This Day in History: 1974-07-08
Elizabeth Joan Batham (1917 – 1974) disappeared on this day. She was a New Zealand marine biologist, mostly associated with the University of Otago. Batham did pioneering experimental work on sea anemones studying under Carl Pantin at both the University of Cambridge and the Plymouth laboratory of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom (c.1945). On returning to New Zealand and the University of Otago (1951) she took over the Portobello Marine Biological Station as director and served there for 23 years. She participated in the Danish Galathea Deep Sea Expedition (1952) and the Chatham Islands Expedition (1954).
Batham began scuba diving late in her career, believing it to be important to her work, she disappeared near the shore of Seatoun and is presumed to have drowned in a scuba diving accident.
Batham is honoured in the names of a number of species under bathamae.