JUAN JOSÉ ALAVA
Researcher at the Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries, University of British Columbia (Vancouver, BC, Canada and serves as an Adjunct Professor at the School of Resource and Environmental Management, Simon Fraser University (Burnaby, BC) . He does research in Marine Ecotoxicology, Mariner Mammal Toxicology, Environmental Toxicology, Ecology, Marine Biology, Conservation Biology, Zoology, Fisheries Science and Management, as well as Tropical Parasitology and Public Health. He is currently Assessing and modelling climate – pollutant interactions in marine food webs.
EMMA ELLIOT SMITH
I am interested in animal ecology, with an emphasis on how retrospective studies can aid conservation efforts. My current research focus is historical sea otter ecology. I use stable isotope analysis to characterize ancient and modern sea otter dietary ecology throughout the North Pacific and California, and quantify how humans have influenced this species over the Holocene. Sea otters are keystone members of nearshore communities, maintaining healthy kelp forests through predation on invertebrate grazers. Thus, understanding the dynamics of this species may inform conservation of an entire ecosystem. My study sites include the Aleutian Islands, southeastern Alaska, and California.
Staff Veterinarian at The Marine Mammal Center in Sausalito, California. Her primary roles include managing the health of the patients on site, collaborating and carrying out research projects, and teaching and mentoring numerous veterinary residents, students and other visitors who come to TMMC. Dr. Field completed the dual DVM/Ph.D degree program at the University of California Davis in 2005, where she studied the effects of high pressure on blood platelets from elephant seals- the worlds’ deepest diving seal. She then worked at Mystic Aquarium in Connecticut for 3 years as a post-doctoral researcher and intern veterinarian, was an Associate Veterinarian at the Audubon Nature Institute in New Orleans for several years, then served as Associate Veterinarian at the Georgia Aquarium for several years before moving back to California to work at TMMC.
CONCEPCIÓN GARCÍA AGUILAR
Trained as a biologist, with a Masters in Management of Coastal Resources and a PhD in Marine Ecology. For more than 20 years she has conducted research on pinnipeds, mainly focusing on population ecology and behavioural ecology. She is also interested in conservation biology and health. She was the President of the Mexican Society for Marine Mammalogy. She is currently an Associate Researcher at the Department of Marine Ecology of CICESE, in Mexico.
Has conducted research on cetaceans for over 30 years. Specifically, she has focused on monitoring the population of blue whales in the Gulf of California, promoting the species' conservation. With over 40 graduate students from various research centers, she has investiaged various aspects of blue whale natural history and ecology, both at an individual and a population level via photoidentification to estimate population and health parameters. These include distribution, abundance, behavior, health assessments, hormonal assays, feeding habits, habitat use and anthropogenic impacts.
SERGIO MARTÍNEZ AGUILAR
Biologist from UNAM, he started conducting research on marine mammals with a project focused on determining the abundance of the humpback whale in the Revillagigedo Archipelago. His MSc thesis was focused on the abunance and recovery of the humpback whale in the Mexican Pacific and his PhD focused on population biology of the grey whale in the Baja California Peninsula. Since 2009 he has been responsible for the fieldwork of the grey whale monitoring program in San Ignacio lagoon, in southern Baja California.
Employed at the Alaska Fisheries Science Center in Seattle, Washington from 1977 until her retirement in 2016, when she founded Blue Sea Research. Member of the US delegation to the International Whaling Commission’s (IWC) Scientific Committee from 1980-1988. She developed the humpback whale matching system and started the centralized North Pacific humpback whale flukes photo database. In 2011, 2012 and 2014, she participated in the Pacific Ocean Whales and Ecosystem Research (POWER) program. She has used whaling and photo-identification data to estimate vital rates of many cetacean species and populations over the course of her long career. She is particularly interested in large mammal population dynamics and reproductive biology and enjoys fostering large-scale collaborative research.
ADRIÁN MUNGUÍA VEGA
Marine Biologist, with a Masters in Management and Conservation of Natural Resources and a PhD in Wildlife and Fisheries, specialized in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology by the University of Arizona. He focuses on applying genetic and genomic tools to describe, manage and conserve biodiversity. He has over 50 peer reviewed publications related to a wide array of marine and terrestrial animals, plants and microorganisms. He is an Associated Researcher with the University of Arizona y and the NGO Biodiversidad. He is also the Associate Director of the Research Network of the Sonoran Desert (N-Gen), and is an independent consultant for various academic organizations in the US and latin America.
Seth is the Associate Director of the Center for Stable Isotopes at the University of New Mexico, where he is an Assistant Professor in the Biology Department. He is interested in tracking the flow of energy and materials within and among ecosystems to unravel the functional structure of ecological systems with the aim to diagnose the factors that control change and stasis. His research quantifies niche breath at multiple levels of biological organization, compares species interactions in modern and ancient ecosystems to provide information for long-term management and conservation strategies, and traces how individual organisms assimilate and metabolize the elements they consume and use them for tissue biosynthesis.
Has worked at The Marine Mammal Center, a leading marine mammal rehabilitation and research facility in Sausalito, CA, for over 10 years. She is currently a Marine Scientist at the center, where she works to advance marine mammal health and disease research. She completed her MSc degree at Moss Landing Marine Laboratories in 2013, with a thesis that focused on the efficacy of translocations as a conservation strategy for the critically endangered Hawaiian monk seal. She is currently participating in research efforts to study health, foraging behavior and habitat use of pinnipeds in the California Current System.
LARISSA ROSA DE OLIVEIRA
I am a professor and researcher in Biology at the University of Vale do Rio dos Sinos and a member of the NGO 'Study group of Aquatic Mammals of Rio Grande do Sul', working along the southern Brazilian coast. Since 1997 I am associated researcher in Punta San Juan project from CSA-UPCH. For 25 years, I have been studying marine mammals, mainly seals, fur seals and sea lions along the coast of South America, Galapagos Islands and Antarctica. My professional career was mainly focused on the application of molecular tools to describe, manage and conserve marine biodiversity. I am currently developing research that seeks to generate knowledge for the mitigation of dilemmas of biological conservation and human welfare, in order to promote the sustainable use of marine resources and the conservation of pinniped species.