Dr Fernando Diaz-Aguirre

PhD Supervisors: A/Prof Luciana Möller and Dr Guido Parra

My experience in cetacean research dates back to 2003 when I started collaborating in different projects related with the behaviour and ecology of common bottlenose dolphins, Chilean dolphins and fin whales. After participating in these projects, I realized how amazing was to be at sea sampling and trying to understand the life of these beautiful and intelligent mammals, so I decided to start a monitoring program on the occurrence of cetaceans off the central coast of Chile for my master’s thesis in Marine Biology. I worked as a research leader on this project that ended up focusing mainly on the behavioral ecology of a population of common bottlenose dolphins that inhabited the area.


In late 2012, I was fortunate to join for my PhD studies the Cetacean Ecology Behaviour and Evolution Lab and the Molecular Ecology Lab at the School of Biological Sciences of Flinders University. Here, my PhD research will basically examine the socio-genetic structure of the recently described Burrunan dolphin (Tursiops australis) and also will try to unravel new aspects of the social dynamics at multiple dimensional levels and social personality types of wild dolphin societies using a wide arrange of quantitative analyses of social networks.

View larger image

Research Project 

Social dynamics and genetic structure of Burrunan dolphins (Tursiops australis).

Research Experience

– 2011 MSc. in Marine Biology  project: 

– 2008 Honours project: