Associate Professor Karl Vernes

Associate Professor - School of Environmental and Rural Science

Karl Vernes

Phone: +61 2 6773 3255


Twitter: @KarlVernes


After finishing my undergraduate degree in Zoology and Marine Biology at James Cook University, I pursued an M.Sc. in Zoology from James Cook University, completing it in 1994. In 1995 I worked as a consultant biologist for the Kinhill Group in Brisbane before returning to James Cook University to undertake a Ph.D. in Zoology and Tropical Ecology. I spent 1997 in Canada writing my Ph.D. at The University of British Columbia, returning to Australia in 1998 to work for the Rainforest CRC on feral pig management in lowland swamp forests. In 1999 I began a 3.5 year tenure as the McCain Postdoctoral Fellow in the Biology Department at Mount Allison University, New Brunswick, Canada. At Mount Allison I also taught courses in Mammalogy and Conservation Biology and supervised undergraduate research students. In the latter half of 2002 I returned again to Australia to lecture in the School of Tropical Ecology at James Cook University (Cairns). In January of 2003 I joined the Discipline of Ecosystem Management at UNE as Lecturer in Vertebrate Ecology, and was promoted to Senior Lecturer in January 2005.


  • B.Sc. in Zoology and Marine Biology (James Cook University, 1989)
  • M.Sc. in Zoology (James Cook University, 1995)
  • Ph.D. in Zoology and Tropical Ecology (James Cook University, 2000)

Teaching Areas

Research Interests

Mammal Ecology Group


Refereed Journals (2010- present)

Clayton, J. A., C. R. Pavey, K. Vernes, and M. Tighe. 2014. Review and analysis of Australian macropod translocations 1969-2006. Mammal Review 44:109-123.

Vernes, K. 2014. Seasonal truffle consumption by long-nosed bandicoots (Perameles nasuta) in a mixed rainforest-open forest community in north-eastern New South Wales. Australian Mammalogy 36:113-115.

Vernes, K. and P. Jarman. 2014. Foraging behaviour and handling times for long-nosed potoroos (Potorous tridactylus) foraging for buried truffles. Australian Mammalogy 36:128–130

Vernes, K. and P. Jarman. 2014. Long-nosed potoroo (Potorous tridactylus) behaviour and handling times when foraging for buried truffles. Australian Mammalogy 36:128-130.

Zewe, F., P. Meek, H. Ford, and K. Vernes. 2014. A vertical bait station for black rats (Rattus rattus) that reduces bait take by a sympatric native rodent. Australian Mammalogy 36:67-73.

Crook, N., S. C. Cairns, and K. Vernes. 2013. Bare-nosed wombats (Vombatus ursinus) use drainage culverts to cross roads. Australian Mammalogy 35:23-29.

Danks, M., T. Lebel, K. Vernes, and N. Andrew. 2013. Truffle-like fungi sporocarps in a eucalypt-dominated landscape: patterns in diversity and community structure. Fungal Diversity 58:143-157.

Meek, P. D., K. Vernes, and G. Falzon. 2013. On the reliability of expert identification of small-medium sized mammals from camera trap photos. Wildlife Biology in Practice 9:1-19.

Dorji, S., R. Rajaratnam, and K. Vernes. 2012. The Vulnerable red panda Ailurus fulgens in Bhutan: distribution, conservation status and management recommendations. Oryx 46:536-543.

Fielder, D., K. Vernes, E. Alacs, and A. Georges. 2012. Mitochondrial variation among Australian freshwater turtles (genus Myuchelys), with special reference to the endangered M. bellii. . Endangered Species Research 17:63–71

Pope, L. C., K. Vernes, A. W. Goldizen, and C. N. Johnson. 2012. Mating system and local dispersal patterns of an endangered potoroid, the northern bettong (Bettongia tropica). Australian Journal of Zoology 60:278-287.

Smith, A. N., K. A. Vernes, and H. A. Ford. 2012. Grazing effects of Black Swans Cygnus atratus (Latham) on a seasonally flooded coastal wetland of eastern Australia. Hydrobiologia 697:45-57.

Castellano, M. A., J. M. Trappe, and K. Vernes. 2011. Australian species of Elaphomyces (Elaphomycetaceae, Eurotiales, Ascomycota). Australian Systematic Botany 24:32-57.

Cooper, T. and K. Vernes. 2011. Mycophagy in the larger bodied skinks of the genera Tiliqua and Egernia: Are there implications for ecosystem health? Australian Zoologist 35:681-684.

Dorji, S., K. Vernes, and R. Rajaratnam. 2011. Habitat Correlates of the Red Panda in the Temperate Forests of Bhutan. PLoS ONE 6.

Vernes, K., S. Green, and P. Thomas. 2011. Estimating brush-tailed rock-wallaby population size using individual animal recognition. Australian Mammalogy 33:228-234.

Vernes, K. and P. Jarman. 2011. The mammal fauna of the Peter Murrell Reserves, Tasmania, as revealed by truffle-baited camera-traps. Tasmanian Naturalist 131:51 – 61.

Vernes, K. and T. Lebel. 2011. Truffle consumption by New Guinea forest wallabies. Fungal Ecology 4:270-276.

Danks, M., T. Lebel, and K. Vernes. 2010. 'Cort short on a mountaintop' - Eight new species of sequestrate Cortinarius from sub-alpine Australia and affinities to sections within the genus. Persoonia 24:106-126.

Jackson, S. and K. Vernes. 2010. Kangaroo: Portrait of an Extraordinary Marsupial. Allen and Unwin Crows Nest NSW.

Vernes, K. 2010. Mycophagy in a community of macropodoid species. Macropods: The Biology of Kangaroos, Wallabies and Rat-Kangaroos:155-169.