IPC10 Keynote speakers
P. Dee Boersma
Wadsworth Endowed Chair in Conservation Science, University of Washington, USA
Short bio: 'Dr. Boersma came to the University of Washington (UW) in 1974. Fieldwork was and is her passion, whether it was working on Fork-tailed storm-petrels in Alaska, on Magellanic penguins in Argentina, or her nearly 50 years of work in the Galápagos Islands on Galápagos penguins. In the early 1980’s, she went to Punta Tombo, Argentina, home to the largest breeding colony of Magellanic penguins. Results of her research helped prevent the harvest of these penguins for high fashion golf gloves, moved tanker lanes farther offshore to prevent penguins from becoming oiled, and informed legislation for Marine Protected areas in the Province of Chubut, Argentina. Dee loves penguin colonies because they are noisy, bustling with activity, and usually far from the nearest city.
Keynote topic: From the tropics to Antarctica, penguins depend on predictable regions of high ocean productivity where their prey aggregate. In recent decades, foraging ranges of penguins increased considerably, very likely reflecting shifts in prey in response to climate change and reductions in prey abundance caused by anthropogenic impacts. Penguins are marine sentinels for southern oceans demonstrating that new challenges are confronting their populations.
Ornitela (Ornithology and Telemetry Applications), Lithuania
Short bio: Ramūnas grew up in Lithuania, where he did Master’s and PhD studying foraging ecology and habitat use seaducks in the Baltic Sea. These studies exposed him to an alarming issue of seabird bycatch in fishing nets. In 2003 he started a postdoc at Simon Fraser University investigating seaduck ecology in relation to shellfish aquaculture in British Columbia, Canada. Two years later he assumed a position at Duke University in the United States and worked on the project focusing on global assessment of fisheries bycatch on marine megafauna. He left in 2008 to pursue a consulting career with DHI in Denmark, where he conducted a lot of work in relation to seabirds and offshore wind farms. Since 2017 he is working for Ornitela, bird telemetry company based in Lithuania.
Keynote topic: Seabird bycatch in the fishing nets – global problem or local issue? Can net fisheries be managed in a sustainable way with respect to seabird populations?
Ralph Eric Thijl Vanstreels
INSTITUTE OF RESEARCH AND REHABILITATION OF MARINE ANIMALS (IPRAM), BRAZIL
Short bio: Ralph Vanstreels is a Brazilian veterinarian. He is the science coordinator of the Institute of Research and Rehabilitation of Marine Animals (Brazil) and an associate researcher of the Karen C. Drayer Wildlife Health Center (UC Davis, USA). Dr. Vanstreels' work has focused on the epidemiology and pathology of parasites and pathogens that infect penguins, with an emphasis on blood parasites. Since 2010, he has been involved in seabird research and conservation projects in South America, South Africa, Australia and at Subantarctic islands, both as principal investigator and active collaborator.
Keynote topic: My work focuses on the diseases of penguins, trying to understand how their health status and pathogens may impact their population ecology and conservation.
NIWA (National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research), New Zealand
Short bio: Mike Williams is Director of the Deep South National Science Challenge where he leads a climate change research programme which focuses on enabling New Zealanders to anticipate, adapt, manage risk and thrive in a changing climate. Mike is also a Physical Oceanographer with NIWA, where his research has focused on the oceanography of the New Zealand Subantarctic, the Southern Ocean, and ice-ocean interaction around Antarctica. Along the way Mike has also looked into how ocean variability may affect foraging behaviour.
Keynote topic: How affects climate change New Zealand, the oceans around New Zealand, and the wider Southern Ocean? Mike will combine an understanding of change in the ocean from historical observations with projections of the future ocean to enable us to understand where and when significant change can be expected. He will focus on the projected changes in the oceans around New Zealand, in the New Zealand subantarctic and in the Ross Sea.
Phillip Island Nature Park, Australia
Short bio: Like most of us, André chases penguins for a living. He works on ecosystem ecology using little penguins as biological indicators of the fast climatic changes in southeastern Australia. Collaborators play a crucial part in his job. Together, they work in a multidisciplinary program that aims to understand at a fine scale how penguins respond to natural changes by developing ways to predict their response or adjustment to environmental changes, including climatic changes. His research produced over 80 scientific papers so far. He is on the editorial board two open source journals, past editor of the Australasian Seabird Group Bulletin, current a steering committee member of the IUCN Penguin Specialist Group, Adjunct Associate Professor (research) at Monash University, and Prof. Penguin’s nemesis. Keen but kook at surfing. He is excited about scientific tweeting @PengChiara.
Keynote topic: Penguin biologists, like most researchers working on long-lived animals, became incidental climate change scientists. Despite their charismatic appeal, almost 70% of all penguin species populations are decreasing. By breeding on land but foraging at sea, penguins are forced to deal with problems in both systems. Penguins evolved over 60 million years ago, André’s talk is about their biggest challenges to survive over the next 50 years.
Pukekura Trust, New Zealand
Short bio: Ko Aoraki te Mauka, Ko Waitaki te awa, Ko Takitimu te waka, Ko Kai Tahu, Kati Mamoe, Waitahi, Rapuwai, Kati Hawea nga Iwi, Ko Otakou te Whenua, Ko Otakou te Marae. I am an Ecologist, recognised and respected Conservationist, and Community Leader with over two decades of experience working with senior teams, communities, and other indigenous leaders to achieve successful outcomes for the environment. I am involved in many conservation organisations, being formerly a chair of the Otago Conservation Board and are currently the Chair of the Otago Peninsula Biodiversity Trust, and trustee for the Yellow Eyed Penguin and Predator Free Dunedin Trusts, to name a few.
Keynote topic: Being of both Kai Tahu and European descent I am in the fortunate position of being able to move between both world views. In my address to the conference I will touch on the work of the Pukekura Trust at Pilots Beach responsible for the well-being of the Little Penguins that are associated with the whenua (land) there. I will also provide insight at a governance level on the aspirations we have for our taonga (treasured) species and how this is given effect through our relationship with our treaty partners.