Merlijn Hulsenboom

Merlijn is a dedicated and accomplished biologist with a specialization in Ecology & Biodiversity from Wageningen University. She graduated with Cum Laude honors, showcasing her exceptional academic abilities. Merlijn further pursued her passion for marine biology by enrolling in the International MSc in Marine Biological Resources (IMBRSea) program. She completed general courses in Brest, France, and specialized in Marine Spatial Planning in Oviedo, Spain, as well as Applied Megafauna Conservation in Galway, Ireland.
Merlijn's commitment to nature conservation is evident through her extensive volunteer work. She has been an active member of NJN (Nederlandse Jeugdbond voor Natuurstudie) since 2015, where she has served as an Excursion Leader, Treasurer of the Executive Board, and Chair of the Beach Working Group. Additionally, she has been a voluntary Watch Leader on board the tall ship Eendracht, contributing to the organization's mission of raising awareness about marine conservation.

START DATE: 3rd September LOCATION: Cape Verde AREA OF STUDY: Seabirds of Raso island
END DATE: 11th September Representing: Merlijn SPONSOR: Settle Global Solutions
START DATE: 3rd September
END DATE: 11th September
LOCATION: Cape Verde
END POINT: Merlijn
AREA OF STUDY: Seabirds of Raso island
SPONSOR: Settle Global Solutions

During her internship at the research institute CIMA in the Algarve, Portugal, Merlijn focused on monitoring pioneering vegetation in restored wetlands. She developed a method to assess and compare biodiversity in different stages of restoration, which will be used as a monitoring tool to evaluate the effectiveness of restoration measures over time. This experience emphasized the importance of long-term planning and vision in restoration projects, as well as the significance of funding for successful conservation outcomes.
Merlijn’s passion for marine biology and species conservation is rooted in her fascination with how different species adapt to their environments and the origins of these adaptations. She believes that conserving species and protecting ecosystems are crucial not only for the wonder of life itself but also for the precautionary principle, which underscores the need to protect species and habitats even when their functions are not fully understood.

As Merlijn nears the completion of her Master’s degree, she is exploring different avenues to make a positive impact on nature conservation. Merlijn sees the Darwin Leader program as an opportunity to broaden her perspective, learn about the role of NGOs in marine projects, and be inspired by conservationists worldwide. Her network of young marine biologists around the world has already provided her with valuable insights and connections, which she hopes to utilize in spreading the message of conservation and contributing to conservation efforts.

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