Stay tuned for our 2023 auction!
Auction items are sustainable, locally produced, have a marine theme/connection and have a proven retail value (min. $100). See past auctions here: 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021. If you are interested in contributing to the auction, please e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The online auction is directed at covering Marine Education and Research Society operating costs. Below is a list of some of the work accomplished in 2020 with less than 3 full-time positions. We hope this summary reflects how efficient and productive an organization MERS strives to be. This is possible through the support of many and, while we have been successful in achieving funding for some of our work, it remains challenging to cover operating costs. Highlights of work achieved by MERS in 2021 (to November)
Education and Outreach
- Working with a film crew on a nature documentary with very significant conservation messaging. Will be aired in 2023.
- Delivering an Ocean’s Day webinar for schools reaching ~ 5,000 students.
- Providing workshops / courses including:
- Two sessions on ethical
advertising conducted in partnership with the North Island Marine
Mammal Stewardship Association (NIMMSA) and Tourism Vancouver Island.
- Three-day workshop for Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s Whale Protection Unit.
- An online Marine Mammal Naturalist Course (24 hours of instruction over 4 weeks to 63 people).
- Workshops to be of use to First Nations re. marine mammal behaviour and boater education.
Marine Mammal Rescue and Response
- Continued cataloguing of Humpback Whales in our study area including the addition of 88 previously undocumented whales.
- Over 2,100 database entries for sightings of Humpbacks in our study area.
the Canadian Pacific Humpback Collaboration; a collaboration of those
cataloguing Humpback Whales off the coast of British Columbia. Includes
database design and consolidation of datasets to develop a province-wide
Humpback Whale catalogue and enable further research collaboration.
- Providing data and analysis to inform research into Humpback Whale population structure.
data collection and analysis of scars on Humpback Whales that indicate
they have survived entanglement(s) and drafting a manuscript focused on
the scope of this threat to Humpbacks in BC waters for publication (work
conducted in collaboration with DFO).
data collection for Humpback Whale population studies and feeding
strategy research and conducting year-round multi-species marine mammal
surveys to inform seasonal and annual changes in distribution. Over 150
hours spent conducting surveys.
compilation of Mola / Ocean Sunfish sightings to support the study into
distribution of the two species in the northeast Pacific Ocean.
our Humpback Whale catalogue to interface fully with our database and
to make use of search criteria for distinctive features.
- 5 days of
monitoring commercial fisheries overlapping with areas of high whale
density, to improve reporting of incidents and to respond, or provide
support to rescue efforts, when needed.
/ coordination for 59 marine mammal incidents, ranging from violations
of the Marine Mammal Regulations to marine mammal entanglement.