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Lisa Danuser

Tussock grasslands recovery after fire

Lisa Danuser thumbA love for the outdoors and botanical ecology lead me to the tussock grasslands of central Otago. I study how the woody component of tussock grasslands systems recover post fire disturbance. My main interests are how well the woody species resprout post fire, and investigating the invertebrate community dynamics in the woody component of the grassland.

Hannah Heynderickx

Effects of ocean acidification on phytoplankton and bacteria

Hannah Heynderickx thumbMy name is Hannah Heynderickx. I joined Linn Hoffmann's lab at the Botany department in the spring 2018 as a PhD candidate. I was born and raised in Belgium where I obtained two Master degrees, one in Biochemistry and Biotechnology (Ghent university, 2014) and one in Marine Science and Management (Free university of Brussels, 2016). During those years of studying I developed a passion for marine microbial ecology.

The aim of my PhD dissertation is to investigate the effect of ocean acidification on phytoplankton and bacterial communities using metagenomics, flow cytometry and FlowCam analysis. The projects used to address this aim focus on identifying microbial communities of hydrothermal vents, kelp forests and a long term time series analysis of microbial communities along the MUNIDA transect off the south east coast of New Zealand.

Chelsea Kerr

Physiological, biochemical and molecular tools for understanding storage breakdown disorder expression in kiwifruit

Chelsea Kerr thumbI completed BAppSc majoring in Molecular Biotechnology with a minor in Botany in 2016 at the and a MSc in Plant Biotechnology in 2019 in the Botany Department at the University of Otago. I am currently undertaking a PhD.

My masters and PhD both centred around post-harvest storage of fresh produce with the overall aim of limiting food waste. I am keen to educate people on where their food comes from, how it was produced and what impact that might have on both their health and the world.

Associate Professor David J Burritt is supervising Chelsea's PhD.

Duncan Nichol

Biogeography and evolution of Celmisiinae

Duncan Nichol thumbDuncan is a PhD candidate interested in systematics, evolution, and biogeography. Duncan is building an evolutionary tree for the subtribe Celmisiinae to update systematic understanding for its clades and species. The tree will then be used to test biogeographic theories and ecological models.

Merissa Strawsine

Mānuka's role in beech seedling establishment

Merissa Strawsine thumbMSc student Merissa Strawsine is examining the role of mānuka in facilitating the establishment of native beech species from seed. New Zealand beech species are the only native trees that form associations with ectomycorrhizal (EM) fungi alone. However, the pioneer species mānuka can host EM fungi in addition to the more generalist arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi. Merissa is examining how fungal diversity on mānuka roots is associated with beech seedling establishment.

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