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Dive in with Liz and Sylvia, Featuring Dee Boersma

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Dive In
Photo Credit: Ocean Elders

Dee Boersma joins Dive In with Liz and Sylvia

Dr. Dee Boersma is a conservation biologist and professor at the University of Washington, where she is Wadsworth Endowed Chair in Conservation Science. Dr. Boersma’s area of work focuses on seabirds, specifically Magellanic penguins. She is the founder of the Center for Ecosystem Sentinels, hosted at the University of Washington, and dedicated to the study of sentinel species as early warning systems of natural or human caused environmental change.

Boersma began teaching at the University of Washington in 1974. Over multiple decades, her career has focused on protecting penguins from oil spills, habitat loss, and road construction plans that would disrupt nesting sites.

She has directed the Magellanic Penguin Project at Punta Tombo, Argentina since 1982.
Boersma and a team of researchers banded more than 44,300 Magellanic penguin chicks at Punta Tombo from 1983 to 2010, finding 3,296 of those chicks made it back to the breeding colony where they were born. Overall, they found that fewer female penguins survived. Her research in Argentina has demonstrated climate-induced change that forced penguins to swim about 25 miles farther each day in search of food, which reduced their chance of survival.

In 1983, she began finding penguins dead on the beaches covered in oil, which caused her and her team to bring the evidence to the attention of the government and ultimately led to tanker lanes being shifted further offshore. This shift protected the penguins from the effects of commercial petroleum dumping in the ocean.

DIVE IN with Liz and Sylvia is a casual, free-flowing, and educational conversation and encourages ocean and nature enthusiasts of all ages to join. Sylvia, Liz, and Dee will take questions via Q & A text from the attendees. Get your questions ready!

Post your comments on Twitter and use #DIVEINWITHUS

Presented by Ocean Elders


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About Author

Kathy is the owner of Kirk Scuba Gear, a passionate Scuba Diver, Ocean Advocate and Managing Editor of The Scuba News Canada

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