Riley Elliott is a shark scientist absolutely passionate about conservation of the ocean’s apex predators and their critical role in balancing the planet’s most important ecosystem.
By increasing knowledge of these magnificent creatures Riley is part of a global movement of young marine scientists who are exploding long-held fears and myths surrounding sharks. Watch news item here
There are 112 species of shark in New Zealand's waters but Riley’s immediate focus is the plight of the blue shark, heavily over-fished as a by-catch of the tuna fishery and targeted for shark finning.
‘Living the life of Riley’ involves in-water interactions with blue sharks and other species in
remote locations around New Zealand. To increase knowledge on their life cycles, he freedives with sharks and tags individuals with satellite transponders that track the depth and breadth of their movements. This hard-won data adds to our knowledge of these endangered species and Riley’s PhD scientific study raises awareness and understanding of blue sharks in particular and ocean sustainability in general.
Riley’s vision and passion for ocean is a perfect fit with the brand values of Atlantis and we are delighted to support his studies. His fieldwork tests, refines and validates our equipment and we pass the results on to every Atlantis diver.Riley’s been constantly inspired by oceanic life, pursuing scuba and freedive expeditions around the globe. “I love the physical and technical challenges of freediving – spearing fish and hunting crays” says Riley, who is also an accomplished surfer.