Mr Mathew Harris
I completed my BSc Environmental Sciences undergraduate degree in 2016 at the University of Pretoria. Thereafter, I set out to a BSc (Honours) degree, in ecology, within the department of Plant and Soil Sciences at the University of Pretoria. My Honours research project explored the responses of bird communities to a slightly degraded land-use, i.e. communal rangelands in the Orpen region of the Kruger National Park and compared these bird assemblages to those within nature reserves.
I joined FABI in 2018 to start my MSc. For my MSc I looked to characterise patterns in fungal community ecology from local to global scales. In particular I reviewed the current state of knowledge for fungal biogeography and explored an important ecological phenomenon (successional patterns) for foliar fungal endophyte communities.
Upon completion of my MSc in 2020 I have decided to continue with a PhD at FABI where my project will explore the ecology of grass-associated fungal endophytes and the role they play in driving various ecosystem processes.
- Harris, M.A., M.D., Voysey, S-L., Jamison, M., Greve., 2019. Changes in bird assemblages because of vegetation homogenisation in communal livestock systems. KOEDOE. 61(1), a1543, https://doi.org/10.4102/koedoe.v61i1.1543
- Jamison-Daniels, S-L., W.D., Kissling, M., Botha, M.A., Harris, C.E., Gordon, M., Greve., 2020. The role of deterministic succession during forest development within a southern African savanna. Biotropica. 53(2):466-476,
- Savanna Science Network Meeting (2018), "Avian responses to communal livestock systems" - Speed presentation
- BIMF-FBIP Forum (2019), "Fungal biogeography and the use of publicly available data for answering biogeographic questions" - Student presentation
- Department of Plant and Soil Sciences symposium (2019), "Do fungal communities mirror the successional trends of woody communities" - Presentation
- South African Association of Botanists (SAAB) conference (2020), "Do foliar fungal communities mirror the successional trends of woody communities" - Poster and speed presentation
- Mycological Society of America (MSA) virtual symposium (2020), "Deterministic processes influence foliar fungal endophyte communities within a forest successional gradient" - Graphical abstract
- University of Oxford's Behaviour, Ecology and Evolution virtual conference (2021), "Successional trends, community composition and species richness patterns of foliar fungal endophytes within a forest successional gradient" - Poster
2017 - H.G.W.J. Schweickerdt medal for the best BSc. (Hons) Plant Sciences student based on final average mark for the year
2018 - Academic honorary colours from the University of Pretoria's SRC (82% average for BSc. (Hons) Plant Sciences)
2018 - FABI Awards (best photograph of the year award)