The PCU gains several new students and staff members

15 May 2019 - 09:30

The Plant Conservation Unit is delighted to welcome some new faces to the team.

Kim Daniels has joined us as a DST-NRF intern to assist in processing historical photographic collections and other PCU-related research projects. She completed her BSc in Biodiversity and Conservation Biology at the University of the Western Cape (UWC) in 2018, and hopes to specialise in the conservation of arid-adapted plants in her future studies.


Two new Honours students, Caitlyn Callanan and Caitlin Dixon, have joined us. Both are being supervised by A/Prof. Lindsey Gillson, Deputy Director of the PCU.

Caitlyn Callanan, having completed her BSc in Applied Biology and Marine Biology at UCT last year, is now working on human land use and fire events in Southwest Madagascar during the Holocene, co-supervised by Dr Estelle Razanatsoa.




Caitlin Dixon, who also completed her undergraduate degree at UCT, is now working on Late Holocene vegetation change in north-eastern Namibia, co-supervised by Dr Glynis Humphrey.





Dr Saúl Manzano, who completed his undergraduate and post-graduate degrees in Spain, joined the PCU as a post-doctoral fellow working with A/Prof. Lindsey Gillson. His research current research focuses on quaternary biome transitions at the Western Cape Fynbos-Renosterveld-Succulent Karoo boundary, which he hopes will provide palaeoecological information applicable in the projection of future environmental change scenarios under the current paradigm of global change.



Some faces familiar to the PCU will be staying on and filling various different positions. We are happy to welcome back PhD graduates Dr Estelle Razanatsoa and Dr Glynis Humphrey as post-docs working with A/Prof. Lindsey Gillson on various palaeoecological research projects. Sonto Mtolo, who was a DST-NRF intern in 2018 assisting in processing historical photographic collections, is staying on for another year as a research assistant, continuing the great work she was doing during her internship. Lastly, Hana Petersen, who completed her MSc in 2018 under the supervision of Prof. Timm Hoffman (Director of the PCU), now re-joins the team as a research assistant. Her main focus is the development and management of the PCU rePhotoSA citizen science project, which involves repeat photography of southern African landscapes.

Read more about our students and staff under the ‘People’ tab above.

Welcome everyone!