How to…

Hey Whale Scientists, You Can Now Access A New Free Cetacean Database For Research!

This week, we are partnering with the Joint Nature Conservation Committee (JNCC), aka the public body that advises the UK Government and devolved administrations on UK-wide and international conservation. They just launched a new tool for conservation called the Joint Cetacean Data Program (JCDP). By accessing the portal, researchers can now obtain tons of sighting …

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Why Should Early-career Scientists Engage in Science Communication?

Science communication (also called #scicomm) is a skill. It involves sharing science with a larger audience, beyond Academia, in an understandable way. Effective science communication relies on a delicate balance between too few details and too much information, which can confuse a non-expert audience. Above all, it should be entertaining and tell a story.  With …

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Photo-ID is the heart of whale research

Photo-ID has been around for decades: it allowed researchers to study the marine mammal populations and opened the door to awesome whale research worldwide. So what exactly is photo-ID, why is it important, and how can you gain skills in this discipline? Find out in this post. A picture says more than a thousand words …

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What it is like to be a women-only scientific group?

We had never given it much thought, but when the world was recently celebrating International Women in Science Day, it hit us. The Cetacean Ecology Research Group at Massey University in New Zealand, where we are a research associate and a PhD student, currently consists purely of women. We are led by the great Prof …

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3 steps to a better work-life balance

In first grade, I remember the look of shock when I told my friends that my mom was a teacher. They couldn’t imagine teachers ever leaving school. They thought teachers just lived in the classroom, and their sole purpose in life was to teach.  Similarly, I think people (both scientists and non-scientists) often believe that their …

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Choose the best courses to study marine mammals

If you want to study marine mammals but don’t know which courses to take, this post is for you. Multiple times I have found myself confronted with the typical student dilemma of which courses to take. Do you want to work within the marine mammal sector? Then most people will respond with “you need to …

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Whale Science in the time of COVID: how to make it work?

This year, professional development opportunities are extremely limited, due to the global COVID-19 pandemic. Global travel restrictions and lockdowns make conferences and internships almost impossible. But there are other ways how you can advance your professional profile! How can you keep developing your skills and/or doing whale science during the COVID pandemic? Here are six …

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5 Ways to Discover Where You Fit in Whale Science

The world of whale science is broad and can seem overwhelming sometimes – there are so many different options you can focus on. Truth is: you can study behavior, diet, communication, microbiomes, evolution, health, migration, reproduction, acoustics, metabolism, pathology, and so much more. Every whale scientist has their own specific niche, just like the marine …

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I can’t find a PhD on marine mammals. What now?

PhD on marine mammals

Finding a PhD on marine mammals is not an easy task, and not everyone succeeds. But that doesn’t mean your dreams of doing marine mammal research have to come to an end! As someone who has worked on marine mammals, birds, and terrestrial mammals, I give you eight reasons for why doing a PhD on …

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