ROBERT K BROWNE completed his Honour’s degree in Aquaculture at the Key Center for Aquaculture, Australia, and then obtained a Ph.D. (1998) in Conservation Biology from the University of Newcastle, Australia.
Robert’s science employment has included consultancy with biotechnology corporations and in response to the global biodiversity conservation crisis, and has focused on amphibian conservation and sustainability. Working with zoos in Australia, the USA, Europe, and as Research Officer for the IUCN has led Robert to work with collaborative conservation programs in the USA, Peoples Republic of China, Australia, Russian Federation, Islamic Republic of Iran, and Cameroon.
Robert has experience in a wide range of research fields supporting herpetological conservation and environmental sustainability. He has published in the scientific fields of nutrition, pathology, larval growth and development, husbandry, thermo-biology, reproduction technologies, and facility design.
Robert’s Ph.D. in the late 1990s was seminal to the development of gene banking to the preserve genetic diversity of threatened species, where he developed the first reproduction providing fertile amphibian eggs from cryopreserved sperm. Since then his research with reproduction technologies has led to major advances in the use of hormones to promote amphibian reproduction led to the first use of artificial fertilization to produce tadpoles for release of a Critically Endangered amphibian, the Wyoming toad (Bufo baxteri). These techniques have since been adopted for a number of other Critically Endangered amphibian species. Robert’s recent collaborative work with Nashville Zoo at Grassmere, USA, and international organizations on the North American giant salamander (Cryptobranchus alleganiensis), commonly known as the Hellbender, has fostered the development of the first genetically representative gene bank for any amphibian.
Robert is co-editor of Amphibian and Reptile Conservation journal, and reviews for many major journals.
In addition to his work in research and other international projects for the conservation of amphibians, other vertebrates, and invertebrates, Robert is establishing a sustainability project with a research facility based in the region of a coastal village in Belize.
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