Extreme deep sea environments exposed by UVic professor in public talk

Exploring ocean frontiers – astonishing wonders revealed!

Dr. VerenaTunnicliffe, a pioneer and leading authority on deep-water life, dazzled the audience with images from extreme deep sea environments at a public lecture at Okanagan College’s Kalamalka campus on Thursday, November 17 at 7:30 p.m.  This talk was presented by the Science in Society Speaker Series (a joint project by Okanagan Science Center and the Okanagan College).

Dr. Tunnicliffe is a University of Victoria professor in the departments of Biology & School Earth/Ocean Sciences. She led the world’s first expedition to observe the hydrothermal vents off the west coast of Canada in 1983 and has logged more than 120 submersible deep sea dives and hundreds of hours with seafloor remotely operated vehicle operations.

The human species is limited by terrestrial adaptations and dependence on a few senses to understand our interactions with the environment. Penetration of the oceans by humans is difficult. Lack of visual connectivity beneath the sea surface usually means “out of sight, out of mind.” In this talk, Dr. Tunnicliffe will explore some of the deep places in our ocean to reveal some astonishing wonders. Imagery from expeditions to hot vents, subsea volcanoes, and deep into Canadian oceans will illustrate the beauty and the extraordinary dynamics of ecosystems seldom seen. Canada is a leader in development of subsea technologies that allow us to undertake such exploration: submersible, remotely operated vehicles and subsea observatories are world leading!

Dr.Tunnicliffe, the Canada Research Chair in Deep Ocean Research, holds a Ph. D. from Yale University and is the author of many influential scientific publications and a children’s book, Kira’s Undersea Garden.  She is a member of the Royal Society of Canada and is awardee of both the NRC Steacie Prize and the BC Innovation Council’s “Frontiers in Exploration” prize.

Admission is $5 in advance or $7 at the door. Please contact the Okanagan Science Centre www.okscience.ca or call (250) 545-3644 for advanced purchase of tickets or for more information.

This event was sponsored bythe Best Western Vernon Lodge, Starbucks Coffee,  Sweet Caroline’s Bakery, and the Morning Star.

For more information, contact:

Carl Doige, Okanagan College (250) 545-7291 ext. 2286

Sandi Dixon, Okanagan Science Centre (250) 545-3644

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