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Ann-Kathrin Schlesselmann has been researching the genetics of black-fronted terns/tarapirohe for the past few years for her PhD thesis. Her findings represents a signficant breakthrough on several levels, and a clear signal that we have to start managing South Island rivers as interlinked rather than isolated systems. Ann-Kathrin summarises her findings below:
“In a nutshell, there are five key points that have come out of my research:
In addition to her primary research, Ann-Kathrin also identified native southern black-backed gulls/karoro (Larus dominicanus) as primary predators of black-fronted tern nests, and nesting success was low, independent of island vegetation cover.
On a personal note, I would like to congratulate Ann-Kathrin on completing her PhD!