Oceans Initiative: on a mission to protect marine life
Conservation scientist Erin Ashe, PhD, says we all have a “cetacean story”: the moment in our lives when we realize that whales and dolphins—the spellbinding mammals she studies—exist. Ashe was four years old when hers happened. A family of orcas swam below her aunt’s cliffside home on San Juan Island in the state of Washington, announcing their presence with the unmistakable whoosh of air being exhaled through blowholes. Ashe was awestruck, and insatiably curious about the 12,000-pound creatures—a feeling that would direct the course of her studies and, eventually, her life’s work.