Each year, the Art Collection’s exhibitions, events and workshops are directly inspired by the research of the University. This year the focus is on environment, and with the umbrella title ‘Under Threat’ we highlight a variety of pressing issues.
These photographs by Danni Thompson, photographer and seabird ecologist, show the plight of the UK’s seabird colonies, many of which have faced huge population changes over recent years due to invasive species, by-catch, pollution, habitat loss, overfishing and climate change. It would be impossible to see these trends without long-term monitoring.
Danni says ‘Since the 1960s our seabird colonies have undergone a national census every 15 years or so, whereby every single breeding seabird in the UK is counted. This allows us to see the bigger picture of how our seabirds are faring. Seabirds Count, the fourth national census, is currently underway and thanks to the huge efforts of surveyors, many of whom are volunteers, this should be complete by the end of 2020.
Wildlife is my passion. But seabirds are better. I’ve enjoyed capturing the natural world through a lens since I was knee high. I now work as a Seabird Ecologist for JNCC (Joint Nature Conservation Committee) where my team focusses on citizen science and monitoring projects, such as the Seabird Monitoring Programme (SMP), the seabird census and Volunteer Seabirds at Sea (VSAS). Long-term monitoring is fundamental for all aspects of wildlife conservation; how can we work to conserve something we don’t understand?’