A few years ago, Sara earned her BSc in Biology from the University of Aveiro and her MSc in Ecology in the University of Coimbra, Portugal. Her MSc research focused on mercury levels in Gentoo penguins from the South Pole. During her PhD at the University of Connecticut in the United States, she studied the effects of northward habitat range expansion of marine species on the transfer of contaminants and nutrients in Arctic food webs.
Her research interests include effects of environmental stressors in the structure and composition of Arctic marine food webs, and how that might affect food security for Indigenous communities.
Ongoing research projects
BriGHT (Bridging Global change, Inuit Health and the Transforming Arctic Ocean) Local marine foods (LMF) are central to Inuit culture and subsistence in the Arctic. Conversely, the Arctic Ocean is changing and Inuit see signs that LMF are different and becoming less accessible. Yet we do not know how the quantity and quality of algae and zooplankton consumed by LMF respond to climate-driven changes in sea ice, light availability and the physicochemical properties of Arctic seawater, how this response modifies the food choices of Inuit and impacts their health and wellbeing. My project is one among others trying to address these challenges.