Ellen Schoener

Doctor of Philosophy, (Ecology)
Study Completed: 2016
College of Sciences


Thesis Title
The impact of conservation translocations on vector-borne parasites

Read article at Massey Research Online: MRO icon

Avian malaria parasites, Plasmodium spp., are transmitted by mosquito vectors (insects and other invertebrates that transmit a disease) and are common in birds worldwide. Ms Schoener examined the relationship of an endemic (only found in New Zealand) bird species, the North Island saddleback, a subject of many conservation translocations to preserve the species, with its native, and introduced malaria parasites. She found that parasites are an important part of any ecosystem and are completely overlooked on any list of endangered or extinct organisms. During her research she identified different avian malaria species in New Zealand, some of them new, and their potential mosquito vectors. In addition, she emphasised the importance to move endemic parasites with their hosts during conservation translocations to prevent further loss of biodiversity in native New Zealand ecosystems

Professor Isabel Castro
Dr Daniel Tompkins
Associate Professor Laryssa Howe
Dr Kevin Parker