Growing up in Colorado, Mitchell Rider didn't have much access to the ocean, but that didn't stop him from pursuing his passion to study marine ecology. He obtained his Bachelors of Science in Biology at Bates College in Lewiston, Maine. While in college, Mitchell was always trying to find a way to take part in marine related research whether that was studying abroad in Turks and Caicos or participating in a summer internship program through the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Program which brought him down to Miami. During his internship in Miami, he not only studied the effects of oceanographic features on bluefin tuna catch in the Gulf of Mexico, but was also able to connect to different ecologists and biologists including his future advisor, Dr. Neil Hammerschlag. After college, he was accepted into a graduate program at the University of Miami's Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science where he studied the relationship between boat traffic and shark movement patterns.
While pursuing his masters, Mitchell became fascinated with the world of acoustic telemetry. As part of his research assistantship, he was tasked with tracking various species of tagged sharks and turtles in Biscayne Bay, Florida. This assistantship led to various projects involving tracking the movement patterns of various species in relation to urbanization and other anthropogenic stressors. After earning his Master's, Mitchell stayed with the same advisor and is currently pursuing his Ph.D. where he focuses on the movement ecology of leatherback sea turtles in the Northwestern Atlantic Ocean.
Learn how turtles and sharks are tracked in the Caribbean through acoustic and satellite telemetry. Later, join him for a turtley fintastic dive identifying these animals at one of Saba's diverse dive sites.