Dr Benjamin Scheele

Postdoctoral Fellow
Frank Fenner Building (141)
 +61 2 612 52055

Profile

Qualifications

BSc (Hons)

Biography

I am passionate about ecology and sustainability.  As human impact continues to affect an ever increasing portion of the globe, I believe it is imperative that we develop methods that facilitate human-wildlife co-existence.  In particular, I am interested in wildlife conservation in human modified landscapes from an both ecological and social perspective.  To this end, I am currently involved in several frog conservation programs based in agricultural landscapes.  I am also interested in environmental history and anthropology, and believe that ecologists have much to gain from engaging with these fields.  If you think we have similar interests and would like to discuss potential collaborations please contact me.  

Research

Research interests

Thesis

Chytridiomycosis dynamics in Australian frogs

Thesis description

Globally, amphibians are experiencing unprecedented declines.  One of the leading causes of decline is the emerging infectious disease chytridiomycosis, caused by the skin fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis.  Chytridiomycosis is a highly virulent disease that has spread through Australia since its introduction in the 1970s, causing the decline or extinction of at least 17 endemic species.

My PhD research focuses on how populations of susceptible species persist with enzootic chytrid fungus.  Specifically, I am investigating the influence of host-densities, reservoir hosts and environmental variables on chytridiomycosis dynamics and the effects of disease on host demographics.  I am using a variety of approaches including natural experiments, manipulative experiments and broad scale surveys to collect data.  My findings are facilitating an increased understanding of chytridiomycosis and informing strategies to assist species threatened by this disease.  

Updated:  27 July 2016/Responsible Officer:  Director Fenner School/Page Contact:  Webmaster Fenner School