Our Team

Our team includes specialist Ecologists in flora/vegetation and all fauna groups. The Team is led by Principal Ecologist and co-founder of the Ecotone Flora Fauna Consultants Group, Morgan Thomas. Morgan has over 25 years experience as an ecological consultant working throughout Queensland and NSW on a multitude of Projects. In addition to a wealth of experience as a field ecologist, Morgan excels at assisting clients interpret their ecological survey and assessment requirements and providing tailored work programs.

Key Personal

Morgan Thomas B Nat Res (Wildlife)

Morgan Thomas B Nat Res (Wildlife)

Principal Ecologist

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Morgan commenced his consultancy career in North Queensland in 1991 working on a range of flora and fauna Projects including conservation planning for the Burdekin River Irrigation Area and fauna surveys in the Mount Isa mineral province. A substantial body of work in Southeast Queensland, northern NSW and the Brigalow Belt followed before a return in focus to northern Qld and Cape York Peninsula. Morgan’s specialities have included small mammals, birds and Brigalow Belt flora, and he now focuses on client relations, project development and management, project logistics and management of the Ecotone team. He also heads our current work on the northern quoll on Cape York Peninsula.

Jason Searle BSc (Biological Science) MURP (Master of Urban & Regional Planing)

Jason Searle BSc (Biological Science) MURP (Master of Urban & Regional Planing)

Senior Ecologist

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Jason has 20+ years professional experience as an ecologist with half of this time in a consultants role. Jason has also performed ecology and management roles in local and state government which has provided valuable insights to, and familiarity with the way governments administer and manage environmental approvals and compliance. Jason remains very much a field ecologist (whilst many others of his experience are often office bound) and takes the lead role on many of our high end Projects with threatened species. Jason is as comfortable working with fauna as he is undertaking vegetation and floristic surveys. Specific recent areas of expertise include migratory waders, red goshawk, palm cockatoo, and Cape York Peninsula flora particularly orchids; though overall Jason has a thorough knowledge of all bird groups. Jason also provides mentoring to the wider Ecotone team and frequently works with Traditional Owners on flora and fauna Projects.

Simon Purcell B App Sc (Wildlife Science), CertIII Animal Care & Management

Simon Purcell B App Sc (Wildlife Science), CertIII Animal Care & Management

Senior Ecologist

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Simon’s early work history was centred around animal care and husbandry, and team management in the retail sector. After completing tertiary studies whilst living in Weipa, Simon moved into field ecology with Ecotone undertaking both vegetation and fauna survey activities related predominantly to environmental compliance within Cape York Peninsula mine sites. In recent years Simon has also moved into threatened species projects and is our key field ecologist working on the threatened palm cockatoo. Simon is also involved in mine rehabilitation including both monitoring and controlling seed for rehabilitation works. On the back of several years’ experience operating heavy machinery in a mining situation Simon also represents a valuable asset with respect to understanding mine development and operation processes and our interpretation of ecological data and development of suitable and practical ecological management recommendations and programs.

Lauren Dibben BSc (Zoology), AssocDegSpSc (Surveying)

Lauren Dibben BSc (Zoology), AssocDegSpSc (Surveying)

Senior Ecologist / Spotter Catcher

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Growing up in Weipa, Cape York Peninsula, Lauren has had a lifelong interest in wildlife, with a particular penchance for reptiles. Lauren is an accomplished field ecologist with extensive experience in the handling, care and manipulation of all native fauna groups including research activities with estuarine crocodiles, land and sea snakes, northern quoll, box jellyfish, and as a long term rehabilitator of sick and injured wildlife. Lauren is an integral member of the field survey team and has expertise in a variety of fauna and other survey activities including baseline fauna surveys, safe and ethical animal handling (including venomous snake and bats), radio/GPS tracking including fitment of transmitters to fauna, bat mistnetting, sea turtle handling and monitoring, water sampling (flow and quality), spotter-catcher work, and habitat assessment. Having grown up on Cape York Lauren is also at home with the safety and logistical aspects of conducting surveys in remote areas. Lauren also holds recent qualifications in the field of spatial sciences – focussing on surveying and GIS. She is trained in the collection and interpretation of spatial data including interface with GIS and GPS systems, and is the Ecotone Data Coordinator.