The Time Lord of biological systems

Prof Dale Roberts, the Time Lord of Frogs, presenting on Frogs at a Climate Change conference. Photo courtesy Dale Roberts

Prof Dale Roberts from UWA has presented brilliantly on how even supposedly ‘fragile’ frog species have persisted in the south west for over 25 million years, so far, and how a number of frog species are adapting and evolving within a small number of years to cope with human induced changes to the ecosystem. This was happening in the biodiversity section of a South Coast Climate Change conference yesterday, organised by South Coast NRM. There was a range of important discussion on the durability of the south western Australian ecological systems, how they have coped with the human onslaught so far, and the practicality of micro-managing their future species by species (Nah!).

Gondwana Link’s Keith Bradby spoke to the strengths of an ecological system that has a continuous biological history stretching back over 250 million years, and the ongoing tragedy of mammal loss, while other speakers talked to the genetic robustness of the flora and the benefits and difficulties of modelling the future for individual species. While no-one underestimated the current human induced stresses on the ecosystems and the species, it was wonderful to see the robustness of our Gondwana heritage recognised, with Dale’s talk being the icing on the conservation cake! It was a great day, well done all.

South-western Australia’s Sunset Frog. Photo courtesy of Dale Roberts.



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© Raana Scott - Carnaby cockatoo in flight, flame grevillea