In 2017 Daniel led an expedition to the South coast of Sicily, Italy, to collect biopsy samples from Bottlenose Dolphins to support his PhD research. Kindly hosted by Dr Elena Papale and other staff of L’Istituto per l’Ambiente Marino Costiero del Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (IAMC-CNR) in Capo Granitola, this three week expedition was a resounding success as it not only delivered the much needed samples but formed lasting professional relationships that will facilitate future research.
Invasive research such as this is vital to ensure robust data sets that can then be utilized to make informed conservation decisions. However, it must only be carried out after appropriate training and under the correct licencing. To ensure the safety of the animals involved the expedition team was trained by Tilen Genov, a highly experienced cetacean biopsy sampler who runs Morigenos, the Slovenian Marine Mammal Society. This organization does fantastic research and you are encouraged to check them out here.