Steve Locket (Executive Director)
Mahseer Trust is run by the Executive Director, with oversight from the Board of Trustees and technical support from our expert Advisers. The post of Executive Director was created as part of a review of structure undertaken during 2020.
Steve has been an integral part of the many projects run by Mahseer Trust since 2012. He is a lifelong freshwater conservationist and brings experience from his parallel careers in entertainment and hospitality, photojournalism and teaching.
Of the 15 mahseer range countries, Steve has visited rivers, fish breeding facilities and community conservation projects in seven. While India and Nepal remain as priority countries, Steve is determined to return to Indonesia and to make a first visit to Myanmar as soon as possible. He rates the small spate rivers of northern Borneo as his favourite freshwater spaces.
Adrian C. Pinder (Trustee - Chair)
Based at Bournemouth University (UK), Adrian is a freshwater fisheries scientist and passionate conservationist with 30 years’ experience of monitoring and managing fish populations. His first visit to South India’s River Cauvery in 2010 signified the onset of a personal obsession to address some of the many knowledge gaps and political challenges which currently constrain the development of effective conservation plans to protect mahseer.
Adrian was recruited as Director of the Mahseer Trust in 2012 and, since achieving charitable status and recruiting a new Board of Trustees in 2016, has served as Director of Research.
Ian Pett (Trustee – Treasurer)
Ian first travelled in Pakistan, India and Nepal on leaving school, thus forging a lifelong attachment to the lands where mahseer swim, later living and working in several of them. He spent his career working on the design, financing and management of national health systems around the world, retiring from a post at the World Health Organization’s headquarters in Switzerland.
An angler since childhood, the chance purchase of a copy of HS Thomas’s The Rod in India sparked his curiosity about mahseer, and a posting to India in 1990 brought it off the shelf to be his hand-book for the next 7 years. He was lucky enough to meet and fish with some of the great mahseer anglers and pioneer conservationists of the day, fish across much of north India and a little in Nepal, and observe protected mahseer at close quarters at monastery and temple sites in Bhutan and India. He collects mahseer literature and helped the Natraj Press in India to expand their list and introduce their publications to the wider world.
During his time in the USA, Ian was inspired by the organisations presenting their work at the conservation dinners hosted by New York Anglers Club, so was delighted to find and join the Mahseer Trust when he returned to Britain. When in mahseer country he tries to find any and everyone engaged in angling and conservation. With experience in both the management and governance of UK Registered Charities with international concerns, and an international career, Ian brings a useful mix of personal interest and professional expertise to his role in the Mahseer Trust.
Derek D'Souza (Trustee)
Derek started angling at the age of four, using a bamboo rod and line, catching small catfish in front of his grandparents home in Mangalore. His first encounter with Mahseer was in 2003, which immediately broke his rod.
His love for Mahseer grew tremendously; it was the sport that made him meet the Mighty Mahseer, and he says “it’s the love for the fish that has shaped me as what I am today”. Derek took a vow to protect the fish that he loved; he practices catch and release and spreads the message to every person he meets about mahseer, and to practice catch and release to every angler.
Once he fell in love with the mahseer, there was no turning back. He became involved with Mahseer Trust in 2014, and in 2016 he was appointed a Trustee of the charity as the India Regional Lead.
Derek also serves as the India Representative of the International Game Fishing Association (IGFA) and is Vice President – Environment of the All India Game Fishing Association (AIGFA). He was recently inducted into Anglers Association of Nagaland as a Technical Advisor. He is also a sub Committee member of Wild Life Association of South India (WASI) and advises various Fisheries Departments of Mizoram, Assam, Karnataka, Arunachal Pradesh and Nagaland.
Andy Harrison (Trustee - Secretary)
Andy is a fisheries scientist based at Bournemouth University (UK), with a keen interest in fish species of conservation importance. He has over 10 years’ experience in both the public and private sectors, working on all aspects of freshwater fish ecology and protection. Andy is particularly interested in the impacts of water management practices and in-river barriers on migratory fish species, including eel, salmon and lamprey.
In addition to his professional fisheries science background, Andy’s experience in website design, content management, marketing and social media saw him appointed to the Board of Trustees in 2016 as Director of Marketing and Communications and subsequently appointed as Secretary in 2020.
Working alongside the Trustees, our dedicated MT Officers use their technical and regional expertise, on a voluntary basis, to further the aims of the Trust.
Paromita Ray (Mahseer Trust Officer - Communications)
Paromita Ray is a researcher studying the fish assemblage structure in a mangrove forest of India for her PhD. She is also working on conservation of freshwater fishes in the Eastern Ghats landscape of India, where she developed a keen interest in the large freshwater fish species that include mahseers. She has an experience of nearly nine years in both government-based institutions as well as in NGOs working on various aspects related to conservation of freshwater and / or coastal habitats. She recently joined Mahseer Trust as Communications Officer to contribute to increasing awareness of mahseer species and their conservation, and supporting the larger goal of Mahseer Trust.
Sushan Mani Shakya (Mahseer Trust Officer - Nepal Lead)
Sushan is a young and experienced fish biologist with a focus on mahseer ecology. He has been with the Mahseer Trust in the position of Lead Officer for Nepal since 2017. He has a Masters degree in Fish Biology and Aquaculture and has gained extensive practical experience in sustainable fish farming, biosecurity in aquaculture, fish taxonomy, and taxonomic photography. In addition, Sushan has received international training and has been exposed to a range of diverse professional environments, further enhancing his skills and expertise.
Sushan has been passionate about fish since childhood and has over five years professional experience in the field. He is a member of the Nepal Fisheries Society and the Fisheries Society of the British Isles, and is also a research associate at the Central Department of Zoology at Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu, Nepal.
Mahseer Trust Advisors provide invaluable support to the Trust, providing voluntary expertise to further the Trust’s aims.
Rajeev Raghavan (Mahseer Trust Advisor - Species and Taxonomy)
Dr. Rajeev is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Fisheries Resource Management, Kerala University of Fisheries and Ocean Studies (KUFOS), Kochi, India; the South Asia Chair of the IUCN Species Survival Commission – Freshwater Fish Specialist Group (FFSG); and the IUCN Freshwater Fish Red List Authority Coordinator (for the regions of Southern, Northern and Eastern Asia and Oceania). His work over the last 15 years has focused on the diversity, distribution and conservation of freshwater fishes of the South Asian region with a special focus on the Western Ghats-Sri Lanka Biodiversity Hotspot.
Mark Everard (Mahseer Trust Advisor - Freshwater Ecosystem Services)
Dr Mark Everard is Associate Professor of Ecosystem Services at the University of the West of England (UWE Bristol), also working as a consultant, author and broadcaster. Mark has been involved in sustainable development for decades, with particular interests in water – its ecology, uses and management – having played a leading role in development and practical application of ecosystem services.
His work has included research, advocacy and policy development, as well as journalism and corporate consultancy, including frequent contributions to TV, radio and public presentations. The author of twenty-three books addressing ecosystems, ecosystem services and fishes, Mark has worked on catchment systems across five continents, including advisory roles to overseas and UK governments.
Mahseer are both a passion and a research interest, and Mark has been happy to support the work of the Mahseer Trust over a number of years. He is also a wildlife photographer and passionate angler, inspired in all his diverse activities by the protection and regeneration of aquatic ecosystems vital for sustaining wildlife and people – their basic needs, economic activities and broader dimensions of ‘quality of life’ – in a highly interdependent way.
Dr AJT Johnsingh
As a boy Johnsingh got fascinated by mahseer by reading the fishing stories by Jim Corbett. He nurtured this interest and while serving in Wildlife Institute of India, Dehra Dun, from 1985 to 2005, he made it a point to visit almost all the mahseer habitats in Uttarakhand and has come out with a valuable report and several popular articles.
Johnsingh met his first blue-finned mahseer in Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary in the early 1980s and has carried out a survey of Cauvery mahseer habitat for Jungle Lodges and Resorts Pvt Ltd in 1999.
He drew the attention of mahseer conservationists to Shimsha as the only viable habitat for spawning in the stretch between Sivasamudram and Hohenekal falls. He has contributed to the training of hundreds of forest officers in India and is keen to make use of this relationship to secure a future for mahseer in India.
Jeremy John Wade is a British television presenter and author of books on angling. He is known for his television series River Monsters and Jungle Hooks.
Wade’s interest in fishing began when he was living in East Anglia, on the banks of Suffolk’s River Stour. In 1982, Wade made his first overseas trip to India’s mountain rivers. He has since made trips around the world in search of elusive fish species. He has taken many trips to the Congo and Amazon rain forests. With the aid of local fishermen, Wade travels the world to catch various fish. Wade is also a published author. With joint-author Paul Boote, in 1992 Wade published his first book, Somewhere Down the Crazy River. Wade has also written River Monsters, which details his hunts and journeys around the world.