My name is Fran Fitzpatrick and my passion is conservation. I am inspired to work for less popular, conflict-associated species and those most at risk in this human-dominated world. I am particularly interested in a holistic approach to conserving endangered species, finding ways in which humans and wildlife can co-exist in stable, productive ecosystems.
In the years since obtaining my zoology MSc, I have been privileged to work and volunteer with a variety of animals and conservation organisations, ranging from a seasonal bat advisory role on the UK Bat Conservation Trust Helpline to assisting Vulpro with the final 2020 breeding survey of a colony of African White-backed Vultures in South Africa. This year, I am lucky to join the Sea Watch Foundation as an Outreach and Education Assistant, initially working remotely but hopefully relocating to New Quay once COVID-19 restrictions permit. From April until October, I will be reaching out to schools, extra-curricular clubs and groups of people of all ages to encourage and assist as many people as possible to learn about and help to protect the fascinating world under the waves.
Conservation is a fundamentally human discipline; since we cannot ask marine mammals to change their lifestyles for our convenience, we humans must be the ones to adapt. Cetaceans have fascinated me since childhood and experiences volunteering on the Ionian Dolphin Project and Red Sea Dolphin Project have broadened my understanding and deepened my passion for these intelligent and sociable ocean inhabitants. I have witnessed first-hand how the scientific research required to monitor and identify threats to cetaceans must be accompanied by communication, reaching out to the humans living alongside dolphins, whales and porpoises to educate them about their marine neighbours and how human behaviours can impact marine environments, often in unintentionally negative ways.
One of my favourite things is to encourage people to get involved in conservation and to help others to enjoy the beauty of wild animals and healthy ecosystems in a sustainable, safe and responsible way. I am truly excited to have this opportunity to educate people about the sea, cetaceans, and the conservation work Sea Watch undertake in Cardigan Bay and around the UK. Individuals and groups from any background can make a difference to help conserve these wonderful marine mammals, and I cannot wait to meet the inhabitants of Cardigan Bay, both finned and footed, who make Sea Watch’s conservation work such a success.
Sea Watch Education and Outreach Assistant
- Discover more about the Sea Watch Foundation Education Programme
- Check out a full list of upcoming events in 2021
- To get in touch with myself or another member of the Education team, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org