Monash University
PILI_VYT.mp4 (46.74 MB)

virToad : Giving scientists and conservation managers an edge over cane toad invasions

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posted on 2022-08-08, 04:28 authored by Arman Pili

Arman Pili's submission to Visualise Your Thesis 2022 competition. In this video, Arman describes the 1st part of his PhD chapters -- virToad, a state-of-the-art life-history simulator of the cane toad.


"Invasive Alien Species are non-native animals and plants whose invasions wreak havoc on the environment and societies. A globally notorious alien invader is the cane toad. Wherever it goes, a cane toad brings weapons of environmental destruction — poison packed on its shoulders.In Australia, the cane toad’s invasion has poisoned and killed millions of wildlife, pushing them to extinction.

To aid in the fight against cane toad invasions, I designed virToad — a computer simulation game where the player’s mission is to develop the most efficient and low-cost strategy for controlling cane toad invasions. By playing virToad, wildlife conservationists can make informed management decisions.

But ultimately, anyone can play virToad, so they can understand and be inspired to join the fight against cane toad invasions and conserve our wildlife."

virToad is described in detail in:   

Pili, A. N., Tingley, R., Chapple, D. G., and Schumaker, N. (2022). virToad: simulating the spatiotemporal population dynamics and management of a global invader. Landscape Ecology.

Arman is also competing in the Monash University round of 3MT. There, he will talk about the 2nd part of his PhD thesis -- forecasting invaders and invasions for biosecurity. (THIS IS NOT VIRTOAD).


Faculty of Science Dean’s Postgraduate Research Scholarship (DPRS)

Faculty of Science Dean’s International Postgraduate Research Scholarship (DIPRS)





Monash University


Faculty of Science

Student type

  • PhD