The University of Newcastle, Australia

Understanding the Ecology of the Threatened Green and Golden Bell Frog in a Dynamic Coastal Landscape

Closing Date: 30 October 2020Apply Now

PhD Scholarship

The Conservation Science Research Group at the University of Newcastle is a leader in applied research for the successful conservation of the threatened green and golden bell frog. Integrated land management within an adaptive management framework has shown that populations of this frog may remain viable in suburban and industrial coastal landscapes. This has become a model system to investigate numerous ecological questions about the ecology of pond breeding frogs.

Littlejohn’s Treefrog and the Giant Burrowing Frog

This project explores the population dynamics, distribution and habitat use of the green and golden bell frog at Avoca Lagoon, particularly understanding the response of the larval phase to altered hydrology and water quality associated with lagoon draining after periods of heavy rainfall or tidal activity and how patterns of disease may be affected by water quality and availability.

The project is field based and will be conducted near Avoca on the New South Wales Central Coast, about 30 minutes from The University of Newcastle Ourimbah Campus. Green and golden bell frogs have persisted there in a freshwater wetland within an intermittently closed and open lagoon (ICOLL) within a coastal urban environment. The project is supported by an industry partner, which includes support for a field vehicle, equipment, and the support of another PhD student in assisting with community frog surveys as part of the project.

PhD Scholarship details

Funding: $28,092 per annum (2020 rate) indexed annually. For a PhD candidate, the living allowance scholarship is for 3.5 years and the tuition fee scholarship is for four years. For an MPhil candidate, the living allowance and tuition fee scholarships are two years. The scholarship will be offered to the successful candidate subject to the grant being fully established.

Supervisor: Matt Hayward

Available to: Domestic students


Eligibility Criteria

You should be able to demonstrate that you have excellent field skills. Perhaps more important is that you can demonstrate a strong aptitude for field work, are able to work independently, are self-motivated, enjoy leading small teams and engaging with the local community and are curious about the world around you.

The applicant will need to meet the minimum eligibility criteria for admission.

Application Procedure

Interested applicants should send an email expressing their interest along with scanned copies of their academic transcripts, CV, a brief statement of their research interests and a proposal that specifically links them to the research project.

Please send the email expressing interest to by 5pm on 30 October 2020.

Applications Close 30 October 2020 Apply Now

Contact Matt Hayward
Phone +61 4921 7472

PhD and Research MastersFind out more