Conservation Biology Masters Students (2019/2020)

Conor Eastment




Conor was born in Johannesburg and grew up in Cape Town.He is very thankful to his parents for making this move due to the proximity of this new home to the ocean, where he has since spent a large portion of his time. He completed a Bachelor of Social Science majoring in Environmental Science and Public Policy at UCT and continued on to complete his Honours within the Environmental and Geographical Science Department. His Honours year was focused on Urban Ecology, Water Resource Management, Geomorphology and Environmental Management. During Honours, Conor was also the Conservation Convener for the UCT Mountain and Ski Club. As part of this role, he led hacking teams in the felling of thousands of pines on UCT’s Zuurberg property, accessing the area via helicopter and wilderness hiking. His first job after Honours was as the Project Manager for an urban river conservation organisation (Friends of the Liesbeek) based along the historic Liesbeek River in Cape Town. With Friends of the Liesbeek, he was primarily responsible for overseeing a maintenance team tasked with restoration of the indigenous eco-system; and engaging with government agents, residents and other NGOs with the aim of improving ecological functionality along the river corridor. This experience gave Conor an insight into the world of urban conservation which bred his desire to gain the skills and knowledge necessary to become a qualified conservationist. As a means to raise funds for university and satiate his burning desire to surf waves around the world before committing to further studies, Conor worked as a teacher at an international school in Bangkok for one year. By enrolling within the Conservation Biology course at the Fitzpatrick Institute of African Ornithology, he aims to develop a different set of skills to that which he gained during his Social Science-based undergraduate studies. He believes that there is a common interest for all of humanity in the conservation of the natural world and development needs be informed and guided by this commonality. By combining his Social Science background with this course, it is his hope to become an effective communicator of conservation issues to multiple stakeholders with different interests.


Decadal trends of rainfall, fire and vegetation in north-east Namibia: an approach combining repeat photography and remote sensing.  (Supervisors: Lindsey Gillson, Glynis Humphrey and Timm Hoffman)