Research – February 2016


New publications

Congratulations to Dr Samia Saif and Dr Jake Bicknell, who have both had new papers accepted for publication:

Samia Saif, Aal M. Russell, Sabiha I. Nodie, Chloe Inskip, Petra Lahann, Adam Barlow, Christina Greenwood Barlow, Md. A. Islam & Douglas C. MacMillan (2015): Local Usage of Tiger Parts and Its Role in Tiger Killing in the Bangladesh Sundarbans, Human Dimensions of Wildlife, DOI: 10.1080/10871209.2015.1107786

Horsley, Thomas W.B. and Bicknell, Jake E. and Lim, Burton K. and Ammerman, Loren K. (2015) Seed dispersal by frugivorous bats in Central Guyana and a description of previously unknown plant-animal interactions. Acta Chiropterologica, 17 (2). pp. 331-336. ISSN 1508-1109. (doi:10.3161/15081109ACC2015.17.2.008)

Successful Funding

Congratulations to Dr Matthew Struebig, who has recently won a British Council/Newton Fund grant of £137,068 for a two-year research project in Malaysia entitled, “Enhancing Environmental Resilience in Expanding Oil Palm Landscapes via Improved Design of Riparian Reserves”. Oil palm is central to Malaysia’s economy and welfare of rural society, but has known environmental impacts on water quality and biodiversity if not managed sustainably. The principle means by which these impacts are minimised is to protect vegetation along rivers. This is required by national law, but supporting scientific evidence is lacking and effectiveness unknown. Riparian reserves could also mitigate against climate change. To determine effectiveness of policy the project will examine effects of riparian habitat quality/width on water quality, aquatic biodiversity, and carbon stocks around plantation rivers. It will provide analytical training for emerging Malaysian researchers, and use stakeholder consultation to better link environmental science to practitioner needs. This will yield environmental guidelines, improve business sustainability via improved management of rural waterways, benefiting society (especially vulnerable smallholders) by resilience to climate change.

Dr Struebig has also received a second grant from Newton for £36,750 to fund an early career workshop in Sabah, Borneo on “Enhancing Environmental Resilience of Oil Palm: Setting Research Priorities and Fostering Networking Amongst Researchers and Stakeholders in Malaysia”.

SAC Research in the Media

PhD student Benjamin Lee has recently had his PhD work on the urban ecology of bats featured in the Straits Times of Singapore. See chapter 3 of the following link:

Recent research on the dangers of incomplete data for threatened species by Dr Dave Roberts and honorary DICE researcher Dr Lucas Joppa has been covered by University of Kent’s Science News. Read more here:



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