MARTIN, Richard Aidan, M.Sc.
Canada, Australia (1965-2007)
Last updated: May 30, 2018 at 1:17 am
Shark scientist and conservationist; director of ReefQuest Centre for Shark Research (1990-2007); research associate; Adjunct Professor at the Oceanographic Center, Nova Southeastern University (2003-2007); Research Associate at the Fish Museum, Zoology Department, University of British Columbia (2003-2007); officer of the IUCN Shark Specialist Group (2003-2007); National Director of the Shark Research Institute Canada (2000-2007); Research Associate at the University of the South Pacific, Guam/Cook Islands Natural History Society (1995-97); biologist at the FAO Fisheries Development Programme (1988-89); research interests included the evolutionary biology of chondrichthyan fishes, with particular emphasis on systematics, zoogeography, functional morphology, life history, predatory and social behaviour, ecology, and conservation of elasmobranchs; author of hundreds of articles, columns and books, including Field Guide to the Great White Shark (2003), Shark Smart: the Divers’ Guide to Understanding Shark Behaviour (1995), and Do Whales Fart? And Other Questions (1996); author of DIVER Magazine‘s highly popular Diving Naturalist column for many years; illustrator; research expedition and field class leader; public speaker; stand-up comic; was admitted to the University of Queensland in Marine Biology in 1979 at age 14.
“Aidan was a genius and a force to behold in the eyes of many who knew him. He was also a great friend and mentor.” — Jeffrey Gallant, M.Sc. | Editor of the Diving Almanac and shark researcher
“Our species tends to see itself as something unique and thus apart from Nature. But this is an illusion. We are fundamentally linked with our fellow creatures by ancestry and ecology.” — Aidan R. Martin, M.Sc. (1996)
“If a marine biologist has planned well and is lucky, some days everything comes together: the weather behaves, you find the organism that is the subject of your research, and you are able to collect the data that will allow you to piece together the particular puzzle that compelled you to go into the field in the first place. And once in a while, as though to ‘reward’ one’s perseverance, the ocean allows a glimpse of something truly exceptional. One never know when that once-in-a-career opportunity will swim by. As Hamlet put it, “The readiness is all” and it’s as though one’s whole career has been a ‘dress rehearsal’ for such a moment — whatever one can learn from that opportunity, will depend entirely on what skills, tools, and innovation a researcher can put to use at that particular instant. Moments like that are pure magic.” — Aidan R. Martin, M.Sc. (1996)
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Jeffrey Gallant is the Editor-in-Chief and Records Keeper of the Diving Almanac. He is also a contributing editor of DIVER Magazine, and the scientific director of the Greenland Shark and Elasmobranch Education and Research Group (GEERG). Jeffrey started diving in 1982.