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Whalefest Monterey Symposium 2021

All Day, Jan 30, 2021

Coming next year: The 11th Annual Whalefest Monterey on January 30-31, 2021.Check out all of the Symposium details from our 10th Annual Whalefest Monterey on January 25-26, 2020 below.
10th Annual Whalefest Monterey Announces Updated Symposium Presenters  
Free 2-Day Symposium to be held at the Monterey Conference Center featuring Monterey Bay Aquarium Founder, Julie Packard, and many other marine experts
On January 25th and 26th, 2020, Whalefest Monterey will host a two-day Symposium at the Monterey Conference Center with lectures by top marine research scientists from academia, U.S. government and NGO’s, and documentaries related to ocean and marine life conservation. The aim of the Symposium is to bring marine science research findings from local institutions to the general public, as well as showcase sustainability and ocean conservation projects. Presenters will share their most recent research illustrated with enlightening photos, audio and video clips.
Among the highlights are presentations by Julie Packard, founder and Executive Director of the acclaimed Monterey Bay Aquarium, and Wallace J. Nichols, Ph.D., author of the New York Times bestseller “Blue Mind.” A recent addition, British documentary producer/director Sarah Conner, will provide a behind the scenes look at how landmark science and natural history documentary series such as the BBC’s Blue Planet II are made.
Other speakers will educate and enlighten the audience with information about rear octopuses in deep ocean waters, how marine mammals use sound, and what is done to prevent whale entanglements.  Issues relating to ocean security will be addressed, as will ways to explore how ships can go to zero pollution in a commercial environment. Other topics cover transdisciplinary, collaborative work in coral reef restoration and underwater footage in 3D using virtual reality.
For anyone interested in a career in whale research, a group of graduate students from Hopkins Marine Station at Stanford University will discuss what it’s like to become a marine mammal researcher.
In addition to the Symposium presentations, there will be over 30 educational interactive displays inside the Monterey Conference Center and along the causeway by Old Fisherman’s Wharf and Custom House Plaza – Monterey State Historic Park by organizations whose programs involve the ocean and MBNMS. Next to the symposium in the Conference Center are a 43 ft. inflatable model of a humpback whale people can enter and examine its organs, and a 30 ft. skeleton of a grey whale. A detailed list of exhibitors can be found at
More about the Symposium presentations:
Julie Packard, Founder and Executive Director, Monterey Bay Aquarium with Erika Mahoney, KAZU. "If we're talking about saving the planet, we're talking about saving the ocean: A conversation with Julie Packard"
Wallace J. Nichols, Ph.D., will talk about whales and medicine. He will describe how ocean, water and wildlife’s cognitive, emotional, psychological, social, physical and spiritual benefits can build a bigger, wider and more diverse blue mind movement.
The Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary is represented by Paul Michel, Superintendent, and researcher Chad King. The latter will recount how at a remotely-operated vehicle (ROV) dive in 2018, more than two miles deep near an extinct volcano in Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, scientists stumbled upon more than 1,000 female octopuses that were actively taking care of their eggs, as well as a fresh “whale fall”.
Sarah Conner, Documentary Producer/Director, BBC, Netflix will provide a behind the scenes look at how landmark science and natural history documentary series are made, including the efforts teams make to support science and raise awareness of important issues. Most recently she was directing on the multi-award-winning BBC Planet Earth: Blue Planet 2 and BBC Frozen Planet 2.  She is now

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Fisherman’s Wharf
Monterey, CA 93940

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