You are here: Home People Students Robert Taylor

Robert Taylor

MSc candidate in Ecology, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg Supervisors: Prof Ed Witkowski (WITS) and Dr Dave Thompson (SAEON Ndlovu)

Rob grew up in northern KZN and is inspired to contribute to the conservation of Africa's biodiversity as an ecologist. He completed his undergraduate studies and his Honours in Ecology at UKZN.


Temporal and spatial variation in population structure of the African Baobab (Adansonia digitata) in the Kruger National Park, South Africa.

Description: Long-term monitoring is required to understand the population dynamics and likely persistence of baobabs in the Kruger national Park. In 1995 the locality, morphometrics and level of damage were recorded for 424 baobabs locally. These trees were resampled in 2001, along with 506 additional individuals. During 1995-2013 many changes were affected by park management:  fire frequencies increased, elephant densities doubled and artificial water holes were closed, decreasing browser densities away from natural water. The added impacts of changing temperatures, precipitation regimes and climate variability compound these management effects, which combine to determine the availability of habitat suitable for adult survival and seedilng recruitment. These 930 individuals were resampled in 2013, thereby creating an 18-year dataset to assess changes, and drivers thereof, in baobab population structure in recent decades.

Robert Taylor
Current image PNG image — 900 KB