Archived Webinars

The National Marine Sanctuary Webinar Series provides educators with educational and scientific expertise, resources and training to support ocean and climate literacy in the classroom. This series targets formal and informal educators that are engaging students (elementary through college) in formal classroom settings, as well as members of the community in informal educational venues (e.g. after school programs, science centers, aquariums, etc.).

To learn more about safely viewing marine mammals and other protected species in the wild, please visit NOAA Fisheries Office of Protected Resources' Marine Life Viewing Guidelines.

A scan of a shipwreck overlayed with headshots of Dr. Avery Paxton, Tane Casserley, and Dr. Chris Taylor

Living Shipwrecks 3-D: Exploring North Carolina's World War II Heritage

September 2, 2020

Dr. Avery Paxton, Tane Casserley, and Dr. Chris Taylor

In honor and commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II, researchers will discuss how NOAA is honoring that heritage both above and below the waves.

For the past decade, Monitor National Marine Sanctuary (MNMS) and National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS) Beaufort Lab have been leading an effort off the coast of North Carolina to document shipwrecks from the Battle of the Atlantic that brought World War II to our shores. The research conducted by MNMS and NCCOS honors the sacrifices of our Allied seamen and the heroism of the U.S. Merchant Marine, as well as recognizing the role these nationally significant shipwrecks play in the region's health as habitat for marine ecosystems.

This presentation will highlight the advanced technologies that MNMS and NCCOS utilize, including acoustic surveys aboard the NOAA ship Nancy Foster, to document the shipwrecks and create acoustic fish visualizations of the surrounding marine life. Along with collecting critical data to interpret this naval battlefield, the project also demonstrates the significance of these shipwrecks as both ecological and historical wonders. This project is an example of NOAA offices collaborating to use their best assets to document the incredible maritime history and marine life off North Carolina's shores.

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students posing on the deck of a ship

Using Film to Drive Social Change

September 3, 2020

Tirrea Billings

Five high school students undertook the adventure of a lifetime during Project Shiphunt: hunt for a shipwreck, investigate its identity, and document it in 3D for future generations. Accompanied by a team of scientists and historians from the NOAA, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, and other partners, the students conducted a full-fledged research mission, as they searched the deep waters of northeastern Lake Huron. Join Tirrea Billings to learn more about this experience and how it helped shape her love for film and storytelling, her journey as an entrepreneur, and how she uses her gifts as an activist in digital spaces.

Tirrea Billings is a multidisciplinary storyteller, social justice entrepreneur, and aspiring scholar in communication, culture, and documentary media. She is driven by her passion to tell stories and committed to ensuring that marginalized communities have a space to share their lived experiences. Everyone has a story, and she wants to make certain that underrepresented voices also have a seat at the table and a chance to be heard.

Tirrea holds a Bachelor of Arts in Film/Video/Media studies and a Master of Arts in Communication, both from Western Michigan University and is the Creative Director and Co-Founder or Reflct Media, LLC.

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kids and mentor working on a rov

Unleashing the Innovator in Every Child

August 20, 2020

Christian Wong, Hawaii Science and Technology Museum

Join Hawaiʻi Science and Technology Museum Executive Director Christian Wong for his talk about community robotics and mentoring the next generation of science and engineering leaders. In partnership with NOAA's Mokupāpapa Discovery Center in Hilo, Christian and HSTM developed the Kenyan K. Beals Community Robotics Center in support of student engineering and robotics projects and are currently preparing to launch a small satellite they helped develop to take measurements of the thermosphere. Christian will also talk about how the museum is adjusting to providing STEM education during the pandemic, and the role innovation plays in education and developing a sustainable economy for Hawaiʻi Island.

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side by side image showing the effect of ocean acidfication

Understanding Ocean Acidification: Using NOAAs New Educational Tools

August 13, 2020

Amy Dean, affiliate to the NOAA Office of Education and NOAA Satellite and Information Service

Data in the Classroom is designed to help teachers and students use real scientific NOAA data to explore dynamic Earth processes and understand the impact of environmental events on a regional and global scale. The interactive module provides authentic research questions and scaled data interactions that give students the opportunity to explore this question (and more). In this presentation, participants will dive deep into Data in the Classroom's Ocean Acidification Module to explore the processes that cause acidification, examine data from across the globe and take a virtual tour of the new web-based curricular modules and data tools.

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side by side image, left: man holding a fish, right: view of the beach from shore

Gone Fishing! in Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary

July 24, 2020

Daniel Studt, NOAA Fisheries

Join us as we fish for answers on how to catch the big one. Daniel Studt from NOAA Fisheries will provide some great tips to enjoy sustainable recreational fishing in Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary. Topics will include fish identification tricks, safe handling, and release techniques, and of course some good ole fishing stories from the wild Olympic Coast!

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side by side, left: people on a boat spotting birds, right: bird with fish in it's beak

Seabirds 101

July 23, 2020

Wayne Petersen, Massachusetts Audubon Society

Seabirds are among the most widely traveled and extraordinary navigators in the bird world. Find out from Wayne Petersen, Mass Audubon’s Important Bird Area Program Director, how these remarkable birds are supremely adapted to spend most of their lives in some of the most remote and hostile environments on the planet. We will trace the travels of some of these amazing birds as they seasonally utilize Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary, and learn what they are telling us, both about the marine environment and ourselves.

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deck of the nautilus

2018 Exploration of Strange "Off-Ridge" Seamounts in Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument

July 16, 2020

Dr. Christopher Kelley, University of Hawaii

Join Dr. Christopher Kelley as he discusses the 2018 Exploration Vessel Nautilus expedition to Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument where they explored 10 unusual seamounts located north of the Hawaiian Ridge. The origin of these seamounts is enigmatic since they form a line parallel to, but well north of the islands, atolls, banks, and seamounts created when the Pacific Plate moved over the Hawaiian hotspot. Figuring out how and when they formed, as well as what sea creatures live there were the objectives of the project. Both multibeam mapping and ROV dives were conducted during the cruise that yielded high resolution images of the seamounts, rock samples for Ar/Ar dating and chemical analyses, biological specimens of potential new species, and high resolution video of their geology and biological communities. An update on the process of analyzing these samples/specimens and video will be provided, as well as a preview of a follow up cruise by the Nautilus currently being planned for 2021.

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an open cocount with mixed food inside next to photo of man smiling at the camera.

Notorious & Delicious: Exploring Sustainable Seafood

July 9, 2020

Allen Susser, James Beard Award Winning Chef

James Beard Award Winning Chef, Allen Susser, is on a mission to motivate people to eat Sustainable Seafood, which rewards them with a delicious meal and benefits the ocean’s health today and into the future. His cookbook, Green Fig & Lionfish, Sustainable Caribbean Cooking focuses on lionfish, nonetheless, these bold flavors and unpretentious fish cooking techniques can be applied to most fish and shellfish. Chef Allen will discuss what can be sustainably harvested within your national marine sanctuaries, and lessons on the best way to cook it. His cooking lessons could be a unique way to educate your audiences and students on sustainable seafood. Join the discussion of sustainability, which like all good fish tales, is growing greater each day.

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Left: an ROV is launched into the water; Middle: Underwater shot of coral; Right: Octopus feed on fallen whale

Exploring National Marine Sanctuaries: Diving into Telepresence Education Programs and Resources

June 16, 2020

Hannah MacDonald, Education Specialist for the NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries

Much of the ocean remains unexplored, even areas of your national marine sanctuaries have still not been seen by humans. NOAA's Office of National Marine Sanctuaries works with partners to expand our understanding of sanctuaries through deep-water exploration and research. While these Telepresence expeditions occur, we bring them to you through real-time video feeds and programs. Through this webinar, learn how you and your students can become virtual explorers in national marine sanctuaries and how to further bring the expedition into the classroom through our education resources.

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manta ray from below

Shocking New Evidence Reveals Two Genetically Distinct Hawai`i Manta Ray Populations Separated by a Mere 50 KM

June 5, 2020

Mark Deakos, Hawaii Association for Marine Education and Research

New evidence confirms Hawai`i manta rays take social distancing to a whole new level; implications for management.

Our knowledge of manta rays worldwide has come a long way in the past 15 years, but are we doing enough to ensure small, slow-growing, island-associated populations, and the habitats they rely on for survival, are getting the protections they need? This talk will explore what research techniques have been used to study manta rays and why new evidence of social distancing in Hawai`i's populations are sounding the alarms. Learn how you can become part of the solution!

This distance learning event is an extension of the Kauai Ocean Discovery First Friday Speaker Series.

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side by side images of a movie shark vs a real shark

Hollywood Sharks vs. Real Sharks

May 21, 2020

Doug Perrine, World Famous Marine Photographer and Author

Over a lifetime, Doug Perrine has traveled the planet studying and photographing the marine environment with a particular passion for some of the oceanʻs largest and least understood animals -- sharks. In this presentation, Doug will deconstruct the media bias concerning this large and diverse class of fishes, and show how sharks portrayed in Hollywood and in the media are very different from the real behavior of these fascinating, ancient, and ecologically important animals. Through vibrant imagery, as well as intimate observations of these sometimes secretive animals, Doug will shed light on their real behavior and life history.

Doug is widely regarded as one of the world's foremost marine wildlife photographers. His photographs have been reproduced in virtually every major nature magazine in the world, as well as in thousands of books, calendars, greeting cards, posters, etc., including more than 100 covers. His photography has won a number of awards, including the prestigious BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition as the overall winner (2004), and also winner of the animal behavior category and the Nature's Best/Cemex competition in the Professional Marine Wildlife category. He is also the author of seven books on marine life and numerous magazine articles. Please join us for what is certain to be an enlightening encounter with a very misunderstood group of animals.

This live event is an extension of the Mokupāpapa Third Thursday By The Bay lecture series.

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orca leaping out of the water

What the orcas teach us: the southern residents' battle against extinction and state of our watersheds

May 19, 2020

Lynda Mapes, Seattle Time journalist

Over 18 months, the Seattle Times took a deep look at the southern resident orca extinction crisis to explore and expose the roots of why these animals, the top predator in our marine waters, are struggling to survive. Lynda Mapes, the lead journalist on the newspaper's award-winning series Hostile Waters will explain what the newspaper learned and solutions that will benefit people and orca alike.

Lynda Mapes is the environment reporter at the Seattle Times. She has won numerous international and national awards for her work covering environmental topics, and is the author of five books, including Orca forthcoming from the Mountaineers Books in Spring, 2021. She was a Knight Fellow in Science Journalism at MIT and a Bullard Fellow in forest research at the Harvard Forest, where she wrote her most recent book, Witness Tree, (UW Press, 2019) that looks at the story of climate change through the life of a single, 100-year old oak.

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3 sea turtles lined by images of other sea creatures above

Earth is Blue: Educational Videos About Your National Marine Sanctuaries

May 14, 2020

Nick Zachar and Shannon Shikles, NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries

Did you know that every week the NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries posts an educational video about your ocean and Great Lakes? Come along as Video Production Coordinator Nick and Multimedia Coordinator Shannon walk you through how we create these resources, how you can access and use them, and how you can even contribute to our Earth is Blue campaign.

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whales and dolphins

Studying Whales and Dolphins in the Hawaiian Archipelago

May 1, 2020

Robin Baird, Research Biologist, Cascadia Research Collective

Long-term small-boat based studies in the main Hawaiian Islands have revealed amazing information on 11 resident species of whales and dolphins, as well as migratory and open-ocean species that visit the islands. Studies in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands have been more limited due to logistics of vessel surveys. Comparisons of sightings and tagging data from the two areas suggest that there are resident populations of many species of dolphins and whales in Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument that have yet to be recognized. Join research biologist Robin Baird of Cascadia Research Collective who will compare what is, and isn't, known about whales and dolphins throughout the Hawaiian archipelago.

This distance learning event is an extension of the Kauai Ocean Discovery First Friday Speaker Series.

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A diver working to restore coral

Gardening Corals for Reef Restoration

April 23, 2020

Katie Lohr, Conservation Science Fellow for the NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries through the Sea Grant John A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellowship Program

As coral reefs decline globally, interest in using coral gardening techniques for reef restoration is increasing. This webinar presentation will review well-established and cutting-edge techniques for propagating and restoring corals, as well as experimental work focused on identifying corals that can survive future ocean conditions.

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map showing a marine heatwave

Understanding the Marine Heatwaves in the Pacific Northwest

April 24, 2020

Dr. Jan Newton, senior principal oceanographer with the Applied Physics Laboratory of the University of Washington, executive director of NANOOS, and Global Ocean Acidification Observing Network (GOA-ON) co-chair

Join Dr. Jan Newton as she explains how marine heatwaves are influencing life in the waters off the Washington coast in the Pacific Northwest. This webinar is part of a speaker series in partnership with Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary, Feiro Marine Life Center, and the Peninsula College STEM Club.

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satellite view of changes to an island over time

How will the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands respond to climate change? A look at past, present, and future sea level change and storms within Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument

April 16, 2020

Haunani Kane, PhD, National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Biology at the University of Hawai'i

The future existence of low lying atoll islands is of global concern, as entire island nations and highly evolved ecosystems are projected to become uninhabitable in the next 30-50 years due to sea level rise. Despite this recognized vulnerability, most studies fail to account for the biological controls upon island resiliency. Typically, sea level research instead assumes atoll islands are static and do not recover from environmental stressors. Join Haunani Kane, PhD, National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Biology at the University of Hawaiʻi as she shares data from the fossil record, kaʻao (Hawaiian legends), and future climate projections that give a glimpse of how islands at Lalo respond to past, present, and future changes in sea level and storms.

This live event is an extension of the Mokupāpapa Third Thursday By The Bay lecture series.

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Left: A woman floats on gher back in water; Center: A child wearing VR goggles; Right: Marine debris world scramble

Bringing the Ocean to You

April 7, 2020

Claire Fackler, National Education Liaison, NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries

The NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries brings the ocean to you through a wide variety of online resources appropriate for teachers, students, and even families. This webinar provides an opportunity to learn more about America's underwater treasures and our Virtual Reality content; Earth Is Blue videos; lesson plans; Ocean Guardian Kids Club; online marine science games, and much more.

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Children participating in various outdoor activities

Ocean Guardian Schools: Learn how to get involved

March 26, 2020

Naomi Pollack, Ocean Guardian School Program Coordinator

​What do 134 schools with over 61,000 students from around the country have in common? They have all made a commitment to protect the health of their local watersheds, one ocean and special ocean areas like national marine sanctuaries. ​Since 2009, NOAA's Ocean Guardian School program has supported K-12 schools to conduct hands-on watershed/ocean stewardship projects on campuses and in local communities. Please join Naomi Pollack for a program overview and learn how your school can participate and become recognized by NOAA as an Ocean Guardian School.

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A group of people gathered on a shore

Empowering Young Water Scientists with the EarthEcho Water Challenge!

March 4, 2020

Sean Russell, Associate Director of Youth Engagement and Partnerships for EarthEcho International

​Protecting and improving the health of our watersheds is critical to the future of our National Marine Sanctuaries and the sustainability of our planet. The EarthEcho Water Challenge has engaged over 1.6 million participants in 146 countries – providing young people with the tools to monitor water quality, share their data, and take action to protect their local waterways.

Through this webinar, join Sean Russell from EarthEcho International to learn how to use the EarthEcho Water Challenge platform to collect and share citizen science water quality data, access tools to analyze your results, and learn about the inspiring work of young people protecting our National Marine Sanctuaries and their local watersheds.

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Three different women and acoustic monitoring equipment

Passive Acoustic Monitoring in California's National Marine Sanctuaries

February 19, 2020

Samara Haver, Ph.D candidate at Oregon State University; Angela R. Szesciorka and Vanessa ZoBell, Ph.D. candidates at Scripps Institution of Oceanography

Acoustic signals travel quickly and efficiently over long distances in the aquatic environment; thus, sound has become the principal sensory modality used by many marine animal species. This is particularly true for acoustically oriented marine mammals that rely on sound to communicate, perceive their environment, detect and avoid predators, forage for food, and navigate. Passive acoustic monitoring (PAM) is used to measure, monitor, and determine the sources of sound in underwater environments, enabling scientists to eavesdrop on the acoustic behavior of marine animals (e.g., whale song, fish chorusing, snapping shrimp), natural abiotic sounds (e.g., wind, earthquakes), and human generated sounds (e.g., cargo vessels). By utilizing PAM tools in national marine sanctuaries, researchers are able to collect data to answer questions about these valuable marine habitats and provide important condition information to managers and policymakers. In this webinar, three Ph.D. candidates that are NOAA Dr. Nancy Foster Scholars will discuss current PAM research efforts taking place in some of California's national marine sanctuaries.

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A split image showing, intense sun, cracked airid land, a hurricane, wildfires and melting ice caps

Managing National Marine Sanctuaries in a Changing Ocean

January 14, 2020

Zachary J. Cannizzo, Ph.D., National Marine Protected Areas Center and NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries Fellow through the Sea Grant John A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellowship Program

As a system of nationally significant places managed by NOAA, national marine sanctuaries are directly experiencing climate impacts, and serve as important assets for climate-informed management, science and education. Learn more about how the NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries is actively incorporating climate into site management plans, facilities management, science and assessment, and education and outreach. This presentation will discuss how sanctuaries work with partners to use NOAA climate information in management, our role as climate educators, building a network of sentinel sites, and challenges in managing sanctuaries in a changing ocean.

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 Mats of purple colored Cyanobacteria buoyed up by Methane and Hydrogen Sulfide gas produced underneath them at Middle Island Sinkhole in Lake Huron

Sinkholes to Stars: Exploring Microbial Ecosystems in Lake Huron's Sinkholes

December 5, 2019

Bopi Biddanda, Annis Water Resources Institute at Grand Valley State University

Join Professor Bopi Biddanda as he shares the excitement of over a decade of exploration of life in Lake Huron's sinkholes carried out in collaboration with NOAA's Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary. He will ponder the relevance of these findings to major issues of both scientific and societal interest such as Earth's current biologic and physiologic diversity, oxygenation of early Earth in the distant past, and humanity's ongoing search for extraterrestrial life. For an introduction to life in Lake Huron's sinkholes, see this overview educational article.

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A split image of a n areiel view of mallows-bay and two kayakers

Announcing the United States' Newest National Marine Sanctuary in Nearly 20 Years: Mallows Bay-Potomac River National Marine Sanctuary

November 21, 2019

Paul Orlando, Chesapeake Bay Regional Coordinator for the NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries

​The NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries announces that a new national marine sanctuary has been designated for the first time in nearly 20 years. We introduce to you Mallows Bay-Potomac River National Marine Sanctuary in Maryland. Mallows Bay is most renowned for its "Ghost Fleet," the partially submerged remains of more than 100 wooden steamships that were built in response to threats from World War I-era German U-boats that were sinking ships in the Atlantic. Although the ships never saw action during the war, their construction at more than 40 shipyards in 17 states reflected the massive national wartime effort that drove the expansion and economic development of communities and related maritime service industries.

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2019 Ocean Report cover

OceanReports: The first intelligent web application for marine spatial analysis of the entire U.S. EEZ

October 8, 2019

Dr. James A. Morris, Jr., Marine Ecologist at NOAA's National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science

OceanReports is the most comprehensive web-based spatial assessment tool for the ocean in the U.S., designed to improve decision-making and increase transparency for ocean and coastal users, and resource managers. The tool contains approximately 100 distinct data layers capable of analyzing energy and minerals, natural resources (including species and habitats), transportation and infrastructure, oceanographic and biophysical conditions, and the local ocean economy for any area of the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). Learn more about OceanReports from Dr. Morris and help NOAA determine how formal and informal educators can utilize this robust online product.

OceanReports was developed through a partnership between the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, NOAA, and the Department of Energy, and utilizes new and authoritative data from and other trusted sources.

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Richard coleman and two fish

Where are all the fish going? Identifying patterns of genetic connectivity across the Hawaiian Archipelago

September 24, 2019

Dr. Richard Coleman, former Dr. Nancy Foster Scholar at Hawai`i Institute of Marine Biology

Understanding connectivity and dispersal pathways, as well as identifying the underlying mechanisms influencing these patterns are essential to properly understand how biodiversity is generated in the sea and to inform management strategies. Since direct observation of larvae is impractical, a variety of genetic methods have been developed to characterize connectivity and dispersal patterns in marine organisms. Join Dr. Coleman as he explains how he incorporated several genetic-based approaches to assess connectivity of two recreationally important reef fishes across the Hawaiian Archipelago to assess connectivity between the Main Hawaiian Islands and the Papāhanaumokuākea Marine National Monument.

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Whale with fishing line wrapped around it's tail

Catch and Release: Large whale entanglements and response efforts to mitigate the threat

July 10, 2019

Ed Lyman, Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary

Entanglement or by-catch is a global issue that affects many marine animals, including large whales like the charismatic humpback whale. Hundreds of thousands of whales die worldwide each year, but the impacts go beyond mortality. When conditions and resources allow, trained responders under NOAA's Marine Mammal Health and Stranding Response Program attempt the dangerous task of freeing whales from life-threatening entanglements. However, the ultimate goal is to gain information to reduce the threat for whales and humans alike. The Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary working closely with its partners and the community, coordinates response efforts for Hawaii, the principle breeding and calving ground of humpback whales in the North Pacific. The effort represents a unique and valuable opportunity to gain a broader understanding of large whale entanglement threat. Learn more about whale entanglements and response efforts from expert Ed Lyman.

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side by side images of a cargo ship and blue whales swimming

Protecting Blue Whales and Blue Skies – Vessel Speed Reduction in California

June 11, 2019

Jessica Morten, Resource Protection Specialist, contractor to NOAA's Channel Islands and Cordell Bank national marine sanctuaries through the Greater Farallones Association

California's nutrient-rich coastal waters are home to several species of large whales, including gray whales and endangered blue, humpback, and fin whales. The state is also home to four major shipping ports – San Diego, Long Beach, Los Angeles, and Oakland – that result in thousands of large container and tanker transits taking place within California national marine sanctuary waters. In the past decade, over 10 whale fatalities have been recorded along the California coast as a result of ship and whale collisions, and recent research suggests that many more of these ship strikes are going undetected each year. To address this global issue, national marine sanctuaries along the West Coast have been working with a number of partners to better understand the issue of ship strikes and slow vessels down to reduce harmful air emissions and protected endangered whales.

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deepsea coral

Estimating Coral Feeding Habits from Space

May 21, 2019

Dr. Michael Fox, Postdoctoral Scholar at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Reef-building corals rely on a symbiosis with microscopic algae for much of their energetic needs. Rising ocean temperatures threaten this symbiosis and can cause it to break down in a process known as coral bleaching, which is one of the primary threats to the persistence of coral reef ecosystems globally. Corals are not helpless, however, as they are also excellent predators and if they can capture food to maintain their energy budgets while bleached they may have a greater chance for survival. Learn more how natural variation in food availability on reefs around the world and how this may influence coral resilience and recovery from bleaching events.

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dolphins swimming by a drifting hydrophone

Listening to "See" Beneath the Waves: Soundscape monitoring in Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary

April 9, 2019

Dr. Lindsey Peavey Reeves, Research Specialist for NOAA's Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary

National marine sanctuaries are special places that support many human uses simultaneously, like fishing, recreation, and commercial shipping. At the same time, sanctuary habitats support thriving animal communities made up of some species that can move great distances, and some that remain relatively stationary. Like all marine environments, sanctuaries experience a variety of seasonal conditions and weather each year, like wind-driven upwelling and storms. Each of these sanctuary elements have one thing in common: they produce sound. It is rarely the case that researchers can visually observe all, or even some of these things, and so we need additional tools to "see" beneath the waves to better understand and protect sanctuaries. Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary has been a hot spot for passive acoustic monitoring for years, and in this webinar we'll explore various ways in which the Channel Islands sanctuary and partners are characterizing the sanctuary soundscape, what we've been able to learn so far, and what we are still seeking to understand.

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deepsea Ship wreck

Home Front Hawai`i: a Naval Legacy beneath the Sea

February 5, 2019

Hans Van Tilburg, Ph.D., NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries

Shipwrecks and other submerged properties tell stories of the past, and some of those stories are about World War II in the Pacific. The Hawaiian Islands were very different during the war period, a plantation territory suddenly witness to the initial attack on Pearl Harbor and subsequent years of intensive combat training both on land and sea. The events of this critical period have left a legacy of sites that act as windows on history, a heritage landscape was shared in this presentation.

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fishing around the world

One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish...What Fish?

December 10, 2018 at 6 pm Eastern / 3 pm Pacific

Alexandra M. Avila, Dr. Nancy Foster Scholar at Oregon State University

Are all the fish dying? Have we over fished everything? What are sustainable fisheries? Can I eat tuna? Learn more about the fish you eat, where it came from, and how/where it was caught to help you make sustainable choices to help protect our ocean.

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dungeness crab

Be a Claw Abiding Citizen: Learn how Ocean Acidification could Affect Dungeness Crab

October 17, 2018 at 6 pm Eastern / 3 pm Pacific

Dr. Shelly Trigg, NOAA Northwest Fisheries Science Center and U.S. School of Aquatic and Fisheries Sciences

What is ocean acidification? And how could it affect the future of Dungeness crab, one of our favorite seafoods? Join us as we walk through a new national marine sanctuaries educational toolkit to equip you for teaching others about what ocean acidification could mean for the Dungeness crab, how this is currently being investigated, and resources to get more involved.

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microplastics on the beach

Plastics in the Ocean: Facts, Fiction, and Unknowns

September 25, 2018 at 6 pm Eastern / 3 pm Pacific

Anna Robuck, Dr. Nancy Foster Scholar at the University of Rhode Island Graduate School of Oceanography

Although plastics are vital in a slew of consumer applications, plastic pollution in the ocean has turned out to be a not-so-fantastic outcome of modern day plastic dependence. This presentation provides an overview of the ocean plastic pollution problem, explaining the difference between marine debris and microplastics. It also will outline the current state of knowledge about microplastic impacts in the ocean and marine food webs, and provide insight into an ongoing research project using seabirds as indicators of plastic pollution in the Northwest Atlantic.

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diver looking at a clipboard while swimming over seaweed

The Devil (Weed) is in the Details: The Spread and Ecology of an Invasive Seaweed

August 22, 2018

Dr. Lindsay Marks, California Sea Grant Fellow for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary and former Dr. Nancy Foster Scholar

Invasive species are the second-greatest driver of biodiversity loss worldwide, and invasive seaweeds represent a major challenge to ocean health. This talk will share what has been learned about a Japanese seaweed called Devil Weed, which is rapidly spreading rapidly across the reefs of southern California. Topics that will be discussed include: why this seaweed is a successful invader; the ways in which it may affect native species; the role that Marine Protected Areas can play in resisting its spread; and techniques that can be used to control this and other invasive seaweeds.

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deep sea

Beyond the Last Frontier: The Deep Ocean and Why It Matters

July 10, 2018

Lisa Levin, Scripps Institution of Oceanography

The deep ocean below 200 meters represents over 90% of the habitable space on this plant. This presentation will consider what is special about deep-sea ecosystems and how human interests and impacts are affecting them. The importance of understanding, conserving and managing deep-ocean ecosystems will be highlighted.

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common dolphins swimming

Dolphin Tales: Studying the Who, When, and Where of Habitat Use

June 6, 2018

Tammy Silva, Ph.D., Former Dr. Nancy Foster Scholar

Dolphin species often play key roles in ecosystems and also use habitats that overlap with areas of human activity. Learn more about when and where dolphin species occur so that the research can inform ecosystem management and mitigate human impacts. This presentation will focus on the biology and ecology of dolphins, current threats, and how technology is helping us learn about their occurrence and distribution.

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planet earth graphic

Understanding El Niño - Using NOAA's New Educational Tools

March 13, 2018

Amy Dean, National Estuarine Research Reserve System

People all over the world experience impacts from El Niño and La Niña, the recurring climate pattern that occurs across the tropical Pacific Ocean. As this year's La Niña subsides, join us for a science-based exploration of this powerful phenomena. In this presentation, participants will dive deep into Data in the Classroom's El Niño Module to examine decades of observations from Earth observing satellites and take a virtual tour of the new web-based curricular modules and data tools. Data in the Classroom is designed to help teachers and students use real scientific data to explore dynamic Earth processes.

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diver photographing big mama coral in amercian samoa

Virtual Dives into America's Underwater Treasures

February 21, 2018

Mitchell Tartt, NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries

Immerse yourself in the ocean and your national marine sanctuaries without getting wet! These Virtual Reality (VR) voyages use 360-degree images to highlight the amazing habitats, animals, and cultural resources you can find in each national marine sanctuary. Learn more about VR technology and dive into our underwater treasures using your desktop or mobile devices.

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before and after photos of a bleaching event

What is Coral Bleaching?

December 6, 2017

Kelly Drinnen, NOAA Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary

Coral bleaching is one of the side effects of an increasingly warmer ocean. Episodes of coral bleaching are happening more regularly and with greater severity as the years progress. But, what exactly is coral bleaching? Is bleached coral, dead coral? Is bleaching preventable? Can coral recover from bleaching? Join us to look at the biology of corals to understand what coral bleaching is and its potential long-term effects on coral reefs.

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marine debris

NOAA Marine Debris Toolkit for Educators: Incorporating Citizen Science and Community Action into an Educational Setting

October 18, 2017

Alyssa Nally, NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries

The Marine Debris Toolkit serves as a unique collaborative effort between NOAA's Marine Debris Program and Office of National Marine Sanctuaries to reduce our impact on the ocean through hands-on scientific monitoring, targeted education, and community outreach. Composed of teacher resources, data collection and analysis guidelines, and community engagement and outreach activities, this toolkit empowers students to become ocean stewards by taking action against marine debris on campus, in their local community, and at home. During this presentation, participants will receive an in-depth look into this free education tool.

Webinar Recording

photo of manta ray

Manta Rays: Studying an Ocean Icon

September 20, 2017

Joshua Stewart, Dr. Nancy Foster Scholar at Scripps Institution of Oceanography

Manta rays are one of the most iconic marine megafauna in the ocean, reaching wingspans of over 20 feet and delighting divers and snorkelers with their gregarious behavior. Dr. Nancy Foster Scholar Joshua Stewart will give a presentation on the biology and ecology of manta rays, current threats and conservation action, including his latest research on mantas, and how new technology is providing insights into these mysterious creatures' lives.

Webinar Recording

photo of monk seal

Forty Years of Conserving Hawai`i's Native Seal

Charles Littnan, NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service

May 23, 2017

In honor of 2017 Year of the Monk Seal, join Dr. Charles Littnan on a four decade journey that tracks the history and challenges of monk seal conservation in Hawai`i. This presentation will highlight a number of threats to the species and the evolution of a rag tag research program into the most proactive marine mammal recovery program on the planet.

Audience: Formal and informal educators

Webinar Recording

photo of World War II, graduates of the Tuskegee pilot

Lake Huron Red Tails! The Tuskegee Airmen Project

Stephanie Gandulla and Wayne Lusardi, NOAA's Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary

April 12, 2017

During World War II, Michigan was home to several African American air combat units including many graduates of the Tuskegee pilot training program. As with many similar training programs during the war, dozens of accidents occurred that resulted in the loss of both aircraft and crewmen. Two Tuskegee airplanes have been discovered in Michigan waters near Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Learn about these submerged aircraft and a project where members of the National Association of Black Scuba Divers and Diving with a Purpose participated to document one of the aircraft wrecks in Lake Huron.

Presenters: Stephanie Gandulla and Wayne Lusardi, NOAA's Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary

Audience: Formal and informal educators

Education Materials

Presentation Slides

Download PPT

Webinar Recording

photo of a student building an rov

Explore Your Own Watershed with Underwater Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs)

Sarah Waters, NOAA Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary

March 22, 2017

Building your own ROV is not as complicated as you think! Find out how students near Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary are designing and building their own ROVs to explore the Thunder Bay River and Lake Huron, as well as participate in environmental stewardship projects. This webinar will showcase how ROVs are used to explore our national marine sanctuaries and provide a basic overview of designing and building ROVs with students for your own explorations!

Webinar Recording

photo of a northern elephant seal

Males vs. Females: Feeding Behavior of Northern Elephant Seals

Sarah Kienle, Dr. Nancy Foster Scholar, University of California, Santa Cruz, Long Marine Lab

February 23, 2017

Male and female northern elephant seals exhibit dramatic differences in size, shape and behavior. My research compares the feeding behavior of male and female seals to understand how the sexes use marine resources throughout the North Pacific Ocean.

Education Materials

Resource List

Presentation Slides

Webinar Recording

photo of a various marine life

Deep Sea Science in the Classroom: Exploring Coral Communities of the West Coast National Marine Sanctuaries

Rietta Hohman, Greater Farallones Association

January 18, 2017

Take your students on an incredible journey hundreds of feet beneath the surface of the ocean, without ever leaving the classroom! Using research footage from Remotely Operated Vehicles, your students will be able to utilize real scientific methods to explore the unique deep sea coral communities found in our West Coast National Marine Sanctuaries. They will investigate threats, such as ocean acidification, that these precious ecosystems face and learn the importance of long-term scientific monitoring and protection. This program is aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards and all materials are available for teachers to download from the web free of cost.

Education Materials

Deep Coral Communities Curriculum

Presentation Slides

Webinar Recording

photo of a lionfish

Lionfish: Alien Invaders from the Indo-Pacific

Kelly Drinnen, NOAA Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary and Marlies Tumulo, NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries

Audience: Formal and informal educators

December 1, 2016

Education Materials

Flower Garden Banks Invasive Lionfish Lesson Plan

Lionfish Tag Classroom Activity

Lionfish Reporting Mock Scuba Dive Activity

Lionfish Reporting Worksheet

Lionfish Classroom Slides and Videos

Presentation Slides

Webinar Recording

photo of children and teachers in a marsh

Rivers to Reefs: Understanding the Vital Connections Between Rivers and the Ocean

Cathy Sakas, Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary Foundation

Audience: Formal and informal educators

October 11, 2016

Education Materials

Resource List

Presentation Slides

Webinar Recording

photo of children in classroom

Bring the Ocean into Your Classroom with National Marine Sanctuaries

Claire Fackler, NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries

Audience: Formal and informal educators

September 21, 2016

Education Materials


Presentation Slides

Webinar Recording

photo of logo of winged ambassador program

Sharks of the Channel Islands

Ryan Freedman, NOAA Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary

Audience: Formal and informal educators

August 23, 2016

Education Materials


Presentation Slides

Webinar Recording

photo of logo of winged ambassador program

Communicating Climate Change: Resources for Making it Stick

Marlies Tumolo, NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries and Bruce Moravchik, National Ocean Service

Audience: Formal and informal educators

May 25, 2016

Ever wonder the best way to talk about climate change? Felt unsure if your message is clear and connects to your audience? Effectively communicating complex issues involves sound science and an element of artistry. This webinar shares climate communication tools from the National Network of Ocean and Climate Change Interpreters (NNOCCI), as well as a way to get involved in the NOAA Climate Stewards Program.

Webinar Recording

photo of diver and shipwreck

Great Ships on the Great Lakes

Sarah Waters, Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary

Audience: Formal and informal educators

April 13, 2016

Education Materials

Preservation through Education: Activities & Programs

Piecing it Together: Photo Mosaic Activity Lesson Plan

Shipwreck Detectives Lesson Plan

Other Thunder Bay Lesson Plans

Presentation Slides

Webinar Recording

photo of logo of winged ambassador program

Winged Ambassadors: Ocean Literacy Through the Eyes of Albatross

Jennifer Stock, Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuary

Audience: Formal and informal educators

March 24, 2016

Webinar Recording

photo of coral

Underwater Exploration in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands

Daniel Wagner, Ph.D., Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument

Audience: Formal and informal educators

February 17, 2016

Webinar Recording

photo of diver and shipwreck

Maritime Archaeology: Exploring and Discovering Shipwrecks

Shannon Ricles, Monitor National Marine Sanctuary

Discover how to integrate STEM and social studies as you explore the underwater world of shipwrecks and the tools of maritime archaeologists.

Audience: Formal and informal educators

January 13, 2016

Educational Materials:

Maritime Archaeology: Discovering and Exploring Shipwrecks Curriculum

Shipwreck of the Deep Educator Guide

Presentation Slides

Webinar Recording