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Sunday, 08 September 2019 16:07

Biodiversity Conservation: Dr. Miththapala goes to the basics

Are we really engaging in Biodiversity Conservation? This is the focus of the lecture by Dr. Sriyanie Miththapala on Thursday, September 12 at 6 p.m at the Jasmine Hall, BMICH. The Wildlife and Nature Protection Society monthly lecture is open to all members and non-members, admission free.

Dr Sriyanie MiththapalaDr. Miththapala’s opinion is that Sri Lanka’s nature conservation efforts are hampered by the lack of a clear understanding of the meaning of the phrase ‘biodiversity conservation’. This lack of understanding then impedes effective implementation of conservation actions. The lecture will go back to basics to clarify the definition of conservation. She will then assess the gaps in current conservation measures and finally ask what each of us can do to address these gaps meaningfully.

Who better to discuss this than Dr. Sriyanie Miththapala who has more than 25 years of experience in the science of biodiversity conservation and who has, for the last two decades, engaged in presenting biology and conservation biology topics to lay persons? She is a graduate in Biology from the University of Colombo in Sri Lanka, and obtained her MA in Biology from Smith College, USA, and her PhD in Wildlife and Range Sciences from the University of Florida, USA.She has been a visiting lecturer at the Universities of Colombo and Sri Jayewardenepura and was Principal of Ladies’ College, Colombo.

A Smithsonian Research Associate, Dr. Miththapala is presently Consultant to the Sri Lanka Country Office of IUCN, International Union for the Conservation of Nature and a commission member of IUCN’s Commission on Communication and Education, as well as the Commission on Ecosystem Management.

Dr. Miththapala is a natural history writer and illustrator and her publications range from scientific papers to books and articles on biology for laypersons. She believes strongly that conservation will only be effective if the public is made aware of issues threatening Sri Lanka’s natural wealth and engages in activities to address these problems.