Macquarie University
01whole.pdf (3.32 MB)

The impacts of climate change on Australian reptiles

Download (3.32 MB)
posted on 2022-03-28, 18:46 authored by Abigail Cabrelli
Climate change is anticipated to develop into one of the most significant threats to biodiversity this century. Reptiles are expected to be particularly vulnerable, yet they have received less attention in the climate change literature than some other taxonomic groups. In this thesis, I addressed this knowledge gap by investigating the impacts of climate change on the reptiles of Australia. In the first part of this thesis, I reviewed the published literature to assess why reptiles may be particularly vulnerable to climate change, and whether they have already started to respond in Australia. In the second part, I developed novel frameworks for evaluating the climate change vulnerability of three groups of reptiles - the elapid snakes, the skinks and the freshwater turtles - which integrated the output of environmental niche models and species ecological traits. In the final part, I performed a conservation planning exercise to identify areas within Australia that are important for reptile conservation, and remain important under future climate change. The results of this work were used to determine the species likely to be most vulnerable to climate change, and identify areas that may be particularly valuable additions to the existing National Reserve System.


Table of Contents

1. Introduction -- 2. The vulnerability of reptiles to climate change -- 3. The responses of Australian reptiles to climate change -- 4. A vulnerability assessment of Australian elapid snakes -- 5. A vulnerability assessment of Australian skinks -- 6. A vulnerability assessment of Australasian freshwater turtles -- 7. Protecting Australia's reptiles under future climate change -- 8. Discussion -- Supplementary information


Includes bibliographical references "Thesis submitted for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy" "August 2012" Supplementary information relating to chapters 4, 5, 6 and 7 (maps and tables in .pdf and .xls formats).

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis PhD


PhD, Macquarie University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biological Sciences

Department, Centre or School

Department of Biological Sciences

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Lesley Hughes

Additional Supervisor 1

Adam Stow


Copyright Abigail Cabrelli 2013. Copyright disclaimer:




1 online resource (266 pages) illustrations (chiefly colour), maps

Former Identifiers