whale tales 2018: FEBRUARY 16-19

Humpback Whale (Megaptera novaeangliae), Maui, Hawaii

Whale Trust invites the public to join world-renowned scientists, photographers, and conservationists at the 12th Annual Whale Tales, February 16th-19th, in West Maui. Whale Tales 2018 features four days of expert presentations, guided whale watches, films, an education/art expo, and the first annual Whale Tales Family Day. More than 16,000 people have attended the event since its debut in 2006 and contributed over $575,000 for whale research in Hawai‘i.

Learn the latest findings on marine mammals around the world including right whales, killer whales, humpback whales, and bowheads. Hear from the experts about the effects of human activities on marine mammals and view stunning underwater photography and videography of whales in their natural environment. Join the experts on the water with the whales during benefit whale watching cruises hosted throughout the weekend.

National Geographic Photographer and Whale Trust Co-Founder Flip Nicklin explains, “In a time of so many unknowns regarding the future of our oceans, Whale Tales is an opportunity to hear directly from the top scientists closest to the study of whales and the marine environment.”

The event will run Friday, Saturday and Sunday afternoons at The Ritz-Carlton and Monday afternoon at The Hyatt Regency Maui. Presentations are open to the public. A $20 per day donation is encouraged to support whale research through the Whale Tales Beneficiary Program.

The Education and Art Expo runs throughout the weekend, featuring hands-on learning opportunities with local nonprofit organizations, marine photography and art displays, and showcases from local businesses. Benefit whale watches with the experts are hosted daily throughout the weekend. For detailed information and tickets visit whaletales.org.

To support the beneficiaries of Whale Tales, please consider a $20 suggested attendance donation per day. To register and view a detailed schedule of events, visit whaletales.org.


Friday, February 16

12:30pm – 5pm
Education & Art Expo, The Ritz Carlton, Kapalua

2pm – 5pm
Presentations, The Ritz Carlton, Kapalua

Saturday, February 17

7am -11:30am
Benefit Whale Watches

12pm – 5pm
Education & Art Expo, The Ritz Carlton, Kapalua

12:00 pm – 12:30 pm
Brown Bag Lunch with Dr. Jim Darling

1:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Presentations, The Ritz Carlton, Kapalua

Sunday, February 18

7am -11:30am
Benefit Whale Watches

12:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Education & Art Expo, The Ritz Carlton, Kapalua

1:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Presentations, The Ritz Carlton, Kapalua

Monday, February 19

7:00 am – 6:30 pm
Benefit Whale Watches

10:00 am – 11:30 am
Family Day Whale Watch

12:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Hands-On Science, Art and Technology Expo, The Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa

12:30 pm
Film: Big Pacific as featured on PBS

1:45 pm
Film: MacGillivray Freeman’s Dream Big

Event Highlights & Facts

  • North Atlantic right whale numbers have declined to less than 450 animals. With only approximately 100 females left in this population and at least 17 deaths in 2017, scientists are worried about their future. Dr. Scott Krauss and Dr. Rosalind Rolland will discuss the health of right whales, what whales are revealing about ocean health, and current efforts to reduce mortalities. “While we do not yet have a collective view of how animals like right whales will survive in an industrialized ocean, scientists must work with all stakeholders to help them make human activities less detrimental.” (Dr. Scott Krauss)
  • Dr. John Ford will describe how killer whales are studied in the wild, and will highlight some of the surprising findings about the cultural traditions and ecology of this top marine predator. “As the top marine predators, killer whales, or orcas, are sentinels of ocean health. Orca survival depends on clean, productive marine ecosystems and it is up to us to keep them that way.” (Dr. John Ford)
  • The new Disneynature movie, Dolphins, features epic footage of humpback whales and other marine life in the waters around Maui. Whale Tales audiences will be treated to a sneak peek with Dr. Joseph Mobley presenting behind-the scenes footage and clips from the filming of the new movie!
  • Family Day Whale Watch aboard the Maui Princess on Monday, February 19th featuring education stations for kids inside the boat.
  • Double feature film screenings on Monday, February 19th. Enjoy an exclusive a of an episode from Big Pacific produced by NHNZ in association with PBS. MacGillivray Freeman films will also present Dream Big: Engineering Our World. This is the only opportunity to see this film on Maui.
  • Stand Up for Whales, a guided stand-up paddle tour on Wednesday, February 21rd hosted by Jodelle Fitzwater and Miranda Camp and sponsored by Raw Elements.

Whale Tales is hosted annually by Whale Trust, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to whale research and education and is made possible through the generous support of many individuals and organizations. This year’s presenting sponsors are Makana Aloha Foundation, MacGillivray Freeman Films/One World One Ocean, Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic, George and Marie Weis, and Mary Forbes and Gary Terrell in honor of Gary’s parents Jeanette and Elmer Terrell.

Whale watches can be purchased in advance at http://www.whaletales.org or by calling 572-5700. For more information, tickets and registration visit http://www.whaletales.org.

About Whale Trust

Whale Trust is a Maui-based non-profit organization whose mission is to promote, support, and conduct scientific research on whales and the marine environment, and broadly communicate the findings to the public. Its founders are passionate scientists and explorers who believe that science—the quest for answers to the most intriguing questions about our natural world—lies at the heart of environmental education and conservation. Whale Trust research programs focus on exploring the natural communication, behavior patterns, and social organization of whales. But Whale Trust seeks to do more than fund groundbreaking field research on our earth’s largest marine mammals. Results from Whale Trust field research are the basis for a broader program of outreach and education that involve the public, educators, and a new generation of researchers whom Whale Trust hopes to inspire. Visit http://www.whaletrust.org.


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