Plant systematics & population genetics, evolutionary ecology & plant macrofossils

Plant systematics & population genetics, evolutionary ecology & plant macrofossils

Work with some of South Australia’s leading scientists on a research project about plant systematics and population genetics, evolutionary ecology or plant macrofossils.

Our research program aims to investigate the diversity, history and origins of living and fossil plant communities. We apply molecular genetic, morphological, cytological and fossil analyses to our research.

Currently we work on diverse groups including marine, desert, carnivorous, parasitic and other specialised groups of native Australian, New Zealand, New Caledonia and other Pacific Island plant groups.

We study not only the plants but co-evolution of plants and animals that they are associated with. Many of our projects aim to improve the conservation of plant species in the landscape today.

Our research has adopted the use of up to date next generation sequencing tools to generate data and will lead to students having highly valued skills.


Honours projects

Based on your interests and our expertise, we’ll help define a project in an area such as:

  • Endemic, rare or threatened native plant species systematics and taxonomy
  • Phenology and evolution of the South Australian flora
  • Systematics, molecular phylogenetics and cytological studies of native plants
  • Pollen diversity of New Caledonian podocarps
  • Evolution of fossil angiosperms
    Co-supervisor: Professor Bob Hill
  • Population genetics of marine angiosperms (seagrasses)
  • Developing an exemplar database for Australian weeds and/or native plants - morphology, anatomy, pollen form, leaf venation patterns, DNA sequences
  • Unravelling species complexes and hybridisation in Australian native plant groups
  • How do we detect if something is a weed?
  • Research supporting the revised taxonomy of the Rhamnaceae
  • Seed dispersal by sleepy lizards
    Co-supervisor: Associate Professor Phill Cassey
  • Impacts of coastal management activities on carbon storage in mangrove and saltmarsh
    Co-supervisor: Professor Bronwyn Gillanders



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