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Sunset Over New York City

Greetings! I am Dr. Tara Clark, a mum and an Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Research Award Fellow at the School of Earth, Atmospheric and Life Sciences (SEALS for short), the University of Wollongong. I am fortunate to be able to investigate how coral reef communities on the iconic Great Barrier Reef have changed over the past several hundred years and whether these changes are the result of natural environmental or anthropogenic factors. This work is important to be able to provide an appropriate baseline with which to manage these reefs. My fieldwork takes me to some incredible and expansive reefs (such the one pictured here) where we sample dead coral skeletons to understand past coral mortality events. Using radiometric dating (specifically U-Th dating), we can reliably work out WHEN the corals died - and ultimately WHY they died. A bit like CSI reef! I cant wait to showcase some of my research, and the work of my colleagues from our lab (the PaleoEnvironmental Research Laboratory, aka PERL), to those considering a career in science!

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