Tammy grew up on a farm in Zimbabwe and from a young age has had a passion for the outdoors, wildlife and conservation. A family trip to Sodwana Bay (KZN) as a child sparked her fascination with the ocean and set her on the course to becoming a marine biologist, despite her upbringing in land-locked Zimbabwe. After leaving high school, Tammy enrolled at UCT and in 2012 obtained a BSc in Marine Biology and Applied Biology, followed by an Honours degree in Marine Biology in 2013. Through her studies, Tammy developed a keen interest in the field of spatial ecology, and the application of spatial data to advise fisheries management and conservation, particularly for vulnerable species such as apex predators.
In 2015 she began her MSc on the behaviour and spatial ecology of the broadnose sevengill shark (Notorynchus cepedianus) in South Africa, and has since upgraded to a PhD. The primary aims of her research are to gain a better understanding of the distribution, movement patterns, habitat use and behaviour of this species, with the overarching objective of improving the management of this recreationally and commercially exploited predator on a national scale. Her primary research methods involve the use of acoustic and satellite telemetry supplemented with tag and recapture data from recreational anglers along the South African coast.