Juan Mula Laguna - The Causes of Rarity in Granivorous Birds - Southern Black Throated Finches as a Case Study
I joined the lab in April 2016 to work in a project funded by Queensland’s Department of Transport and Main Roads to study the endangered Black-throated Finch southern subspecies (Poephila cincta cincta), known for having suffered a reduction of 80% in its former range over the last decades. The main aim of my PhD will be to get a better understanding of Black-throated Finch habitat through the use of Species Distribution Models, providing effective tools for its conservation. As a second step, I will extend my research to other granivore species that have suffered similar processes in northern Queensland savannas, trying to uncover the main factors behind this trend. Given the characteristics of the Black-throated Finch I will also explore the constraints of working with rare and data-deficient species, using innovative survey and modelling techniques that could prove useful for further research with poorly known species.