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TC Energy Foundation support for coastal bird research

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Our Biology Department recently received a gift of $26,300 from TC Energy Foundation, supporting coastal seabird research led by Department Head, Dr. Paul Leberg. This project aims to study behaviors among species of ecological significance to coastal Louisiana, the Royal Tern and Black Skimmer. TC Energy's award will be used to purchase GPS tags for Summer 2021 field research, allowing Dr. Leberg's team to track and map the birds' movement, foraging patterns, and breeding data. Leberg reports, "The support from TC Energy Foundation has made it possible for us to increase sample sizes to a point where we can resolve important, unanswered questions about these species."

This gift comes at a good time as coastal restoration projects are transforming from small-scale activities to larger initiatives that involve diverting river sediment to coastal marshland. A better understanding of coastal restoration’s impact on the environment is critical to the survival of the wildlife that depend on it for breeding and foraging. Findings from this study will be shared with federal and state agencies. "Guided by our core values of safety, responsibility, collaboration, and integrity, TC Energy's more than 7,500 employees make a positive difference in communities where we operate across the United States, Canada, and Mexico', said Alex Stroman, Manager, U.S. State Government and Community Relations—East. "It is in this spirit that we are proud to partner with the University of Louisiana-Lafayette as they seek to better understand the effect of coastal restoration on important coastal species".

Other supporters of this project include the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, Coypu Foundation and PADI Foundation.