Rui Peres dos Santos

After my Msc degree testing the effects of drugs administered to zebrafish on bone development, I pursued my life-long dream of working with cetaceans.


Over the last 15 years, I have acquired field experience working on a daily basis as a skipper for whale watching companies in the Azores. While developing my boat handling and interpretation skills, I developed a protocol to collect cetacean data using these opportunistic observation platforms. The database I created over seven consecutive years contains more than 5500 cetacean sightings.

PhD thesis

Currently I am earning a PhD at Restoration, Resources, Connectivity and Climate (R2C2), and Centre of Marine Sciences (CCMAR), from the University of the Algarve, Portugal and Mingan Island Cetacean Study (MICS), Canada for a thesis entitled Temporal and Spatial Distribution of Cetaceans in the Azores, as a means to define migration and dispersal patterns employing associated biotic and abiotic distributional driving factors. This will contribute significantly to improve cetacean habitat use knowledge in the Azores, as well as, in North Atlantic areas which are related to the Azores.

Projecto Farol

I also started in 2021 a Project entitled “Projecto Farol”, whose main objective is to estimate cetacean abundance in the Algarve region.