Dr Martine Maron
Dr Martine Maron

Position

ARC Future Fellow and Associate Professor, Environmental Management

Contact

Room: 3-327
Phone: +61 7 3365 3836
E-mail: m.maron@uq.edu.au

Qualifications

  • PhD (Monash)
  • BSc (Honours) (Monash)
  • Grad. Cert. Tertiary Teaching & Learning (USQ)

Professional Associations

  • Director, BirdLife Australia
  • Chair, BirdLife Australia Research and Conservation Committee
  • BirdLife Australia Student Awards Committee
  • Australasian Ornithological Congress Advisory Committee
  • Birds Queensland Research Committee
  • Ecological Society of Australia

Background

Conserving biodiversity is essential for maintaining the health of the environment that supports human life and wellbeing. But the task will only get harder, with human pressures increasing in magnitude and ubiquity.

My research tackles questions central to this challenge. I work on understanding why species respond the way they do to landscape change and how even highly modified landscapes can be managed to be more biodiverse. Sound conservation policy is essential if we are to apply ecological knowledge to reduce and ultimately halt biodiversity declines. Given that at least some development that damages biodiversity is inevitable, offsetting damage in one place with biodiversity improvement in another may be our only option. My research seeks to improve the practice and policy of conservation policy such as biodiversity offsetting.

I collaborate with a broad network of individuals and organisations including government and non-government bodies to help achieve effective uptake of research findings into policy and environmental management. My research lab is affiliated with both the Landscape Ecology and Conservation Group in GPEM and the Environmental Decisions Hub funded by the National Environmental Research Program.

Research interests

My research focus is in two main areas:

1. Landscape ecology, particularly

  • What affects meso-scale diversity in altered landscapes: how different large-scale patterns of clearing, fire, forest management alter the capacity of landscapes to support species and conversely, how these patterns can be manipulated to increase meso-scale diversity; and 
  • Processes underlying patterns of individual species distribution in human-modified landscapes, such as resource availability and interspecific interactions (particularly the ecosystem-altering noisy miner).

2. Conservation policy, particularly development of defensible and transparent systems for accounting for conservation gains and losses such as in biodiversity offsetting.

Research students

Opportunities exist for prospective PhD students in two areas: 1) biodiversity offset policy analysis; and 2) the potential for management of hyper-aggressive noisy miners to restore woodland bird assemblages. Contact: m.maron@uq.edu.au

Principal supervision of current PhD candidates

  • Emma Burgess: Managing Fire for Nature Conservation in Sub-tropical Woodlands 
  • Anita Cosgrove: Does Habitat Fragmentation Impact Sedentary Bird Species through Reduced Resource Availability? 
  • Bhagawan Dahal: Landscape-scale Effects of Habitat Extent, Configuration and Management on Forest Bird Assemblages in Lowland Nepal 
  • Jeremy Simmonds: Species-area Relationships in Fragmented Landscapes - Identifying Thresholds for Incorporation into Conservation Planning and Land Management 
  • Zoe Stone: Implications of fire management in relation to resource distribution within grassy patches for the recovery of the Eastern Bristlebird (Dasyornis brachypterus)
     

Associate supervision of current PhD candidates

  • Abbey Camaclang: Challenges in identifying and designating critical habitats for threatened and endangered species. (Primary supervisor: Hugh Possingham)
  • Rebecca Dannock: How individuals' characteristics and environmental factors influence the trade-off between resource acquisition and predator avoidance in a prey species, the blue wildebeest (primary supervisor: Anne Goldizen)
  • Madelaine Castles: Social organisation of giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis) in Etosha National Park (Primary supervisor: Anne Goldizen)

Selected publications

A full list of publications is available here.
 
Miller, K. L., Trezise, J. J., Kraus, S., Dripps, K., Evans, M. C., Gibbons, P., Possingham, H. P., Maron, M. In press. The Development of the Australian Environmental Offsets Policy: from Theory to Practice. Environmental Conservation. (Accepted 12 November 2014)
Deikumah, J.P., McAlpine, C. A, Maron, M. 2014. Mining matrix effects on West African rainforest birds. Biological Conservation 169: 334-343
Mac Nally, R., McAlpine, C., Possingham, H., Maron, M. 2014. The control of rank-abundance distributions by a competitive despotic species. Oecologia 176: 849-857
Maron, M., Rhodes, J. R., Gibbons, P. 2013. Calculating the benefit of conservation actions. Conservation Letters 6:359-367
 
Maron, M., Grey, M., Catterall, C. P., Clarke, M., Major, R., Oliver, D., Mac Nally, R., Thomson, J., Davidson, I., Loyn, R. 2013. Avifaunal disarray from a single despotic species. Diversity & Distributions 19: 1468-1479

Maron, M., Hobbs, R., Moilanen, A., Matthews, JW., Christie, K., Gardner, T. A., Keith, D. A., Lindenmayer, D. B., McAlpine, C. A. 2012. Are restoration offsets Faustian bargains? Restoration realities in the context of biodiversity offset policies. Biological Conservation 155:141-148

Mac Nally R., Maron M., Bowen M., Howes A. and McAlpine C. 2012. Despotic, high-impact species and sub-continental scale control of avian assemblage structure. Ecology 93:668-678.

Maron M., Bowen M., Fuller R.A., Smith G.C., Eyre T.J., Mathieson M., Watson J.E.M. and McAlpine C.A. 2012. Spurious thresholds in the relationship between species richness and vegetation cover. Global Ecology and Biogeography 21: 682-692.

Maron, M., Goulding, W., Ellis, R., Mohd-Taib, F. 2012. Distribution and individual condition reveal a hierarchy of habitat suitability for a declining passerine. Biodiversity and Conservation 21:2509-2523.

Maron, M., Dunn, P. K., McAlpine, C. A. and Apan, A. 2010. Can habitat offsets really compensate for habitat loss? The case of the red-tailed black-cockatoo. Journal of Applied Ecology 47, 348–355

Attwood, S. J., Park, S. E., Maron, M., Collard, S. J., Robinson, D., Reardon-Smith, K. M. and Cockfield, G. 2009. Declining birds in Australian agricultural landscapes may benefit from aspects of the European agri-environment model. Biological Conservation 142:1981–1991
 

Funded projects

  • Achieving biodiversity conservation and ecosystem service delivery: the role of landscape structure (ARC Discovery)
  • Management of cypress pine forests for biodiversity (Qld Department of Environment and Resource Management)
  • Large-scale fire management for biodiversity (Andyinc and Bush Heritage Australia)
  • Grassland islands as a key to survival for Bristlebirds in North East NSW (NSW Environment Trust)
  • Priority threat identification, management and appraisal (Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance)

Last updated: Dec 5, 2014