We have a team of dedicated and qualified scientists and researchers working from our facility in Tofo, Mozambique.

Find out a bit more about the people you’ll be working with when you volunteer with us.

CALUM MURIE

Calum is a marine biologist from the United Kingdom who completed his degrees at the University of Liverpool. He completed his dissertation project on manta rays in the Philippines and after that he knew he had to continue to work with these smart, huge, charismatic and all around incredible animals.

From there, he completed his masters degree in three months in order to join the Marine Megafauna Foundation, and to work and learn from the best in the business: Dr. Andrea Marshall. His love for manta rays has led him across Mozambique, then to Ecuador, and then back to Mozambique so he could share his work with the Underwater Africa volunteers. But his life is not all science, he is a huge enthusiast for all things ocean. From free diving to surfing, any chance to get in the ocean he will take.

RAPHAEL MAYAUD

Raphael’s passion for the ocean stemmed from his upbringing in coastal Tanzania and spending a large amount of time in the Mediterranean Sea from his birth place in Marseille. With a fascination in biology, he went on to complete a BSc in Marine Biology at the University of Liverpool and an M.Res in Ocean Science at the University of Southampton, UK where his project is being submitted for publication.

With a love for marine conservation, he wanted to help educate others about the importance of sustainable tourism and conservation, as well as understanding the biology of mega fauna found along the Mozambican coast. He is interested in the ecology of marine systems, in particular how ocean currents affect plankton growth in the Tofo area which in turn attracts the mega fauna like whale sharks and manta rays.

PIERRE GALLEGO

Pierre is a veterinarian specialised in marine mammal medicine. He has been working in the field of marine biology for 16 years, and has been organising marine mammal research internships around the world since 2004.

He represents the Government of Luxembourg as scientific advisor and alternate commissioner at the International Whaling Commission and works with numerous international NGOs to promote marine mammal conservation and to fight cetacean captivity.

He is currently carrying out his PhD with the Oceanology Lab of the University of Liege, Belgium. His PhD thesis deals with pollutants and stable isotopes in humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) off Ecuador and Mozambique, where we co-organise volunteer programmes as well.

The ocean is his passion, and water is his element!

Emily Simpson

Emily is a polymer scientist and avid ocean enthusiast from the Sunshine Coast, Australia.

Emily completed a Bachelor of Applied Science majoring in chemistry and biochemistry from Queensland University of Technology followed by a honours thesis, publishing her work in polymer sensors. Since then, she worked in polymer and free radical chemistry researching environmentally friendly methods of plastic production.

Growing up, Emily volunteered as a Surf Lifesaver and spent every weekend patrolling at Rainbow Beach. Her passion for the ocean started here and she became motivated to protect and understand the marine environment. Emily believes that everyone should be able to enjoy beaches and is passionate about working with Nemos Pequenos to help people enjoy the beach safely for generations to come.

Gabriel Marime

Gabriel Marime has been a Mozambican marine conservationist for several years. Mr. Marime founded the Bitonga divers organisation in 2010 with the aim of investing the local fishing communities in ecotourism. He worked with Coast to survey the biodiversity fishing practices of the coastline. Following this, he joined Underwater Africa where he helped develop a network of protected areas in the Inhambane province. Due to his close relationship with community leaderships and the provincial government, Gabriel will facilitate the attendance and engagement of key bodies and individuals throughout the project.