Open to the Public

Ari S. Friedlaender, PhD, looking badazz in profile against an Arctic sky--he studies whales and is awesome.  White/blue sky, white/blue glacial ice and ocean water, he is wearing an orange/black jacket, red snug cap, and sunglasses.
Ari S. Friedlaender, PhD, Principal Investigator, Friedlaender Lab, Bio-Telemetry and Behavioral Ecology, UC Santa Cruz. 

“We need a new paradigm to adequately protect these animals wherever they exist.” -Dr. Friedlaender

Blue Corridors: New Insights on the Conservation of Baleen Whales from their Migratory Routes
Speaker: Ari S. Friedlaender, PhD, Principal Investigator, Friedlaender Lab, Bio-Telemetry and Behavioral Ecology, UC Santa Cruz.
Tuesday, November 29, 2022
6:00pm to 7:00pm Pacific Time
Online via Zoom (details below)

About the Topic

Traditionally, conservation of marine mammals has focused largely on the locations where whales breed and feed.  Migratory routes and corridors have not been included when considering the threats and risks that these animals face.  As many species migrate for thousands of miles, through the waters of a multitude of nations all of which may have differing levels of protection from fishing, ship strikes, and other anthropogenic sources, we need a new paradigm to adequately protect these animals wherever they exist.  Through a unique collaboration of scientists and data collected over 30 years and in partnership with the World Wildlife Fund, the Blue corridors report provides novel case studies from around the world to illustrate the amount of threats that different whale species face along their migratory routes.  From this, we propose new mechanisms for conserving these whales and protecting these critical routes from harmful human activities.

About the Speaker

Ari is an ecologist with a primary interest in understanding the relationship between the foraging behavior of marine mammals and their prey. He works on a wide range of marine mammal species including baleen and toothed whales and dolphins across a range of geographic regions. Ari has long-term ecological research projects ongoing in Alaska, California, Massachusetts, North Carolina, and Antarctica. He has helped in the development of tag technology and analytical and visualization tools to better understand the underwater movements and behaviors of marine mammals.

For his dissertation research, Ari used geospatial tools to quantify how the distribution of cetaceans related to environmental variables in Antarctica. Ari’s lab focuses on developing new telemetry applications to elucidate the underwater behavior of marine mammals. In Antarctica, Ari is part of the Long-Term Ecological Research program at Palmer Station to better understand the ecological roles of cetaceans in a rapidly changing environment. In Alaska and Massachusetts, Ari’s research focuses on variability in the foraging strategies of humpback whales in relation to changes in their prey. In California, Ari is part of the SoCal Behavioral Response Study to understand the impacts of anthropogenic sound on a variety of cetacean species. Along with this research, Ari is an active member of the Society for Marine Mammalogy, acting as an associate editor for Marine Mammal Science and serving on the Conservation Committee. Ari is also a principal investigator in the Southern Ocean Research Partnership to conduct non-lethal research on cetaceans in the Southern Ocean.

Recommended Reading

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The Center for the Blue Economy is a research organization at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies.  Our mission is to promote a sustainable ocean and coastal economy (the “Blue Economy”) through leadership in research, analysis, and education.  For questions contact: Rachel C. at or visit or call 831-647-4183 (must leave message and receive call back).