Lecture with Stormy Mayo: “North Atlantic Right Whales: On the Path to Extinction”

Join NHA guest speaker, Stormy Mayo of Center for Coastal Studies for an evening lecture, “North Atlantic Right Whales: on the Path to Extinction”.

The right whale of the North Atlantic Ocean is the rarest of the great whales, clinging to existence on the very brink of extinction, threatened by entanglement in fishing gear and the insidious effects of climate change.  The whales’ story, along with efforts by scientists and conservationists to save them, speaks to the issues of biodiversity, protection of the oceans, and the conflict between conservation and economic imperatives.  In this extensively illustrated presentation Dr. Mayo will describe the status of the right whales, their history, the major efforts to understand and protect them, and pose the ultimate question: “As stewards responsible for the vitality of the coastal waters of Cape Cod and the Islands, how shall we confront the issues that control the right whales’ future?”  Included in this discussion are the results of recent studies that suggest that the right whale of the North Atlantic are on the path to extinction.

Charles “Stormy” Mayo, Ph.D., is a Senior Scientist and Director of the North Atlantic Right Whale Ecology Program at the Center for Coastal Studies in Provincetown, Massachusetts.  In 1975, Dr. Mayo along with two other scientists founded the Center and he has been studying endangered large whales for the last 40 years, directing efforts to understand the interaction between rare whales and the ecosystems that support them.   In recent years Dr. Mayo has directed an investigation of the interaction between food resources and North Atlantic right whales with a particular emphasis on the impact of anthropogenic change including the impacts of climate change on whale habitat.  His technical work has ranged from complex computer modeling of foraging movements of whales to the development of new techniques for documenting whale behavior and zooplankton distribution.  Dr. Mayo is also known for his efforts to reduce whale mortality caused by entanglement in fishing gear through the development of new management techniques and methods to rescue entangled whales at sea.  Dr. Mayo serves on several federal conservation teams including the Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Team, charged with development of strategies to reduce the mortality of whales tangled in fishing gear.  He has also served on the Board of the North Atlantic Right Whale Consortium.  Dr. Mayo received his B.A. at Dartmouth College, and his Masters and Ph.D. degrees from the School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences in Miami, Florida.

The Center for Coastal Studies’ web site is at:  www.coastalstudies.org

Media sponsorship generously provided by Novation Media

The Nantucket Historical Association preserves and interprets the history of Nantucket through its programs, collections, and properties, in order to promote the island’s significance and foster an appreciation of it among all audiences.

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