Grant Harper (PhD)
Grant has over 30 years of experience in undertaking long-term field-based ecological management and research throughout the world. Most of his work has been on isolated islands from the Antarctic and Arctic to the tropics. Grant began his career with endangered bird management projects and continues this work today.
He complemented this experience with a PhD on invasive species completed in 2002. He has continued with invasive predator management, which is often the most effective method for threatened bird recovery on islands. Grant has overseen and been involved with many invasive mammal control and eradication operations worldwide. He has also managed a 10,000ha 'mainland island' for the Department of Conservation, which involved control of a variety of invasive species such as rats, mustelids, ungulates, wasps an possums. Native species management at this site included nest management for the threatened great spotted kiwi, and the native parrots - kea and kaka.
His field skills are complemented by extensive skills in conducting research and undertaking data analysis, which has resulted in numerous papers in peer-reviewed journals. Grant has also produced numerous reports, feasibility studies and planning documents for various agencies. He has managed isolated field projects that were completed on time and within budget and has trained and overseen staff and volunteers in various countries.
Peter has been involved in conservation and invasive species for over 15 years. He currently specialises in invasive bird control and has eradicated Indian house crow from Socotra (Arabian Sea), red-whiskered bulbul and fodies from 1000ha Assumption (Seychelles), along with ring-necked parakeets from Mahe (Seychelles). Peter has also overseen the final days of the goat population on Aldabra Atoll and is currently removing goats from islands in Antigua.
In addition to invasive bird eradications Peter was also a key member of the echo parakeet programme on Mauritius, which saw the population rise from 60 to over 300 individuals. This work also involved substantial amounts of invasive species control including, black rats, indian mynas, cats, mongoose and tenrecs. Peter has also been involved with rat eradications in the British Indian Ocean Territories.
As Peter has worked on many islands worldwide so he has an excellent understanding of biosecurity requirements and has designed biosecurity systems for tropical islands. Peter has carried out monitoring programmes with a variety of species including endangered lizards and snakes.
Peter is a registered gunsmith and is highly proficient with a wide variety of firearms in the field and workshop.
Jo has worked in the wildlife management field for over 25 years. She began as a field technician for the Department of Science and Industrial Research (now Landcare Research) working on invasive wasps and kaka, the native NZ parrot. Jo has lived and worked on several isolated islands and has excellent field skills. She worked for many years on the kakapo programme, assisting this highly endangered species to increase in numbers from 50 to over 125. In the meantime she also took the opportunity to conduct research on the Gibson's Albatross on Adams Island, NZ sub-antarctic. Jo also spent two seasons conducting close-order management of the highly endangered echo parakeet in Mauritius (Indian Ocean), another species that rose from about 60 individuals to over 300 today.
With a young family to look after these days, Jo still gets some field work done locally, but also carries out a lot of the day to day administrative tasks for BRS, where her background in ecological field work is invaluable.