Madeleine Sanders, Lab Manager, Monash University

Maddie oversees our lab-based experiments on amphibian ecophysiology.

Sebastian Chekunov, PhD, University of Adelaide (co-supervised with Phill Cassey and Thomas Prowse)

Sebastian is studying drivers of the live pet trade in Australian reptiles.

Arman Pili, PhD, Monash University (co-supervised with David Chapple)

Arman is investigating correlates of amphibian invasion success.

Louise Docker, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Matt Elmer, PhD, Monash University (co-supervised with Vanessa Kellerman)

Matt is investigating the impacts of global change on Australian bees using physiological experiments, statistical modelling and quantitative genetics.

Juan Valbuena, PhD, Monash University (co-supervised with Jane Melville)

Juan is exploring the impacts of Quaternary climate change on shaping past reptile and frog communities from the Australian tropics to the temperate south.

Sesa Roy, PhD, Monash University (co-supervised with Alan Dorin)

Sesa’s research involves using computer vision and machine learning methods to monitor invasive species.


Andressa Duran, PhD, Monash University (co-supervised with Shai Meiri, David Chapple)

Andressa is investigating drivers of lizard diversity by combining data on species traits with statistical models to explore and integrate mechanisms at different temporal and spatial scales.

Saxbee Affleck, PhD, Monash University (co-supervised with Melodie McGeoch)

Saxbee is studying the consequences of population declines on community and ecosystem function, using birds as a model system.


Adam Smart, PhD, University of Melbourne (co-supervised with Ben Phillips)

Adam is studying the application of targeted gene flow to biological invasions.


Emily McColl-Gausden, PhD, University of Melbourne (co-supervised with Andrew Weeks)

Emily is using environmental DNA sampling to understand the distribution and decline of the platypus. Emily’s work forms the foundation of the Great Australian Platypus Search (GAPS), a collaborative project with cesar consulting and San Diego Zoo Global.

Former Students

Holly Wilson, Honours, Monash University (2021) Geographic variation in the voluntary
thermal maximum of the Southern Brown Tree Frog Litoria ewingii.

Thomas Flanagan, Honours, Monash University (2021) Does taxonomy influence biogeographic patterns and conservation priorities? A case study in Australian skinks (co-supervised with David Chapple)

Emily Pertile, Honours, Monash University (2021) Using environmental DNA to
examine the effects of the 2019/2020 Australian bushfires on vertebrate biodiversity.

Emma Walker, Honours, Monash University (2021) The impacts of the 2019-2020
“Black Summer” bushfires on freshwater fish communities using environmental DNA.

Brianna Argall, Global Challenges Honours, Monash University (2021) Spatiotemporal implications for monitoring sharks via environmental DNA.

Mel Berran, Honours, Monash University (2021) A comparison of environmental DNA sampling strategies for detecting anuran populations in wetlands.

Sebastian Chekunov, Honours, Monash University (2020) Intraspecific geographic variation in metabolic rates of a temperate amphibian.

Sam Blackburn, Honours, Monash University (2020) Geographic variation in growth, development and foraging efficiency of a temperate amphibian.

Miranda Richardson, Honours, Monash University (2020) Effects of wetland hydroperiod on tadpole life history.

Emma Hinde, Honours, Monash University (2019) Do Australian Skinks and Goannas conform to Bergmann’s and Allen’s Rules? (co-supervised with David Chapple)

Jesca Norris, Honours, Monash University (2019) Environmental correlates of morphological diversity in Australian Geckos (co-supervised with David Chapple)

David Wilkinson, PhD, University of Melbourne (2016-2019) A comparison of the inferential, computational, and predictive performance of joint species distribution models (co-supervised with Nick Golding, Gurutzeta Guillera-Arroita, Mick McCarthy)

Tessa Mackenzie, MSc, University of Otago, NZ (2018-2019) A comparison between morphology and habitat occupancy of Litoria raniformis in New Zealand and Australia (co-supervised with Phil Bishop)

Chong Yee Yeoh, Master of Environment and Sustainability, Monash University (2019) The range and distribution of the invasive European Wasp (Vespula germanica) in Australia  (co-supervised with Melodie McGeoch)

Lukas Fellows, MSc, University of Melbourne (2018-2019) Thermal biology is key for understanding and minimising chytridiomycosis risk to conserve susceptible amphibians (co-supervised with Matt West)

Will Green, MSc, University of Melbourne (2017-2019) Predicting how thermal physiology and habitat characteristics mediate disease risk in a threatened amphibian (co-supervised with Natalie Briscoe)

Bruce Edley, MSc, University of Melbourne (2017-2018) Extinction dynamics of the Growling Grass Frog (Litoria raniformis) in south-eastern Victoria (co-supervised with Geoff Heard)

Emily McColl-Gausden, MSc, University of Melbourne (2016-2017) Comparing eDNA metabarcoding and electrofishing for sampling freshwater fish communities (co-supervised with Andrew Weeks)

Emily Gregg, MSc, University of Melbourne (2015-2016) No water, no hope: Investigating the feasibility of a waterless barrier to stop the toads (co-supervised with Ben Phillips)

William Lugg, MSc, University of Melbourne (2015-2016) Using site occupancy detection models to compare the cost-efficiency of environmental DNA sampling and a traditional trapping technique (co-supervised with Andrew Weeks)

Nathaniel Gecse, MSc, University of Melbourne (2015-2016) Accounting for false positive errors in occupancy studies based on Environmental DNA (co-supervised with Andrew Weeks)

Darren Southwell, PhD, University of Melbourne (2012-2016). Optimal management of metapopulations across space and time (co-supervised with Eve McDonald-Madden, Mick McCarthy, Brendan Wintle)

Sadia Ishaq, MEnv, University of Melbourne (2015). Modelling the distribution of Lissotriton vulgaris in Australia (co-supervised with Mick McCarthy)

Carla Rani Rocha Arantes, Australian Internships Program (2014). Integrating propagule pressure data and species distribution models to develop spatially-explicit risk assessments for exotic species

Adam Smart, MSc, University of Melbourne (2013-2014). Optimal detection of an aquatic invader using environmental DNA (co-supervised with Mick McCarthy)

Bona Hartoto, Hons, University of Melbourne (2014). Trait-based models of anuran movement (co-supervised with Mick McCarthy)