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Education and research

The Channel Islands Naturalist Corps (CINC) programme was started in 1996 with the Condor Express and has expanded to over 150 volunteers and five other marine excursion vessel operators. CINC volunteers educate the public on whale watch tours, wildlife excursions, island hikes and at community events. CINC volunteers also play a vital role in citizen science, recording sightings data and photo-ID of whales.

Santa Barbara Maritime Museum (SBMM) runs an educational outreach programme called ‘Whales are Superheroes! Saving the Planet one CO2 Molecule at a Time.’ Led by local marine biologists/naturalists, this programme starts with an interactive lesson on whales, their role in mitigating climate change, and cetaceans in the Santa Barbara Channel. This is followed by a whale art lesson and instruction with a local art educator.

The Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History has organised talks by local marine biologist Holly Lohuis as well as the museum’s curator of anthropology, John R. Johnson, to discuss the whales of the Santa Barbara Channel, the challenges they face, and their importance in Native American culture.