Student research funding supporting rainforest protection now available

The Skyrail Rainforest Foundation is offering funding to support student research that enhances the protection of tropical rainforests through better understanding and sustainable practices.

Research students will be able to access up to $5,000 for PhD and masters projects and up to $2,000 for honours projects.

The funding will favour projects with a focus on the sustainable use of tropical rainforest and consequent protection of rare, threatened and vulnerable species and bio diversity.

Max Shepherd, a director of the Skyrail Rainforest Foundation, said the foundation was pleased to make this funding available.

“The foundation can see great value in the research the students undertake and is pleased to assist them in research efforts which enhances our understanding and leads to sustainable coexistence with our rainforest assets," Mr. Shepherd said.

PhD student Andres Merino-Viteri highlighted the importance of the foundation funding for his research project on the potential impact of climate change on microhylid frogs.

“The support of Skyrail Rainforest Foundation directly resulted in an improvement of the ecological and physiological knowledge of these frogs. This information is integral for the development of management plans concerning the protection of these rare and important endemic animals in the future.”

Since inception, the foundation has provided $176,000 to research projects.

Organisations or individuals are invited to submit applications to be considered for this funding opportunity. The closing date for submissions is Friday 4th June 2010.

To assist with the preparation of submissions, a Skyrail Rainforest Foundation (SRF) 'Guidelines: Applications for Funding Students' document is available upon application. To receive a copy, please contact the Skyrail Rainforest Foundation on email email/info)( or phone (07) 4038 1999.

Applications will be reviewed and assessed by the SRF's Public Fund Management Committee, which has representatives from Skyrail Rainforest Cableway, James Cook University, the Environmental