Damian Morrant BAppSc (Hons), PhD (Zoology), CEnvP Principal Ecologist and CEO

Damian’s 16+ year career as an ecologist has included research and advisory roles in consulting, government, academia, and not-for-profit wildlife and protected area management. His scientific interests and experience are broad and multidisciplinary, and he has studied wildlife throughout Queensland and south-eastern Australia, from tropical rainforests to arid deserts. Damian applies his knowledge and experience to solve complex environmental challenges with robust science and evidence-based recommendations. He has presented his work in a range of disciplines in peer-reviewed book chapters, journal articles, and professional reports.

Earlier in his career, Damian served as a commando and infantry soldier in the Australian Army. He has 25+ years experience planning, undertaking, and leading remote field operations including survey design and conduct, animal ethics, compliance, logistics, OH&S, remote first aid, emergency response, radio and satellite communications, mapping and navigation, restricted medications/firearm safety and security, and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV; drone) and helicopter operations.

Sarah Gill BSc (Hons), BVSc (Hons), MVS (Conservation Medicine) Principal Veterinarian and Managing Director

Sarah has more than 20 years of experience as a veterinarian, which includes research into disorders in pythons for her (BSc) Honours research, and a Master of Veterinary Studies (Conservation Medicine). In addition to work with domestic animals, Sarah has worked at a bird specialist centre in Sydney, at the Australian Wildlife Health Centre – Healesville Sanctuary (Zoos Victoria), and at a 24hr Emergency Veterinary Hospital in Cairns. Sarah has provided field support to researchers from NGOs, zoos and biosecurity agencies including training ecologists in field anaesthesia of spectacled flying-foxes, waterfowl capture/surveys for avian influenza, health checks and management during large-scale macropod (kangaroo and wallaby) translocations, and captive management of native Australian animals.

Sarah holds a Remote Pilot Licence (RePL) and Aeronautical Radio Operators Certificate (AROC) and oversees Biosphere’s Remotely Piloted Aircraft Operators Certificate (ReOC) and drone capability including high-resolution thermal and visual imaging, and precision measurements, enabling efficient and effective monitoring of project impacts and compliance via orthorectified aerial imagery, temperature data, and other measurements.

Andrew Bengsen BSc (Hons), PhD (Wildlife Biology) Principal Vertebrate Pest Ecologist

Andrew has over 17 years of experience in pest animal management and research. Most of his current research aims to improve the management of introduced large herbivores by understanding the effects of different management tools, strategies and policies on their populations and the environmental damage they cause. He has a strong interest in developing and promoting wildlife survey and analysis methods to provide the best quality information for managers and decision-makers.

Andrew served as an infantry soldier in the Australian Army.

Stuart Worboys BSc(Hons), MSc (Tropical Rainforest Ecology) Principal Botanist

Stuart is a botanist with over 25 years experience in research and ecological consulting. He obtained his first degree from La Trobe University, researching Phytophthora cinnamomi-related dieback in eucalypt forests, before moving to north Queensland to complete a Master of Science in tropical rainforest ecology. Stuart worked for several years as an environmental consultant, conducting field surveys across northern and eastern Australia on behalf of mining, Defence and other government agencies. In addition to consulting, Stuart leads rare plant collecting and vegetation mapping expeditions, assists with herbarium curation and facilitates plant identification training courses. Stuart has several peer-reviewed publications in the fields of plant pathology and applied taxonomy, and has lodged over 1,500 botanical collection specimens with Australian and overseas herbaria.

Fanie Venter MSc, PhD (Plant Systematics and Ecology) Principal Botanist

Fanie has 30+ years experience in the fields of plant ecology and taxonomy. His professional experience includes herbarium curator, senior research botanist at the Australian Tropical Herbarium, and environmental consultant. Fanie has undertaken more than 190 major ecological surveys for a range of stakeholders including the Department of Defence, government, mining, and universities. He regularly travels throughout Australia and Papua New Guinea to undertake his work. During his career Fanie has discovered over 200 new plant species, of which he has described 33. Four plants are named after him. Fanie’s past and present work also includes research into the ecology and taxonomy of a range of botanical genera from Australia and abroad. His past work includes revision of the genera Dracophyllum (Ericaceae; 70 species) and Ledebouria (Asparagaceae; 43 species). His current work includes taxonomic description of the family Ericaceae (600+ species) for ‘the Flora of Australia’, the definitive catalogue of Australia’s native plants. Fanie has published numerous peer-reviewed journal articles, books and book chapters, and supervises postgraduate students in plant systematics and ecology.

Philipp Seiler BA (Hons), MPsyc (Registered), Dip (Hort), Dip (Cons & Land Mgmt) Principal Social Scientist

Philipp has 9+ years’ experience in the psychological/social sciences (qualitative and quantitative), and is a registered psychologist. His professional career includes multidisciplinary experience and expertise, including (for example) in project management, remote operations, community engagement and education, terrestrial and aquatic ecology(flora and fauna), and wildlife management. With support from Biosphere’s Principal Ecologists, Philipp combines his detailed understanding of human behaviour, with his applied ecological understanding, to develop effective solutions to conflicts between humans and wildlife.

Philipp served as a commando and infantry soldier in the Australian Army.

Michael Peachey BPhysio, MBA Chief Operations Officer

Michael provides Biosphere with strategic vision and guidance, and ensures we keep up-to-date with best practice in business, safety and data security. He has held various executive roles including CEO of a national healthcare services company and private and not-for-profit board positions. Michael’s experience spans national operations, training & assessment, branding, governance practices, risk management, information security, and legal compliance. Michael has completed the AICD Company Directors Course, and is a Justice of the Peace for South Australia, and serving Officer in the Australian Army Reserves

© Biosphere Environmental Consultants 2024

Website created by RJ New Designs