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2018 SF Bay ACS Chapter Naturalist Training Program

Love whales? Want an interesting and fun Volunteer opportunity?

Become a SF Bay ACS Chapter Naturalist!

Our March 1, 2018 Naturalist Training class is now taking signups. Our classes fill very quickly so be sure to sign up right away!

For further information & to sign up please email Lynette R Koftinow acs.sfbay@gmail.com   

SF Bay ACS Chapter 2018 Naturalist Training Program: Once trained, our naturalists will help other community members observe and interpret our local marine habitat. Naturalists will be able to represent SF Bay ACS on tours (both on land and water), in classroom visits, at festival exhibits, and at other events in the Bay Area.

Our naturalist program will give the community more opportunities to interact meaningfully with our local marine environment. It will help deepen our collective understanding of cetaceans. The program will strengthen our ability to include each other in creative conversation.

Through these efforts, SF Bay ACS Chapter gives the public access to local marine wildlife and to the people who work to understand and protect cetaceans. The result is community connections that enrich the lives of everyone involved.

The SF Bay ACS Naturalist Program will:

  • Give the typical student, working professional, retiree, or otherwise available person a chance to explore interpreting the natural world as a hobby, avocation, or vocation;
  • Increase education resources for teachers;
  • Increase education opportunities for classroom students;
  • Enrich the experiences of visitors to our local nature areas;
  • Create awareness and effect change in the community with respect to the needs of cetaceans and the effects of human actions upon them;
  • Bring the general population further into the dialog;
  • Support a learning culture with a conservation focus; and
  • Increase SF Bay ACS Chapter’s capacity to provide services to the community.

Our first class will begin Thursday March 1st! This will be a 6 week course 6:00-9:00 pm. Thursdays: March 1, 8, 15, 22, 29, April 5

Location: Sports Basement: Presidio: 610 Old Mason St., San Francisco

Link to map:


American Cetacean Society – San Francisco Bay Chapter protects whales, dolphins, porpoises, and their habitats through public education, research grants, and conservation actions.

Chapter activities include a monthly presentation series by noted marine biologists and ocean specialists, educational outreach tabling at science festivals, classes in bay area schools, 10 week ocean/cetacean curriculum class in bay area Citizen Schools, gives yearly student travel and research grants, and whale watching trips.

Jan. 23, 2018: Dr. Baldo B. Marinovic “The Role of Krill in the Food Web”

Tuesday January 23rd

Location: The Bay Model, Sausalito CA

Time: 7pm

Join ACS-SF Bay Chapter for a fascinating presentation by Dr. Baldo B. Marinovic.

“Krill:  more than just food for whales”

Krill are found throughout the world’s oceans and are particular abundant in cool productive waters such as those found in polar seas.  Everyone knows that whales eat krill (actually not all do), but did you know that krill play a pivotal role in the oceanic ecosystem.

Here in California, baleen whales show up during the spring and summer months to gorge on seasonally dense krill aggregations but there is so much more to this story.  For instance krill are the main prey for seven of the most valuable commercially fished species (including salmon and squid).  This presentation will explore the natural history of krill within the Central California Coastal ecosystem in an attempt to highlight their importance with respect to the overall health of this ecosystem.

Dr. Baldo Marinovic, a research biologist at Institute of Marine Sciences, University of California, Santa Cruz studies zooplankton ecology and the dynamics of ocean food webs. MS Marine sciences UCSC, PhD Zoology University Western Australia.

Since 1997, he has been conducting surveys in Monterey Bay to understand what determines the distribution, abundance, and species composition of krill, tiny shrimp-like invertebrates that are a crucial link in the Bay’s food web.

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Feb. 21, 2018: ACS SFBAY Presents A Special Evening With Michael Aw

Wednesday February 21st

Location: The Bay Model, Sausalito CA

Time: 7pm

Please join ACS-SF Bay Chapter and the Marin Scuba club with Northern CA Underwater Photographic Society for a Special Evening with Michael Aw

Michael AW – Founder of Ocean Geographic Magazine, Conservationist, Explorer, and Wildlife Photographer will share his expeditions in the Arctic, Antarctic and numerous locations around the globe.

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March 27, 2018: “Heirs to Our Oceans”

Tuesday March 27th

Location: The Bay Model, Sausalito CA

Time: 7 pm

Join ACS-SF Bay Chapter for a fascinating presentation 

HEIRS TO OUR OCEANS.  That’s who we are, along with your children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and newly-spawned zygotes. 

Heirs to our oceans are the next generation and the future generations who will inherit this planet and all that comes with it…. after your generation is done with it.

We live just near the Pacific Ocean.  We have learned about and seen the atrocities to our ocean.  We have studied what is happening to know why action is needed to end the human impact on our planet’s oceans. 

We are sad.  We are mad.  We are motivated.  We are inspired.  We are hopeful.  We are tenacious.  And together we are taking action.

We are committing this next year to diving further into learning about the issues we and our oceans face.  We will take you along in our voyage so that you too might learn and be inspired to join us in our efforts to ensure that the oceans and the magnificent and necessary life within them are on this planet, alive and well, for our generation and our children’s. 

And, we are making a movie.  No not a dull drab documentary.  A movie.  One that will move you, make you laugh, make you cry, make you excited, make you concerned, make you want to change, make you want to encourage others to change, make you want to join us. 

We are the Heirs To Our Oceans, and we have a job to do. Hop in and ride this wild wave with us!    http://www.heirstoouroceans.com

April 24, 2018: Scott Benson “Leatherback sea turtles in the California Current: Why leatherbacks cross the Pacific”

Tuesday April 24th

Location: The Bay Model, Sausalito CA

Time: 7 pm

Join ACS-SF Bay Chapter for a fascinating presentation by Scott Benson M.S.C.

With their immense size and peculiar appearance, leatherback turtles resemble species that inhabited Earth in the distant past. A swimming and diving machine, they are uniquely adapted for life at sea. This ancient mariner is the most widely distributed sea turtle, spanning tropical and subarctic waters worldwide. The endangered western Pacific leatherback turtle engages in the longest migration of any aquatic, air-breathing vertebrate. These turtles travel more than 7,000 miles annually between their western Pacific nesting beaches and their eastern Pacific foraging areas. The presentation will cover the biology and ecology of leatherback turtles, the current status of the population, challenges to recovery, and the actions we can take to help.

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May 22, 2018: ACS SF Bay Presents Grant Awardees Kaytlin Ingman & Samantha Jane Cope

Tuesday May 22nd

Location: The Bay Model, Sausalito CA

Time: 7 pm

Join ACS-SF Bay Chapter for a fascinating presentation by two of our 2017 Grant Awardees!

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Kaytlin Ingman and Samantha Jane Cope

Kaytlin Ingman, Master’s Student in Marine Science; Romberg Tiburon Center for Environmental Studies, San Francisco State University, Point Blue Conservation Science

“Long Term Trends in Baleen Whale Observations Near the Farallon Islands”

Samantha Cope, M.S. student, Romberg Tiburon Center for Environmental Studies, San Francisco State University

“Evaluating the influence of vessel noise on the underwater soundscape of San Francisco Bay”

June 26, 2018: ACS SF Bay Presents Daniella Dimitrova Russo

Tuesday June 26th

Location: The Bay Model, Sausalito CA

Time: 7pm

Join ACS-SF Bay Chapter for an inspiring presentation by Daniella Dimitrova Russo


Daniella Dimitrova Russo is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Think Beyond Plastic™, the innovation accelerator focused on the global plastic pollution crisis. Since 2009, Think Beyond Plastic has led the shift away from fossil fuel-based plastics towards bio-based, bio-benign materials from renewable sources and associated manufacturing, and innovative consumer and business products specifically designed to handle these new materials.

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July 24, 2018: ACS SF Bay Presents Dr. Shawn Johnson – The Marine Mammal Center Director of Veterinary Science

Tuesday July 24th

Location: The Bay Model, Sausalito CA

Time: 7 pm

Join ACS-SF Bay Chapter for an inspiring presentation by Dr. Shawn Johnson – The Marine Mammal Center Director of Veterinary Science

shawnjohnsonDr. Shawn Johnson joined The Marine Mammal Center in 2012. His role as Director of Veterinary Science is to guide the science team’s study of marine mammal health issues around cancer in sea lions, toxic algae poisoning effects, and harbor seal health analysis, among others.

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2017 Research and Travel (SMM Conference) Grant Awards

We at ACS-SF Bay Chapter Thank all of you, our members and monthly presentation
audience, for your constant support of our organization. Your donations allow us to give
yearly research and travel grants to outstanding graduate students and young
researchers which aids them in their research. Those receiving Travel grants are aided in attending the Society of Marine Mammology and ACS National conferences to present
their research and network for their future work.

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2017 Research Grant Awardees