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Seahorse expert receives prestigious award

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Seahorse expert
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Seahorse expert Neil Garrick Maidment FBAN, Executive Director and Founder of The Seahorse Trust, has been awarded the David Bellamy Award by the British Naturalist Association at the 2023 Encaenia at the Natural Museum.

He was presented the award as a field naturalist of distinction for his work on the study of seahorses spanning over 40 years in the UK and across the world. The honour was presented to him at the annual awards ceremony by Honorary President Roger Tabor, alongside 14 other leading naturalists.

Mr Garrick-Maidment’s work has included setting up the British Seahorse Survey in 1994 and the National Seahorse Database, which have since morphed into the World Seahorse Database Survey, which is now the longest-running continuous survey of its kind in the world. It now spans over 50 countries and has in excess of 3,500 sightings on it.

Seahorse expert
Neil Garrick-Maidment with Honorary President Roger Tabor

He is currently a Visiting Fellow to the faculty of science and technology at Bournemouth University and is a Fellow of the British Naturalists Association. In addition to his research, Mr Garrick-Maidment founded The Seahorse Trust, based primarily in Devon, which is an umbrella organisation to preserve and conserve the natural world, using seahorses as its flagship species. They work in alliance with organisations across to the world in partnership to protect seahorses and their habitats.

On being awarded the David Bellamy Award, Mr Garrick-Maidment said: “I am so humbled by this award, and I am accepting it on behalf of myself and all the amazing volunteers who have helped over the years. It is only through research that we can understand these fascinating creatures and uncover the secrets to their survival. We must learn what is needed to protect seahorses and their habitats from harm and create solutions so seahorses and all marine species can thrive. Thank you to everyone who has supported me and especially to my wife Maxine who has supported me through so much.”

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Mark Evans
Scuba Diver's Editorial Director Mark Evans has been in the diving industry for nearly 25 years, and has been diving since he was just 12 years old. nearly 40-odd years later and he is still addicted to the underwater world.
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