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Ecology and Conservation

Dr Liliana Poggio Colman

Dr Liliana Poggio Colman

Postdoctoral fellow

 The Farmhouse Ground floor


The Farmhouse, University of Exeter, Penryn Campus, Cornwall, TR10 9FE, UK


I am a marine ecologist and my research focuses on several aspects of marine turtle ecology, including both in-water research and work conducted on nesting beaches. My current research involves studying the ecology of leatherback sea turtles in Brazil, through the use of diverse techniques such as PIT tagging, stable isotopes, temperature and sex ratios and population dynamics.

Broad research specialisms:

  • Marine turtles
  • Marine conservation
  • Population dynamics
  • Spatial ecology
  • Mark and recapture studies


2019 PhD in Biological Sciences, University of Exeter, UK

2013 MSc Biodiversity & Conservation, University of Exeter, UK

2010 Bachelor in Biology, Universidade Federal da Bahia (UFBA), Brazil 


2019 - current: Post-Doctoral Researcher University of Exeter & Projeto TAMAR (Brazilian Sea Turtle Conservation Programme) Brazil

2015 Consultant Auiká Brazil

2013 - 2014 Field Biologist at Projeto TAMAR, Brazil

2010 - 2012 Field Biologist at Projeto TAMAR, Brazil

2006 - 2007 Federal University of Bahia, Brazil (Junior Researcher PIBIC/CNPq)

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Research interests

Research projects

Project Title: Ecology and conservation of the leatherback sea turtle (Dermochelys coriacea) population in Brazil.

Supervisors: Professor Brendan Godley and Dr Annette Broderick

Funding Bodies: US Fish and Wildlife Service and British Chelonia Group, in collaboration with Projeto TAMAR (The Brazilian Sea Turtle Conservation Programme) in Brazil

Project Description:
The leatherback sea turtle population in Brazil is considered critically endangered, mainly due to their restricted distribution and small population size, which makes them highly vulnerable to threats such as incidental capture in fisheries, habitat destruction/alteration and climate change. The broad objective of this project is to utilise a range of techniques, including PIT tagging, stable isotopes, the thermal profile of nesting beaches and nest counts to obtain a more complete knowledge of the spatial ecology, habitat use, population trends and threats to the leatherback turtles nesting in Brazil, hopefully contributing to achieve their effective conservation.


Colman LP, Lara PH, Bennie J, Broderick AC, Freitas JR, Marcondes A, Witt MJ, Godley BJ (2020) Assessing coastal artificial light and potential exposure os wildlife at a national scale: the case of marine turtles in Brazil. Biodiversity and Conservation

Bellini C, Santos AJB, Patrício AR, Bortolon LFW, Godley BJ, Marcovaldi MA, Tilley D, Colman LP (2019) Distribution and growth rates of immature hawksbill turtles Eretmochelys imbricata in Fernando de Noronha, Brazil. Endangered Species Research, 40:41-52 

Colman LP, Thomé JCA, Almeida AP, Baptistotte C, Barata PCR, Broderick AC, Ribeiro FA, Vila-Verde L, Godley BJ (2019) Thirty years of leatherback turtle Dermochelys coriacea nesting in Espírito Santo, Brazil, 1988-2017: reproductive biology and conservation. Endangered Species Research, 39:147-158

Colman L.P., Patrício A.R.C., McGowan A., Santos A.J., Marcovaldi M.Â., Bellini C., & Godley B.J. (2015). Long-term growth and survival dynamics of green turtles (Chelonia mydas) at an isolated tropical archipelago in Brazil. Marine Biology, 1-12.

Colman, L.P., Sampaio, C.L.S., Weber M.I. & Castilhos, J.C. (2014). Diet of Olive Ridley Sea Turtles, Lepidochelys olivacea, in the Waters of Sergipe, Brazil. Chelonian Conservation and Biology, 13(2):266-271

Colman, L. P., Carneiro K. & Salies E.C. (2012). Caretta caretta (Loggerhead Sea turtle) Diet. Herpetological Review, v. 43, p. 637-638.

Research grants

  • 2017 Rufford Foundation
    Ecology and conservation of leatherback sea turtles in Brazil
  • 2017 British Chelonia Group
    Ecology and conservation of leatherback sea turtles in Brazil
  • 2015 Brazilian National Council for Scientific and Technological
    PhD studentship

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