Ella’s passion has always been in marine conservation, with a childhood spent swimming, kayaking or boating in the chilly waters of the UK, or surveying the marine life of those waters from windswept headlands. She has numerous, distinct early memories of shivering adults, wrapped up in jumpers and cagoules, looking down at her with slight horror through sheets of rain and commenting on her short sleeves. A phenomena that persists to this day. She graduated with a Masters degree in Marine Biology: Conservation and Resource Management from Swansea University, setting her up for a career protecting those marine ecosystems that she so loves.
Ella has worked for several British whale conservancy charities, including ORCA and the Hebridean Whale and Dolphin Trust (HWDT) and is a British Divers Marine Life Rescue (BDMLR) marine mammal medic. She has a real passion for lecturing, and during her time in these different organizations has presented to vastly ranging audiences; from groups of young children right up to filled auditoriums at the headquarters of HWDT partner, WWF.
Ella has been guiding and surveying aboard a range of different vessels professionally since 2011 (not counting the many unprofessional years prior to this). Some of her most notable encounters have been in the Bay of Biscay, where she identified her first blue whale whilst on a marine survey (a rare sighting in this location) and her native waters of the Hebrides where she has been lucky enough to spot some of the remaining members of the highly endangered West Coast Community killer whale pod. However, her most treasured moments in the field have been encountering members of the truly rare and spectacularly beautiful, right whale family; a group of animals with the most fantastical habits, life histories and cultures.
When Ella is not on a ship, boat or kayak, she is often getting sucked into a research or conservation project. She is an avid photographer, swimmer and hiker - activities well suited to life on the Isle of Mull, which she has made her home in the Hebrides. Other unexpected skills include pottery, axe throwing and mediocre karaoke.
My upcoming expeditions
- Aug 14 2021