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The Possingham Lab is in the Faculty of Science at The University of Queensland split between two schools – the School of Biological Sciences and the School of Maths and Physics. All of our work is directly supported by The University of Queensland via administration, facilities, grants and research infrastructure.

Most of our research is using decision science thinking to pose and solve conservation problems. We do odd bits of field work – often on birds. We like using models to predict the future, and we like to test those models with new and existing data. We like ecological theory, things that change in space and time and inventing clever ways of extracting information from old data. The mathematical and statistical tools we use are diverse, ranging from the basic to the complex.

Read about a few of our projects in the Research Themes section or for a more casual introduction to lab work – read a few issues of Decision Point.

Most importantly we try to do research that has impact, research that changes the way that the world works.  Our work has helped save hundreds of thousands of square kilometres of woodland and forest and informed the creation of many of the world’s marine protected area systems.

Who are the people the lab?  Anyone who thinks they are in the lab. We have lots of friends, both in the two centres Hugh directs – the ARC Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions (CEED) and the National Environmental Science Programme Threatened Species Recovery Hub - and in over 20 countries around the world. Many of them like to visit – lab meetings and talks are twice a week. If you want to join us, or visit us, go to the opportunities tab.

 group pic 2

Lab twitter feed:

saverygo RT @OceanaEurope: #DidYouknow a puffin can fly as fast as 55mph, and weigh about the same as a can of coke? #SeabirderSaturday #puffins htt…
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saverygo RT @ECCCSciTech: Just some of the great work being done by our researchers! (Also, they take great pictures!) #ECCCsci #ornithology #arctic
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saverygo RT @AChangingArctic: Congratulations to Heather Mariash, #Arctic @ECCCSciTech researcher selected among the top 30 candidates of the Canadi…
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saverygo @megcevans Rediculously satisfying?
saverygo @sjurdur @GrantHumphries Truely, this PhD has been all about self discovery. Of new levels of geek. Like my love of #R.
saverygo @sjurdur @GrantHumphries Haha 😂 To be known as the founders of TwitCons? Ha I don't think anyone knows! We'll just… https://t.co/rbtxlOk40W
MariaBeger RT @Robert___Harris: For centuries the guiding principal of British foreign policy was to avoid exactly this: Europe becoming a single bloc…
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MariaBeger RT @_coraltriangle_: A cruise ship destroyed a precious reef in #rajaampat. Yet tourism and conservation can and should go hand in... https…
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MariaBeger RT @fishiintheC: A likely casualty of blast fishing that never got collected. Unfortunately, it is a common practice here in #TunMustaphaPa
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MariaBeger RT @fishiintheC: We've seen beautiful reefs and very flattened reefs in #TunMustaphaPark. How can dynamite fishing be prevented? @Coral_Tri
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MariaBeger RT @UNEP: The @UN will convene the Ocean Conference in June to spur action to protect oceans, seas & marine life: https://t.co/OhDyKTDFim #…
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MariaBeger random fact of the day... https://t.co/SsqhErqSk9
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MariaBeger an important topic... but who is studying what to do about it? https://t.co/Oqbm1lRRj5
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MariaBeger RT @MarkEakin: Climate models have underestimated Earth’s sensitivity to CO2 changes, study finds https://t.co/zQdzrO1Sa1
BeyerHawthorne Philae lander en route to comet 67P right now. Exciting moment given the odds of even getting #Rosetta there.
BeyerHawthorne Landowners destroy habitat to dodge immenent protection legislation. Conervation planning must acount for this! http://t.co/SMBelGA6TW
BeyerHawthorne A major problem in conservation planning is finding ways of accounting for myopic reversals of protection. E.g. http://t.co/EV9MvhE87S
BeyerHawthorne Slam on the breaks. We have it all wrong: Tony Abbott adviser warns of threat of 'global cooling'. No, not Apr 1st. http://t.co/iXn80UgD7M
BeyerHawthorne Happy to see a woman has won this years Fields medal for the first time. http://t.co/qIoG6ED7q2
AChauvenet RT @guardianeco: Big four banks all refuse to fund Adani coalmine after Westpac rules out loan https://t.co/GcVsaLdotv
AChauvenet RT @mickresearch: New paper in Ecol Apps on Adaptive Management with Alana Moore, @mcmadlab, Leila Walker & Mike Runge: https://t.co/22OdpS
AChauvenet RT @adam_ruben: My Experimental Error column in @ScienceCareers this month is about the glory of @unpaywall: https://t.co/l4HyWd0Oao
AChauvenet RT @achazhardenberg: Coming to #ICCB2017? I am offering a short course on causal inference for conservation biologists! @Society4ConBio htt…
AChauvenet RT @SciGenderEquity: Scientists on Twitter - "women are better represented on the social-media site than on scientific papers" #scicomm #w
AChauvenet RT @HugePossum: In Australia (NSW) smart prioritisation leveraged $100 million of new funds for threatened species @LeahLeopold https://t.c…
AChauvenet RT @Research_Voice: "Too many scientists still only receive yearly contracts & we're still far, far away from post-PhD #gender equality" ht…
AChauvenet RT @MaxCRoser: Why numbers are sometimes better than words. What people think you say “almost certainly", “probably", or “highly unlikely”…
AChauvenet RT @SciGenderEquity: Applications are open for the Peer Prize for Women in Science. Apply now! https://t.co/dv20NWwb2j
AChauvenet RT @RSECJournal: Call for content for special issue 'Monitoring the Marine Environment' - find out more and submit your paper at https://t.…
NRMecon Real-life language learning is a constant exercise in humility - true that. But I still want gold stars! @DRobcito https://t.co/SKc1WMn5lM
NRMecon RT @MarkDiStef: Median income in Australia, from low to high, male and female. What a brutal graph by @GrogsGamut https://t.co/iugVmRmh0o h…
NRMecon RT @WILDLABSNET: New resource recently released on how technology is tackling both corruption and wildlife conservation issues https://t.co
NRMecon RT @ARC_CEED: #postdoc #job opp with @ConservationOrg - #conservation social scientist needed to evaluate impact in Amazon forest! https://…
NRMecon Great visit to @tcddublin over Easter @ARC_CEED https://t.co/Um1XzPuhyj
NRMecon Research Associate position @SheffieldAPS with the fantastic @tomjwebb @ARC_CEED @uwaoceans @UQ_sees https://t.co/feNcoihqOd#jobsacuk
NRMecon #postdoc Research Associate position @SheffieldAPS with the fantastic @tomjwebb see link for details https://t.co/feNcoihqOd #jobsacuk
biodiversityBD Big tumour data could save lives and reduce the cost of health care. Very international collaboration for betterment of humanity.
biodiversityBD Devastating but engaging news piece on the state of the Great Barrier Reef https://t.co/P5PA3W0U79 @Nicki__S #TheProjectTV
biodiversityBD And the winner for "best moustache and dancing gorilla-man" @Eurovision 2017 is... ITALIA!!! Good luck Francesco!!! https://t.co/UmYTtVFAfv
biodiversityBD Wow! As a teen, @BrittanyMWenger created a neural network to improve breast cancer diagnosis. So inspiring! https://t.co/YXeWuUJlvd
biodiversityBD RT @SenatorMRoberts: How should government spend $5 billion of taxpayer money currently used on green energy
biodiversityBD @YumMusings But we remembered another notable birthday! Right? Right? :-D
biodiversityBD Malthus introduced the geometric growth concept to legitimise removal of social welfare. Iniquitous in social science, indelible in ecology
biodiversityBD @YumMusings oh-mah-gersh, look at him! *gush* https://t.co/QjaYMSjt7s
biodiversityBD RT @TaraGMartin: Observed impacts of climate change - from genes to biomes to people @cyclonewatson @BrettScheffers https://t.co/JhvzQBjHXs
biodiversityBD RT @TSCommissioner: Awesome to spend time with 300 Australians fighting #extinction driven by invasive species today. Thanks for having me…
MattHHolden RT @stevenstrogatz: A Klein bottle partially filled with water. What do you think happens if you turn it upside down? https://t.co/r1sJ9cv
MattHHolden Basic research is important: example, a study on tiny shrimp might save us from fungal infections, @duffy_ma at… https://t.co/pQKNAfu2mS
MattHHolden Risk of dying from shark = risk from driving 1.2 km (extremely low). Sensational news posts misrepresent risks.… https://t.co/Ch1pSnQx3o
MattHHolden Thanks @ScienceMarchBNE >50% female speakers, inclusive of those w #disabilities, pretty good #marchforscience model #marginsci @HugePossum
MattHHolden RT @JessCappadonna: @MattHHolden @ScienceMarchBNE @LISACOX_CO @Enceladosaurus Personal stories take courage to share. Gratitude for being a…
MattHHolden @megcevans I agree w/ critiques of #marchforscience yet, I still marched. Ethics pose tough trade-offs, my views =… https://t.co/Z6CDzFbQ5I
MattHHolden Clever idea on rewarding replication of #science by Butera&List-ht @DynamicEcology https://t.co/3aZ16x3Ine @cboettig @StatModeling #opendata
MattHHolden RT @jdhallphd: I can't overstate how big of a deal this #sciencemarch is. Have you ever tried to get five scientists in a room for a commit…
cdkuempel RT @AlongsideWild: I appreciate the attention #ClimateChange is getting because of the #ScienceMarch. But biggest threat to biodiversity to…
cdkuempel RT @MarkRuffalo: Here are some of the most awesome signs from the March for Science https://t.co/IGabdV0bdQ # via @HuffPostPol
cdkuempel RT @ConsLevin: Science gives us hope, illuminates truths & highlights pathways to a better future. https://t.co/RnKRffxYCv
cdkuempel RT @ericgarland: A burn so sweet, they could bottle it and sell it as barbecue sauce. https://t.co/FDk91k0jqx
cdkuempel RT @Mikel_Jollett: TRUMP: The protesters are paid. These marches are small. Well, here's Chicago today: https://t.co/iyfVfmFy8O
cdkuempel RT @jdhallphd: I can't overstate how big of a deal this #sciencemarch is. Have you ever tried to get five scientists in a room for a commit…
cdkuempel RT @saverygo: Scientists and family from Australia UQ & @ARC_CEED out to call for a greater role for science in policy & investment! UQ_New…
cdkuempel RT @nature_brains: The Chief Scientist of @nature_org, @HugePossum, explains why he's marching at the #ScienceMarch https://t.co/xqogbadbIf
cdkuempel RT @TrevorABranch: New global fisheries catch database by Reg Watson (who did the first catch databases for Sea Around Us) https://t.co/5RI
cdkuempel RT @MariaBeger: The adventure begins: assessing reef health for spatial planning at TMP! @j_a_mcgowan @fishiintheC @HugePossum https://t.co
kwekings Retweeted Sivasothi N. (@sivasothi): Heartbreak! 90% of Cameron Highland’s 123 streams and rivers are unhealthy,... https://t.co/eA2196Lxz6
kwekings RT @sivasothi: Heartbreak! 90% of Cameron Highland’s 123 streams and rivers are unhealthy, and three are biologically dead https://t.co/pOW
kwekings Is "New Normal" in this case just skirting the term "Novel Ecosystem"? Everything else seems to be the same. https://t.co/Jj8SAWjrhQ
kwekings I've told off anglers along the Punggol waterway on >4 occassions, but most just made snarky retorts... https://t.co/dB1iQyweIY
kwekings @sivasothi @marcuschua Planting non-native dipterocarps certainly won't help reproduction of the natives. Some species hybridise easily too.
kwekings @sivasothi @marcuschua Best figure was in the appendix. See light green in Fig (b). S. macroptera germination was c… https://t.co/Ej7udux5bB
kwekings @sivasothi @marcuschua Tried our best to avoid overly negative framing but the inviability was a mentally sticky me… https://t.co/meDLuhrFdC
kwekings Take the thought-provoking and well-designed survey on the #FutureOfConservation debate, ends with a self-profile! https://t.co/WWrJRVJlRr
kwekings @marcuschua I think this is worth responding to, perhaps as a Voices letter? But ideally an ant expert should write it.
kwekings Very cool, but buying queen ants from overseas supplies is going to be a problem https://t.co/dRqmiRt5Wt
BonMappin RT @EJ_Aus: So, about those claims the Adani coal mine will create 10,000 jobs... https://t.co/StUA2WuyGy via @Rob_Stott
BonMappin RT @ConversationEDU: Corals on the Great Barrier Reef have bleached again in 2017 as a result of extreme summer temperatures https://t.co/m
BonMappin RT @cdkuempel: Uni of Queensland ranked #1 in the world for #biodiversity #conservation! Not a bad place to do a PhD! @UQ_News https://t.c…
BonMappin RT @p_hannam: ICYMI: 'Barbaric' - Farmers rattled as Adani #coal mine gets unlimited water licence for 60 years: https://t.co/v5xXoODaFq vi…
BonMappin RT @Samantha_Vine_: 'Even if you don’t care about possums or trees; Great Forest National Park better for Victorian economy than logging'ht…
BonMappin @jameswhel No my question. It was a reply from tweet. I trust your research. Thanks for putting this important information out
BonMappin "health damage caused by #airpollution costs #auspol between $11billion & $24billion per year" @jameswhel @EJ_Aus https://t.co/5yEU9kttaQ
BonMappin RT @restoreforward: 2 billion hectares can be restored to productivity across the globe, learn more here: https://t.co/hcgN4YWvZW #restorat
BonMappin RT @GMMace: MPA effectiveness related 3x more to staffing & resources than bio, geo or eco factors. https://t.co/KqMe5tZTod https://t.co/nc
BonMappin RT @JAppliedEcology: To grow cities at least cost to #nature, couple land-sparing housing with habitat #restoration @LydiaCollas https://t.…
mainambui RT @qeemq: Presenting at Australia's Parliament https://t.co/LXDnepRnjx https://t.co/opjpJj6Swt
mainambui RT @AndrewKSkidmore: New #remotesensing vegetation index for GPP in @sciencemagazine Advances - an adjustment of NDVI using scene NIR https…
mainambui RT @AndrewKSkidmore: Scholarships for #PhD #postdoc researchers @EUFAR_science 2 wk course on #remotesensing essential biodiversity variabl…
mainambui RT @mainambui: @ITCAlumni @SIS_MQ great to reconnect with @AndrewKSkidmore during his talk @EnvScMQ on 'Remote sensing of Essential Biodive…
mainambui @ITCAlumni @SIS_MQ great to reconnect with @AndrewKSkidmore during his talk @EnvScMQ on 'Remote sensing of Essentia… https://t.co/YbPxSfff26
mainambui RT @NOAAClimate: What happens when ENSO's influence combines with other climate phenomena? https://t.co/WR7InNo1cO https://t.co/gU6jul71hs
mainambui RT @emilysdarling: Mark your calendars, the next @WIOMSA Symposium is in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania Oct 30 - Nov 4, 2017 #coral #seagrass #man
mainambui @bluecology perhaps package 'sjPlot'?
mainambui @TheWCS @EnvScMQ @ARC_CEED training hydrologists & water managers in Iringa - S. Tanzania on using R for hydrologic… https://t.co/b8GU6PC16S
mainambui @ITCAlumni @LibITC I dont..cant' access my own pdf
j_a_mcgowan RT @wild_ark: Our scientist in residence working in Borneo on biodiversity mapping project with WWF https://t.co/IETWKYRtNP
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j_a_mcgowan RT @fishiintheC: We've seen a site with #coralbleaching of Acroporas in #TunMustaphaPark. Bad sign for early summer. @Coral_Triangle @GCITw
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j_a_mcgowan Halfway through our 2017 TMP Expedition. Fuel reloaded. Traveling to the northern reaches of the marine park over t… https://t.co/fXvXmvxUJ7
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j_a_mcgowan RT @WCSNewsroom: Great News: Proposed Superhighway in #Nigeria has been rerouted to protect #CrossRiverGorillas and other wildlife https://…
j_a_mcgowan I am teaching a course with @Hugepossum on decision science for conservation and spatial planning pre -#ICCB2017- s… https://t.co/1qFRGnVe3p
j_a_mcgowan RT @theGEF: #Aquaculture now provides half the global seafood supply, with #China the leading producer (58% of total). https://t.co/DHGwEMh
j_a_mcgowan RT @SCBConsMark: 42 Of The Most Powerful Social And Environmental Ads That Will Change The Way You Think... https://t.co/Qet1Jqy4Ls https:/…
j_a_mcgowan RT @4fishgreenberg: All right folks, I hope you enjoyed the #FrontLinePbs "The Fish On My Plate". Let's keep the fish conversation going. M…
MorenaMills RT @ICCB2017: #ICCB2017 Early Bird Registration deadline has been extended until May 2! Register now: https://t.co/YpwwDKnSNc https://t.co/
MorenaMills RT @theGEF: #Aquaculture now provides half the global seafood supply, with #China the leading producer (58% of total). https://t.co/DHGwEMh
MorenaMills RT @emiel_delange: Great workshop on using media to tell conservation stories by @gabbyrsalazar #conservationoptimism https://t.co/ieiuAOdI
MorenaMills @david_tickner I'm organising a panel session at ICCB2017 on entrepreneurship & I wanted examples of freshwater projects. Any favourites?
MorenaMills @EvoEcoEric @ConnectedWaters @valeriasouzaccb Thanks Eric and Steph! @valeriasouzaccb, where can I find out more about your work?
MorenaMills @SteveOrmerod @ConnectedWaters @DrKatfish @SolomonRDavid @david_tickner Thanks Steve! I'm going to look into his work.
MorenaMills @ConnectedWaters @rhodycaroline Apologies for the delay in getting to this! They are amazing!
HugePossum RT @JohnFBruno: Wow congratulations to @Spalumbi on being inducted into @theNASciences https://t.co/82j6o2w4hj
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HugePossum A remarkable fraction of the new members of the US National Academy of Sciences study the causes and consequences of climate change #NAS154
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HugePossum RT @Marcia4Science: Huge crowd gathering for new member induction. Congrats! #NAS154 https://t.co/prsyBk4sDI
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HugePossum RT @sapinker: In DC to be inducted into National Academy of Sciences #NASmembers. Ceremony streamed here. @theNASciences #NAS154 https://t.…
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HugePossum #NAS154 18 or the 21 new foreign associates of the US National Academy of Sciences #science admitted today… https://t.co/wtt3DsoAai
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HugePossum RT @matthewgburgess: Hyperaggregation is known to enable overharvesting in oceans. We found it is likely to be even more common on land. ht…
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HugePossum The cost of massive reduction in GhG emissions in USA is less than a cup of coffee per person per week - Geoffrey Heal #NAS154 #climatemarch
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HugePossum RT @MarkTercek: "Talking about the science in a dispassionate, reasonable, calm, careful way is powerful." https://t.co/TlMyXl5K0M
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HugePossum RT @theNASciences: Watch live online Sunday, April 30 at 2pm EDT as the Public Welfare Medal is presented to @JaneLubchenco #NAS154 https:/…
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HugePossum Marcia McNutt - President of the National Academy of Sciences - begins our orientation to the Academy https://t.co/MubC0o5ZrJ
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RKRunting Sad to see Jeffrey Beall's blog gone. Such a useful resource! Who will keep an eye on predatory publishers now? https://t.co/JPkYjwri0K
RKRunting Having a great time at the @oceaniaesforum booth at #2016ACES https://t.co/PFq1qzR9b6
RKRunting Congrats @kerrie_a_wilson - Life Scientist of the Year! https://t.co/GJt0QiujMD
RKRunting RT @oceaniaesforum: Hear ye! Hear ye! The call for Town Hall Meetings is now open! Town Hall Meetings offer a sounding board for... https…
RKRunting RT @kerrie_a_wilson: An overview of our research on Borneo https://t.co/49uwBXOHJc
RKRunting RT @LauraEllenDee: Why functional diversity can help #EcosystemServices withstand more variable #temperatures: https://t.co/4yaUL3EgH4 http…
RKRunting Great new #ECR paper on incorporating socio-ecological systems into restoration planning https://t.co/wT8U7KcnSZ @ARC_CEED
RKRunting Australia is now a global hotspot for land clearing. I support a call for stronger laws to #ProtectHabitat! https://t.co/BebIpzDRcN
RKRunting RT @megcevans: New paper by the always impressive Jessie Wells: mapping impacts and perceptions of flooding in #Borneo @emeijaard https://t…
christhebirder RT @CarlaWildlife: So many people in Brisbane marching for science!! #marchforscience https://t.co/gKaeMcGgY7
christhebirder RT @saswisch: #WSTC3 abstracts & schedule are ONLINE! AMAZING line-up & more surprises to come! #seabirdersaturday #ornithology https://t.…
christhebirder RT @PetrelStation: In just a couple of hours #WSTC3 kicks off, #seabird goodness for 3 days! I'm on at 17.30 NZT on seabird #conservation p…
christhebirder Amazing! Cyclone Debbie maintained an eye all the way to Brisbane. Getting pretty windy here. https://t.co/NbWkyPtIXv
christhebirder RT @HugePossum: The listing of a species is a scientific rule-based process #alternativefacts @Barnaby_Joyce @IUCNRedList https://t.co/v2W
christhebirder .@megcevans haha so NASA is a trusted source on bible facts but not climate science?
christhebirder RT @Forest_and_Bird: An Australian butterfly never before recorded in New Zealand has been spotted in Canterbury. https://t.co/yjmABiS0TT h…
christhebirder Just a reminder that despite media hyperbole, we were pretty sure Night Parrot were still in WA due to the Fortescu… https://t.co/cvhujDDb39
christhebirder RT @staffo_sez: Koorangie State Game Reserve has now been closed to hunters due to deplorable behaviour on weekend. Pressure to abandon sea…
christhebirder @Blair__Parsons @GreeningAust @WAParksWildlife @RangelandsNRM Great! The Pilbara definitely needs all the conservation it can get
vivtulloch New #marxan prioritisation incl. probability of vegetation variability frm #climatechange in #canada @ARC_CEEDhttps://t.co/zbg3v1S637
vivtulloch RT @megcevans: Based on the volume and quality of her work I am convinced @ayeshatulloch never sleeps #ESA16 (or she has a twin...) @vivtul
vivtulloch RT @HugePossum: Which #coral reefs are a priority for #marineconservation when there are land-based threats https://t.co/FZqYvQ0hoH #marxan
vivtulloch @HugePossum we need actions not hotspots maps, translates humans hopes dreams and fears about coral reef management into maths #ICRS2016
vivtulloch RT @bluecology: Oil palm expansion is huge in tropics - potential massive #ridgetoreef impact on coral reefs @vivtulloch #ICRS2016
vivtulloch RT @bluecology: Marine protected areas have been key mgmt approach for coral reefs, but don't stop pollution! Need #ridgetoreef mgmt @vivtu
vivtulloch Need to act now with the best data available to guide management action and prevent further reef decline @bluecology #ICRS2016
vivtulloch @bluecology new ridge-to-reef approach solves disconnect btw academic & applied management needs #ICRS2016 https://t.co/RYQOWxEsUc
rubenvli RT @HugePossum: If you thought natural world heritage sites were safe, think again @cyclonewatson @jamesecology https://t.co/4S0ORdUDLf
rubenvli Complementing expert priorities and stakeholder preferences for marine management of Moreton Bay #MBQR2016.@NRMecon https://t.co/Oh0jMVVbOL
rubenvli RT @JAppliedEcology: Coarse spatial resolutions ⬇ commission errors in species ranges but ⬆ #conservation planning costs https://t.co/Jp8y7

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