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Nicola Hodgins

Scientific Advisor

Nicola has worked with international charity, Whale and Dolphin Conservation (WDC) since 2005 and has extensive expertise on small cetaceans, strandings and managing local researchers and relationships, predominantly throughout Africa and Asia. Nicola leads WDCs work on the global capture (both deliberate hunts and the utilization of bycaught individuals) of small cetaceans for food, bait, trade and traditional uses and represents the organization at various fora including UNEP’s Convention on Migratory Species (CMS) and the International Whaling Commission (IWC).

Although having undertaken research in various countries around the world, since 2010, Nicola’s research has focused on the biology (including hybridization events with bottlenose dolphins) and conservation of Risso’s dolphins in Scottish waters. Research methods include photo-identification, acoustics and the incorporation of citizen science, with data used to better understand the habitat use, threats to, social structure and life history of this population of Risso’s dolphins. Evidence gathered to date has been used to enact policy change to ensure the long-term conservation of the species in Scottish waters with the waters around the north-east Isle of Lewis designated as a Marine Protected Area (MPA) in December 2020.

Nicola Hodgins, Scientific Advisor - African Aquatic Conservation Fund


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