Monday, March 5, 2018

Superpod Six Primer with Schedule Outline

Superpod is a biennial gathering on San Juan Island, Washington, USA, hosted by Voice of the Orcas

#Superpod6 is the sixth incarnation of an event that began in July 2011, organically. It is organized through volunteerism & minimal fund raising. It's an event for learning, sharing, & inspiration. It's open & free to the public and brings together scientists, authors, journalists, former trainers, naturalists, orca advocates and people who want to see killer whales swimming, playing & chasing prey in the ocean. It's fun & the San Juan Islands are stunningly beautiful. 

Recent years have seen an increase in the number of transient orcas in the Salish Sea. Whale watch patrons are just as likely to see transient families as they are to see the fish-eating Southern Residents. Humpbacks are increasing in number & frequently seen via boat. Bald eagles, dolphins & stellar sea lions are plentiful. 


Whale watching is land-based or via several whale watch companies. Here's a Southern Resident bull orca swimming in front of #Superpod5 attendees at Lime Kiln State Park, with voice over by attendee Brian Goodwin, who traveled from Florida: 

#Superpod6 happens Mon-Fri July 16th - 20th, 2018 

July 19th will mark the five-year-anniversary of #Blackfish opening at theaters in New York, Los Angeles and Hollywood. Appropriately, this year's theme is The Blackfish Effect. That said, topics will be far-ranging, including on current events, state of the Southern Resident orcas, shake-ups at SeaWorld, wild and captive orca research, the Russia-China-SeaWorld connection, Morgan, Lolita, Corky updates, salmon restoration, the lower Snake River dams, scholar advocacy, short films and more. Our venue is the San Juan Community theater, seen in the drone video here: 

At the theater, over two dozen experts & advocates will take the stage for Ted Talks Style presentations including short films on Granny & Moby Doll. The theater will also house booths and interactive information tables. Meet folks from the Center for Whale Research and conservation groups that will be on island for the event. The official #Superpod6 T-Shirt, designed by artist Kaarina Makowski, is below with her comments. Guess who the whales are on the official logo?  


16 July Monday: FLEX time. Arrival day. Explore the island, social events 

17 July Block ONE: Tues 1:30 pm to 4:00 pm: Meet & Greet at Friday's Crab House 

17 July Block TWO: Tues 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm or later - Welcoming at the San Juan Theater

18 July Block THREE: Wed 8:30 to 12:30 pm - presentations / films 

18 July Block FOUR: Wed 2:pm to 6:00 pm - presentations / films 

19 July Block FIVE: Thurs 8:30 pm to 12:30 pm - presentations / films 

19 July Block SIX: Thurs 2:00 pm until 6:00 pm or as late as needed / films 

20 July Friday: FLEX time. Whale Watching, social events, island exploration


NOTE: This list is a working list in no particular order. Most on this list will be presenting or involved in scholar advocacy. We will update the list with more details, add-ons or cancellations

Phil Demers - The Walrus Whisperer 
Charles Vinick - Lessons from Keiko Project 
Christine Caruso - Introduce her documentary on Corky with film clips 
Colleen Weiler, WDC Fellow, Rekos Fellowship for Orca Conservation
Margaux Dodds - Marine Connection (UK) - Introduce Whale Bowl Documentary
Carly Ferguson, Ontario Captive Animal Watch - Update on Kiska / status of Bill S-203
David Neiwert - Journalist, Author Of Orcas & Men 
Kim Ventre - Mistress of Ceremonies 
Dr Kathryn Comer - Portland State University, Blackfish impacts 
Dr Lori Marino - Neuroscientist, Scholar advocacy & Whale Sanctuary Project 
Dr Ingrid Visser - New Zealand orca researcher, multiple topics 
Dean Gomersall - Blackfish cast member
Murial Arnal - French Decree banning breeding of cetaceans 
Pedro Bicchieri - Book Author, The Blackfish Effect 
Dr Naomi Rose - Blackfish Effect, policy expert 
Rachel Carbury - Empty the Tanks Worldwide organizer 
Mark Leiren-Young / Rayne Benu -  Films: Moby Doll & The Hundred Year Old Whale
Suzanne Mager - Sound Action Org - protecting juvenile salmon
Jim Waddell - Dewatering the 4 Lower Snake Dams 
Ella Van Cleave - Scholar Advocate 
Mariah Kirby - Scholar Advocate 
Captain Jeff Friedman - Northwest orca -salmon connection
Simon Hunt - His work with the UK Parliament on animal justice issues
Michael Mountain - Whale Sanctuary Project 

Haze Sommer - social media guru 

Ken Balcomb - PI for Center for Whale Research 

Dr Deborah Giles - Orca scat study
Dr John Jett - VOTO - Tooth Damage in Captive O Orca 
Kaarina Mackowski - official SP6 artist / videographer 
Dr Jeffrey Ventre - VOTO
More to come...

NOTE to presenters. Contact one of us at VOTO if you don't see your name here! 

#Superpod1: On Legacy with David Kirby, Samantha Berg, Jeffrey Ventre, Michelle Duncan, Todd Bricker