A research focus in the areas of ocean sciences and marine animal ecology naturally emerges from USC’s location at the edge of the Pacific Ocean. It also reflects the expertise, and international leadership, of several academics who work on cutting-edge issues in marine and coastal ecology.
They work on a diverse range of topics, set in equally diverse environments, spanning from deep-sea biology to marine climate change ecology.
Whilst they undertake both applied and theoretical research, a leading principle is that all of their marine science work must be strongly embedded in modern theoretical frameworks of ecology and conservation, and that attributions are strong and defensible, especially in the area of climate change associated work.
The ecology and conservation of interfaces, focusing particularly on processes that structure and impact ecosystems of sandy beaches and estuaries.
The ecological consequences of global change, emphasising cutting-edge modelling of biotic response to changing ocean conditions, at regional to global scales.
Connectivity between populations, habitats and ecosystems including reef fishes, sharks, mangroves, surf-zones, deep-ocean seamounts and submarine canyons.
Investigating the fundamental role played by vertebrate scavengers of beach and marine carrion in food-webs and in biological connectivity.
Examining coastal geomorphology and how changing seascapes impact on ecological processes, resilience and animals.
Professor Thomas Schlacher
Professor, Marine Science
Dr Ben Gilby
Assoc. Lecturer, Animal Ecology
Dr Javier Leon
Senior Lecturer, Physical Geography
Dr Andrew Olds
Senior Lecturer, Animal Ecology
Marine ecology latest news
8 August 2016
Drone research at two Coast beaches
From the air to the sea, Mooloolaba and Maroochydore beaches are this week in the sights of University of the Sunshine Coast researchers working in collaboration with Sunshine Coast Council on a project to map the ocean floor to improve coastal zone management.
27 August 2015
Research predicts changes for marine life
Marine life will be thrown into chaos by ocean warming by the year 2100, according to a new international study co-authored by a University of the Sunshine Coast expert in quantitative ecology.
29 May 2015
USC sustainability research on show at festival
Whether they’re trying to save Great Barrier Reef coral, Queensland’s pine forests or turtles nesting on local beaches, USC researchers will tell the public about their exciting work at the World Environment Day Festival on Sunday 7 June.
12 November 2014
Funding boost for groundbreaking USC research
Senior academics from USC are collaborating on research projects that have received almost $890,000 in the latest round of major grants from the Australian Research Council.
30 September 2014
Vet who studies beach wildlife earns Chancellor’s Medal
A veterinary surgeon whose love for the region’s beaches and wildlife has inspired her to excel in her studies will receive the prestigious Chancellor’s Medal when she graduates from USC.
4 September 2014
Fresh look at our beaches and climate change
Coast residents will be encouraged to see the opportunities climate change could create and to view our treasured sandy beaches as thriving ecosystems at a fascinating free public lecture at University of the Sunshine Coast on Tuesday 16 September.