Ecosystems in recovery: how do we monitor post eradication?

Islands provide unique opportunities for conservation restoration. Island eradications are becoming more and more common and more successful, particularly for vertebrate pests. As island eradication increases, associated technological advancements are made and our knowledge on secondary poisoning and other direct impacts improves. However for many of these islands there is no integrated evaluation of the effectiveness of eradication in restoring ecosystem function and threatened species recovery.

My research examines how to monitor these ecosystems under change. The largest multi-species vertebrate eradication to-date has recently been declared successful on Australia’s World Heritage Macquarie Island. Several small islands of Tasmania have had pests removed. ¬†How do we best monitor threatened species to investigate their recovery following habitat recovery and the cessation of predation following eradication? I am investigating how to utilise existing disconnected long-term datasets (some over 30 years old) and identify a robust suite of bioindicators for tracking ecosystem change into the future.

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