Graeme Newell

Graeme taught physiology at Deakin University for nine years, where he also completed his PhD on the effects of the forest disease cinnamon fungus on habitats of native mammal fauna.  He later held a post-doctoral fellowship with the CSIRO/Co-operative Research Centre for Tropical Ecology & Management.  During this time he studied the effects of habitat loss upon the rare, arboreal Lumholtz’s Tree-Kangaroo Dendrolagus lumholtzi in tropical rainforest.  He has been employed as a research scientist with DELWP at the Arthur Rylah Institute since 1997, and he is currently the Program Leader for Ecological Analysis & Synthesis.

In recent years Graeme has been involved in the development of new datasets for Government agencies on the distribution, type and condition of native vegetation, the distribution of both common and rare native plant and animal species, landscape connectivity, modelling the potential impacts of climate change on biota, and developing integrated tools for conservation planning, prioritisation and management.


Work History

from 1997 – Senior Scientist / Program Leader at Arthur Rylah Institute

1994 – 1997 – Post-Doctoral Fellow – CRC for Tropical Rainforest Ecology and Management, based at CSIRO Atherton Qld. Studies focused upon the disturbance ecology of Lumholtz’s tree-kangaroos.

pre- 1994  PhD – Deakin University. Studies focussed on the effect of Phytophthora cinnamomi on the habitat utlization of Antechinus stuartii.


Liu, C, White, M and Newell, G. (2015). On the selection of  thresholds for predicting species occurrence with presence-only data. Ecology and Evolution

Amos, J.N., Harrisson, K.A., Radford, J.Q., White, M., Newell, G., MacNally, R, Sunnucks, P. and Pavlova, A. (In press) Species- and sex-specific connectivity effects of habitat fragmentation in a suite of woodland birds. Ecology

Liu, C., White, M., Newell, G. and Griffioen, P. (2013). Species distribution modelling for conservation planning in Victoria, Australia. Ecological Modelling. 249 68-74

Liu, C., White, M., and Newell, G.  (2013). Selecting threshold for the prediction of species occurrence with presence-only data. Journal of Biogeography 40 778-789

Sinclair, S, White, M, Medley, J, Smith, E and Newell, G. (2012) Mapping the past:  Constructing a digital land use history map for Victoria, Australia Proceeding of the Royal Society of Victoria 124 (3): 193-206

Kyle, G, Duncan, D, and Newell, G. (2012).   Measuring change in vegetation extent at regional and property scales. In  Landscape Logic. Integrating Science for Landscape Management (Ed. Lefroy, E. Curtis, A., Jakeman, A. and McKee, J.). pp. 129-144. CSIRO Publishing, Collingwood.

Amos, N,  Bennett, AF, Mac Nally, R, Newell, G, Pavlova, A, Radford, JQ, Thomson, JR, White, M and Sunnucks, P. (2012) Predicting Landscape-Genetic Consequences of Habitat Loss, Fragmentation and Mobility for Multiple Species of Woodland Birds. PLoS ONE 7 (2)

Langford, W, Gordon, A, Bekessey, S, Bastin, L, White, M, and Newell G. (2011). Raising the bar for systematic conservation planning. Trends in Ecology&  Evolution.  Dec Issue

Newell, G, White, M, Griffioen, P and Sinclair, S. (2011). Potential impacts of a changing climate on selected terrestrial ecosystems in northern Victoria. Transactions of the Royal society of Victoria 122 (2)  xcvi – cxi

Liu, C, White, M and Newell, G. (2011).  Measuring and comparing the accuracy of species distribution models with presence-absence data. Ecography 34 232–243

Paplinska, JZ, Bencini, R, Fisher, DO, Newell, GR, Goldzien, AW, Hazlitt, SL, Sigg, DP, Finlayson, GR, Munn, AJ, Chambers, BK and DA Taggart. (2010). Sperm competition in Macropodoidea: a review of evidence. In ‘Macropods. The biology of kangaroos, wallabies and rat-kangaroos’ CSIRO Publishing, Collingwood.

Sinclair, S, White, M, and Newell, GR. (2010).  Tell us something we don’t know – Are species distribution models useful for managing biodiversity under future climates?  Ecology and Society 15(1): 8 (

Bennett, AF, Haslem, A, Cheal, DC,. Clarke, MF, Jones, RN, Koehn, JD, Lake, PS, Lumsden, LF, Lunt, ID, Mackey, BG, Mac Nally, R, Menkhorst, PW, New, TR, Newell, GR, O’Hara, T, Quinn, GP,. Radford, JQ, Robinson, D, Watson, JEM, and Yen. AL. (2009). Ecological processes: A key element in strategies for nature conservation. Ecological Management and Restoration.10 (3): 192-199

Kocev, D, Džeroski, S, White, MD, Newell, GR and Griffioen P. (2009) Using single and multi-target trees and ensembles to model a compound index of vegetation condition.  Ecological Modelling 220 1159-1168.

Di Stefano, J, and Newell, GR. (2008). Diet selection by the swamp wallaby (Wallabia bicolour): Feeding strategies under conditions of changed food availability. Journal of Mammalogy. 89 (6): 1540-1549.

Johnson, PM, and Newell, GR. (2008).  Lumholtz’s Tree-Kangaroo.  In ‘The Mammals of Australia’. Third Ed. (van Dyck, S. and Strahan, R. Eds). Reed New Holland, Sydney.

Steel, J, Kohout, M, and Newell, G. (2008). Climate Change and the potential distribution of weeds. Whither the weeds under climate change?  Department of Primary Industries, Victorian Government.

Newell, G, White, M, Griffioen, P, and Conroy, M. (2006).  Vegetation condition mapping at a landscape-scale across Victoria. Ecological Management and Restoration 7: S65-S68.

Parkes, D, Newell G and Cheal, D. (2004).  The development and raison d’être of ‘habitat hectares’: A response to McCarthy et al.  (2004).  Ecological Management and Restoration. 5: 29-31.

Cheal, D, Newell, G and Griffioen, P. (2003).  Climate Change and Weeds: Can we predict future problems? In Climate Impacts on Australia’s Natural Resources: Current and Future Challenges.  Queensland Government Natural Resources and Mines, Brisbane.

Newell, ., Griffioen, P and Cheal, D. (2003). Effects of ‘greenhouse’ warming scenarios upon selected Victorian plants and vegetation communities. In ‘Climate change impacts on biodiversity in Australia.  Outcomes of workshop sponsored by the Biological Diversity Advisory Committee’. Eds. Howden, M., Hughes, L., Dunlop, M., Zethoven, I., Hilbert, D., Chilcott, C. CSIRO Sustainable Ecosystems, Canberra.

Bowyer, JC, Newell, GR, Metcalfe, CJ and Eldridge, MDB. (2003). Tree-kangaroos (Dendrolagus) in Australia: Are D. lumholtzi and D. bennettianus sister taxa? Australian Zoologist 32 (2): 207-213.

Parkes, D, Newell G. and Cheal, D. (2003).  Assessing the Quality of Native Vegetation-  the Habitat Hectares approach.  Ecological Management and Restoration.4: S29-S38.

Bowyer, JC, Newell, GR, and Eldridge, M. (2002). Genetic effects of habitat contraction on Lumholtz’s tree-kangaroo (Dendrolagus lumholtzi) in the Australian Wet Tropics.  Conservation Genetics 3:  61-69.

Kanowski, J, Felderhof, L, Newell, G, Schmidt, C, Stirn, B, Wilson, R, and Winter, JW.  (2001). Community survey of the distribution of Lumholtz’s tree-kangaroo on the Atherton Tablelands, north-east Queensland. Pacific Conservation Biology 7 (2): 79-86.

Duffy, A.M, Lumsden, LF, Caddle, CR, Chick, RR, and Newell, GR. (2000). An evaluation of the efficacy of ultrasonic detectors and harp traps as survey methods for microchiroptera in south-eastern Australia.  Acta Chiropterologica 2 (2): 127-144.

Newell, GR. (1999) Responses of Lumholtz’s tree-kangaroo (Dendrolagus lumholtzi) to loss of habitat within a tropical rainforest fragment. Biological Conservation  91 (2-3): 181-189.

Newell, GR. (1999) Home ranges and habitat use by Lumholtz’s tree kangaroo (Dendrolagus lumholtzi) of a rainforest fragment in north Queensland. Wildlife Research 26 (2): 129-145.

Newell, GR. (1999) Australia’s tree-kangaroos: current issues in their conservation. Biological Conservation. 87 (1): 1-12.

Newell, GR.  (1998) Characterization of vegetation in an Australian open forest community affected by cinnamon fungus (Phytophthora cinnamomi): Implications for faunal habitat quality. Plant Ecology 137 (1): 55-70.

Newell, GR. (1997) Living in a fragmented landscape – Lumholtz’s tree kangaroos. Nature Australia (a peer-reviewed pictorial publication: referees – T. Flannery and R. Martin).

Newell, GR. (1997) The abundance of ground-dwelling invertebrates in a Victorian forest affected by ‘dieback’ (Phytophthora cinnamomi) disease. Australian Journal of Ecology 22 (2): 206-217.

Laidlaw, WS, Hutchings, S and Newell, G.R. (1997) Habitat utilization, movement patterns and estimation of home range size of Sminthopsis leucopus in coastal dry heathland, Anglesea, Victoria. Australian  Mammalogy 19: 1-9.

Frankenberg, S, Newell, G and Selwood, L. (1996) A light microscopic study of oogenesis in the brushtail possum Trichosurus vulpecula. Reproduction, Fertility and Development 8: 541-6.

Wilson, BA, Newell, G, Laidlaw, WS, and Friend, G. (1994) Impact of plant diseases on faunal communities.  Journal of the Royal Society of Western Australia  77(4): 139-43.

Newell, GR and Wilson, BA. (1993) The relationship between Cinnamon fungus (Phytophthora cinnamomi) and the abundance of Antechinus stuartii (Dasyuridae: Marsupialia) in the Brisbane Ranges, Victoria. Wildlife Research 20 (2): 251-9.

Wilson, BA, Robertson, D, Moloney, DJ, Newell, GR and Laidlaw, WS. (1990) Factors affecting small mammal distribution and abundance in the Eastern Otway Ranges, Victoria.  Proceedings of the Ecological Society of Australia  16: 379-396.

Postgraduate students supervised:

Megan McNellie (PhD Student – current). Modelling vegetation condition. ANU (co-supervised with Phil Gibbons, Ian Oliver, Simon Ferrier and Brendan Mackey).

Kathryn Sheffield (PhD Student – 2005 – 2009) Remote Sensing of Native Vegetation Condition.   RMIT University (co-supervised by Simon Jones, Phil Gibbons & Andre Zerger)

Julian de Stefano (PhD Student – 2004 – 2007)  Disturbance ecology of swamp wallabies University of Melbourne  (co-supervised with Graeme Coulson)

Susan Hutchings (Masters student  – 1994-6) The effect of fox predation on populations of small mammals in Anglesea heathlands.  Deakin University

Susan Hutchings (Honours – 1993) Home range and habitat utilization of Sminthopsis leucopus in regenerating heathlands of Anglesea. Deakin University

Douglas Mills (Honours – 1992)  Home range and habitat utilization of the New Holland Mouse (Pseudomys novaehollandiae). Deakin University