I am a Zoologist specialized in behavioural ecology, a science communicator for a university department, and award-winning photographer.

My research interests are predator-prey systems and their relationships with climate change, trophic cascades, and migration channels. I’ve recently started working on the cultural behaviours of large sharks.

I am available to supervise students at this time.

Contact me via email (JewellShark [at] gmail . com) or twitter @scichelle.

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Please visit my Google Scholar page.

Tamburin, Elena, et al. (2020) “New insights into the trophic ecology of young white sharks (Carcharodon carcharias) in waters off the Baja California Peninsula, Mexico.” Marine Biology 167:1-14.

Huveneers, Charlie, et al. (2018) “Future research directions on the ‘elusive’ white shark.” Frontiers in Marine Science 5:455.

Wcisel, M., O’Riain, J.M., de Vos, A., & Chivell, W. (2015) The role of refugia in reducing predation risk for Cape fur seals by white sharks. Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 69(1): 127-138*

*This publication was listed on Springer’s “Top Mentioned Articles of 2016

Jewell, O. J. D, Wcisel, M. A., Towner, A. V., Chivell, W., Van der Merwe, L., & Bester, M. N. (2014) Core habitat use of an apex predator in a complex marine landscape. Marine Ecology Progress Series 506:231-U542

Wcisel, M. (2013) The effects of great white shark presence on the behavior of Cape fur seals at Geyser Rock, Gansbaai, South Africa. University of Cape Town M.Sc. dissertation

Towner, A., Wcisel, M., Reisinger, R., Edwards, D., & Jewell, O. (2013) Gauging the threat: The first population estimate for white sharks in South Africa using photo identification and automated software. PLoS One 8(6):e66035

Jewell, O. J. D., & Wcisel, M. (2012) Leatherback turtle (Dermochelys coriacea) stranding at Danger Point, South Africa. South African Journal of Wildlife Research 42.2: 147-150

Jewell, O. J. D., Wcisel, M., Genarri, E., Towner, A., Bester, M., Johnson, R. & Singh, S. (2011) Effects of SPOT-tag deployment on white sharks in South Africa. PLoS One 6(11):e27242

Wcisel, M., Chivell, W., & Gottfriend, M. D. (2010) A potential predation attempt by a great white shark on an Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin. South African Journal of Wildlife Research 40(2): 184 – 187

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Research Projects

I am now available to supervise students. Contact me here: JewellShark [at] gmail. com.

Title: “Arctic meltdown tropical seagrass meadows via migrant shorebird”
Role: Researcher

Title: “Ethology of Southern Right Whales (Eubalaena Australis).”  M.Sc. by Petra Neveceralova. [PDF Download:Diploma thesis_Neveceralova]
Role: Academic Supervisor

Title:  “The effects of white shark presence on the behaviour of Cape fur seals”
Role: Researcher (M.Sc. thesis)

Title: “Population estimate of white sharks at Gansbaai, South Africa.” The Dyer Island Conservation Trust.
Role: Collaborator

Title: “Habitat use of white sharks established with manual acoustic telemetry.” The Dyer Island Conservation Trust.
Role: Collaborator

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Scientific Communications

If you are interest in my consultancy work, please email me your query: JewellShark [at] gmail. com.

I am the Chief Science Communicator for a major university department, have hosted many TV shows (including Shark Week’s “Great White Shark Babies“), and write for several outlets.

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In the news

Winner of AIBS Faces of Biology Photography Competition. 
Great White Shark BabiesDiscovery Channel’s Shark Week.
High fins:  Shark Week is finally featuring female scientists.  International Business Times.
Injured great white shark swims free after mishap in shallow water (Video). Earth Touch News.
Crafty orcas take down white sharks and float their livers like tasty buoys
Earth Touch News.
Meet ‘Gums,’ the great white shark with an adorably toothless grinEarth Touch News.
Bullied out of research
.  Science.
Foolish human does ‘The Worm’ on a dead whaleEarthTouch News.
Seagulls Have a Gruesome New Way of Attacking Baby Seals. National Geographic.
Shark Week is once again making things up.  Vox.
Meet a shark scientist this Shark Week: Predator/prey expert Michelle Jewell. EarthTouch News.
The Best Shark Biologists and Conservationists to Follow During Shark Week. Scientific American.
Sexist comments spark “distractingly sexy” tweets from female scientistsCBS News.
Great white sharks are really spastic poopers (yes, we have video). EarthTouch News.
How seals use subsurface structures to sneak by white sharks. Gills Club.
Behind the Fins: Michelle Jewell. Fins United.
Meet Shark Biologist Michelle Wcisel. Sharks4Kids.
Graphic Content Warning: Six seals found in one shark stomach.  EarthTouch News.
Gills Club Science Team Member – Michelle Wcisel [VIDEO]
Before They Were Scientists: Michelle Wcisel. Your Wild Life.
The Best Shark Dive In The World: Michelle!