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Teah Coate | Honours Student

My honours project focused on how prescribed burning in winter affects seedling germination in the heathy woodlands of Anglesea, Victoria. I’m also interested in understanding how the season of burn influences the proportion of species with differing post-fire responses i.e. resprouting vs germination. The results from this research will help inform fire management practices in the Anglesea Heathlands and potentially any other highly diverse, shrubby ecosystems. 


Georgia Moyes | Honours Student

My honours project used the Australian Mountain Research Facility's rain-out shelters in New South Wales and Victoria to compare whether species showed variation in their ability to tolerate drought. This was complemented with a manipulative glasshouse experiment applying prolonged drought to seedlings of two common species in the Australian mountains; Carex breviculmis and Grevillea australis. This contributed to the first year of a larger project titled ‘High and Dry: Understanding alpine plant water stress in a drying climate’ which will continue to monitor species-specific drought responses in the future. 


Dr Emma Sumner | PhD Student

My research focused on how alpine plants respond to heatwaves and drought which are climate extremes predicted to become more frequent in the Australian Alps. I focused on a suite of alpine plant species growing across the Bogong High Plains and in Kosciuszko National Park: Poa fawcettiae, Grevillea australis, and Ranunculus graniticola to name a few. Much of my research involves imposing drought and heatwave treatments in the field and/or in the glasshouse and then measuring thermal tolerance response. I’m also interested in how plant thermal tolerance changes throughout the year, and along elevational gradients.

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Holly Mlikota | Honours Student

My honours research investigated the ecology of the five Victorian species of Celmisia snow daisies. These alpine species seem to have quite different relationships with water availability, which is reflected by differences in the types of environments they grow in. My project investigated these differences through field and lab work to find out: 

  • How water availability shapes the functional traits of these species, particularly their root traits, in early life stages, and 

  • How these functional traits shape their distribution at state, regional, and local scales 

I hope to improve our understanding of these species’ ecology, particularly relating to water, with a view to predict how they might respond to climate change and survive under reduced precipitation and changing snow regimes. 

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