Debbie is a conservation biologist and restoration ecologist, specialising in wetland reptiles and amphibians. Find Debbie on Twitter @deborah_bower.


Manu is an insect ecologist and expert in ecosystem services, specialising in plant-insect interactions. Find Manu on Twitter @ManuSaunders.


John is a renowned botanist and expert in upland wetlands on the Northern Tablelands.

Tessa stewart

Tessa is our project Research Assistant and has a passion for reptiles and amphibians. She has recently graduated with a Bachelor of Zoology from UNE and is currently completing her Honours in zoology.

Carmen Laidlaw

Carmen completed her Bachelor of Environmental Science and Honours in ecology at UNE. After working as an aquatic ecologist in Far North Queensland and also a research assistant at the Australian Botanic Gardens Mount Annan, Carmen is now completing her PhD as part of the Dynamic Lagoons team. Her research explores spatial and temporal differences across ephemeral wetlands and she is also working on applying dark diversity theory to ephemeral wetlands.

Past team members

Gillian Backhouse

Gillian completed her Masters in Environmental Science and Management with the Dynamic Lagoons team in 2022. She is also an Australian Elite Triathlete.

Dr heidi kolkert

Heidi was the Dynamic Lagoons Research Assistant from 2019-2022. Heidi is a bat ecologist and is currently working as a postdoc at UNE.

Our research partners


Navjot is a behavioural scientist and researches environmental and community psychology. She uses behaviour science informed strategies for effective behaviour change and public engagement. Find Navjot on Twitter @DrNavjotBhullar.

Associate PROFessor WENDY BECK

UNE Archaeology

Wendy is an archaeologist with a research focus on indigenous archaeology and cultural heritage. She has worked extensively on the archaeology and environmental history of New England’s Upland Wetlands in collaboration with local Aboriginal people.

James brinkhoff

James is a remote sensing scientist, specialising in agricultural and environmental applications. Find James on Twitter @jamesbrinkhoff.