Thank You So much guys you've been fantastic, look out for my new website ill build with the prize dor more answers to your marine biology questions!!
Annecy Roman Catholic School, Seaford Head Community College, Sussex Downs College, University of Essex, University of East Anglia
GCSE’s, A-Levels, Batchelor of Science (BSc), Master of Science (MSc), Finishing my Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
I’ve tried everything, at school I worked as a waitress, in a nursing home and at the Co-op. At university I worked as bar staff and a tour guide. Scince qualifying as a marine biologist I’ve worked for charities around the world including Operation Wallacea and Earthwatch
Most of the time i work at the University of Essex as a scientist and teacher, however i still work as expedition staff for Operation Wallacea and Earthwatch in Africa and Asia
University of Essex
Favourite thing to do in my job: Scuba Diving! I love to work underwater, being weightless with nothing but the sound of bubbles surrounded by thousands of fishes.
I identify super coral reef species that are resiliant to climate change
I look at how different environments can produce species that are more resilient to stress such as climate change. Superman came from Krypton right so maybe there are place on earth that breed super-beings. I work in Africa, Indonesia and in our super high tech aquarium in Essex to try to identify where these habitats may be. Once we find these super species we can develop strategies to help protect our oceans from the impact of climate change.
Half a billion people worldwide (7% of the all the people on earth) get their food from coral reefs. If they die then all these people will go hungry. we need to make sure coral reefs survive in order to keep producing the food we need to feed the world.
My Typical Day
Wake up, eat, dive, eat, dive, eat, work on some data, sleep, repeat
When I’m in the field we live very basically, usually we have huts with no electricity or running water. However we get a spectacular view and a hammock so I’m easily pleased!
I have to be in the lab before sunrise, which is at 6am, so usually take a leisurely stroll across the pristine sandy beach to the lab at around 5.40 which takes ten minutes. I have to take some measurements using a special machine which basically tells me how healthy my corals are. after that i need to change the water before heading off to get breakfast which is fried rice or porridge, yum yum.
Then its time to get wet! We need to characterize the environment we are studying and collect samples so get to dive on some of the most biodiverse reefs in the word about twice a day. Lunch is around 12.30 before its off for another dive.
At about 5.30 i usually get to grab a shower. As there is no running water on the island we only have a limited supply of slightly eggy well water = However its not as bad as it sounds, i quite enjoy a ‘mandi’ after a while.
After that its back to the lab to take more measurements, type up data and run experiments. I usually stop for a break at 6pm to watch the amazing sunset before pulling a late one and working till midnight.
When i walk back to my hut i have to watch out for all sorts such as snakes, spiders, scorpions, giant lizards and holes! However i actually get quite excited when i see any of these as i love all wildlife, hopefully i also have my camera ready too!
What I'd do with the prize money
To buy some high tech underwater camera equipment and build a new website focused on education and outreach
I want to buy a neat piece of eqipment called a Go-Pro. Its super small in survives alomost anything, meaning its perfect to put in rockpools and aquariums to get a closer look at whats going on. With health and safety gone wild, it quite hard to be able to give you guys a closer look at the marine world without you getting really wet or me getting in trouble. With one of these cameras we can set it up at low tide in the rockpools or in lakes or ponds and see whats really going on. We can also buy a super extenda pole to put it on so we can get it in to cracks and in deep without getting wet. We can then go watch the videos in the comfort of a classroom and see what we find. The best clips will form youtube videos highlighting marine life in all sorts of environments.
I already have a free blog which i made myself which has a huge following, over 20,000 people so far. However i want to take it to the next level. One of the most popular things i get asked is how can i become a marine biologist. I want to redesgn the website to be specifically aimed at education and outreach, to make it professionally and for it to have its own web adress. The site would have information of the routes to working in marine biology, ecology and conservation, tips on how to get experience and stories on current scientific issues. I can link the website with the youtube videos i can make with the Go Pro so that everyone can get up close and personal with our marine habitats.
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
Cheeky, Enthusiastic, Go-Getter
What's the best thing you've ever done in your career?
Swimming with the biggest sharks in the world
What or who inspired you to follow your career?
Were you ever in trouble at school?
Only all the time
If you weren't doing this job, what would you choose instead?
Who is your favourite singer or band?
What's your favourite food?
What is the most fun thing you've done?
If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!
To go to every single country in the world, stand on the north and south pole, be remembered for making a difference
Tell us a joke.
What did one rockpool say to the other rockpool?… Show me your mussels