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Help the Marine Research Centre in Mozambique

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The centre is in Tofo, Mozambique. We collect vital information on some of the worlds rarest and most vulnerable marine species. We provide training to volunteers, interns, school and university students to learn about the local marine wildlife, collect data in the field, contribute and analyse the long-term datasets that are nearing a decade in their current form. We consult with researchers that publish in peer-reviewed journals, helping to understand and aid in the conservation of these species (publication list below).
Jenny (UK) is the Marine project coordinator.
Jonas (Moz) is a project assistant, Biology student and local educator.

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound effect on the people and economies of Africa, especially Mozambique, which FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast for 2019 nominal GDP per capita rates as the 2nd poorest country in the world.

The loss of all visiting students and researchers has been particularly hard for our Marine Centre in Mozambique. Income is dependent upon volunteers, interns, school and university field groups to continue the near-10 year dataset concerning many marine animals, many of whom are endangered, critically endangered or data deficient (IUCN).


The increasing data gap during this time is a huge concern. It is detrimental to the integrity of our long-term observational data documenting sightings of marine wildlife. Long-term data collection is essential to understand trends and even simply to have enough sightings of the rarer species that inhabit the Mozambican coastline.


We must continue to head out on the ocean to conduct our underwater and surface observations. We collect a wide range of information such as photo-identification, behavioural data, dolphin and humpback whale vocalisations, species interactions, reef fish biodiversity and reef health surveys, microplastic ingestion surveys and much more.


This is a plea to anyone that might be so kind as to donate anything they have lying around to contribute towards the continued collection of this data, just until international travel can be safely restored and we can get our volunteers, interns and researchers back on the ground.


Money donated will be invested in the following;
Boat trip - surface survey
Boat trip - underwater survey
Office - internet and administrative costs
(and when the schools return in Mozambique)
Staff wage, travel cost and materials for school marine education curriculum 


Follow our Facebook and Instagram pages for regular updates from the field, information about the animals and mini-tutorials about data collection techniques and tips of becoming a marine biologist

Instagram : @aoa_marine_research


Visit our Website  to book yourself on a trip of a lifetime from January 2021 and see the work first hand. As a volunteer, intern, researcher or bring your school/university fieldwork module, come and see all the research for yourself and gain insight in to the work that is possible in Mozambique.


Thank you from the heart of Mozambique and the deepest depth of our incredible ocean for anything that you might be able to spare in order to keep the marine centre going. Thank you.


1.    Pierce, S.M., Mendez-Jimenez, A., Collins, K., Rosero, M. & Monadjem, A. (2010). Developing a Code of Conduct for whale shark interactions in Mozambique. Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, 20(7), 782-788.
2.    Rohner, C. A., Richardson, A. J., Marshall, A. D., Weeks, S. J. and Pierce, S. J. (2011). How large is the world's largest fish? Measuring whale sharks Rhincodon typus with laser photogrammetry. Journal of Fish Biology, 78: 378–385. doi:10.1111/j.1095-8649.2010.02861.x
3.    Rohner C.A., Pierce S.J., Marshall A.D., Weeks S.J., Bennett M.B., Richardson A.J. (2013) Trends in sightings and environmental influences on a coastal aggregation of manta rays and whale sharks. Marine Ecology Progress Series 482:153-168
4.    Haskell, P.J., McGowan, A., Westling, A., Mendez-Jimenez, A., Rohner, C., Collins, K., Rosero-Caicedo, M., Salmond, J., Monadjem, A., Marshal, A.D. & Pierce, S.J. (2014). Monitoring the effects of tourism on whale shark Rhincodon typus behaviour in Mozambique. Oryx, 49(03), 492-499.
5.    Williams J.L., Pierce S.J., Fuentes M.M.P.B. and Hamann M. (2015). Effectiveness of recreational divers for monitoring sea turtles. Endangered Species Research 26: 209-219. (51 in AOA research series).
6.    Rohner C.A., Richardson A.J., Prebble C.E.M., Marshall A.D., Bennett M.B., Weeks S.J., Cliff G., Wintner S.P., Pierce S.J. (2015). Laser photogrammetry improves size and demographic estimates for whale sharks. PeerJ 3:e886
7.    Williams JL, Pierce SJ, Rohner CA, Fuentes MMPB and Hamann M (2017) Spatial Distribution and Residency of Green and Loggerhead Sea Turtles Using Coastal Reef Habitats in Southern Mozambique. Frontiers in Marine Science 3:288. doi: 10.3389/fmars.2016.00288   
8.    Rohner CA, Richardson AJ, Jaine FRA, Bennett MB, Weeks SJ, Cliff G, Robinson DP, Reeve-Arnold KE, Pierce SJ (2018) Satellite tagging highlights the importance of productive Mozambican coastal waters to the ecology and conservation of whale sharks. PeerJ, doi: 10.7717/peerj.4161
9.    Norman B, Holmberg JA, Arzoumanian Z, Reynolds SD, Wilson RP, Rob D, Pierce SJ, Gleiss AC, de la Parra R, Galvan B, Ramirez-Macias D, Robinson D, Fox S, Graham R, Rowat D, Ptenski M, Levine M, McKinney JA, Hoffmayer E, Dove ADM, Hueter R, Ponzo A, Araujo G, Aca E, David D, Rees R, Dincan A, Rohner CA, Prebble CEM, Hearn A, Acuna D, Berumen ML, Vazquez A, Green J, Bach SS, Schmidt JV, Beatty S, Morgan DL (2017) Undersea constellations: The global biology of an endangered marine megavertebrate further informed through citizen science. Bioscience 67(12): 1029-1043. doi: 10.1093/biosci/bix127
10. Prebble CEM, Rohner CA, Pierce SJ, Robinson DP, Jaidah MY, Bach SS, Trueman CN (2018) Limited latitudinal ranging of juvenile whale sharks in the Western Indian Ocean suggests the existence of regional management units. Marine Ecology Progress Series 601:167-183. doi: 10.3354/meps12667
11. Keeping JA, Reeve-Arnold KE, Burns NM, Catarina N, Bailey DM, McNeill D (2019) Computer-aided photo-identification of a rare stingray, Megatrygon microps. Journal of Fish Biology. doi: 10.1111/jfb.14242
12. Keeping JA, Reeve-Arnold KE, Bailey DM, McNeill D (2020) Trends in the sightings of four predominant stingray species in southern Mozambique. Western Indian Ocean Journal of Marine Science Pending.
13. Keeping JA, Newbigging RM, Reeve-Arnold KE (2020) New size record of the largest stingray in the western Indian Ocean. Journal of Fish Biology. Pending.
14. Keeping JA, Guissamulo A, Cockroft V, Reeve-Arnold KE (2020) First record of a True’s beaked whale stranding in Inhambane province, Mozambique. Western Indian Ocean Journal of Marine Science. Pending.


Jennifer Keeping

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