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ContactWill Rayment image

Office 310 Castle Street, room 211a
Tel +64 3 479 8304

Academic qualifications

BA Oxford
MSc University College London
PhD University of Otago

Research interests

  • Ecology and conservation biology of cetaceans
  • Capture-recapture methods and analyses
  • Species-habitat relationships
  • Efficacy of Marine Protected Areas and MPA networks

Will is also a member of the Coastal People: Southern Skies collaboration that connects communities with world-leading, cross-discipline research to rebuild coastal ecosystems.

Coastal People: Southern Skies

He Kitenga: Auckland Islands: Baleen barometers outlines recent work combining aerial photography and computer software to measure the condition of southern right whales.


  • ECOL 111 Ecology and Conservation of Diversity
  • MARI 112 Marine Biology: The Living Ocean
  • MARI 302 Biology and Behaviour of Marine Vertebrates (course co-ordinator)
  • MARI 401 Advanced Methods in Marine Science
  • MARI 429 Coastal Marine Environment (course co-ordinator)
  • MARI 431 Antarctic and Southern Ocean Science
  • ZOOL 418 Conservation Biology of Marine Mammals

Postgraduate students

Current students

  • Steph Bennington PhD: Transferring statistical models between populations and species
  • Namrata Chand, PhD: Ecosystem Functioning and Role of Soft Sediment Macroalgal Communities
  • Leah Crowe, PhD: Variability and vulnerability of the critically endangered Fiordland bottlenose dolphin
  • Nicholas Daudt, PhD: Spatiotemporal patterns and environmental drivers of seabird assemblages in Australasia, a world hotspot of seabird diversity
  • Stella Simpson, MSc: Investigating the effects of oceanic conditions on sperm whales and their prey at Kaikōura
  • Lindsay Wickman, PhD: Population modelling of Hector's dolphins at Banks Peninsula, NZ.

Completed students

  • David Johnston PhD: Sentinels of the Southern Ocean: southern right whales (Eubalaena australis) as indicators of oceanic productivity
  • José Emilio Trujillo Moyano, PhD: Insights into neonate reef sharks' vulnerability to predation: a behavioural, physiological and ecological approach
  • Gaby Keeler-May, PhD: Undaria pinnatifida management and control in Southern New Zealand
  • Moss Thompson, MSc: Pup survival of the New Zealand sea lion on the Otago Coast
  • Hannah Williams, MSc: Abundance and distribution of Hector's dolphins in Otago and effectiveness of current protection measures


Harvey, M., Dawson, S., & Rayment, W. (2024). Estimating the abundance of the Hector’s dolphins (Cephalorhynchus hectori hectori) that use Porpoise Bay, New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Marine & Freshwater Research, 58(1), 46-59. doi: 10.1080/00288330.2022.2112060

Carome, W., Rayment, W., Slooten, E., Bowman, M. H., Martinez, E., & Dawson, S. M. (2023). Snapshots in time: Quantifying dynamics of coastal vessel traffic in a dolphin hotspot. New Zealand Journal of Marine & Freshwater Research. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1080/00288330.2023.2261872

Wickman, L., Rayment, W., Dillingham, P., Dawson, S., & Slooten, L. (2023). Updated estimates of survival rate for Hector's dolphins at Banks Peninsula. Proceedings of the New Zealand Marine Sciences Society (NZMSS) Annual Meeting. (pp. 174). [Abstract]

Guerra, M., Sabadel, A., Rayment, W., Dawson, S., & Wing, L. (2023). Seasonal variation in the use of food resources by sperm whales in a submarine canyon. Deep Sea Research Part I, 200, 104149. doi: 10.1016/j.dsr.2023.104149

Brough, T. E., Rayment, W. J., Slooten, L., & Dawson, S. (2023). Prey and habitat characteristics contribute to hotspots of distribution for an endangered coastal dolphin. Frontiers in Marine Science, 10, 1204943. doi: 10.3389/fmars.2023.1204943

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