Hi, my name is Esti. I am doing my PhD with the Quantitative and Applied Ecology Group at the School of Botany in the University of Melbourne, where Jane Catford and Peter Vesk will lead my journey through the exciting world of plant ecology. My research interests focus on plant invasion patterns.
Before moving to Australia, I completed a master’s degree on ‘Biodiversity management and conservation’ at the University of Barcelona. It was at this time that my curiosity about biological invasions arouse and I began to look into the many theories that have been developed to explain why invasions take place. I worked with samples of the asterid herb Senecio phterophorus from South Africa (where it is a native species) and from Spain and SE Australia (where it has been introduced) to explore the ‘Enemy release hypothesis’.
From late 2011 to mid 2012 I did a six month collaboration with Jane Catford, Peter Vesk and Matt White looking at the linkage between species invasiveness and ecosystem invasibility. We used hierarchical modelling to examine how species traits modulate their responses to the environment.
This blog is thought to include updates on my postgrad adventures. Feel free to jump into the other sections, which provide up-to-date information regarding the progress and outcomes of my research. Of course, if you want to know more or discuss any related topic, please drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org