Amy Ferguson BA
Education Officer & Marine Consultant
Megaptera novaeangliae, humpback whale, have come to warm Hawaiian waters for breeding season. Diving underwater, their songs will fill your heart and lungs and brain and toes and every bone with vibrations. Treading water to oxygenate myself for the journey home through a world of booming bass and high frequency trills. At around two hundred metres, a gargantuan beautiful beast broke the surface waters, launching his entirety out of his element and into ours. For a slow motion succession of moments he was weightless. The white folds of his rubbery, pleated underside presented, enormous pectoral fins extended, Megaptera huge wing, glistening salt water particles following his mass and falling back into the ocean. The most exquisitely beautiful moment of my life.
My experience with the humpback whales of Hawaii inspired me for a life of conservation. Since that time, around 10 years ago, I have built my knowledge and understanding of these compelling ocean dwellers and their extended cetacean families. I started by volunteering on a research boat collecting data on the local Stenella longirostris, spinner dolphin, population. At the same time I became involved with an NPO education programme, teaching young Hawaiians to protect their natural environment. Education of the coming generations is essential and I am forever amazed by the awareness and enthusiasm of young conservationists around the world. I have been engaging in several conservation projects worldwide and developing a professional career working as a marine mammal consultant, rescue co-ordinator and acoustic technician. Project locations include: Hawaii, Alaska, Uruguay, Morocco, Angola, Ivory Coast, Portugal, Norway and my native Scotland. I have been privileged to encounter myriad marine species worldwide and have met extraordinary people who are dedicated to protecting what they love.
In boarding the good ship Whalefish, I aim to inspire others to consider what each of us can do to bring about positive change. Whoever you are, you have the power to nurture and develop your own talents and potentials to be a positive force in this natural world.
Whalefish is a tool for you to explore these exciting possibilities and to join a wider network of pro-active scientists and conservationists. To quote one of marine conservation’s founding fathers, Jacques Cousteau; “The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever.”