Partners & Scientists
Bellingen Riverwatch has been developed and implemented by the NSW Office of Environment & Heritage, Saving Our Species program and OzGREEN in partnership with Bellingen Shire Council, NSW Waterwatch, Western Sydney University, Taronga Zoo Sydney, Bellinger Landcare, Earthwatch Institute, Eco Logical Australia, North Coast Local Land Services and Jaliigirr Biodiversity Alliance.
The breadth of project partners reflects the importance placed on working together collaboratively with key stakeholders who have a role to play in catchment health and biodiversity. This partnership approach allows us to leverage the expertise and available resources of a strong group of organisations and individuals.
Bellingen Riverwatch brings together an exciting array of scientific expertise in the areas of: ecology, invertebrate taxonomy, citizen science project design, land management, monitoring and evaluation, aquatic ecology and water quality monitoring.
Alicia Scanlon is a fauna ecologist specialising in bats. She has worked locally as a consultant for Eco Logical Australia for the past ten years, on projects as diverse as residential subdivisions, management plans for Council reserves, fauna inventories of National Parks estate, road and rail upgrades including the Pacific Highway and monitoring of biodiversity on offset lands for the mining sector. Her work often takes her away from Bellingen and she has conducted fauna surveys along the East Coast of Australia.
Geetha Ortac, Scientist – Citizen Science, is responsible for designing citizen science projects to support the Saving our Species program delivered by the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage. Her interest is to develop citizen science projects that deliver scientific outcomes supporting threatened species management. Read More
Gerry McGilvray is the Project Coordinator of the Bellinger River Snapping Turtle Saving Our Species Project and coordinates other threatened species projects for the Office of Environment and Heritage.
Gerry has a Bachelor of Science (Environmental Systems) and has worked in a variety of environmental management areas in the government and privates sector for over fifteen years including waste management and vegetation management. Read More
Kristen Petrov is a PhD student at Western Sydney University and is studying the decline and ecology of the Bellinger River Snapping turtle. Kristen’s current research focuses on the remaining Bellinger River turtle population, its overlap in diet and habitat with the nonnative short-necked turtle, and the susceptibility of freshwater turtles to disease.
Ingrid Garland is currently Director of a small consultancy – EnviroComm Connections, delivering services to clients on community engagement, citizen science, NSW Waterwatch and administrative projects in the natural resource management and agricultural sector in NSW. Instagram NSW Waterwatch Enviro Comm Connections
Peter Serov is an Environmental Scientist, Water Wetlands and Coastal Science with the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage. Peter is an Aquatic Ecologist and Invertebrate Taxonomist who has worked in a range of environments for over thirty years. He specialises in the identification of aquatic macroinvertebrates and stygofauna (groundwater fauna) with a particular interest in the ecological condition assessments and management of Aquatic Ecosystems. Read More
Phil Pisanu is an ecologist who has worked in Queensland, South Australia and New South Wales in research, conservation management and policy roles. Phil is responsible for monitoring and evaluating the programs of North Coast Local Land Services, which are focused on restoring terrestrial ecosystems and threatened species. Phil has been working with scientists and managers in the Border Ranges on Eastern Bristlebird recovery and will commence a vegetation monitoring project in the Jaliigirr Biodiversity Corridor in the next couple of months.
Ricky Spencer is the Head of WildLab and Associate Professor of Ecology at Western Sydney University. Ricky has spent more than fifteen years actively working on vertebrate pests. His major current projects include an ARC Linkage Project on the 'Turtle Crisis' in the Murray River, as well as developing optimal strategies to recover the Bellinger River Snapping Turtle. Ricky is also the manager and developer of TurtleSAT and WomSAT, two community mapping Citizen Science projects. Read More
Sue Lennox (BSc DipEd)