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Want to work with us? PhD top-up scholarship in Migratory Species Conservation available: apply now!

We’re excited to be able to offer a PhD top-up scholarship ($7k/year) to work with the Conservation Decisions Team! Dr Sam Nicol is partnering with the amazing Professor Richard Fuller from the Fuller Lab at UQ to find a student to work on Global cooperation for conserving migratory species.

Please note that successful candidates will need to apply for an obtain a scholarship from UQ to be eligible for the top-up. Application details for scholarships close 17 Jan 2020 for international students; 27 March 2020 for domestic students. See the post below for more details.

Project description

Many migratory species are in rapid decline and in need of effective conservation action. Interconnections between habitats used during migration mean that threats in any one part of an annual cycle can affect the entire population of a migratory species. Environmental management actions for migratory species therefore need to be coordinated across habitat types, seasons, and jurisdictions – yet this type of coordination has proven frustratingly elusive in practice. For example, the Convention on Migratory Species is signed by 125 countries, yet 91% of the world’s migratory birds are inadequately covered by protected areas across their annual cycle. There is a need to better understand where migrants move, how nations cooperate and the benefits of additional cooperation to protect migrants from extinction. This project will investigate these issues by measuring migratory connectivity and using the information gained to suggest improvements to the way migratory species are conserved. The methods that are developed will be tested on global datasets and used to provide guidance for international cooperation to better protect migratory species.


Top-up Scholarship Offer

We are looking for a motivated student to work with The Fuller Lab at UQ and the Conservation Decisions Team at CSIRO on an exciting new joint project. A top-up scholarship funded by CSIRO is available for this project for one PhD student contingent on the student receiving a UQ scholarship, an Australian Government Research Training Program (RTP) scholarship, or some similar domestic or international scholarship. We will work with the successful candidate to help put together their scholarship application. This top-up provides additional stipend ($7,000 per annum for 3.5 years) and generous support costs (including travel). UQ scholarship round dates can be found here:


Student Requirements

The ideal candidate will need to have a strong interest in the conservation of migratory species. Excellent written and oral presentation skills are essential and the candidate will need to have or develop skills in data management and spatial analysis. Modelling and programming skills in at least one language (such as R), will be a distinct advantage. Prospective candidates with training in population ecology, conservation biology, spatial analysis or statistics are particularly desirable, but strong candidates with relevant skills from other quantitative disciplines are also encouraged to apply.


For more information contact Professor Richard Fuller ( or Dr Sam Nicol  (


For more details on research environment visit

Featured Image: Migrating Sandhill Cranes, Alaska USA. Image courtesy of: May-Le Ng


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