Phil was a Firefighter for over 20 years until his recent change from fire to water! During the last 3 years, he trained to operate a fast rescue boat around the Shetland coastline during service at Sumburgh airport fire station. This work entailed a large amount of training time spent negotiating difficult sea conditions & navigation in rough weather, day & night. He has achieved Powerboat Level 2, Sea Survival, is a VHF Radio Operator & has both First Aid and Professional Practices and Responsibilities qualifications All of this plus his seafaring experience & knowledge put Phil in a perfect place at the helm of our bespoke Wildlife Rib Cruiser.
Phil has been a keen birder & naturalist since his youth and has carried out Wildlife Guiding over the past 10 years for several Internationally reputable wildlife tour companies mainly in Shetland, Lesvos and Spitsbergen. Being a Shetland Bird Club committee member, on the rarities committee & heavily involved with the Shetland Ringing Group he is at the forefront of bird studies on Shetland carrying out regular monitoring work of Shetlands birds. Phil is delighted to bring all his training and expertise together in the form of Shetland Seabird Tours Ltd. and share his infectious enthusiasm and knowledge with his passengers here on the Isles!
Rebecca has a strong environmental academic background, achieving a certificate in Ornithology from Cambridge University, an MSc in Conservation Management & a 2:1 Hons degree in Geography & Environmental Studies from Winchester University. An enjoyable career as a freelance Ecologist & Wildlife Photographer, Rebecca also regularly guided wildlife tours for several highly regarded International tour companies. Since 2005 she has led trips annually in Shetland & overseas locations including Lesvos & Spitsbergen.
She possesses excellent ornithological & communication skills and has worked in the tourism & conservation sectors throughout the last 20 years. She has been a professional wildlife photographer for the last 10 years and is keen to share her abilities and enthusiasm with our passengers, so they too can enjoy their photography whilst aboard our vessel.
Rebecca has worked for several Ecological Consultancies carrying out survey work on both land & sea. She is a full member of the Chartered Institute of Ecology & Environmental Management. She carries out voluntary bird surveys throughout Shetland on behalf of the BTO and RSPB & also keeps annual records from birds to hoverflies for the Shetland Biological Records Centre. She has found several new invertebrate species for Shetland. Rebecca is Treasurer & Membership Secretary of the Shetland Bird Club and a full committee member. Rebecca & Paul Harvey produced a long awaited photographic book ‘Discover Shetland’s Birds‘ in 2015 through the Shetland Amenity Trust, which became an instant best seller.
Rebecca & Phil met on Fair Isle in 2003 during a two year contract Rebecca had as Seabird Officer & Assistant Warden at Fair Isle Bird Observatory. When not on our boat, Rebecca is the driving force behind the business administrative operations & can also be found with their baby daughter Ayda Ruby, overseeing the family run Bed & Breakfast from their Georgian townhouse overlooking Lerwick harbour.