Right Whales

The Marine Discovery Center will kick off its 2022 Monthly Lecture Series with an annual January update on North Atlantic Right Whales and will offer the event in a live outdoor setting under MDC’s pavilion.

Julie Albert, manager of the Marine Resources Council’s North Atlantic Right Whale Program, will make the face-to-face presentation on Thursday, January 20, at 7 p.m. The event is free to the public, but donations to the Marine Discovery Center are always appreciated.

Albert will discuss the current status of the endangered species and the recent sightings of these whales around coastal Central Florida. The first sightings of Right Whales this season occurred in December (2021).

Albert trains and leads volunteers along Florida’s east coast to spot and report North Atlantic Right Whales. The whales travel from Canada and New England to Georgia and Florida each winter to deliver their calves.

The presentation is designed to encourage individuals to engage in a volunteer contact system that alerts officials whenever these critically endangered mammals are in the area. Officials rely on volunteer observers in a coordinated effort to help alert commercial shipping and fishing vessels when the whales are present.

There are currently fewer than 400 North Atlantic Right Whales in existence, making local and regional volunteers essential to protecting these animals when they arrive off Central Florida’s shorelines each winter.

The presentation will be videotaped and archived later on MDC’s website, allowing those who cannot attend the lecture in person to watch it later from home.

Guests attending the lecture are encouraged to wear masks and to practice social distancing during the event. Some chairs will be available under the pavilion, but guests may also bring their own folding chairs to sit wherever they feel most comfortable. Guests should dress appropriately for the outdoor temperature on the day of the presentation.

For more information about the lecture, contact the Marine Discovery Center at 386-428-4828. The Marine Discovery Center is located off the North Causeway at 520 Barracuda Blvd., New Smyrna Beach, Fla.

The lecture is open to the public at no charge  |  No reservations are required