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  • Turtles in Trouble: Impact of marine debris & recent flooding events on SE Queensland’s sea turtles

Turtles in Trouble: Impact of marine debris & recent flooding events on SE Queensland’s sea turtles

  • Tuesday, July 02, 2024
  • 7:30 PM - 9:00 PM
  • Gregory Place, 1/28 Fortescue St, Spring Hill and via Zoom



RGSQ Lecture Series

Dr Kathy Townsend 

University of the Sunshine Coast, Fraser Coast Campus

Marine debris is a global issue that effects a wide range of marine species.Endangered sea turtles are facing a wide range of pressures, from habitat changes caused by climate change through to marine debris. Dr Kathy Townsend will be presenting over a decade of research that her and her team have conducted on the impact of marine debris on Queensland’s iconic sea turtles. Dr Townsend will discuss local and global impacts of marine debris on marine wildlife and reflect on the impact that the recent flooding events had on sea turtles in southeast Queensland. She will finish off with what progress we have made to date, talk about tangible projects that are currently being undertaken, and what further steps need to be taken to reduce our global plastic footprint.

Bio: Associate Prof Kathy Townsend is an award-winning marine scientist, whose research focuses on marine conservation and human impacts on the marine environment. She is the chair of the “World Whale Heritage Steering Committee” and is the co-lead for UniSC’s “Marine and Terrestrial Megafauna Research Cluster”. Dr Townsend is an invited member of the United Nations Marine Litter and Plastic Reduction Program, and GCT’s Plastic Free Galapagos. She supervises multiple PhD students who are working out of the Galapagos Science Centre and has a large team based in Hervey Bay. Her research programs draw their strength from a multidisciplinary approach, and focus on global scale issues such as the impacts of marine debris and marine pollution. Her research programs also contribute to a greater understanding of the conservation status of marine species identified by the IUCN Red List for threatened species.

Please note: If you have registered to attend the lecture via Zoom, the lecture link will be emailed to all registrants closer to the lecture date. This lecture may be recorded. If you have any questions, please email us at

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The Royal Geographical Society of Queensland Ltd.
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