Workshops

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Register OnlineThere are presently six workshops planned to follow the AMSA 2011 conference, listed below.

1.  The Australian Animal Tagging and Movement System – Progress and Future Directions.
Mark Meekan
AFFILIATION:  AIMS, Perth
More information…

2.  The Estimation of Animal Abundance from Counts for Rare and Elusive Species: Accounting for Detection Probability.
Ken Pollock
AFFILIATION:  Murdoch University
More information…

3.  Bridging the “data-reality” gap in species distribution modelling.
Tanya J. Compton & Piers K. Dunstan
AFFILIATION:  National Institute for Water and Atmospheric Research, CSIRO
More information…

4.  Modelling Habitat Connectivity & Network Analysis for Conservation
Erik Treml & Stuart Kininmonth
AFFILIATION:  UQ, AIMS, Townsville
More information…

5.  AMSA Coral Identification Workshop using the Indo Pacific Coral Finder.
Russell Kelley
AFFILIATION:  Coral Identification Capacity Building Program.
More information…

6.  In situ studies of the metabolism of marine organisms and assemblages.
John W. Runcie
AFFILIATION:  Uni of Sydney
More information…

All half day and one day workshops are to be run on Friday 8th July.  The two-day workshop will be run on Friday and Saturday 8-9th July.

There is a possibility for a field trip following the coral workshop which could run on Monday and Tuesday 11-12th July depending on the interest, with 1 day travel each side of that.

Potential participants in workshops should send an Expression of Interest.

Workshop registration and costs will also be included in the conference Registration Form.

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More detail about the Workshops

1. The Australian Animal Tagging and Movement System – Progress and Future Directions.
Mark Meekan
AFFILIATION:  AIMS, Perth

WORKSHOP SUMMARY
The Australian Animal Tagging and Monitoring System (AATAMS; http://www.imos.org.au/aatams.html) funds and maintains infrastructure for tracking of marine animals around the Australian coastline as part of the Integrated Marine Observing System (IMOS). A principal aim of AATAMS is to facilitate the collection of data over the long term (decades) so that researchers can assess the effects of climate change, ocean acidification and other physical and biological processes that influence the movement and habitat use of animals within the marine environment. AATAMS now involves over 30 research institutions, 100 active researchers with 1200 instruments deployed throughout Australia on marine animals including cetaceans, elasmobranchs, teleost fishes, reptiles and invertebrates. This workshop would involve updates on telemetry technology and the utilisation of multiple streams of data from multiple sources to enhance future research in Australia.

Friday 8th July
Full day
No Charge to Participants

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2. The Estimation of Animal Abundance from Counts for Rare and Elusive Species
Accounting for Detection Probability.
Ken Pollock
AFFILIATION:  Murdoch University

WORKSHOP SUMMARY
This course will cover the strengths and weaknesses of relative abundance indices and then move to the estimation of detection probability using multiple observers, distance sampling and repeated counts. The workshop would be of great interest to marine mammal scientists and of interest to other wildlife and fisheries ecologists.

Friday 8th July
Full day
Charges:
$300 per person with a 20% discount for full time students.
Participants will need own laptop

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3. Bridging the “data-reality” gap in species distribution modelling.
Tanya J. Compton & Piers K. Dunstan
AFFILIATION:  National Institute for Water and Atmospheric Research, CSIRO

WORKSHOP SUMMARY
Australia and New Zealand share two of the world’s largest Exclusive Economic Zones. The extensive size of these EEZ’s, in combination with sparse biological and environmental data, has translated into a major challenge for implementing spatial management based approaches across these areas.  As a number of initiatives are underway to synthesize species and community data, distributional modelling provides a powerful tool for describing the associations between species and their physical environmental. However, as distributional modelling is a relatively new discipline for the marine environment, a number of challenges specific to the marine environment exist.

In this workshop, we will promote a discussion on whether there is a “data-reality gap” in the ecological models used to describe species and communities in the marine environment. Some issues for discussion include spatial bias in biological data, spatial autocorrelation, the modelling of mobile species, drawing inference on ecology from statistics, decisions to be made during the process of model building and evaluation and methodological issues. Finally, we will also discuss the implications of this work for conservation and management. The outcomes of this workshop will be a knowledge exchange between researchers, as well as a critical thinking about the use of these models for marine management.

Friday 8th July
Half day (morning) 9-12pm
No Charge to Participants

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4. Modelling Habitat Connectivity & Network Analysis for Conservation
Erik Treml & Stuart Kininmonth
AFFILIATION:  UQ & AIMS, Townsville

WORKSHOP SUMMARY
Network analysis has become particularly useful in many disciplines, including population genetics, landscape ecology, community ecology, and conservation. Graph theory is an area of mathematics that deals with problems of connectivity, flow, routing, and community structure of networks ranging across many disciplines. This short course offers participants an introduction to this diverse field and highlights key papers and ideas in marine and terrestrial ecology and conservation. The goal is to provide a broad introduction to network thinking, and enable participants to develop and analyse a habitat network of their choice. By the end of this course, individuals will be familiar with graph theory, network analysis, and the tools and data available. The course uses brief lectures, discussions of the key literature, and individual-based workshops to provide hands-on experience.

Required Software; (will be available on disk on the day)

  • Pajek, free (http://pajek.imfm.si/doku.php)
  • R with igraph, free (http://www.r-project.org/ & install packages(“igraph”))

Course Objectives
By the end of the course, participants will:

  • Develop a broad understanding of network analysis across various disciplines;
  • Understand key network properties and behaviours;
  • Become familiar with a variety of network analysis programs and tools;
  • Understand the steps required to develop and analyse a habitat network

Friday 8th July
Full day
No Charge to Participants
Participants will need own laptop

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5. AMSA Coral Identification Workshop using the Indo Pacific Coral Finder.
Russell Kelley
AFFILIATION: Coral Identification Capacity Building Program.

WORKSHOP SUMMARY
The Coral Identification Capacity Building Program will run a 2-day fast-start coral identification workshop at the AMSA Fremantle Conference. The workshop will be lead by Russell Kelley author of the Indo Pacific Coral Finder. The Coral Finder uses a novel visual approach to coral identification that makes it possible for beginners to advance rapidly with little prior knowledge. Participants will be shown how to use the Coral Finder to identify corals to genus regardless of growth form with special emphasis placed on techniques for field identification, self-learning and problem solving. Case studies of how to proceed to species level identification will be demonstrated.

Friday and Saturday 8-9th July
Two days*
Charge to Participants: for ~20 participants ~$900 per participant**
Participants will need own laptop
*If you are interested in a 2 day field workshop to run after the Perth based workshop, please flag your interest with the AMSA scientific committee. This would possibly be held at Coral Bay and snorkelling equipment would be required by participants.
**This cost includes the Perth workshop, lunches, a copy of the Indo Pacific Coral Finder, Coral Finder accessory kit and DVD of training movies and learning / self testing resources. Note that the field workshop is not included in this cost.

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6. In situ studies of the metabolism of marine organisms and assemblages.
John W. Runcie
AFFILIATION: Uni of Sydney

WORKSHOP SUMMARY
Estimates of photosynthesis, respiration and calcification are key components to ecosystem models, with the latter becoming prominent in the Climate Change literature.  Subjects include marine communities, In situ measurements have the advantage of closely representing how the subject might respond in its natural environment.  However, in situ experiments are rarely completely uninfluenced by experiment-related artifacts. Additionally, the equipment used to conduct metabolism research may be difficult to obtain, or may be custom designed and difficult to learn how to operate.  This workshop aims to discuss the rationale, techniques and equipment available for each class of measurement (photosynthesis, respiration and calcification), with hands-on demonstrations from those with expertise in a given field.  Details relating to each technique, their advantages and disadvantages in relation to similar techniques and trade-offs will be assembled in a working paper to be made available to the AMSA community.

Friday 8th July
Half day (afternoon) 2-5pmNo Charge to Participants
Participants will need own laptop

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