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 “Grandes Écoles”. While studying there, Thomas took part in several exchange programmes and studied firstly at KTH Stockholm (Sweden) and then at James Cook University of North Queensland (Australia).
Thomas moved to SE Asia in 1999 and has been living and working the Maldives and Sri Lanka 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.
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.
MDC Manager (at Landaa Giraavaru) and Coral Expert
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.
Akbar Ahmed ‘Aku’
Deputy MDC Manager (at Landaa Giraavaru); Fish Lab Manager & 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.
After an internship position in Fiji, focusing on reef structure and shark behaviour, Koan went on to attain a BSc in Applied marine zoology (Plymouth University, UK) alongside his SSI instructor qualification.
Since graduation, he has held various positions around the world, both in-water and in the kitchen, where he has spent most of his professional life, before joining us at Marine Savers as a Reefscapers coral propagation intern (2019).
Koan dazzled managers and co-workers alike, who considered him a good fit a Landaa’s resident aquarist, a position he accepted in February 2020. As well as catering for his new found love (the Harlequin shrimp 💙) Koan’s passion is diving and the preservation of the marine world. He aims to focus on developing our anemone fish breeding program, in a bid to reduce the number of individuals caught globally from the wild for the aquarium trade.
Dafne has always been passionate about wildlife health and conservation. She holds a Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine and a degree in Animal Science, from the AVMA accredited School of Veterinary Medicine & Animal Husbandry at the National Autonomous University of Mexico. Dafne then went on to graduate from the Specialty Program in Zoo & Wildlife Medicine (same University). As part of this program, she completed international externships at the Copenhagen Zoo (Denmark), the St. Louis Zoo (USA), and the Vancouver Aquarium (Canada).
During her student years, Dafne had the opportunity to work in different zoos, veterinary hospitals, natural reserves and rehabilitation centers, and participated in conservation projects of green sea turtles and scarlet macaws. She discovered the wonderful world of marine medicine through the MARVET program, and we were pleased to welcome Dafne to our Marine Savers team in March 2020.
Born and bred in the Maldives, Maanee grew up with the ocean in her backyard. From an early age, the natural beauty of marine life captivated her, and she decided to crystallise her passions through studying the preservation and protection of marine environments.
After spending time in Sri Lanka, Singapore, Australia, and Malaysia, Maanee graduated from Monash University (Malaysia) with a B.Sc. in Tropical Environmental Biology in 2020. During her studies, she landed a 3-month internship with Marine savers – a position in which she excelled! Don’t miss Maanee’s marine adventures on her blog pages.
We are pleased to welcome Maanee back home to the Maldives as our resident Marine Biologist, working with our international team at our Marine Discovery Centre at Four Seasons Resort Kuda Huraa.
Margaux is a Marine Biologist, Divemaster, Underwater Explorer and Science Communicator from London. She has an MSc in Applied Aquatic Biology (2017) and BSc in Marine Biology (2016), both from the University of Portsmouth (UK). Her passion for coral reefs has taken her to Indonesia (Coral Reef Community Metric Surveys), Honduras (Stereo Video Surveys), Italy (Effects of MPAs on target fished species), Maldives (Mid-water floating coral nurseries) and Cambodia (community fisheries, artificial reefs, teaching conservation).
The heart-breaking mass mortality of these intricate underwater cities (now shifted to algal-dominant reefs of low diversity) means she is more dedicated to increasing coral reef resilience to climate change through collaboration, research, outreach and media.
Margaux also works part-time as an editor for Women in Ocean Science, a global community created to connect, celebrate and empower women in the Marine Sciences. She is excited to return to the Maldives as our Reefscapers Coral Biologist, working with the incredible team at Landaa!
Alejandra completed her Master’s degree in Marine Science and Management in Australia in 2019, after having obtained a joint scholarship from CONACYT- Macquarie University. She also has a BSc in Marine Biology (2016) from Universidad del Mar (México), in which she specialised in Diatom Taxonomy in upwelling locations from the Mexican South Pacific.
Having lived and worked near the ocean her whole life, mostly in the Mexican Caribbean, and witnessing firsthand the terrible effects of climate change on these highly valuable ecosystems, she became involved in coral propagation programs at the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System.
Alejandra is a firm believer that environmental education and local, multi-sectoral engagement leads to effective management, and she is eager to continue to raise awareness, while running the coral propagation program as our Coral Biologist at the Marine Discovery Centre, Kuda Huraa.
Looking for more ?
You can meet some of our 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 on our Blog Pages.
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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.
Beth grew up near the English coast, and would spend hours exploring the rock pools on her local beach, which sparked her love for the ocean. Beth took this fascination a step further and decided to study marine biology at the University of Portsmouth (UK). After completing her studies, she moved to the Maldives to work as a marine biologist, where she became a PADI divemaster and gained experience in coral restoration, turtle rehabilitation and various nationwide research projects including the Manta Trust’s ID work.
In 2017, after two years building her knowledge and experience, Beth joined the Maldivian Manta Ray Project (Project Manager, Laamu Atoll) and recently moved to the Baa Atoll research base. Whilst working for the MMRP, Beth has been researching the local manta populations, learning more about their biology, behaviour and population dynamics. She has worked alongside other NGOs and resort marine biologists to share this knowledge with local communities, guests and resort staff, inspiring them to conserve the underwater world. Working so closely to these beautiful animals has only increased her appreciation for them and the wider Maldivian marine environment.
In January 2021, Beth was featured on CNN >> Swimming with manta rays could help save them.
Assistant Project Manager
Growing up in the middle of Canada presented limited opportunities to get to know the life beneath the waves, but after completing her Divemaster training in Honduras, Kaitlyn knew she would go anywhere to to pursue a lifetime of protecting the ocean.
Upon completing her BSc in Marine Biology (Dalhousie University, CA) she moved to Baa Atoll (Maldives) for a 3-month internship with the Maldivian Manta Ray Project, followed by a year in Australia working as a Marine Biologist (whale watching) and as a Marine Science Educator (improving ocean literacy in youth).
In 2019, Kaitlyn was reunited with the mantas when she returned to the Maldivian Manta Ray Project as the Assistant Project Manager for Baa Atoll. In addition to collecting data on the population dynamics, habitat use and reproductive ecology of the Maldivian mantas, Kaitlyn has taken on a lead role with “Eyes on the Reef”; a long-term monitoring project that records manta rays when humans are absent.
While she loves being in the water and on the research boat, her role within the team has also allowed her to explore her passion of connecting youth to the ocean by assisting the Education Manager with theory lessons and field trips.