Saturday, July 5, 2014

No longer a one-man team: Marine Biology at Gili Lankanfushi has just got better and stronger!


Since early 2012, when Gili employed the first marine biologist, we have achieved a lot; from launching simple guest awareness programs (briefings, presentations, snorkels, posters, underwater world blog, the book ‘Living Life The Gili Way’, organising reef cleanups, and special events), to creating codes of conduct and carrying out staff training,  all the way to conservation efforts e.g. rescuing 9 turtles, working on a long term beach management solution, and making contributions to national and international projects such as Sharkwatch, Manta Trust, Olive Ridley Project, Project Aware.  

Finally, in 2014 we launched our non-profit making, grand-master-plan “Coral Lines”,  in order to grow large amounts of coral, and make a contribution to reef rehabilitation science. With the introduction of Coral Lines, we were in dire need of a helping hand, and we also felt that the project would provide an opportunity for a marine biologist who wanted to carry out research in the field of reef rehabilitation science.  Therefore, we advertised for a volunteer to join us…



It with pleasure that we introduce you to our new team member: Deborah Burn (Debs –as she prefers to be known), our Volunteer Marine Biologist. Debs holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Marine Biology from Newcastle University in UK and she comes to us with recent experience working as a Science officer at Korallion Lab in Lhaviyani Atoll, Maldives, as well as having carried out coral disease research in Venezuela. Because Debs worked in the Maldives before, she knows a few words of the local language (Dhivehi) and gets along with the team extremely well. Debs is here primarily to work on the Coral Lines project, carry out research and help with our guest awareness programmes. 
Here’s a message from Debs:

 “I’ve really enjoyed my first month here getting to know the role and the resort, and I’m excited to work on a project like Coral Lines, which is showing real promise as both a research opportunity and a great guest experience!”


While I (Vaidas) was away for most of June, Debs temporarily took care of the Marine Biology operation here at Gili, and has done a great job – she even organized World Oceans Day 2014. She has also written up some cracking articles for June that we will be posting later, as we are currently setting Debs up with our blogger platform – no need to get confused.