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Marineland Seeking Volunteers for Right Whale Surveying

ⓒ Scott Spradley

MARINELAND – The Marineland Right Whale Project is currently seeking volunteers, according to a social media post released this week. Those who apply will have the opportunity to do their part for the conservation of one of Flagler County’s most iconic marine mammals.

Those who join the volunteer program would be participating from early January to mid March, according to Marineland’s statement. It would entail taking four hours per morning, one day a week, to look for North Atlantic right whales from one of several designated lookout points. The stations are located at the beach from Marineland to Flagler Beach. No experience of any kind is necessary to take part.


The timing of the project coincides with the regular migration patterns of North Atlantic right whales. Starting in the winter months, the whales begin to move south along the Atlantic coast from the colder waters of New England and Southeast Canada to the warmer waters off Florida and Georgia. Here they do much of their breeding, and mother whales can often be seen swimming alongside their calves.

ⓒ National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration

Flagler Beach and Marineland have been home to numerous sightings of the North Atlantic right whale over the years; the species is unique in its willingness to swim very close to shore. The National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) prohibits boaters, kayakers, surfers, and paddleboarders from approaching withing 500 yards North Atlantic right whales, with enforcement being handled by the U.S. Coast Guard. The best photos of whales that visit the area usually come from authorized drone pilots or shore photographers with high-powered lenses.

The strict protections that are in place for North Atlanitc right whales can largely be attributed to their critical conservation status. As of 2021, the total population for the species was said to be around 350. They are often killed by hazards such as floating debris and collisions with commercial fishing or shipping vessels. With that population crisis in mind, the Marineland Right Whale Project can play an important part in keeping conservation data current and accurate, so that the whales can get the protection they need to preserve their species.

Those who are interested in joining the Marineland Right Whale Project can do so by emailing or by contacting Sara at (207) 281-3541.

Written By

Chris Gollon is a Flagler County resident since 2004, as well as a staple of the local independent music scene and avid observer of Central Florida politics, arts, and recreation.



  1. Judy Bowman

    December 17, 2023 at 11:43 am

    Thanks Chris been a volunteer for 14 years

  2. Bev Hebard

    December 20, 2023 at 8:45 pm

    I’d like to volunteer.

    • Chris Gollon

      December 21, 2023 at 8:04 am

      The bottom lines of the article show where the organizers asked prospective volunteers to reach out.

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