Claire's passion for orcas was sparked by her first encounter with a pod near the Lofoten Islands, Norway in 1998. She is a freelance writer and naturalist, writing a regular column for The Guardian's Country Diary and contributing to a number of other publications, including the 2020VISION project, for which she is one of the main researchers and writers. Passionate about wildlife and wild places, she has a particular interest in anthrozoology (human-animal interaction) and is now busy researching the mythology and cultural significance of orcas in a worldwide context. Claire has a BA (Hons) English, an MA in Creative Writing specialising in Natural History and Ecocriticism, and she graduated in 2011 with a Postgraduate Certificate in Biodiversity, Wildlife and Ecosystem Health.
Claire trained as a marine mammal medic with British Divers Marine Life Rescue in 2006 and held the post of area coordinator for Hampshire for five years. She teaches on medic courses and has been involved in a number of rescues including seals, porpoises and a northern bottlenose whale. Claire has also undertaken MARINElife' s marine mammal and seabird surveyor training course, and holds a boat handling qualification.
You can read about one of Claire's encounters with orcas in The Guardian Country Diary here.