Watch Ocean Alliance on CBS News…

The last few weeks have been pretty exciting at Ocean Alliance hosting a number of television crews.

Two Saturday’s ago, Ocean Alliance had a CBS News shoot for a national news feature on SnotBot®. Host Tom Hanson interviewed Iain Kerr for the segment and filmed SnotBot® in action on Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary. We had really great weather and experienced a feeding frenzy of seabirds, dolphins, finback and humpback whales. Ocean Alliance collected great behavioral footage along with a robust snot sample from a Finback whale that will be analyzed  for hormones, DNA, and microbiomes. The news story is planned to air on CBS News affiliated stations today, reaching a minimum of 5 million viewers!

IMG_5983.jpeg
Tom Hanson, CBS News interviewing Iain Kerr

 Fin whale lunge feeding on Stellwagen Bank

This past weekend actor/comedian Sir Billy Connolly spent three hours at the Paint Factory with Ocean Alliance filming a segment for Billy Connolly’s Great American Trail television show. The show will be broadcast on ITV in September 2019 and then worldwide. The production team was interested in filming in Gloucester because of the whaling history, wildlife, and Ocean Alliance’s new developments in whale research. Billy was able to test out our thermal imaging drone FLIRBot, and even fly a drone himself! It was a lot of fun hosting Billy and the production team at our Paint Factory headquarters. We’ll keep you updated on when the show will air.

Billy Connolly talk
Filming at Ocean Alliance for Billy Connolly’s Great American Trail
DBilly Connoly Thermal.jpg
Iain and Billy using FLIRBot

Last September, while on a Parley SnotBot expedition in Gabon, Africa the Ocean Alliance team filmed an episode of  BBC’s Equator from the Air.  For our UK friends the first episode will air on Sunday 26th May, on BBC Two at 20:00/8pm BST. The series will air at the same time each week for an additional three weeks. Look for it on BBC streaming in the near future.

ChristianMiller_Snotbot_gabon-33
SnotBot® collecting humpback whale blow in Gabon

 

To learn more about Ocean Alliance’s work and what is going on at the Paint Factory visit https://whale.org or follow us on social media.

 

“Prevailing Wind & Whales” special MIT concert Saturday is all Gloucester Ocean Alliance, Parley, MIT Wind Ensemble 20th Anniversary & Humpback Whales

Parley X MIT: Prevailing Wind and Whales Saturday April 27, 2019

Reserve tickets here

From the press release:

7:00pm Parley SnotBot, EarBot & Drones for Whale Research
Parley Pre-Concert Talk Featuring Drs. Iain Kerr & Roger Payne, Ocean Alliance
Cyrill Gutsch, Founder, Parley for the Oceans

Join Dr. Roger Payne, Dr. Iain Kerr, and Parley founder Cyrill Gutsch as we dive into the world of whales and the new technologies that are changing the way that we study them.

8:00pm MIT Wind Ensemble 20th Anniversary Concert

Dr. Frederick Harris, Jr., Music Director
Kenneth Amis, Assistant Conductor
Stephen C. Massey, Guest Conductor
MITWE Alumni
Kathryn Salfelder and Michael Weinstein, Guest Composers
Drs. Roger Payne and Iain Keer, Guest Speakers, Ocean Alliance
Cyrill Gutsch, Guest Speaker, Parley for the Oceans

To celebrate its 20th anniversary, MITWE brings together traditional and new music, works commissioned by the ensemble, special guests, and alumni.  In tribute to its recent tour to the Dominican Republic and collaboration with Parley for the Oceans, the concert features “In Praise Of The Humpback,” prefaced by remarks by legendary biologist-environmentalist and whale song expert, Dr. Roger Payne.

Renowned music educator Stephen C. Massey leads Persichetti Symphony no. 6, and legendary wind ensemble conductor-historian Frank L. Battisti will be honored by performances of three works composed for his 85th birthday in 2016, by Kenneth Amis, Kathryn Salfelder, and Michael Weinstein. MITWE’s percussion ensemble performs a new work in honor of MITWE’s 20th anniversary and “Course Sax” performs Piazzolla’s famed “Cafe, 1930” from Histoire du Tango. MITWE alumni join current MITWE members to close out the program with Gustav Holst’s amiable Second Suite in F. 

MIT Wind Ensemble
https://mta.mit.edu/music/performance/mit-wind-ensemble

Parley For The Oceans
https://www.parley.tv/#fortheoceans

Ocean Alliance
https://whale.org/

Center for Coastal Studies (informational materials available at the concert)
http://coastalstudies.org/

RESULTS Week 4 INVENTORS | #greatteacher Mr. Goulart’s local history hunt #GloucesterMA #TBT

Gloucester, Mass.  Great teacher at Gloucester High School, Shaun Goulart, creates a local history scavenger hunt trivia game for his 9th grade students that takes place weekly for 6 weeks. We’re taking the challenge paced one week after the students.

ANSWERS TO SHAUN GOULART’S LOCAL HISTORY TRIVIA WEEK FOUR

How did you do? Week two delved into Gloucester’s famous inventors. Stop here if you prefer to go back to see Week 4 questions only

Mr. Goulart’s Local History Trivia Scavenger Hunt Week 4 Inventors

1.John Hays Hammond Jr. “Jack”

  • Go to the location of his home and take a picture with a member in it.

  • What did he invent?

Answer: “Over the course of his professional career, he was awarded over 800 foreign and domestic patents resulting from over 400 of his inventions.  Many of these began in radio control before extending to electronics, naval weapons, national defense, as well as various consumer products.” – Hammond Castle

“In connection with his radio researches Jack obtained most important patents for receiving and broadcasting and these he sold to RCA…” John Hays Hammond, Sr

hammond 3109

 

Hammond first radio boat off Gloucester_The boat is run from the shore as no one is aboard_photograph Boston Public Lib

Hammond Castle – I hope that one day the Trustees and Historic New England add this as a shared property among their preservation jewels, along with the Natalie Hammond property and much of the parents’ estate, Lookout Hill, with some portion of admission for the City. At one point Hammond Castle was one of the top attractions in Massachusetts.

 

 

2.Clarence Birdseye

  • Go to the location where his company was and take a picture with a member in it.

  • What did he invent?

Answer: flash freezing

Beauport Hotel Gloucester Ma_former site Birdseye_25 March 2019_photo copyright Catherine Ryan
photo: Beauport Hotel, March 2019 ©catherine ryan 

3.Augustus H. Wonson

  • Go to the location of his grave and take a picture with a member in it.

Answer: Mt. Pleasant cemetery

  • What did he invent?

Answer: Augustus S Wonson invented antifouling copper paint to protect boats. Tarr & Wonson’s was established in 1863.  The former factory and harbor icon is now Ocean Alliance.

Mt Pleasant grave_20190325_© c ryan

Paint Factory Past/Present

574209pv

Paint Factory Ocean Alliance_20180928_ Goetemann artist Deborah Redwood Whale in process public art_Glouc MA©catherine ryan

Paint Factory Ocean Alliance_2018 09 28_ Goetemann artist Deborah Redwood public art – whale’s tail in process_Gloucester, MA © catherine ryan

4.William Nelson Le Page

  • Go to the location where his company was after it moved from Rockport and take a picture with a member in it.

  • What did he invent? 

Answer: Le Page’s glue from fish waste (established 1876)

  • Go to the location of Le Page’s company co-founder Ruben Brooks’ manor and take a picture with a member in it.

Answer: Castle Manor Inn

lepage now_20190325_Gloucester MA © c ryan

 

Castle Manor Inn_20190325_© catherine ryan

 

Prior Posts Continue reading “RESULTS Week 4 INVENTORS | #greatteacher Mr. Goulart’s local history hunt #GloucesterMA #TBT”

From Iain Kerr

Dear Friends,

What an adventure the Blue Plant Live shoot has been – it’s been an absolutely amazing experience for the SnotBot team and it’s Snot over yet (😉)! EarBot is live this Sunday (show #4) at 20:00 GMT on BBC 1 BBC Blue Planet Live. If you missed the SnotBot show (# 2) I will let you know how and when you can see a non-live version, it is coming to BBC America and other media outlets.

BBC did have some transmission issues during our live shoot, but I take my hat off to the whole team. I have been told that this was the biggest live production that the BBC have ever done. To give you an on location perspective of this undertaking, there are 33 people in the BBC Baja team, 3 people in the helicopter team, 3 local small boats and drivers and of course the 3 person SnotBot team (missing Miller). Grand total 42 people!!! Clearly shooting a live show is far more complicated than a regular documentary. I think that the BBC “The Equator from the Air” (still to be released) production team who joined us in Gabon West Africa had a total of 6 people.

The 42 people were broken down into 7 different crews;

  1. The shore crew who managed the satellite uplink (we could not get more than twenty kilometers from this location, which turned out to be a limiting factor).
  2. The uplink crew on the boat, responsible for transmitting the live signal to the shore crew.
  3. The film and sound crew on the boat.
  4. The SnotBot team – who knows what they do?
  5. The helicopter crew.
  6. The ShotOver boat crew (I talked about the amazing ShotOver camera in an earlier blog) – they took shots of us on the boat from the water & amazing wildlife shots.
  7. Supporting panga’s run by local fishermen who ran people out to the bigger boat, tracked whales etc.

Typically I lead with expedition logistics, so it is hard for me to express how much of a pleasure it was to watch others doing this job and doing it so well. However you cut it, managing 42 people in the field is a logistical nightmare and the fact that they kept pulling off the impossible was amazing.

My wife can tell you I am not a morning person, well I guess my future is not in live TV.  For two days in a row we had to be at breakfast at 5:00 am and on the live day 4:30 am. We did get to see some more spectacular sunrises at sea though and the shore scenery was always spectacular.

There was rehearsal day before the live segment, not just for our location but for all of the different connections between the two other live teams and the studio in London. I take my hat off to Chris Packham, his ability to remember boat loads of facts and then eloquently reiterate them on demand-live was quite phenomenal.  For those of you who missed the live SnotBot show, the satellite uplinks were not kind to me. Chris Packham introduced me as one of his favorite scientist’s and then we lost the uplink.  Andy had a great segment on the science and data later in the show so we are all good. If you get a chance please watch the show, in the meantime, (spoiler alert) we did find a couple of blue whales on the live day but they were out of the satellite uplink range so no Snot collection live, but they ended the show with a cut to a Snot collection we made during the live rehearsal. I like to think that we did collect blue whale Snot live but it was only watched by the producers in London & the Baja team. In one of those bizarre situations it turns out that the sample we collected during the live rehearsal is the most productive blue whale snot sample we have collected to date.  Andy said that the liquid was so gummy that he had a hard time sucking it up with the micro pipette. I have attached the actual snot collection video short that appeared during the show to this e mail.

The Sea of Cortez is one of my favorite places to work, every day on the water held new and different wildlife encounters. Chris Packham quoted Jacques Cousteau who called the Sea of Cortez “The Aquarium of the Pacific.” I have run sperm, humpback, blue and grey whale expeditions here. When you are out on the water there is always enormous biodiversity, from concentrated bait balls of fish that attracts all sorts of wildlife including diving birds, to Mantas, turtles, dolphins, whales and whale sharks and so on.

I have attached a few photos of the team working and some amazing Sea of Cortez wildlife, apologies that I don’t have the capacity at this time to label them all. Of course we missed our good friend Christian Miller, but Andy and the rest of the team stepped up to the plate with the attached photos. I have included a couple of lunch break photos that I thought were fun.

I am still staggering a bit from a lack of sleep so I hope that you will bear with my usual erroneous writing and grammar. We have just flown south to our next location and we will be out on the water tomorrow and Sunday following and listening to Humpback whales and flying EarBot (LIVE).

I want to end by applauding the BBC Blue Planet Live team again, what an incredible effort. At dinner one night the director said that the goal of this show was to be ambitious and push boundaries, they did than and the some!

The Ocean Alliance Drones for Whale Research Program continues….. One more show to go but well done team Blue Planet live!!

Best Fishes

Iain

Iain Kerr

http://www.whale.org

 

 

A message from our friend Iain Kerr from Ocean Alliance

Dear Friends,

Chris, Andy and I have just arrived in Loreto. As advised previously we are pretty damn excited to be taking part in the BBC Blue Planet Live Series. You can find more information on the show here: BBC Blue Planet Live. As I understand it the first show went live today, with Chris Packham and the crew in San Ignacio Lagoon. I have it on good faith that Chris was downwind of a grey whale and he got Snotted!

I made a mistake in my last e mail, I thought that there were three shows but it turns out there are four.

I am also excited but terrified to report that they have asked me to take part in the 4th live show on Sunday. So you can catch us on live TV on Wednesday the 27th (SnotBot with blue whales….🤞🤞) and Sunday 31st of March, EarBot and Humpback whales (🤞🤞).  Right now my biggest concern is finding whales and good weather, preferably both at the same time, then of course not making a fool of myself on live TV.

For those of you not in England, there is a way to watch the show live on your computer, Chris says you have to get a VPN, which before last week I had never heard of.  In short if the BBC website thinks that your computer is in England it will let you watch the show.

Clearly if you can’t watch the show live I am sure BBC will put it up on their website so I will send that information out next week.

So here we go – Get a VPN

  1. Download NordVPN 7 day free trial (https://free.nordvpn.com/trial/)
    1. Make sure to remember to cancel before the 7th day to avoid being charged $100+ for the 3 year subscription
    2. Alternatively, you can buy one month for $11.99
  2. After you’ve signed up for the trial, download and install the VPN app on your computer https://ucp.nordvpn.com/downloads
  3. Open the VPN app, log into your account
  4. Search for “United Kingdom” server in the country list
    1. Once connected to a server, now the internet thinks you are in the UK

Create BBC account

  1. Go to BBC iPlayer (https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer)
  2. Register for an account (https://account.bbc.com/signin)
  3. Choose United Kingdom as your country, and put in a UK postal code, this one should work: SW191AA
  4. Verify your email address with the email sent to you after registering

Watch BBC ONE

  1. Log back into BBC iPlayer and search for Blue Planet Live if it already aired, or if you’re trying to watch live go to channels and click on BBC ONE, then click “watch live”
  2. When asked if you have a TV License, click YES
  3. Press play
    1. If you get a message that says “This content doesn’t seem to be working” – go back to your VPN app and click United Kingdom again, it will give you a new server number, refresh BBC iPlayer and try again. You might need to try a few different UK servers before you get one that works.

I will try to send out a few blogs from our time here, until then….

Best Fishes from Loreto.

Iain

Iain Kerr

Cell: 978 760 1784

http://www.whale.org

OCEAN ALLIANCE’S IAIN KERR TO APPEAR ON BBC BLUE PLANET LIVE!


Amy Kerr writes the following:

Below is a message from Iain, who is in the Sea of Cortez preparing for the BBC’s “Blue Planet Live” for this Wednesday and Sunday. He said he’d never do a live show with whales again, but here we are! The following are his instructions on how to watch outside of the UK (4:00 EST?), and if you can figure them out and DO you are a good good friend. At the very least, send him your positive whale-y, snotty thoughts!

Dear Friends,

Chris, Andy and I have just arrived in Loreto. We are pretty damn excited to be taking part in the BBC Blue Planet Live Series. You can find more information on the show here: BBC Blue Planet Live. As I understand it the first show went live today, with Chris Packham and the crew in San Ignacio Lagoon. I have it on good faith that Chris was downwind of a grey whale and he got Snotted!

I am also excited but terrified to report that they have asked me to take part in the additional 4th live show on Sunday. So you can catch us on live TV on Wednesday the 27th (SnotBot with blue whales….🤞🤞) and Sunday 31st of March, EarBot and Humpback whales (🤞🤞).  Right now my biggest concern is finding whales and good weather, preferably both at the same time, then of course not making a fool of myself on live TV.

For those of you not in England, there is a way to watch the show live on your computer, Chris says you have to get a VPN, which before last week I had never heard of.  In short if the BBC website thinks that your computer is in England it will let you watch the show.  

Clearly if you can’t watch the show live I am sure BBC will put it up on their website so I will send that information out next week.

So here we go – Get a VPN

  1. Download NordVPN 7 day free trial (https://free.nordvpn.com/trial/)
    1. Make sure to remember to cancel before the 7th day to avoid being charged $100+ for the 3 year subscription
    2. Alternatively, you can buy one month for $11.99
  2. After you’ve signed up for the trial, download and install the VPN app on your computer https://ucp.nordvpn.com/downloads
  3. Open the VPN app, log into your account
  4. Search for “United Kingdom” server in the country list
    1. Once connected to a server, now the internet thinks you are in the UK

Create BBC account

  1. Go to BBC iPlayer (https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer)
  2. Register for an account (https://account.bbc.com/signin)
  3. Choose United Kingdom as your country, and put in a UK postal code, this one should work: SW191AA
  4. Verify your email address with the email sent to you after registering

Watch BBC ONE

  1. Log back into BBC iPlayer and search for Blue Planet Live if it already aired, or if you’re trying to watch live go to channels and click on BBC ONE, then click “watch live”
  2. When asked if you have a TV License, click YES
  3. Press play
    1. If you get a message that says “This content doesn’t seem to be working” – go back to your VPN app and click United Kingdom again, it will give you a new server number, refresh BBC iPlayer and try again. You might need to try a few different UK servers before you get one that works.

I will try to send out a few blogs from our time here, until then….

Best Fishes from Loreto.

Iain

Great info from Iain Kerr from Ocean Alliance

Take a look at these awesome photos of the humpback whales ..  amazing.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

SnotBot DR Blog 3 – Everything we had hoped for!

 It gives me great pleasure to advise you that our last 3 days on the water have been fantastic, each day better than the previous. The weather has fallen into a typical trade wind scenario, calm in the early morning and picking up as the day goes on. We were on the boat this morning by 6:15 and had the pleasure of watching a sunrise at sea (with a whale of course).

 Today we had our 1st sample by 7:15 am and had our 9th sample by 9:00 am, by 12:30 (when the winds picked up) we had collected a total of 14 samples bringing our expedition total to 54. Our goal was 50 samples, so we are now ahead of the game with 3 days to go. As the sun rose we were with a mother, calf and escort, we collected two Snot samples from each whale so we could have comparable samples, then we collected another sample from each whale flying at a higher altitude than the first set so that we can try to determine what effect height might have on the success/productivity of the biological data (snot) that gets onto the dish.

Angie Sremba is here from Dr. Scott Bakers lab at Oregon State, Angie has been focusing on the DNA analysis. She brought us some exciting information with regards to how our biological data capabilities have (successfully) evolved over time. It is important to remember here that part of this whole process is developing the collection tools and protocols and while Dr. Bakers lab is developing the preservation and analysis protocols. In summary 2016 we had a 39% success rate with regards to sexing the animals from the DNA and a 55% success rate on the mitochondrial DNA. In 2018 we had a 92% success rate with regards to sexing the animals from the DNA and a 96% success rate with the mitochondrial DNA. This is clearly exciting as it demonstrates that we are learning and getting better on all fronts.

 Another exciting data point today was the collection of some whale feces, the whales here are not feeding so it is unusual to find feces in this location. I think this is another amazing benefit of using drones for whale research, the drone saw the whale defecation (look very carefully for the brown stain in the last photo) and Britta and Andy were ready to collect it. This will prove invaluable in trying to put into context the hormone levels that we collect in the blow.   We had a number of fun whale moments today but one of the best ones was a mother and calf lob tailing together (lifting their tails up and crashing them down onto the water). The mother would throw her tail down with an enormous crash and then the baby would do the same hardly making a splash. Andy caught one of these moments on camera (see attached photo).

Today we also did some sea trials with EarBot, after this expedition I will have four days at home and then Chris and I go to Cabo San Lucas with EarBot to work on a BBC special, so we need to make sure that EarBot is in tip top shape.

 Last but not least I am happy to report that this blog is supported by some amazing photos from Christian Miller and Andy Rogan.

  Best Fishes from the DR.

 Iain

 Iain Kerr

Cell: 978 760 1784

http://www.whale.org

 

 

Today’s paper | #GloucesterMA Ocean Alliance in the news and update from DR

IMG_20190306_142919
Sean Horgan article for Gloucester Daily Times “Ocean Alliance Planning Innovation Center at Paint Factory” includes rendering of restoring 2 former sites for new use

View past Paint Factory Ocean alliance _20190306_Gloucester MA_© catherine ryan

March 5, 2019 Message from Iain Kerr – update on Ocean Alliance research trip off the coast of the Dominican Republic studying breeding humpback whales 

“It gives me great pleasure to advise you that our last 3 days on the water have been fantastic, each day better than the previous. The weather has fallen into a typical trade wind scenario, calm in the early morning and picking up as the day goes on. We were on the boat this morning by 6:15 and had the pleasure of watching a sunrise at sea (with a whale of course).

Today we had our 1st sample by 7:15 am and had our 9th sample by 9:00 am, by 12:30 (when the winds picked up) we had collected a total of 14 samples bringing our expedition total to 54. Our goal was 50 samples, so we are now ahead of the game with 3 days to go. As the sun rose we were with a mother, calf and escort, we collected two Snot samples from each whale so we could have comparable samples, then we collected another sample from each whale flying at a higher altitude than the first set so that we can try to determine what effect height might have on the success/productivity of the biological data (snot) that gets onto the dish.

Angie Sremba is here from Dr. Scott Bakers lab at Oregon State, Angie has been focusing on the DNA analysis. She brought us some exciting information with regards to how our biological data capabilities have (successfully) evolved over time. It is important to remember here that part of this whole process is developing the collection tools and protocols and while Dr. Bakers lab is developing the preservation and analysis protocols. In summary in 2016 we had a 39% success rate with regards to sexing the animals from the DNA and a 55% success rate on the mitochondrial DNA. In 2018 we had a 92% success rate with regards to sexing the animals from the DNA and a 96% success rate with the mitochondrial DNA. This is clearly exciting as it demonstrates that we are learning and getting better on all fronts.

Another exciting data point today was the collection of some whale feces, the whales here are not feeding so it is unusual to find feces in this location. I think this is another amazing benefit of using drones for whale research, the drone saw the whale defecation (look very carefully for the brown stain in the last photo) and Britta and Andy were ready to collect it. This will prove invaluable in trying to put into context the hormone levels that we collect in the blow. 

We had a number of fun whale moments today but one of the best ones was a mother and Calf lob tailing together (lifting their tails up and crashing them down onto the water). The mother would throw her tail down with an enormous crash and then the baby would do the same hardly making a splash. Andy caught one of these moments on camera (see attached photo).

Today we also did some sea trials with EarBot, after this expedition I will have four days at home and then Chris and I go to Cabo San Lucas with EarBot to work on a BBC special, so we need to make sure that EarBot is in tip top shape. Last but not least I am happy to report that this blog is supported by some amazing photos from Christian Miller and Andy Rogan.

I fly out on Thursday, so I plan to do one more blog tomorrow. I hope to report on some more EarBot and Hydrophone recordings so I can attach some Humpback whale songs from the DR, and attach a few more amazing photos.

Best Fishes from the DR. 

Iain Kerr http://www.whale.org

ARKR2117
“We had a number of fun whale moments today but one of the best ones was a mother and Calf lob tailing together (lifting their tails up and crashing them down onto the water). The mother would throw her tail down with an enormous crash and then the baby would do the same hardly making a splash.” courtesy photo by Andy Rogan for Ocean Alliance

 

courtesy photos for Ocean Alliance by Christian Miller:

 

From our friend Iain Kerr Ocean Alliance

Dear Friends,

Here we go again! The Parley SnotBot team is off on expedition, we’re taking along some other ‘Bots and will be having some long distance chats!

This time we’re in the Dominican Republic (DR), visiting the breeding / calving grounds of the North West Atlantic humpback whales (photo 1). I was first here in the 1990’s aboard the RV Siben and then the RV Odyssey so it is great to be back. This location and this group of whales is very special to us, because while the humpbacks mate and give birth in the waters off the DR, some of them migrate up the East Coast of the U.S. to spend their summers feeding on Stellwagen Banks, right off the coast from our headquarters in Gloucester, Mass. (Photo 2)

During Expedition 9 we took the Parley SnotBot out to study and collect (Exhaled Breath Condensate) “Snot” samples from the Gloucester population of humpbacks and we’re very excited to bring all of our skills and tools to bear to add what knowledge we can, about these whales in their winter grounds.

As with every Parley SnotBot expedition, this one started out with us at the airport with a ridiculous number of bags (total of 20 bags with 2 carry on’s each ☹). We flew Boston to Miami, Miami to Santo Domingo where we picked up a rental mini van. We then drove for almost 3 hours to our Air B&B accommodation (Photo 3) in Samana. Six people and twenty bags was a bit of a squeeze in the mini van. So when we got to Samana Chris and I removed some of the chairs from the mini-van to make it a bit more SnotBot friendly (Photo 4).

In addition to SnotBot, we are putting energy into another member of the Drones For Whale Research family while we are in the DR EarBot. EarBot was first seen in Alaska in 2016 and 2017 (photo 5). While our other drone work has kept us busy, our Robotics manager Chris Zadra has given EarBot some much needed TLC over the last few months and we are excited to be putting EarBot back to work to record humpback whale songs in the DR.  As well as doing some behavioral studies and working with regional scientists monitoring the whale watch industry here we will also be doing photogrammetry work (measuring the size of whale with a drone) using our LIDAR array (photo 6) mounted on one of our Inspire 2 drones.

We have a bigger team here this year as we continue to try to improve Parley SnotBot and our Drones for Whale Research program. The team from past expeditions are Iain Kerr, Andy Rogan, Christian Miller & Chris Zadra. Now we have Ocean Alliance staff member Britta Akerley helping Andy with the science and data and Angie Sremba from Dr. Scott Bakers lab at Oregon State.  Angie has been doing most of the DNA analysis of our Snot samples so we thought it important for her to see the collection process. Next week Ainsley Smith from Gloucester will be joining us to be trained on our data protocols and management. As if this was not enough we will be joined by Germany’s largest TV network ZDF (https://www.zdf.de) to shoot a documentary short.

We did get out on the water today but it was blowing close to 20 knots (photo 7) which like Gabon makes the work more challenging. To try and beat these trade winds the plan is to be on the boat tomorrow at 6:00 am (before sunrise) and be with the whales as the sun rises – hopefully we will have some spectacular photos and will be able to collect plenty of Snot before the wind picks up (fingers crossed).

Last but not least I am excited to report that these blogs are going Live! Our good friends at Maritime Gloucester will host an evening with a live discussion from the DR with the Parley SnotBot team along with live and archival footage.  We hope that we can share some of the expedition excitement and let people know what it is like to be working in the field and answer a few questions….LIVE. If you live near Gloucester, please come on down and be part of the conversations at Maritime Gloucester on Sunday March 3rd, you can Register here. Next time we do Expedition Live we hope to webcast as well but for this first one we are trying to keep it simple as we can.

So once again we will be keeping busy, that said I am sure we will have some great stories to tell along with Christian Miller’s stunning photos.

As always thanks again to our partners and expedition supporters Parley.

Onwards Upwards and Fair Winds from the Dominican Republic!

Iain

Iain Kerr

http://www.whale.org

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

SnotBot Live! Sunday at 5pm

The Ocean Alliance research team will be chatting live from the Dominican Republic. This is a great opportunity to learn more about the humpback whales that feed off of Cape Ann and ask all your SnotBot questions.

The Event is FREE, please RSVP to reserve your seat. https://www.eventbrite.com/e/snotbot-live-tickets-57096562355SnotBot Live Poster

 

 

 

THERE IS MORE TO SEA II/ call for artists

After a successful THERE IS MORE TO SEA I, there will be another on October 5, 2018 – October 7, 2018.

There’s More to Sea II

Friday, October 5, Opening Reception with Artists 6-9 pm
Saturday October 6 – Sunday October 7, 12-6 pm
Gloucester Paint Factory to Benefit Ocean Alliance

Call for Entry:
Receiving: Thursday, October 4, 4-7 pm and Friday, October 5, 12-2pm
Pick up: Sunday October 7, 6-8 pm
Reception: Friday October 5, 6-9 pm

Entry Fee:
– $30 for three pieces.
– Entrants may also submit up to 6 matted and sleeved prints for bin work.
– Entry will be capped when space is filled.
– Entry based on first come, first paid of entry fee.
– Items should be ready to hang.

– Six foot tables are available for artists with table pieces. $30 for full table, $15 for half table. First come, first serve.

Entry Fee payable to Jessica Biker at 7 Morton Place, Gloucester MA

Entry Deadline: September 29
– Please include show entry form with entry fee or by email.

THERE’S MORE TO SEA II – ARTIST ENTRY FORM

NAME

PHONE                                                      EMAIL

ADDRESS
Please complete form below for all work. Please provide height and length of hanging pieces (including frame, if applicable).
Title Media Type Height Length Price

 

Title Media Type Height Length Price
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sales:
– All items submitted must be for sale.
– 20% of all sales will go to the Ocean Alliance and Restoration of the Gloucester Paint Factory.

The “There is More to Sea” organizers will take reasonable care in handling and showing exhibitor’s work. The exhibiting artist understands and agrees that all works are exhibited at their own risk. The “There is More to Sea” organizers and Ocean Alliance do not carry insurance for the artwork and do not assume responsibility for any loss, damage, or theft of work during the event. By participating in the show, you agree to the above terms and conditions.

Questions: Jessica Biker – jessicaabiker@gmail.com, Melissa Cox – mcoxward2@gmail.com

Goetemann Artist DEBORAH REDWOOD to Construct a Large Whale’s Fluke at Ocean Alliance

News from Rocky Neck:

Goetemann Artist to Construct a Large Whale’s Fluke
Artist Talk: Tuesday, September 4, 7:00 PM
The Cultural Center at Rocky Neck, 6 Wonson Street, Gloucester, MA
Public Construction Dates: September 10 ­ 28
On the Grounds of Ocean Alliance, 32 Horton Street, Gloucester, MA
Closing Talk: Friday, September 28, 6:00 PM
On the Grounds of Ocean Alliance, 32 Horton Street Gloucester, MA

Gloucester Ma—The Goetemann Artist Residency—a program of the Rocky Neck Art Colony, Inc. that provides artists from around the world a live/work space for a month at a time—is pleased to introduce its 2018 Environmental/Installation Artist, Australian Deborah Redwood.

To be considered for the 2018 month-long residency, artists submitted a proposal responding to the mission of Ocean Alliance, RNAC’s non-profit partner, which states in part: “Ocean Alliance strives to increase public awareness of the importance of whale and ocean health through research and public education.”

Redwood is the second Goetemann resident to work at the site following last year’s installation of a seven-foot tall Great Auk by Nathan Thomas Wilson. Redwood’s practice encompasses sculpture and installation that evokes a sense of play and comments on society’s waste. She graduated from the College of Fine Arts (Sydney) in 2006 and was awarded a one-year exchange program at Alfred University, in New York.

Beginning September 10 and continuing through September 28, visitors are invited to stroll down Horton Street to observe the artist while she constructs a large whale’s fluke (part of a whale’s tail) on the grounds of Ocean Alliance, site of the former Tarr and Wonson Paint Factory at 32 Horton Street, Gloucester. Using equipment donated by J&L Welding in Gloucester, Redwood will collect scrap metal and weld it into a sculpture rising about ten feet above the water’s edge. This is a wonderful opportunity to share an artistic experience with children while making them aware of the fragility of life in our oceans. Printed information about the artist and her process will be available on site.

Deborah Redwood is the latest artist at the Goetemann Residency and the public is invited to learn more about her work when she presents an Artist Talk on Tuesday, September 4, at 7:00 PM at the Cultural Center at Rocky Neck.

For the past decade Redwood has participated in group and solo exhibitions in Australia and overseas, including; Japan, China, India and the USA.  She has also attended several artist-in-residence programs, in New York, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Vermont, Jaipur (India), Wellington (NZ), Sydney and now, Gloucester, MA. This challenging month-long project wraps up with a Closing Talk by the artist for the public at the Ocean Alliance site (weather permitting) on Friday, September 28 at 6:00 PM.

Images:

Deborah Redwood – Spiraling Shell

Deborah Redwood – Starfish at Killalea

Deborah Redwood – At Work

 

 

 

Ocean Alliance Harbor Cruise Fundraiser

Hope to see you on the Ocean Alliance Harbor Cruise on Thursday! There are still some tickets remaining. We have great raffle items donated from many local businesses. Purchase your tickets here: https://shop.whale.org/products/ocean-alliance-harbor-cruise

OA fundraising cruise_Final flier

Follow Ocean Alliance on Facebook for updates: https://www.facebook.com/oceanalliance/

Save the Date- June 15th

Save the date, the unveiling of the I Am More opening exhibit is just 15 days away!

Come down to Ocean Alliance at the Paint Factory on Friday June 15th from 7-10pm for the opening reception. Gallery hours will be June 16th & 17th 9-5pm

Learn more about the I Am More portraits at Amy Kerr’s website: https://amykerrdrawsportraits.wordpress.com

I Am More flyer jpeg.jpg

Massachusetts Whale Trail #whaletrailMA and more in Gloucester

The Massachusetts Whale Trail “is a special collection of museums and attractions, whale watching, and historic sites and tours with a connection to whales.” Capt Bill & Sons, 7 Seas Whale Watch, and Cape Ann Whale Watch are included.

WhaletrailMA

Naturally, Gloucester had created a version on the HarborWalk which you can find on line or on the trail at marker #36 right by Tonno Restaurant, Gloucester, MA.  Whale watching is beloved here in town. The Gloucester HarborWalk has whale watch information, points of interest and a tab to all the local whale watching  companies.”Most offer daily whale watching trips from April through October.”

SEVEN SEAS WHALE WATCH +1 (888) 283-1776
CAPE ANN WHALE WATCH +1 (800) 877-5110
CAPT BILL & SONS +1 (800) 339-4253
YANKEE FLEET +1 (978) 283-0313

When O’Maley 6th graders study Gloucester and visit the HarborWalk, the student thank you drawings featured whale tails and spouting whales. It’s common for local kids to be invited to birthday parties on whale watch trips.  Donna Ardizzoni photographed and wrote about her Right Whale sightings from shore spring 2018, and more whale sightings around town. Parsons Street wall Mural (by the Fish Net HarborWalk street mural) was painted by local kids under the direction of Cape Ann Art Haven and features a great whale.

20170925_085547

 

Ocean Alliance headquarters is located in Gloucester. Kim Smith posted the announcement for its most recent National Geographic special. 

Maritime Museum (opening May 26) and Cape Ann Museum are included on the new Whale Trail map. Cape Ann Museum collection includes Hartley’s study for Whales Jaw Dogtown

Hartley-WhalesJaw collection CAPE ANN MUSEUM Gloucester Mass

Stores along Main Street and throughout Gloucester’s neighborhoods have art and goods inspired by whales. Look for hand carved wood sculptures at Willow Rest. Savour Wine & Cheese, Gloucester, MA