• The University of Western Australia (M092), 35 Stirling Highway,

    6009 Perth


  • 372 Citations
  • 8 h-Index
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Personal profile


Although I've worked with a diverse array of species and systems, a common theme is an interest in understanding how evolutionary forces and population dynamics shape genetic variation within natural populations, with a focus on conservation. Currently I have a co-appointment with UWA, where I am a NESP (National Environmental Science Program) Threatened Species Recovery Hub Research Fellow with the Mitchell lab in the School of Biological Sciences, and Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research Crown Research Institute in New Zealand (https://www.landcareresearch.co.nz/home).

My work at UWA is focused on describing contemporary genetic diversity within threatened species and building this data into population viability models to enable informed decision making around species translocations. This allows estimates of not just the probability of survival of translocated populations, but also how much source population genetic variation is captured, and projects how well that genetic diversity is retained into future generations. I work closely with WA’s Department of Biodiversity Conservation and Attractions (DBCA) and the Australian Wildlife Conservancy NGO. Target species include the banded hare wallaby (Lagostrophus fasciatus), the western barred bandicoot (Perameles bougainville) and the dibbler (Parantechinus apicalis) – all chosen for DBCA’s ‘Dirk Hartog Island: Return to 1616’ project.

My role with the Biodiversity and Conservation Team at Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research in New Zealand as a population geneticist and bioinformatician, sees me involved with the molecular component of a 4 year MBIE funded Research Programme on kiwi rescue which includes developing a non-invasive genetic approach for population monitoring of kiwi (Apteryx spp.) from microsatellite data. Other recent and current projects include quantifying population bottlenecks and estimating allele retention in translocated populations of Cook Strait giant weta, and the genetic delimitation of taxa within New Zealand land snails. My genomics based work has helped reveal population connectivity and genomic adaptation in the Galaxias maculatus fish species complex using SNP data generated from genome complexity reduction techniques such as GBS, and I have worked extensively on the discovery of viral aetiological agents of wildlife disease using de novo metagenomcis, mostly in endangered New Zealand birds, e.g., kākāpō and rowi kiwi. Currently I’m assembling and annotating a common brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) transcriptome as part of the ‘Achilles Heel’ project – which aims to find good candidate genes for gene silencing for control of this invasive species. Such work often relies on bash scripting to link perl and python programs.

Education/Academic qualification

Human Genetics, PhD, University College London

Oct 2001Jun 2005

Population and Quantitative Genetics, MSc by Research, University of Edinburgh

Oct 1999Sep 2000

Zoology, BSc Honours , University of Edinburgh

Oct 1994Sep 1998

External positions

Population Geneticist and Bioinformatician, Landcare Research

Nov 2011 → …


  • population and evolutionary genetics
  • conservation genetics and wildlife ecology
  • molecular ecology
  • bioinformatics
  • computer simulations

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Daniel White is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

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Mitochondrial DNA Medicine & Life Sciences
mitochondrial DNA Agriculture & Biology
Apteryx Agriculture & Biology
conservation management Earth & Environmental Sciences
Genetic Recombination Medicine & Life Sciences
Metagenomics Medicine & Life Sciences
Viruses Medicine & Life Sciences
feather Earth & Environmental Sciences

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Research Output 2004 2019

  • 372 Citations
  • 8 h-Index
  • 17 Article
  • 1 Comment/debate
  • 1 Short survey
  • 1 Review article

The mixed liver and heart transcriptome dataset of the New Zealand brushtail possum, Trichosurus vulpecula

White, D. J., Trought, K. & Hopkins, B., 1 Dec 2019, In : Data in Brief. 27, 104577.

Research output: Contribution to journalShort survey

Open Access
Trichosurus vulpecula
crossover interference
2 Citations (Scopus)

Extraction of DNA from captive-sourced feces and molted feathers provides a novel method for conservation management of New Zealand kiwi (Apteryx spp.)

Ramón-Laca, A., White, D. J., Weir, J. T. & Robertson, H. A., Mar 2018, In : Ecology and Evolution. 8, 6, p. 3119-3130

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
kiwis (birds)
conservation management
isolated population
genetic variation
5 Citations (Scopus)

Assessing the impact of assemblers on virus detection in a de novo metagenomic analysis pipeline

White, D. J., Wang, J. & Hall, R. J., 1 Sep 2017, In : Journal of Computational Biology. 24, 9, p. 874-881 8 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
3 Citations (Scopus)

Population history and genetic bottlenecks in translocated Cook Strait giant weta, Deinacrida rugosa: recommendations for future conservation management

White, D. J., Watts, C., Allwood, J., Prada, D., Stringer, I., Thornburrow, D. & Buckley, T. R., 1 Apr 2017, In : Conservation Genetics. 18, 2, p. 411-422 12 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

population bottleneck
Population Genetics
conservation management