My team of marine conservation scientists: The Namibian Dolphin Project Please check out the Namibian DolphinProject's Facebook Page
Hi everybody! Thanks for reading my page! My name is Morgan Martin and I am departing for a three year trip to Namibia and South Africa on September 17th, 2015. I am a first year Ph.D. student at the University of Pretoria, South Africa. I will be joining a small team of fantastic, hard-working, marine scientists based in both Cape Town, South Africa and Walvis Bay, Namibia. We call ourselves the Nambian Dolphin Project (NDP), and are currently the only marine mammal conservation group in Namibia. The NDP was established in 2008 by my advisor, Dr. Simon Elwen. We are working to collect baseline population data on several species of dolphins and whales that exist off the coasts of Namibia and South Africa. Currently, there are no population estimates for any of the 40+ dolphin and whale species occurring off the southern African coast. These population estimates are urgently needed in order to help create conservation laws protecting these marine mammals. The coastlines of Namibia and South Africa are currently suffering major habitat destruction from oil and natural gas exploration and drilling, as well as diamond and phosphate mining. Without population estimates and conservation laws, the mining and drilling companies will continue to build and strip the coast of its natural resources and habitats- endangering every species that lives nearby. The good news is that Namibia and South Africa are countries that recognize the importance of ahealthy ocean ecosystem. Laws can and will be passed to protect these species; however, it's a matter of time and raising enough money to fund this research. My Ph.D. project is focusing on creating population estimates for the two most common species of dolphins that are seen off the coast of Namibia. One of these species, the quite handsome Heaviside's dolphin, is found only off the coast of Namibia and no where else in the world. (See cute photo above.) I am so excited for this upcoming adventure and am looking forward to making a positive impact for these animals and the ocean as a whole. I am qualified for this task and currently hold a Master's of Marine Science degree from the University of San Diego (2014). I am seeking donations to help cover my research costs including boat fuel and acoustic recording equipment. We will be conducting visual surveys as well as acoustic surveys with hydrophones via a research boat. No animals will be harmed during our surveys, and I'm hoping they like to have their pictures taken!
Any contributions and/or prayers and good luck wishes will be greatly appreciated. The more money I raise, the more research gets conducted = the more whales and dolphins we count! Please consider donating to my research, I thank you, and the whales and dolphins thank you too! :)
Take care, updates coming soon!
All the Best,
- Yvonne Rearick
- Kristy's Fundraiser
- Frances Hoover
- Morgan Martin
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