Dr Heidi Zimmer

Dr Heidi Zimmer


Bachelor of Environmental Science (Monash University)
Master of Forest Ecosystem Science (University of Melbourne)
PhD (University of Melbourne)


  • Rainforest, woodland and grassland ecology
  • Vegetation measurement and monitoring design
  • Wollemi pine

Research Interests and Background

Heidi began her career in forest research using dendrochronology (tree rings) to investigate the stand dynamics of tropical pine forests in northern Thailand. She continued her dendrochronological research with a Masters project in the high-elevation forests of Papua New Guinea.

Heidi then worked for the Arthur Rylah Institute for Environmental Research (Melbourne) on the ecology and management of Victorian Volcanic Plains Grassland, Gippsland Plains Grassy Woodland, Callitris verrucosa, and on ecosystem recovery following the Black Saturday bushfires (snow gum forest, Callitris endlicheri woodlands).

Conifer ecology has been a theme of Heidi's research: her she completed her doctoral research on the Wollemi pine, one of Australia's most iconic threatened species. This research included establishing a population of Wollemi pines at a new rainforest site using experimental translocation.

Recently Heidi spent a year living in Hanoi and working with the Vietnamese Academy of Forest Science. Heidi continues to work in Vietnam on issues around degradation of steep slopes in mountainous north-western Vietnam.

List of Recent Publications

TD Le Breton, HC Zimmer, RV Gallagher, M Cox, S Allen, TD Auld (2019); Using IUCN criteria to perform rapid assessments of at-risk taxa; Biodiversity and Conservation, 1-21

JDN Ha T.T. Do, John C.Grant, Ngoc Bon Trinh, Heidi C.Zimmer, Lam Dong Tran (2019); Recovery of tropical moist deciduous dipterocarp forest in Southern Vietnam; Forest Ecology and Management 433, 184-204

H Zimmer, T Auld, D Coates, J Moore, J Silcock, N Reiter, M Matthes (2018); Translocation monitoring and evaluation; Guidelines for the Translocation of Threatened Plants in Australia

HC Zimmer, SK Florentine, R Enke, M Westbrooke (2017); Rainfall and grazing: not the only barriers to arid-zone conifer recruitment; Australian Journal of Botany 65 (2), 109-119

JL Rigg, CA Offord, H Zimmer, IC Anderson, BK Singh, JR Powell (2017); Conservation by translocation: establishment of Wollemi pine and associated microbial communities in novel environments; Plant and soil 411 (1-2), 209-225

H Do, JC Grant, BN Trinh, HC Zimmer, DJ Nichols (2017); Diversity depends on scale in the forests of the Central Highlands of Vietnam; Journal of Asia Pacific Biodiversity

H Zimmer, H Le Thi, D Lo, J Baynes, JD Nichols (2017); Why do farmers still grow corn on steep slopes in northwest Vietnam?; Agroforestry Systems

HC Zimmer, CA Offord, TD Auld, PJ Baker (2016); Establishing a wild, ex situ population of a critically endangered shade-tolerant rainforest conifer: a translocation experiment; PloS one 11 (7), e0157559

HC Zimmer (2016); Limits to recruitment of a rare conifer: Wollemia nobilis; PhD Thesis, University of Melbourne

HC Zimmer, TJ Brodribb, S Delzon, PJ Baker (2015); Drought avoidance and vulnerability in the Australian Araucariaceae; Tree physiology 36 (2), 218-228

HC Zimmer, TD Auld, L Hughes, CA Offord, PJ Baker (2015); Fuel flammability and fire responses of juvenile canopy species in a temperate rainforest ecosystem; International Journal of Wildland Fire 24 (3), 349-360

HC Zimmer, PF Meagher, TD Auld, J Plaza, CA Offord (2015); Year-to-year variation in cone production in Wollemia nobilis; Cunninghamia 15:79-85