Professor Alistair Poore

Professor Alistair Poore

  • PhD, University of New South Wales, 1999
  • Bsc(Hons), Monash University 1992
School of Biological, Earth & Environmental Sciences

Professor Alistair Poore is Head of the School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences. He has research interests in ecology and evolutionary biology, with a focus on coastal marine ecosystems.

+61 2 9065 5566
School Office | Room 520E Biological Sciences North (D26) UNSW, Kensington 2052
  • Book Chapters | 2022
    Langley M; Garthwin R; Poore AGB; Vergés A, 2022, 'Endangered Posidonia australis Seagrass Meadows in Australia', in Imperiled: The Encyclopedia of Conservation, Elsevier, pp. 640 - 643,
  • Journal articles | 2022
    Ferretto G; Vergés A; Poore AGB; Gribben PE; Glasby TM, 2022, 'Floating bags have the potential to minimise oyster farming impacts on Posidonia australis seagrass meadows', Aquaculture, vol. 560,
    Journal articles | 2022
    Leong RC; Bugnot AB; Marzinelli EM; Figueira WF; Erickson KR; Poore AGB; Gribben PE, 2022, 'Variation in the density and body size of a threatened foundation species across multiple spatial scales', Restoration Ecology, vol. 30,
    Journal articles | 2020
    Callaghan CT; Roberts JD; Poore AGB; Alford RA; Cogger H; Rowley JJL, 2020, 'Citizen science data accurately predicts expert-derived species richness at a continental scale when sampling thresholds are met', Biodiversity and Conservation, vol. 29, pp. 1323 - 1337,
    Journal articles | 2020
    Gribben PE; Poore AGB; Thomsen MS; Quesey P; Weschke E; Wright JT, 2020, 'Habitat provided by native species facilitates higher abundances of an invader in its introduced compared to native range', Scientific Reports, vol. 10,
    Journal articles | 2019
    Callaghan CT; Poore AGB; Major RE; Rowley JJL; Cornwell WK, 2019, 'Optimizing future biodiversity sampling by citizen scientists', Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, vol. 286, pp. 20191487,
    Journal articles | 2019
    Callaghan CT; Rowley JJL; Cornwell WK; Poore AGB; Major RE, 2019, 'Improving big citizen science data: Moving beyond haphazard sampling', PLoS Biology, vol. 17, pp. e3000357,
    Journal articles | 2018
    Archer M; Poore AGB; Horn AM; Bates H; Bonser S; Hunt M; Russell J; Archer NP; Bye DJ; Kehoe EJ, 2018, 'Thirty two years of continuous assessment reveal first year university biology students in Australia are rapidly abandoning beliefs in theistic involvement in human origins', Evolution: Education and Outreach, vol. 11,
    Journal articles | 2014
    Vergés A; Steinberg PD; Hay ME; Poore AGB; Campbell AH; Ballesteros E; Heck KL; Booth DJ; Coleman MA; Feary DA; Figueira W; Langlois T; Marzinelli EM; Mizerek T; Mumby PJ; Nakamura Y; Roughan M; van Sebille E; Gupta ASE; Smale DA; Tomas F; Wernberg T; Wilson SK, 2014, 'The tropicalization of temperate marine ecosystems: climate-mediated changes in herbivory and community phase shifts', Proceedings. Biological sciences / The Royal Society, vol. 281, pp. 20140846,
    Journal articles | 2012
    Birdsey E; Johnston E; Poore AGB, 2012, 'Diversity and cover of a sessile animal assemblage does not predict its associated mobile fauna.', Marine Biology, vol. 159, pp. 551 - 560,
    Journal articles | 2012
    Gall ML; Poore AGB; Johnston E, 2012, 'A biomonitor as a measure of ecologically-significant fraction of metals in an industrialised harbour.', Journal of Environmental Monitoring, vol. 14, pp. 830 - 838,
    Journal articles | 2010
    Pease CJ; Johnston E; Poore AG, 2010, 'Genetic variability in tolerance to copper contamination in a herbivorous marine invertebrate', Aquatic Toxicology, vol. 99, pp. 10 - 16,
    Journal articles | 2008
    Roberts DA; Johnston E; Muller S; Poore AG, 2008, 'Field and laboratory simulations of storm water pulses: Behavioural avoidance by marine epifauna', Environmental Pollution, vol. 152, pp. 153 - 162,
    Journal articles | 2008
    Roberts DA; Johnston E; Poore AG, 2008, 'Biomonitors and the assessment of ecological impacts: Distribution of herbivorous epifauna in contaminated macroalgal beds', Environmental Pollution, vol. 156, pp. 489 - 503,
    Journal articles | 2008
    Roberts DA; Johnston E; Poore AG, 2008, 'Contamination of marine biogenic habitats and effects upon associated epifauna', Marine Pollution Bulletin, vol. 56, pp. 1057 - 1065,
    Journal articles | 2007
    Roberts DA; Poore AG; Johnston E, 2007, 'MBACI sampling of an episodic disturbance: Stormwater effects on algal epifauna', Marine Environmental Research, vol. 64, pp. 514 - 523,

2020. Elected Fellow of the Royal Society of New South Wales

2012: UNSW Vice Chancellor's Award for Teaching Excellence

2013: Citation for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning from the Federal Government's Office of Learning and Teaching.

2014. Provasoli Award from the Phycological Society of America (best paper published in Journal of Phycology for 2013).

Details of research projects can be found at

My research focuses on the ecology and evolution of interactions among marine organisms, in particular benthic invertebrates and algae. My current research projects involve:

  • the impacts of herbivores on plant communities
  • the ecology and evolution of host choice in marine herbivores
  • human impacts to coastal marine ecosystems
  • adaptation of marine organisms to environmental stress
  • use of citizen science data for biodiversity monitoring

My Research Supervision


Giulia Ferretto (PhD). Restoring ecosystem function in threatened seagrass beds (co-supervised by Assoc. Prof. Adriana Vergés) Twitter: @ferretto89

Nik Hubbard (PhD). Impacts of artificial light at night on marine organisms (co-supervised by Dr Mariana Mayer-Pinto and Dr Katherine Dafforn) Twitter: @NikiHubbard

Maddy Langley (PhD). Restoring threatened seagrass meadows (co-supervised by Assoc. Prof. Adriana Vergés)

Rick Leong (PhD) Role of oyster reefs in coastal biodiversity (co-supervised by Assoc. Prof. Paul Gribben) Twitter: @rickcleong

Chris Roberts (PhD). Using recreational dive photographs to monitor change on rocky reefs. (co-supervised by Assoc. Prof. Adriana Vergés)

Maureen Thompson (PhD). Using citizen science data to understand the ecology of Australian frogs (co-supervised with Dr Corey Callaghan and Dr Jodi Rowley).

My Teaching

BIOS2031 Biology of Invertebrates

  • diversity, form and function of invertebrate animals

BIOS3091 Marine and Aquatic Ecology

  • experimental ecology of nearshore environments (rocky shores, beaches, coral reefs and soft sediments)
  • ecology of freshwater habitats
  • management and conservation of aquatic habitats

BEES2041 Data Analysis for Life and Earth Scientists

  • sampling and experimental design
  • introduction to statistical analyses for biologists and environmental scientists
  • interpretation and communication of data analyses

Environmental Computing

  • Freely available tutorials for data manipulation, graphics and statistics for the environmental sciences