Virtual lecture by Distinguished Professor Jamie Kirkpatrick, winner of the RST Clive Lord Medal 2019.
When: 3pm, Sunday, 6th September, 2020, by Zoom webinar.
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Tasmanian high mountain treeless vegetation is globally outstanding for its dominance by shrubs, hard-leaved graminoids and cushion plants, many of which are Cretaceous palaeoendemics. The highly maritime Tasmanian environment makes snow intermittent, exposing plants to fierce wintry winds and allowing mammals to graze all year round. The high mountain winds are associated with apparently cyclic succession in several situations, including bogs and fjaeldmark. Other apparently cyclic changes relate to the internal dynamics of ecosystems. Climate change has, so far, not affected the areas exhibiting these processes because of an interaction between stronger winds caused by climate change and environmental lapse rates. However, any marked ongoing warming at higher altitudes is likely to fossilise active processes. There is already some indication of such fossilisation in low altitude fjaeldmarks.
Our speaker Jamie Kirkpatrick AM is Distinguished Professor in Geography and Environmental Studies at the University of Tasmania where he helps students learn about nature, researches its characteristics and conservation, and engages with wider society. He has supervised to graduation more than 70 higher degree students. He is most cited in the academic literature for his work on planning conservation reserves and on the socio-ecology of urban areas. He has also written, or contributed to, many publications that are accessible to a wider audience. These include several books with Peter Dombrovskis, and, most recently, his own book Art by Nature.