- School of Environmental and Rural Science
Debbie Bower (B.Sc., Ph.D) is a Conservation Biologist and head of the Laboratory of Applied Zoology and Ecosystem Restoration (LAZER) in School of Environmental and Rural Science and UNE. Her research focuses on the management of invasive species and applied ecology of threatened taxa. This work incorporates experimental techniques to explore disturbances such as wetland weeds, salinisation and emerging infectious diseases. LAZER undertakes research in diverse aquatic systems including the wetlands of the Murray Darling Basin, savannas of north Queensland and, most recently, the rainforest streams of Papua New Guinea.
B.Sc.(Hons I), PhD in Applied Ecology
Conservation biology, Ecosystem Rehabilitation, Australian vertebrate Fauna, Herpetology, Wildlife Management, Behavioural Ecology.
Units currently teaching:
EM351, EM551 Ecosystem Rehabilitation (Coordinator)
ECOL202, ECOL402, ECOL502 Aquatic Ecology (Coordinator)
RSNR302, RSNR402, RSNR502 Integrated Water Resource Management (Coordinator)
EM312, ECOL100, ECOL203, RSNR110 (Lecturer)
Selected Competitive Grants:
Research Supervision Experience
Sasha Greenspan – PhD completion - Thermal thresholds in the amphibian disease chytridiomycosis
Donald McKnight – PhD Candidate - Life finds a way: The recovery of frog populations from a chytridiomycosis outbreak
Selected Recent Publications:
Bower, D. S. (2018) Commentary: Strategic conservation action for frogs. Animal Conservation 21: 106-107
Agha, M., Ennen, J.R., Bower, D. S., Nowakowski, J.A., Sweat, S.C, Todd, B.D., (2018) Salinity tolerances and use of saline environments by freshwater turtles: implications of sea level rise. Biological Reviews. Early view
Greenspan, S., Bower, D. S., Webb, R. J., Berger, L., Rudd, D., Schwarzkopf, L., Alford. R. A., (2017) White blood cell profiles in amphibians help to explain disease susceptibility following temperature shifts. Developmental and Comparative Immunology 77, 280-286.
McKnight, D., Alford, R. A., Hoskin, C., Schwarzkopf, L., Greenspan, S., Zenger, K., Bower, D.S. (2017) Fighting an uphill battle: The recovery of frogs in Australia’s Wet Tropics. Ecology. 98:3221-3223
Bower, D. S., Lips, K., Schwarzkopf, L., Georges, A., Clulow, S. (2017). Amphibians on the brink: Pre-emptive policies can protect amphibians from devastating fungal diseases. Science 357:454-455
Greenspan, S., Bower, D.S., Roznik, L., Marantelli, G., Pike, D., Schwarzkopf, L., Alford, R., Scheffers, B. (2017) Infection increases vulnerability to climate change via effects on host thermal tolerance. Scientific Reports 7 (1), 9349
Greenspan, S., Bower, D.S., Webb, R., Roznik, E., Stevenson, L., Berger, L., Marantelli, G., Pike, D., Schwarzkopf, L., Alford, R (2017) Realistic heat pulses protect frogs from disease under simulated rainforest frog thermal regimes. Functional Ecology (2017)
Bower, D. S., Mengersen, K., Alford, R.A., Schwarzkopf, L. (2017) Using a Bayesian Network to clarify areas requiring research in a host-pathogen system. Conservation Biology 31:1373–1382.
McKnight, D., Schwarzkopf, L., Alford, R.A., Bower, D. S. Zenger, K.R (2017) Effects of emerging infectious diseases on host population genetics: a review. Conservation Genetics 18(6), 1235-1245
Pollard, C. Stockwell, M. P., Pickett E. J., Garnham, J.I., Bower, D. S., Clulow, J., Mahony, M.J., (2017) Removal of an exotic fish influences breeding site selection by a threatened amphibian. Journal of Wildlife Management. Journal of Wildlife Management 81 (4), 720-727
Pollard C. J., Stockwell, M.P, Bower, D. S., Clulow, J., Mahony, M.J., (2017) Combining ex-situ and in-situ methods to improve water quality testing for the conservation of aquatic species. Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems: 27 (2), 559-568
Bower, D. S, Clulow, S.,, Richards, S., Amepou, Y. and Georges, A. 2017. Frogs of Wau Creek. Rokrok bilong Hanwara Wau. Poster prepared for public circulation.
Associate Editor for Austral Ecology
Editor for the Australian Society of Herpetologists
Reptile and amphibian ecology