Research Manager

Peter has worked as a wildlife ecologist for 30 years and has published extensively on seabirds and shorebirds in Australasia.  He is a research fellow of the Department of Zoology at the University of Melbourne, the Scott Polar Institute at Cambridge University and the past chairman of the Australasian Seabird Group, one of the editors of the journal ‘Marine Ornithology’ and a director of the Penguin Foundation.


       Phone: + 61 (3) 59512839

       Mail:     Phillip Island Nature Parks, PO Box 97, Cowes Vic. 3922, Australia

 Professional Area

Avian ecology and behaviour, particularly seabirds

Current projects

  • Population regulation of little penguins
  • Long-term demography of penguins
  • Climate change and penguins
  • Satellite tracking of penguins
  • Oil pollution and seabirds
  • Conservation biology of hooded plovers
  • Long-term monitoring of shorebirds in Victoria
  • Management of coastal birds


2000 - Ph.D. (Zoology), University of Melbourne.
1975 - Honours (Zoology), University of Melbourne.

Current students

Kasup Munaweera. Development of improved pre-conditioning agents for the removal of oil contamination from wildlife and rocky foreshores. (Ph.D., Victoria University, Werribee with Professor John Orbell).

Jakub Stoklosa. Modern methods of estimation of population size and demographic parameters on various capture-recapture datasets. (Ph.D., University of Melbourne, Parkville with Professor Richard Huggins).

Annett Finger. Trace metals in Little Penguin Eudyptula minor populations along the Victorian coastline of Australia. (Ph.D., Victoria University, St Albans with Carol Scarpaci). 

Natalie Sheppard. Foraging ecology and spatial dynamics of the Hooded Plover on Phillip Island: an obligate, beach-dwelling shorebird. (Ph.D., Deakin University, Burwood with Mike Weston).

Billie Ganendran. Climatic factors and Little Penguin survival in Bass Strait. (MPhil, Australian Defence force Academy at University of New South Wales, Canberra)

Publications last 5 years (Full list in Google scholar)


Chambers, L. E., Patterson , T., Hobday, A. J., Arnould, J. P. Y., Tuck , G., Wilcox, C. and Dann, P. (2015).  Determining trends and environmental drivers from long-term marine mammal and seabird data: examples from southern Australia.  Regional Environmental Change 15(1):197-209. DOI: 10.1007/s10113-014-0634-8

Trathan, P. N., García-Borboroglu, P., Boersma, D., Bost, C-A., Crawford, R. J.M., Crossin, G.T., Cuthbert, R.J., Dann, P., Davis, L.S., De la Puente, S., Lynch, H.J., Mattern, T., Pütz, K., Seddon, P.J., Trivelpiece, W. and Wienecke, B. (2015). In the face of climate change, pollution, habitat loss and fishing remain as critical threats for penguins.  Biological Conservation 29 (1): 31–41.  DOI:10.1111/cobi.12349

Salton, M., Chiaradia, A., Saraux, C. and Dann, P. (2015). Carry-over body mass effect from inter-breeding to breeding in a resident seabird, the Little penguin.  Royal Society Open Science. 2: 140390.

Evans,  J. K., Dann, P. and Frankel, T. (2015). Variation in innate immune function during incubation, chick-rearing and moult in Little Penguins (Eudyptula minor). Emu 115(1) 63-71


Dann, P., Sidhu, L., Jessop, R., Renwick, L., Healy, M., Dettmann, B., Baker, G. B. and Catchpole, T.(2014). The effects of flipper bands and injected transponders on the survival of adult Little Penguins Eudyptula minor. Ibis 156, 73–83.  DOI: 10.1111/ibi.12122

Dann, P. (2014).  Prey behaviour and availability, and not energy content, explain diet and prey choice of Eastern Curlew Numenius madagascariensis during the austral spring and summer in southern Australia.  Ardea 102:213-224. doi:10.5253/arde.v102i2.a11

Sutherland, D. R. and Dann, P. (2014).  Population trends in a substantial colony of Little Penguins: three independent measures over three decades.  Biodiversity and Conservation 23, 241-250.DOI: 10.1007/s10531-013-0597-y

Antos, M. and Dann, P.  (2014). Are Mound Springs important refugia for Eastern Grass Owls Tyto longimembris in south-western Queensland?  Australian Field Ornithology 31: 208-212.

Schumann, N., Dann, P. and Arnould, J.P.Y. (2014).  The significance of north-central Bass Strait in south-eastern Australia as seabird habitat.  Emu 114 (3), 234-240 DOI: 10.1071/MU13048

Stoklosa, J., Dann, P. and Huggins, R. (2014).  Semi-varying Coefficient Models for Capture-recapture data: Population Size Estimation for the Little Penguin Eudyptula minor.Mathematical Biosciences 255: 43–51

Leitch,T. N., DannP. and Arnould, J. P. Y. (2014).  The diet of Pacific gulls (Larus pacificus) breeding at Seal Island in northern Bass Strait.  Australian Journal of Zoology 62(3): 216-222. DOI: 10.1071/ZO13066

Sutherland, D. R., Dann, P. and Jessop, R. (2014).  Evaluating the provision of artificial nest-sites for long-term conservation of a burrow-nesting seabird.Journal of Wildlife Management 78(8):1415–1424; 2014; DOI: 10.1002/jwmg.783

Rodríguez, A., Burgan, G., Dann, P., Jessop, R., Negro J.J. and Chiaradia, A.  (2014). Fatal attraction of short-tailed shearwaters to artificial lights.  PloS ONE 9(10): e110114  DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0110114

Fuentes, M.M.P.B., Chambers, L.E., Chin, A., Dann, P., Dobbs, K., Poloczanska, E., Maison, K., Turner, M., Pressey, R. L and Marsh, H. (2014).  Adaptive management of marine mega-fauna in a changing climate.  Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change  DOI: 10.1007/s11027-014-9590-3

Dewar, M.L, Arnould, J.P.Y, Krause, L, Trathan, P, Dann, P and Smith, S. C.  (2014). Influence of Fasting during Moult on the Faecal Microbiota of Penguins.  PLoS ONE 9(6): e99996. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0099996

Dewar, M.L, Arnould, J.P.Y., Krause, L, Dann, P, Smith, S.C. (2014). Inter-Specific Variations in the Faecal Microbiota of Procellariiform Seabirds.  FEMS Microbiology Ecology 89(1): 47–55. DOI: 10.1111/1574-6941.12332

Kirkwood, R., Sutherland, D., Murphy, S. and Dann, P. (2014).  Lessons from long-term predator control – a case study with the red fox. Wildlife Research 41(3) 222-232.  DOI: 10.1071/WR13196


Dewar, M.L., Arnould, J.P.Y., Dann, P., Trathan, P., Groscolas, R. and Smith, S.C. (2013). Inter-specific variations in the gastrointestinal microbiota of penguins.  Microbiology Open 2, 195–204.

Schumann, N., Dann, P., Hoskings, A. and Arnould, J.P.Y. (2013). Optimising survey effort for burrow-nesting seabirds.  Journal of Field Ornithology 84, 69-85.

Warneke, R. and Dann, P. (2013).  Birds of Seal Rocks in northern Bass Strait: changes over forty years (1965–2005).  Victorian Naturalist 130, 4-21.

Dann, P. (2013).  Book Chapter-17.  Little Penguins (Eudyptula minor). In Penguins: Natural History and Conservation (Garcia-Borboroglue, P. & Boersma, D. eds.).  Pp. 305-319. University of Washington Press, Seattle, USA.

Cardilini, A. P., Weston, M. A., Nimmo, D. G., Dann, P. and Sherman, C. D. H. (2013).  Surviving in sprawling suburbs: suburban environments represent high quality breeding habitat for a widespread shorebird.   Landscape and Urban Planning 115, 72–80.

Bigger, S. W., Munaweera, K, Ngeh, L. N., Dann, P. and Orbell, J. D. (2013). Mathematical Model for the Sequential Pick-Up of Chemical Contaminants by Magnetic Particles.  Journal of Environmental Engineering 139, 796-802.

Lees, D., Weston, M. A., Sherman, C., Maguire, G., Dann, P., Cardilini, A. P. and Tan, L.  (2013). Occurrences of co-operative breeding in the Masked Lapwing Vanellus miles.  Victorian Naturalist 130, 84-85.

Schumann, N., Dann, P. and Arnould, J.P.Y. (2013). Use of terrestrial habitats by burrow-nesting seabirds in south-eastern Australia.  Emu 113, 133-144.

Taylor, A. R., Dann, P. and Arnould, J.P.Y. (2013). Timing of breeding and diet of the Black-faced Cormorant Phalacrocorax fuscescens.Marine Ornithology 41, 23–27.

Lees, D., Sherman, C. D. H., Maguire, G. S., Dann P., Cardilini, A. P. and Weston, M. A. (2013).  Swooping in the Suburbs; Parental Defence of an Abundant Aggressive Urban Bird against Humans. Animals 3(3), 754-766.  DOI: 10.3390/ani3030754

Chambers, L. E., Dann, P., Cannell, B. & Woehler, E. (2013). Climate as a driver of phenological change in southern seabirds.  International Journal of Biometeorology 58(4), 603-612.  DOI 10.1007/s00484-013-0711-6

Dann, P. and Chambers, L., E. (2013).  Ecological effects of climate change on Little Penguins Eudyptula minor and the potential economic impact on tourism.  Climate Research 58, 67-79.DOI 10.3354/cr01187


Chiaradia, A., Forero, M. G., Hobson, K., Swearer, S., Hume, F., Renwick, L. and Dann, P. (2012). Diet segregation between two colonies of little penguins Eudyptula minor in southeast Australia. Austral Ecology doi:10.1111/j.1442-9993.2011.02323.x

Dann, P. (in press). Book Chapter. ‘Little Penguins’. In ‘Status of World’s Penguins’ (Boroboroglue & Boersma eds.). University of Washington Press, Seattle.

Sutherland, D. R. and Dann, P. (2012). Population size estimates of burrowing seabirds robust to variation in burrow occupancy: linking burrow surveys with demographics in Little Penguins. Ibis 154, 488-498.

Norman, F. I., Dann, P., Unthank, S. and Montague, T. (in press). Movements of Little Penguins Eudyptula minor banded at Rabbit Island and the Seal Island Group, Wilsons Promontory, Victoria. Corella 36

Sidhu, L.A., Dann, P., Chambers, L. and Catchpole, E.A. (2012). Seasonal ocean temperature and the survival of first-year little penguins Eudyptula minor in south-eastern Australia. Marine Ecology Progress Series 454, 263-272.

Warneke, R. and Dann, P. (in press). Birds of Seal Rocks in northern Bass Strait: changes over forty years (1965–2005). Victorian Naturalist


Chambers, L.E., L. Renwick, and Dann, P. (2011). Climate, fire and Little Penguins.  In Climate Change: Global Risks, Challenges and Decisions (Eds. K. Richardson, W. Steffen and D. Liverman), Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. pp 275-276.

Sidhu, L., Catchpole, E. and Dann, P. (2011).  Modelling banding effect and tag loss for Little Penguins Eudyptula minor using Matlab.  Australian & New Zealand Industrial and Applied Mathematics Journal 52, 206-221.

Chambers, L. E., Devney, C., Congdon, B. C., Dunlop, N., Woehler, E. J. and Dann, P. (2011). Observed and predicted impacts of climate on Australian seabirds.Emu 111, 235-251.

McCutcheon, C., Dann, P., Salton, M., Renwick, L., Gormley, A. and Arnould, J. (2011). Foraging range of Little Penguins during winter.  Emu 111, 321-329.

Stoklosa, J., Dann, P. and Huggins, R. (2011). Inference on partially observed quasi-stationary Markov chains with applications to multistate population models. Journal of Agricultural, Biological, and Environmental Statistics 17, 52–67.

Ganendran, L. B., Sidhu, L., Catchpole, E., Dann, P. and Chambers, L. (2011). The effect of directional wind components on the survival of Little Penguins Eudyptula minor. Australian & New Zealand Industrial and Applied MathematicsJournal 52, 1012-1030.

Dann, P. (2011). Chapter 12.  Birds and Marine Mammals.  In Understanding the Western Port Environment. (Keough M. & Quinn, G. eds.). Melbourne Water, Melbourne.

Keough, M. J., Boon, P., Dann, P., Dittmann, S., Jenkins, g., Lee, R., Quinn, G., Ross, J., Walker, D. and Wilson, R.  (2011). Chapter 15. Consolidated research needs and prioritisation.  In Understanding the Western Port Environment. (Keough M. & Quinn, G. eds.). Melbourne Water, Melbourne.