Matthew Burnett obtained his PhD in ecology at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in 2020. He is currently a post-doctoral fellow at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and a senior Scientist with Rivers of Life Aquatic Health Services. Dr Burnett is a specialist aquatic scientist focusing on water resources management, conservation and fisheries. In particular, he has co-developed and implemented the FISHTRAC programme in Southern Africa and is now expanding this research to case studies in other countries abroad. His involvement in conservation and research has seen a holistic approach to achieving sustainability in the management of freshwater ecosystems while using available tools to do so. Dr Burnett has numerous peer-reviewed publications and is currently leading our fisheries theme and collaborating with international partners. His vision is to contribute to the protection of South Africa’s vulnerable freshwater ecosystems aiding the people who depend on them.

Find Matt on ResearchGate.

Key publications:

  • Burnett, M.J., O’Brien, G.C., Jacobs, F.J., Botha, F., Jewitt, G., Downs, C.T., 2020. The southern African inland fish tracking programme (FISHTRAC): An evaluation of the approach for monitoring ecological consequences of multiple water resource stressors, remotely and in real-time. Ecological Indicators 111, 106001.
  • Burnett, M.J., O’Brien, G.C., Wepener, V., Pienaar, D., 2018. The spatial ecology of adult Labeobarbus marequensis and their response to flow and habitat variability in the Crocodile River, Kruger National Park. African journal of aquatic science 43, 375–384.




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