Meet Dr. Carole Carlson

Dr. Carlson has been a naturalist on board the Dolphin Fleet since 1979. She is currently the director of the Dolphin Fleet's Research and Education Program and a Research Associate at the College of the Atlantic (COA), Bar Harbor, Maine. COA curates the North Atlantic Humpback Whale and Antarctic Humpback Whale catalogues.

Her work and that of Dr. Stormy Mayo on humpback whale photo-identification at the Center for Coastal Studies was the inspiration for the PBS series “The Voyage of the Mimi”. She has spent over twenty-six years studying cetaceans off the east coast of the United States, Puerto Rico, Brazil, Chile, the Dominican Republic and the Eastern Caribbean and is an acknowledged world expert on photo-identification techniques, humpback whales and whale watching.

Dr. Carlson serves on the Whalewatch Sub-Committee of the International Whaling Commission and has organized and conducted several international whale-watching workshops. The workshops promote responsible whale watching as a viable ecological and economical alternative to whaling by assisting in: the development of national regulations and/or guidelines throughout the world; the development of education and scientific programs associated with whale-watching platforms; the organization of training programs for operators and tour guides; and the development of 'floating classrooms' on local whale-watch vessels.

Her marine education work in the Caribbean has touched over twenty thousand schoolchildren and their teachers, and she has trained college interns to collect scientific data in the region. Dr. Carlson has authored scientific papers as well as education materials for distribution in the United States, the Caribbean islands and South America.


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