Shaping a new generation of scientists and veterinarians through mentorship and research.

The Early Scientists Program supports the development of marine mammal scientists and veterinarians through mentorship and guidance from our Senior Scientist, Dr. Sam Ridgway. Dr. Ridgway’s team is currently focused on understanding how dolphins use sound to find food, find their way, and communicate in the ocean. The team is also working to understand how dolphin-made sounds may be linked to their overall health and welfare.

We know a great deal about how dolphins make their sounds.

Dr. Ridgway and members of the Early Scientists Program are studying how dolphins interact with their environment while swimming freely in the open ocean. The dolphins are trained to wear tiny cameras and recorders, allowing us to see them and hear them underwater. With these novel methods, the team can make observations in the near field, from the perspective of the dolphin, and in the far field through clicks projected at the fish and other animals in the ocean. Dr. Ridgway’s studies are revealing new details about how dolphins interact with their food, environment, and one another.

Early Scientists Program Team