Vishrutha Rao

Programme Associate – Marine Flagships

Qualifications: M.Sc Marine Science, Goa University (2017-19)


Profile: As a child, Vishrutha first took notice of the ocean when she felt a strong urge to want to protect the dolphins being slaughtered and taken captive. It had made quite an impression on her and she began exploring career choices through which she could make a difference to them. She eventually came across the field of marine biology and since then, discoveries of the science behind various adaptations and cultures of underwater life forms have not ceased to fascinate her. Her conviction to study and protect the oceans was furthermore fueled during her master’s when she understood that life on Earth is dependent on the smooth regulatory function of this dynamic realm. Her perception of the oceans expanded from viewing it as a habitat containing curious organisms to viewing it as an abiotic organism in itself.

Her interest in cetacean study and conservation lives on and has grown into an aspiration to eventually pursue climatic and ecological studies of whales. The same interest led her to work for the Wildlife Institute of India on their CAMPA dolphin project, where she learned about the curious case of river dolphins. She is here at Dakshin to formally initiate herself with ocean research by monitoring and studying the mass nesting of Olive Ridley turtles along the coast of Ganjam, Orissa. Aside from her intellectual curiosity for the conservation, ecological and behavioral studies of marine fauna, she has a strong drive to educate herself and implement alternative solutions to the issue of plastic disposal. She hopes to one day implement a sustainable model on a larger scale that would be able to prevent the movement of plastic into the oceans while also empowering local communities.