25th October 2021

Recent multi-authored paper in Global Change Biology

A recent multi-authored paper in Global Change Biology reports the results of a wetland monitoring program that Bennelongia director Stuart Halse set up in 1997 when he was in DBCA. The startling conclusion is that aquatic invertebrate richness in wetlands of the Western Australian wheatbelt has declined by two-thirds over 13 years as a result […]

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11th October 2021

A Hotspot of Arid Zone Subterranean Biodiversity

Last month both of Bennelongia’s principal scientists Huon Clark and Bruno Buzatto, along with our managing director Stuart Halse published “A Hotspot of Arid Zone Subterranean Biodiversity: The Robe Valley in Western Australia”. This paper discusses a globally significant subterranean fauna hotspot in the Robe Valley of the Pilbara region, Western Australia. In contrast to […]

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11th October 2021

Trapped indoors? Long-distance dispersal in mygalomorph spiders.

Earlier this year one of Bennelongia’s Principal Scientists Bruno Buzatto published a paper investigating long-distance dispersal in mygalomorph spiders. Tarantulas, trapdoor and curtain-web spiders are known for poor dispersal abilities, but some species can disperse aerially, via dropping on drag lines from elevated positions and being passively blown off. Named ‘suspended ballooning’, this behaviour was […]

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8th January 2019

What does sampling tell us about the ecology of troglofauna? (ISBC 2018)

The conference abstract is available online at https://doi.org/10.3897/aca.1.e29829 and a video will be forthcoming. Sampling for troglofauna has many inherent constraints and these include survey timing and design. Stuart Halse and his co-authors analysed sampling data from the Pilbara and found little evidence of weather or timing affecting capture rates. Importantly, there is evidence to […]

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8th January 2019

Comparison of eDNA and traditional troglofauna sampling methods (ISBC 2018)

The conference abstract is available online – https://doi.org/10.3897/aca.1.e30282 and a video of Michael Curran‘s talk will be forthcoming. eDNA metabarcoding holds great promise for documenting the underground biota, but it currently faces significant challenges that will likely be met over the next decade. The troglofauna eDNA pilot study was unable to definitively confirm the presence […]

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8th January 2019

Cave Ecology

The book ‘Cave Ecology’ has recently been published – https://www.bookshare.org/browse/book/2357751. The MD Stuart Halse is one of the editors of the book and penned two chapters. Brief introductions to these chapters are provided below: Chapter 20 – Research in Calcretes and Other Deep Subterranean Habitats Outside Caves The outstanding difference between traditional subterranean fauna studies […]

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3rd October 2018

On the Ecology of Australia’s Arid Zone

The Managing Director, Stuart Halse, has had a book chapter published in ‘On the Ecology of Australia’s Arid Zone’. Stuart’s chapter talks about the subterranean fauna of the Australia’s arid zone. The major difference between this chapter and most accounts of subterranean fauna is the focus on underground habitats other than caves. The book is […]

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10th September 2018

Subterranean Biology Conference

The 24th International Conference on Subterranean Biology recently concluded. It was held in the University of Aveiro, Portugal. This small city offered a beautiful backdrop to the conference. A myriapod of topics were covered in the five workshops, 70 talks and poster session. Two staff from Bennelongia attended. The MD, Stuart Halse, and Michael Curran […]

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2nd May 2017

New stygal diving beetles to be described by Bennelongia staff

Bennelongia is excited to reveal the pending descriptions of several new species of stygobitic diving beetles (Dytiscidae) that were collected during recent sampling trips. Specimens of two putative species were collected late last year in the Gascoyne region by team members Michael Curran and Anton Mittra, while specimens from a previous study in the Yilgarn […]

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1st May 2017

Three new troglobitic cockroaches described

Bennelongia’s resident taxonomic powerhouse Jane McRae, former Bennelongia principle scientist Dr Andrew Trotter and senior ecologist Dean Main and geneticist Dr Terrie Finston have co-authored a paper describing three new species of troglobitic cockroach of the genus Nocticola from the Pilbara. Troglobitic cockroaches in WA are understudied, with only a handful of cave species having been […]

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