Emily Jordan

Emily Jordan

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Emily Jordan

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Start Year

2021 (Cohort 8)

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PhD Project
PhD Title

Novel ecosystems and the ecology of recovery; investigating community dynamics in introduced populations

Research Theme

Biodiversity, Ecology and Conservation

Primary Supervisor
Primary Institution


Secondary Supervisor
Secondary Institution



The ongoing global extinction crisis endangers the resources human life is dependent upon via the destabilisation of ecosystems. Species recovery programmes work to mitigate against species losses to preserve and restore genetic, species, and ecosystem biodiversity. Conservation translocations, involving the movement and release of living organisms, can aid against extinction by reinforcing or establishing new populations, however, require careful planning to avoid failure. Translocation success is dependent upon the interactions of released individuals with their novel biotic and abiotic environment, and knowledge of species ecology can be used to generate models to predict these interactions and select an appropriate release site. Where ecological knowledge is limited, the opinions of experienced academics and practitioners can be collated to facilitate robust decision-making. This study will focus on the recently discovered Kapitia skink, Oligosoma salmo, in New Zealand as a case study. Research elucidating the species’ life history, behaviours, habitat use, and distribution will guide conservation decision-making. Further uncertainty will be addressed using expert elicitation and decision science frameworks. The outcomes of this project will inform conservation translocations and further management actions to optimise the recovery of this Critically Endangered species, with impacts for wider reptile conservation in New Zealand.

Policy Impact
Background Reading



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