Welcome to the Ocean Mammal Institute

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Registration OPEN for January 2022 Whale Research Internship with the Ocean Mammal Institute (OMI)

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OMI Logo OMI is dedicated to awakening peoples' minds and hearts to nature's interconnected harmony.

Our programs help individuals understand and feel their connection to nature, and give them courage to act responsibly for the planet and its inhabitants.
Mother and Calf Under Water Humpback Hump Humpback Breaching
Science Protecting Nature

OMI is unique as a research organization.
We collect data on the impact of human marine activities on whales and dolphins. The research results are then used to develop guidelines to protect these marine mammals.

Deadly Sounds II
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The latest video from
Whaleman Foundation

Our current research, being done under a permit from the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) focuses on the impact of engine noise on Hawaii’s humpback whales, on the function of the humpback whale song and humpback whale social sounds.

Our results on the effects of engine noise on the short and long term behavior of humpback whales show that whales’ swimming speed and amount of time underwater is affected by the noise level of boats that approach them. It is this finding and the concern about the impact of  Underwater Noise Pollution on the entire marine environment that has driven Dr. Marsha Green, OMI President and Founder, to act to make a difference.

Dr. Green has worked in the United States and internationally to protect whales and dolphins. Her specific actions include: speaking to Congressional representatives; educating the public; serving as a member of the Federal Advisory Committee that will make recommendations to Congress on acoustic impacts on marine mammals; working with the European Parliament, NATO and the UN to address the international problem of underwater noise pollution.

In October 2004, the European Parliament passed a resolution asking Member States to regulate the use of High Intensity Sonars in waters under their jurisdiction. Dr. Green was a key player in this accomplishment. Read more about her international efforts to stop underwater noise pollution at   OMI International Actions link.

OMI uses scientific data to directly protect whales and dolphins.

Education Embracing the Earth

You can help us protect marine mammals.
In our research internships you will learn field research techniques on humpack whales, work in the field collecting data, and have an opportunity to directly observe the impact of humans on whale behavior and habitat. You will gain not only an understanding of how to apply the scientific method to protect the environment and its inhabitants, but will be exposed to the delicate relationship between humans and nature.

In 1990, research conducted by OMI Research Interns resulted in creating better conditions for humpback whales in Hawaii. Their data resulted in the Hawaii State Legislature passing a bill banning the operation of parasail boats and jet skis in west Maui and 2 other Hawaiian coastal areas each year during whale mating season.

Two Humpbacks Humpback Fluke Humpback Waving
Copyright 2004-2020 Ocean Mammal Institute - All Rights Reserved.
Certain humpback whale images were taken under NMFS permit #924-1484-02 and are not public domain. Photographs may not be reproduced or distributed without the written permission of Dr. Marsha Green / Ocean Mammal Institute. The whale sound files are for personal listening only and may not be redistributed or reproduced elsewhere.
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