ecosystems and how we might ameliorate or reverse those impacts. Much of his research has focused on understanding the role that restoration might play in reducing human impacts on faunal communities and developing techniques to increase and accelerate faunal return to restored sites. His current research examines the role that water plays in the ecology of Forest Red-tailed Black-Cockatoos and we can use water to more effectively manage cockatoo populations
The industry partners on his current ARC Linkage project are the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions, Alcoa of Australia and Western Australian Museum. His research has three main parts. Firstly, to identify factors that influence where Forest Red-tailed Black-Cockatoos nest so that predictive models of landscape-scale nesting habitats can be developed that will minimise the conflict between both logging and mining and cockatoo conservation. Secondly, to test the potential for water provision to contribute to the persistence and management of Forest Red-tailed Black-Cockatoos in a drying climate. He runs a large experiment that provides artificial water point at various locations in the jarrah forest so see how heavily they are used by Forest Red-tailed Black-Cockatoos. The last part combines the information from these two aspects to identify ways to better integrate biodiversity conservation and extractive land uses. Again, a particular focus is on how the availability of water might influence how this is achieved.
ARC Linkage Grant LP160100177 “Changing water availability and the conservation of wide-ranging species”, May 2016, $392 000 for 3 years from ARC, Alcoa of Australia, Department of Parks and Wildlife and Western Australian Museum.
Variation to ARC Linkage Grant LP120200581 “Understanding the underlying causes and practical solutions to marri (Corymbia calophylla) decline in the south-west of Western Australia, September 2013, $340 000 over 5 years from Alcoa of Australia and Department of Parks and Wildlife.
ARC Linkage Grant LP0882677 “Understanding successional processes to maintain vertebrate populations in production landscapes”, June 2008, $783 723 over 5 years from ARC and Alcoa of Australia.
ARC Linkage Grant LP0455309 “Management of rehabilitated bauxite mines to accelerate the return of vertebrate fauna”, April 2005, $268 536 over 3 years from ARC and Alcoa of Australia
Jan 2009 – present Lecturer, Animal Ecology (ANIM3301), University of Western Australia
Jan 2007 – present Lecturer and Workshop Presenter, Wildlife Biology (BIO376), Murdoch University
Jan 2007 – Dec 2015 Lecturer, Conservation Biology (BIO368), Murdoch University
Jan 2007 – Dec 2007 Lecturer, Environmental Restoration (ENV324), Murdoch University
Mar 2000 – Sep 2002 Rainforest Ecology Faculty, School for Field Studies: Centre for Rainforest Studies
Service to Community
Lake McLarty Recovery Team – Member, 2015 – present (Department of Parks and Wildlife)
Shorebirds 2020 Monitoring Program – Participant, 2008 – present (Birdlife Australia)
Technical Advisory Group to Cockies in Crisis Project – Member, 2015 – present (Birdlife Australia)
Technical Advisory Group to Great Western Woodland Project – Member, 2010-2015 (Birdlife Australia)