Four Seasons Resorts Maldives have been working with local environmental agency Reefscapers (formerly Seamarc) since 2001, under the ever-watchful eye of the company’s founder, Thomas Le Berre. Our wildlife conservation projects are run from two Marine Discovery Centres by a dedicated team of ten full time marine biologists, ably assisted by our interns and apprentices.
In addition, The Manta Trust charity (formerly the ‘Maldivian Manta Ray Research Project’) – headed by founding director Guy Stevens – has been run from Landaa Giraavaru since 2005, employing marine biologists and seasonal volunteers.
Four Seasons Resorts & Reefscapers – working together since 2001
Reefscapers team at Kuda Huraa (January 2019)
Thomas le Berre
Founder of Seamarc and Reefscapers
French coastal oceanographer and founder of Maldivian environmental consultancy Reefscapers, Thomas has been spearheading the environmental projects at Four Seasons Resorts Maldives since 2001.
In 1992, Thomas obtained the Baccalaureat-C (Mathematics & Physics) with distinctions in Vannes, France. He was admitted to the ENSTA ParisTech, one of the French engineering “GrandesEcoles”. While studying there, Thomas took part in several exchange programmes and studied at KTH Stockholm (Sweden) and James Cook University of North Queensland (Australia).
Thomas moved to the Maldives in 1999 and has been living and working in the country ever since. Along with Marie Saleem, he founded Seamarc (‘Systems Engineering and Marine Consulting’) in the year 2000, and as well as running the company (now known as ‘Reefscapers’), Thomas is actively and passionately involved in each project.
Marine Discovery Centre Manager, Landaa Giraavaru
Annemarie has spent a lot of time in the ocean from an early age, developing a passion for sailing and scuba diving. She obtained her MSc and PhD in Zoology, specialising in Marine Biology, and has worked with a wide range of organisms from the smallest planktons to the largest whales.
Hands-on marine biology and applied marine conservation have been the focus of her career, with a passion for spending time in the field and teaching about the marine environment (biology, ecology, oceanography and marine invertebrates).
Annemarie worked for ‘study abroad’ programmes in different countries in the Tropical Western Atlantic and the Caribbean, and we welcomed her in 2017 as Manager of the Marine Discovery Centre at Landaa Giravaruu.
MDC Manager (at Kuda Huraa) and Turtle Expert
Alejandra graduated in 2012 from the University of Guadalajara with a Bachelors in Biological Science. Her career started in Mexico, working with many species including sharks and sea lions, before moving to Florida and Mississippi (USA) to work with sea turtles, dolphins and manatees.
Following a stint in Holland researching seals, Alejandra then moved to Costa Rica to manage a remote research station in Tortuguero National Park (with its large 35km Green Turtle nesting beach).
With such unique work experiences, we were pleased to offer Alejandra the position of Turtle Biologist at our Centres, and she joined the team in July 2017.
Akbar Ahmed ‘Aku’
Fish Lab & Aquaculture Specialist
After graduating from school, Aku worked for the Maldivian ‘State Trading Organisation’, gaining valuable experience in a variety of roles (sales, legal credit, logistics, inventory, accounts).
Aku joined Reefscapers in December 2009, and is now one of our longest serving and most valuable team members. Starting as a research assistant, Aku is now in charge of the Fish Lab and leads all of our aquaculture projects at Landaa Giraavaru. These include our Clownfish breeding programmes, as well as refining our techniques in algae, phytoplankton and rotifer production (essential food sources in the Lab).
His wealth of local knowledge and technical expertise makes Aku the perfect trainer, and he plays an essential role in environmental awareness issues, sharing his knowledge and skills with the younger generation of Four Seasons apprentices.
Although originally from the snowy country region of Australia, Hannah became obsessed with the ocean after moving to the warm beaches of the Gold Coast … and never looked back!
Following a Bachelor of Science in Marine / Wildlife Biology at Griffith University, Hannah spent a year researching the ecotoxicological effect of herbicides in sea turtle cells. She then decided to switch the lab for the field, and the cells for the actual turtle, by joining the Marine Savers team as an intern in February 2017 (read her blog, chapter 1 and chapter 2).
Hannah was subsequently offered a full time position as the Coral Biologist at Kuda Huraa, and returned to the Maldives in August 2017.
Alex graduated in 2015 with a Bachelor of Science majoring in Marine and Freshwater Science and Environmental Management from Edith Cowan University in Perth, Western Australia. He has had a passion for all marine life from a young age with a focus on sea turtles. After volunteering at an Aquarium, Alex’s curiosity with coral and sea turtles grew. He has worked with sea turtles in Australia, Costa Rica and the Seychelles. He has completed a marine conservation programme in Fiji, working on coral propagation and mangrove replantation.
After watching the ‘Chasing Coral’ documentary, Alex was inspired to get more involved in helping coral reefs. He is very eager to contribute and make a real difference to the Reefscapers coral propagation programme at Kuda Huraa.
Felipe’s passion for the ocean started when he became a diver just before finishing a degree in Environmental Science in Barcelona. In 2015, he started a Master’s degree in Marine Systems and Policies at the University of Edinburgh and collaborated with the Maldives Whale Shark Research Programme to write his thesis about the impact of tourism on whale shark behaviour. The collaboration with the MWSRP continued, this time as a member of a staff.
Before returning to the Maldives, he worked as a Project Scientist in the Philippines and was involved with coral propagation projects and the establishment of Marine Protected Areas.
A BSc in Coastal Marine Biology (Hull University, UK) was followed by various research and dive positions with a strong focus on invasive species and ecosystem management. In 2013, Simon achieved an MSc in Conservation Biology (Manchester Metropolitan University, UK), focusing on dietary analysis of the invasive Lionfish (Pterois volitans/miles) in the Caribbean. Subsequent roles have included Scientific Research Officer in Fiji, (Marine Protected Areas Establishment); Aquarist with Europe’s largest shark collection (UK); Lead Aquarium Aquarist (Queensland, Australia); manager of the East End Coral Nursery (Grand Cayman).
During this time, Simon clocked up over 5000 dives, attaining PADI Instructor and IANTD Advanced Freedive Instructor status, and we were pleased to accept him into the Marine Savers team as Coral Biologist in April 2018.
Tori’s passion for marine studies began when she was in high school, after a school trip to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef opened her eyes to the marine world. Continuing on with this passion, she went on to study at Griffith University (Gold Coast, Australia) graduating in 2017 with a Bachelor of Science majoring in wildlife and marine biology. During this time, she also volunteered with sea turtles and humpback whales where her love for the ocean was cemented.
Tori first joined the Marine Savers team in March 2018 as an intern, and you can read about her experiences in 5 chapters on our blog page. She was subsequently offered a full time position as the Assistant Marine Biologist at Kuda Huraa, returning to the Maldives in September 2018.
Assistant Coral Biologist
Gaetan holds a Master’s degree from Ecole Centrale Paris, where he specialised in data science. He is passionate about marine biology and the fight against climate change.
After studying marine biology at the University of Queensland (Australia), and directing a documentary about climate change, he joined Marine Savers at Landaa Giraavaru to help with our Reefscapers Coral Propagation Programme.
Gaetan is responsible for our image recognition software, which helps to analyse the impact and success of our Reefscapers coral programme, and will help to improve our long-term coral propagation processes.
Saphire’s love of the ocean originated from her time exploring rock pools whilst on the annual family holiday to Cornwall (UK), but it was volunteering in Madagascar to carry out coral reef surveys that ignited a passion for tropical marine biology.
Saphire studied Coastal Marine Biology at the Scarborough campus of the University of Hull (UK) and then studied for a master’s degree in Marine Environmental Management at the University of York (UK), graduating in 2017.
Saphire has worked as a research assistant for the Marine Megafauna Foundation in Mozambique, collecting data on whale sharks and manta rays, as well as working with the local fishermen to monitor their catch. She joined Marine Savers in 2018 as an intern, and was subsequently offered a full time position as marine biologist later in the year.
Jasmine has always had a fascination with the underwater world, and after becoming increasingly exposed to the degradation of marine environments she felt it was her duty to commit to a future protecting them. During her degree in Marine and Natural History Photography at Falmouth University (UK), she interned at marine conservation NGOs in Spain and Cambodia, specialising in coral reef and seagrass beds. Here she was able to combine her passions of scientific research and compelling visual media and went on to write a book about the effects of and solutions to overfishing.
After completing her Divemaster in the UK, she moved out to the Philippines and worked as an underwater photographer and manager for a production company. Following this, she worked as a Science Officer for a coral reef conservation initiative and completed her Scuba Instructor course, before moving to the Maldives. She is very excited to get involved in all aspects of Marine Saver’s inspiring work!
Some of the Reefscapers team, Landaa Giraavaru (October 2017)
Looking for more ? You can meet some of our Eco-Volunteers and Marine Biology interns that have worked with us here at Marine Savers. Read about their research projects, see interesting underwater photos and watch fun & exciting video – Blogs from our Volunteers and Interns.
Want to work with us ? Visit our Employment page to see our current job vacancies, and to learn about the different ways you can work with Reefscapers and Marine Savers.
Looking to get in touch ? Contact Us by email or quick message.
Founder Director, Manta Trust
A member of the Four Seasons Resorts Maldives marine biology team since 2004, Guy now works full-time as the Founder Director of The Manta Trust – a charity dedicated to the global research and conservation of manta rays.
Guy’s conservation efforts in the Maldives have led to the creation of several Marine Protected Areas (MPA’s) at key manta aggregation sites, most notably at Hanifaru Bay, where his work was featured in the National Geographic Magazine (July 2009).
Guy and his conservation efforts have also featured in over a dozen TV documentaries for the BBC, NatGeo, ABC (Project Manta), ITV (Man to Manta), Channel 4 (Big Fish Fight) and 60 minutes Australia.
Guy’s work with manta rays now takes him to other corners of the world, but the Maldives for him will always be the best place to see and study these amazing animals.
Project Manager | Manta Trust
Growing up in Mallorca, surrounded by the riches of the Mediterranean Sea, Kirsty’s ambition to pursue a career in marine biology was ignited from a young age. During Kirsty’s undergraduate degree at Newcastle University (UK) she had the opportunity to conduct fieldwork in both Bermuda and the Bahamas. Kirsty worked closely with the elasmobranch research team at Cape Eleuthera Institute for her BSc thesis.
Remaining at Newcastle University to obtain her MSc, she studied the abundance and distribution patterns of sharks in North Male atoll (Maldives) through baited remote underwater video. Following a year in the Bahamas as a marine educator and divemaster, Kirsty found herself back in the Maldives in 2017 with the Manta Trust team.
After a year project managing in Lhaviyani atoll, Kirsty transitioned to Manta Trust’s flagship project base at Landaa Giraavaru in January. She’s incredibly excited to see what Hanifaru Bay has to offer this manta season!
Assistant Project Manager | Manta Trust
Rand graduated in 2013 with a Bachelor of Science majoring in Marine, Freshwater, and Environmental Sciences from Ohio University (USA).
He developed a passion for all things aquatic from a very young age. After working for local watersheds in Ohio to assess their health and productivity, he moved from freshwater to marine environments and never looked back. Rand has spent most of his professional career working and living on commercial fishing boats as a research scientist in the Atlantic Ocean and Bering Sea.
Catching a break from the cold, Rand left Alaska and headed south to the Bahamas where he spent his time teaching the importance of marine conservation. Rand now finds himself in the Maldives for the first time working with Manta Trust as an Asstistant Project Manager based at Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru.