Ocean Steward Zodidi Gwayise

Originally from Mchonco in Mthatha, Eastern Cape, 25-year-old Zodidi Gwayise, would like to see a Marine Protected Area covering a deep offshore zone extending from Richards Bay to Port Edward.

Currently doing her Masters in Marine Biology at the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN), Zodidi’s research project is focused on zooplankton -tiny animals found near the surface of the ocean. The word “zooplankton” is derived from the Greek zoon (ζῴον), meaning “animal”, and planktos (πλαγκτός), meaning “wanderer” or “drifter”.  Click here to read more about plankton.

A former botany student, Zodidi was introduced to Ocean Stewards programme last year and now has her sights set on becoming a leading marine scientist.

In this short Roving Reporters’ video, Zodidi talks about her involvement in the Ocean Stewards programme and her dream  of travelling widely as a marine scientists,  learning more about latest research techniques and methods.

In embarking on the first leg of the 2017 Ocean Stewards expedition on board the Angra Pequena (Jemune 2 to June 6) Zodidi will be part of the “shake down” crew that will test run the deployment of state-of-the-art research equipment, including a remote underwater vehicle (ROV) baited remote underwater video (BRUV) systems which attracts fish the field of view of mounted cameras.

“This year I’m expecting to get more exposure and discover more species that were not picked up in our sampling last year,” says Zodidi.

This snapshot profile of Zodidi Gwayise was compiled by Zamo Phungula as part of Roving Reporters Ocean Watch training programme supported by the Human Elephant Foundation and The Blue Fund – a joint initiative of Grindrod Bank and Wildlands.