Prof Mike Lawes

Prof Mike Lawes
Mlawes's picture
Professor - Wildlife Science
Primary research group: 
Savanna Wildlife Research and Conservation Management
08 8946 6527


My research interests include: (1) the community ecology and tree dynamics of tropical savannas and monsoon forests; (2) the causes of the decline of small mammals in north Australia; and (3) the ecology of feral cats and their interaction with other feral predators. I am especially interested in sprouting ecology and the role of the persistence niche in tropical savannas under climate change. In pursuance of the latter I am currently researching the effect of fire on tree dynamics in tropical savannas; in particular how bark thickness affects individual persistence and resprouting capacity after fire.

Prospective projects

  1. Assessing the effect of Magpie Geese on mango production in the Top End- see Magpie Geese for more information
  2. The effect of oil palm plantations on ecosystem services: insect pollination- see Oil Palm - pollination for more information
  3. The effect of oil palm plantations on ecosystem function: seed dispersal - see Oil Palm - seed dispersal for more information
  4. Resource allocation strategies in disturbance prone environments: sprouting behaviour, carbohydrate storage and the persistence niche- see Sprouting for more information
  5. Surviving fire: stem traits and evolutionary trade-offs - see Stem survival for more information
  6. How fire kills trees: Understanding stem mortality to predict savanna resilience to fire and climate change
  7. Recruitment in tropical cypress-pine: Is Callitris intratropica a useful indicator of savanna health? - see Callitris for more information
  8. The carbon sequestration potential of mixed species tropical plantations - click this link Carbon sequestration for more information [ARC funded project - LP0989161: 'Identifying cost-effective reforestation approaches for biodiversity conservation and carbon sequestrationin the Australian wet tropics]

Current projects

  1. Protecting vulnerable land from high wallaby densities. [Post-doctoral Research Fellow: Dr Miguel Bedoya-Perez]
  2. The invasive potential of Rubberbush (Calotropis procera) in the northern Australia [PhD student: Enock Menge] - click this link Rubberbush for more information
  3. Management of Feral Pigs and Buffalo in Kakadu National Park [PhD student: Stewart Pittard]
  4. Gouldian Finches and Fire [PhD student: Anna Weier]
  5. Ecology of Migratory Shorebirds on Darwin Harbour Mudflats [PhD student: Amanda Lilleyman]
  6. Ecology of the Eastern Sarus crane and drivers in of population trends [PhD student: Robert van Zalinge]
  7. Brolga conservation Ecology [PhD student: Tim Nevard]
  8. Investigating the efficiency of reforestation approaches in restoring rainforest biodiversity and function. [PhD student: Mia Derhe]
  9. Why the white nose? Sexual selection in putty-nose monkeys (Cercopithecus nictitans). [MSc student: Kelly Hutchinson]
  10. Pattern of bark thickness across a landscape-scale fire and productivity gradient in northern Australia [Hons student: Andrew Schubert]
  11. Causes of decline of arboreal small mammals [PhD student: Michael Hitchcock]
  12. Feral cat predation: a driver of small vertebrate decline in north Australia? [participant in ARC funded project - LP100100033: Mammal declines in northern Australia: science for conservation and recovery]


My projects

 ***Exciting opportunity for an applied ecology PhD, funded and supported by industry***

*PhD opportunity working in Sabah*


*PhD opportunity working in Sabah*


People I work with's picture
Amanda Lilleyman
PhD student
diane-pearson's picture
Dr Diane Pearson
Alumni - Senior Research Fellow
don-franklin's picture
Dr Don Franklin
Adjunct Research Fellow
muhammad-quddus's picture
Muhammad Quddus
PhD Student
abritton's picture
Adam Britton
Adjunct - Senior Research Associate
cassie-scoble's picture
Cassie Scoble
Research Associate
emenge's picture
Menge, E.O.
PhD Researcher
anna-weier's picture
Anna Weier
PhD Student
stewart-pittard's picture
Stewart Pittard
PhD Candidate
eddie-webber's picture
Eddie Webber
Alumni - Post-Doctoral Research Fellow
mbedoyaperez's picture
Dr Miguel A Bedoya-Pérez
Research Fellow's picture
Alyson Stobo-Wilson
PhD Candidate
bmurphy1's picture
Dr Brett Murphy
Senior Research Fellow
NDowling's picture
Natalie Dowling
PhD Candidate
wross's picture
Billy Ross
PhD Student
hcampbell's picture
Dr Hamish Campbell
Senior Research Fellow/Senior Lecturer
hparamjyothi's picture
Harinandanan Paramjyothi
PhD Student
lawoolley's picture
Leigh-Ann Woolley
Research Associate

My Places