Join SF Bay ACS Chapter and Oceanic Society on Whales of Guerrero Research Project!

We are very excited to partner with Oceanic Society on research trips around the world. Our members will receive a 10% discount on these trips and your money goes toward the important research projects!
Our 2015 Barra de Potosi   Humpback Whale Monitoring Research Program was so successful we will be working in the field as citizen scientists again with the Whales of Guerrero Research Project. Barra de Potosi Humpback Whale Monitoring Research Program Marine Citizen Science • Playa Blanca, Mexico • 2016 Dates – Feb 1 – Feb 8, 18-25 Feb, Feb 29 – March 7 Participate in Pioneering Research in a Breathtaking Landscape
Oceanic Society invites you to beautiful Barra de Potosí, Mexico located on Bahia de Petatlan just south of Zihuatanejo. This region is an important part of the migration route for the northeastern Pacific population of humpback whales. While the presence of whales has been documented in the area for years, there have been no formal studies of them until now.
As a participant on this expedition you will have the chance to help scientists better understand this important whale population by working in the field as a citizen scientist with the Whales of Guerrero Research Project. You will work alongside American and Mexican scientists and local fishermen to spot, identify, and make scientific observations of humpback whales and any of four species of dolphins found in the area. We  also frequently observe olive ridley sea turtles, manta rays, golden cow nosed and spotted eagle rays, red-billed tropic birds, blue and brown footed boobies, roseate spoonbills, brown and white pelicans, frigate birds, and countless other noteworthy marine species. In addition to learning humpback whale fluke identification and hydro-acoustic recording techniques, you will also assist with recording other key ecosystem data. Our citizen scientists come away with a wealth of knowledge about humpback whale behavior and biology and the unique experience of being a part of a truly pioneering project. 
You can go on these trips individually or together. Research trips are a wonderful way to travel in not only seeing the area, but helping with important research programs and interacting with the local people in environmental education. We look forward to having you join us!

Dead Whales Do Tell Tales – What We Learn from Post-mortem Examinations & Museum Specimens — September 29th at Bay Model Visitor Center

When: September 29th @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Where:  Bay Model Visitor Center  2100 Bridgeway, Sausalito, CA 94965

Cost:  $5 Suggested Donation goes toward Student Research Grants

Moe Flannery

Dead Whales Do Tell Tales – What we learn from post-mortem examinations and museum specimens

Credit: Sue Pemberton, California Academy of Sciences

As a member of the Marine Mammal Stranding Network, the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco, along with the Marine Mammal Center in Sausalito, responds to any dead whale that washes up along the coast between the Sonoma/Mendocino county line and the San Mateo/Santa Cruz county line. Each carcass offers scientists the opportunity to learn about the health of whale populations and the threats that they face. By performing necropsies in the field, scientists collect valuable data about whale migration patterns, habitat threats, human impacts, and geographic distribution that help to inform critical conservation decisions and scientific research. Moe Flannery, Ornithology and Mammalogy Collection Manager, will share some of the stories uncovered during recent whale post-mortem exams along our local coastlines.

Continue reading

View Into Vocalizations – October 27th at Saylor’s Restaurant

When: October 27th @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Where:  Saylor’s Restaurant and Bar, Upstairs Cabo Wabo room

2009 Bridgeway, Sausalito, CA 94965

Cost:  $5 Donation goes toward Student Research Grants

Maren Anderson   “View Into Vocalizations”

maren-Calf surfacing_watermark

For the last 15 years, Cetos Research Organization has used underwater videography with a variety of recording set-ups that allow us to capture both video and sounds in our studies of Hawaiian humpback whales. While collecting data on sounds and behaviors, we also, when possible, obtain photo identification of humpbacks, and collect annual song samples by tracking and recording singers. Our priority is the social sounds and underwater behaviors of different humpback groups.

In the 2015 field season, Cetos focused on using non-invasive suction cup tagging on mothers, calves, escorts, and competitive males, in order to track movements and acoustics both above and below water. These tags have ability to take in acoustic information as well as positional movement underwater. Join Maren to hear about using their current research to understand Hawaiian humpback whales on a new level, as well as give a sneak peak into a current publication underway on calf susceptibility to ship strikes. Continue reading

March 2-13, 2016:  Baja California & The Sea of Cortez  “Whales and wildlife of the Forgotten Peninsula”

juan carlosJC-Blue Whale

Join Founder Juan-Carlos Solis and Quetzal Adventures on this incredible trip!

This is one of those trips that people talk about and remember always!

Slim as a blade, the Baja California peninsula jackknifes from mainland Mexico, creating a cleft filled by the Sea of Cortez. Every year, California Gray Whales migrate here from arctic waters-the longest mammal migration known. In the protected lagoon of San Ignacio, watch the Grays during their breeding, calving, and nurturing cycle.

JCContinue sailing around the tip of Baja in search of Fin, Sperm, Blue and Humpback Whales along with pods of Common Dolphins accompanied by Magnificent Frigate birds and Red-billed Tropic birds. Along the way, visit lovely and uninhabited islands such as San Jose and Santa Catalina. Awake to an incomparable sunrise, snorkel in an isolated cove, bask in Baja California’s seductive desert warmth, stroll its glorious beaches, and-best of all–wonder at its wildlife.

Juan-Carlos is very supportive of SF Bay ACS chapter and is  giving  us a donation for each person signing up on this wonderful trip. We look forward to seeing you on the trip!

For full details go to:!baja-2016/c24f1


Volunteer and Board Member Opportunities!

Dear Members and Friends of SF Bay ACS Chapter

For all my wonderful friends who have been involved in the SF Bay American Cetacean Society Chapter I have exciting news!  A group of people dedicated to the goals of SF Bay ACS has been laying the groundwork for a new period of growth for our Chapter.  We are formalizing the Chapter’s structure and procedures and reaching out to you to become involved!  To be successful we need those of you who both appreciate our work and have some time to give to consider what role you might play.

We hope you will become a volunteer – either to help with the daily nuts and bolts of the chapter or to take on one of our leadership roles.  I briefly explain some of these roles below, but if you are interested please explore the attached PDF descriptions.

If you are new to SF Bay ACS or just want to test the waters you can start on a limited scale, as a nuts and bolts volunteer.  We will find ways for you to apply your particular skills and knowledge.

We need a few well-organized people to take on our Presentation and Education Committees to maintain our beloved monthly speaker programs and to develop and expand our education programs through new speaking opportunities, school visits, and tabling at regional events.  You could join our Volunteer Committee and help to develop new opportunities, recruit and train new volunteers, and match each volunteer to their ideal job.  Or if you prefer a behind-the-scenes role and have a head for numbers we need just a couple people for a Finance Committee to be responsible for our donations, grants, annual budget, and other financial concerns.

If you are ready to take on a larger commitment we need several dedicated and skilled visionaries who appreciate and believe in the work we do to step up and become Board members.  Board members will share the responsibility to guide the Chapter and plan for its future.

Now I’m sure that any of you who know our Chapter might say “Hey!  Doesn’t Lynette do all those jobs?”  That’s why I am especially excited to announce that I am withdrawing from my administrative responsibilities so that I can expand my efforts toward research and conservation  So over the coming months, as others step up I will help them learn the ropes and ease out of my current roles.  My goal is to be finished with this transition by the end of 2015.

I am excited.  Our chapter is strong and our impact is unlimited as long as we tap the vision and creativity of those in the Bay Area who care about cetaceans. So please view our positions and step forward.  And if you think of a new way you can help our chapter, let us know and we will do our best to fit you in a role where you can pursue your dream.  Then, if you have a friend who might want to be involved, tell them about our work.

Below are brief descriptions of some of the positions needed. Full descriptions with applications are the attached PDFs.  Please feel free to contact me with any questions. We look forward to working with you!

Visit our Volunteer and Board Member Opportunities Page under our “About” tab occasionally for updated opportunities!


Lynette R. Koftinow

President San Francisco Bay Area Chapter

*SF Bay ACS Vice President

The Vice President of the America Cetacean Society, San Francisco Bay Area Chapter (ACS
SFBAC) is an officer elected by the [Board of Directors of the ACS SFBAC], and serves as a
member of the Board of Directors (Board) and the Board of the ACS SFBAC.
The primary responsibility of the Vice President is to assist the president and to help lead the
ACS SFBAC toward goals defined by the Board of the ACS SFBAC.
While in this position the Vice President shall gain an understanding of the roles and
responsibilities of the President position, but it is not [?] a President-elect position. However, In case of vacancy in the office of President, the Vice-President shall automatically assume the roles and responsibilities of President until a new President takes office.

*SF Bay ACS: Education Director

The Education director is responsible for planning and managing educational programs and activities that further the ACS mission. The Education Director plays a key role in growing the organization’s capacity to develop and motivate teams of volunteers with a “many hands make light work” philosophy; maintaining working relationships with experts in the marine science fields; and assessing the organization’s programmatic needs and readiness.

The Education Director is a volunteer position on the chapter’s board of directors. The board of directors is a working board in an all-volunteer-organization. The expected time investment for the Director of Education is 4 to 8 hours per week. During a special program or project the time investment may temporarily increase.

For full description visit our Volunteer and Board Member Opportunities Page under our “About” tab

*SF Bay ACS: Volunteer Coordinator

The Volunteer Coordinator plays a key role in growing the organization’s capacity to develop and motivate teams of volunteers with a “many hands make light work” philosophy, and fulfilling service requests within the San Francisco Bay Area cetacean- and marine-sciences community. The Volunteer Coordinator is responsible for overseeing chapter’s pool of volunteers and assigning volunteers to projects and events.

*Responsibilities, Desired Skills & Knowledge, Time commitment detailed information:


*SF Bay ACS: Communications and Outreach Coordinator

The Communications and Outreach Coordinator oversees the chapter’s communications with media outlets, associate organizations, and the community at large. The Coordinator’s objective is to make the public aware of chapter activities, drive participation, and develop opportunities for chapter engagement.

*Responsibilities, Desired Skills & Knowledge, and Time Commitment detailed information:


*SF Bay ACS Chapter: Board Member

Purpose of the Board

The purpose of the Board of Directors of the SF Bay American Cetacean Society Chapter is, in good faith, to guide the SF Bay American Cetacean Society Chapter.

*Responsibilities, Length of Term,  Meetings, Time commitment detailed information   and application:


ACS-SFBay Area Chapter Board Application

Dramatic 24-hour Gray Whale Disentanglement off Laguna Beach, CA

Capt. Dave and his wife, Gisele, were headed to dinner with friends Friday evening at 5:30 PM when they received a call from one of their whale watching boats that a whale with a huge amount of gillnet wrapped around its tail flukes had been spotted. They quickly abandoned their plans and headed to Dana Point Harbor where they met up with volunteer members of Capt. Dave’s crew, Tom Southern, Mark Tyson and Steve Plantz and headed out in their whale watching boat to see the entangled whale and attempt to help it before it got dark. Continue reading