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Biographical entry Colbran, Robert C. (Bob) (1926 - 2010)

3 August 1926
Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
2 April 2010
Brisbane, Queensland, Australia


Robert Colbran made major contributions to the taxonomy of Australian nematodes and nematode control. He undertook pioneering taxonomic studies on plant parasitic nematodes and made important contributions to understanding the distribution, pathogenicity and control of nematodes in tropical and semitropical crops. Colbran published comprehensive records of all plant-parasitic nematodes he found in Queensland; his host lists were later extended to the rest of Australia. His experiments on soil fumigants and non-volatile nematicides formed the basis of control programs for the next 30 - 40 years, while his non-chemical control methods proved equally effective. In 1992 the Queensland Department of Primary Industries nematode collection of over 5,000 specimens of plant and soil nematodes, including several hundred types of species described by Colbran, were transferred to the Queensland Museum.



Education - BAgSc, University of Queensland
1954 - 1958
Career position - Research scientist, Entomology Branch, Queensland Department of Agriculture and Stock
Career position - Rockefeller Fellowship, University of California, Berkeley, U.S.A
Education - PhD, University of Queensland
1976 - 1986
Career position - Director of Plant Pathology Branch, Queensland Department of Primary Industries
Life event - Retired

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Published resources

Journal Articles

  • Angus, B. M., Cannon, L. G. R. and Adlard, R. D., 'Parasitology and the Queensland Museum, with Biographical Notes on Collectors', Memoirs of the Queensland Museum: Nature, 53 (2007), 1-156. Details
  • Stirling, G. R., Yeates, G. W., Davies, K. and Hodda, M., 'The history of plant and soil nematodes in Australia and New Zealand, with particular reference to the contributions of six pioneering nematologists', Australasian Plant Pathology, 37 (3) (2008), 203-19. Details


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