Media Release

12/05/2015
Seabirds in hot water
The role of seabirds in understanding the impacts of climate change will be outlined at a free public lecture next week (Monday 18th May).

The role of seabirds in understanding the impacts of climate change will be outlined at a free public lecture next week (Monday 18th May).

Dr Brad Congdon, an ecologist at James Cook University in Cairns, will deliver the lecture at Salt House.

“Increasingly, climate change is being linked to severe detrimental impacts in tropical marine ecosystems. This affects seabirds as well as other marine organisms,” Dr Congdon said.

“To date, my research group has shown that seabirds on the Great Barrier Reef are heavily impacted by multiple climate-driven processes, including El Niño intensity and sea-surface temperature change.

“I’ll be outlining how we are combining high-resolution oceanographic and satellite data with information on where seabirds are foraging, and how successful their food-gathering is.

“By combining that data we can build comprehensive models and so increase our understanding of how changing ocean conditions will impact on the availability of prey for seabirds and other marine top predators into the future.”

Dr Brad Congdon is a Reader in Ecology at James Cook University in Cairns. He is a research academic and field ecologist with more than 30 years experience in the application of ecological and evolutionary theory to the management and conservation of animal and plant species.

He has a special interest in seabird conservation and has worked extensively with seabirds in Australia and overseas.

The public lecture is titled Seabirds in hot water: linking seabird foraging success and oceanography on the Great Barrier Reef. It will be held at Salt House, The Pier, on Pier Point Road in Cairns, from 6.30pm on Monday 18 May. Admission is free and all are welcome.

To confirm your attendance, please go to: alumni.jcu.edu.au/publect2015

Issued: May 12, 2015

Media enquiries: Linden Woodward, 07 4232 1007, linden.woodward@jcu.edu.au