SUMMER FIELD COURSES, 2017
Diverse experiences possible and vary on resource availability
Updated Thursday November 24, 2016
OERS-F600 (April 30-May 7, 2017)
This field course opportunity is unique as it allows the participants the opportunity to get up close and personal with a number of marine mammal species and experience living physiology of these remarkable creatures. OERS will be offering this as a 1 week trip at the beginning of may that includes daily in the field (water!) interactions with dolphins, manatee and sea lions in a controlled yet natural environment. You will experience applied physiology and see first-hand how their adaptations allow them to exist in their aquatic environment. You will have time in the water getting to feel and see for yourself their unique adaptations that make them survive so well. Through direct exposure to mothers and their young you will learn about reproduction and maternal physiology including witnessing live births if they occur. You will also learn and get hands on experience regarding marine mammal nutritional requirements. Wrapping up the week is a thrill of a lifetime - an interactive in water session with you and a dolphin interacting one-on-one!! Not only is the unique in water experiences unbelievable but as part of the course fee you will be staying at an all inclusive resort in a safe and gated community. After class activities include observing other marine life to compare to the marine mammals you were studying. This is an opportunity of a lifetime as there are few facilities where you get to interact so closely with these beautiful creatures in as natural a habitat as possible. All course materials provided, space is limited to ensure hands on experience for all participants who wish it. The course fees will be $3,500 USD* everything included but airfare and tuition fees (if you want university credit). This course is a must for anyone who wants to finally get a chance to touch, interact and learn comparative marine mammal physiology in the field. Submitting the registration form with the non-refundable deposit of $500 (cheque dated February 1, 2017; payable to OERS) ensures your space on this very popular and unusual experience. Registrations are now open, apply immediately if you really wish to be a part of this unique experience! (Note - minimum enrollment of 12 applies for course to be held)
*NOTE: If you are enrolling in PSL379 (UofT) at the same time you get a discounted price of $2,995 USD with confirmation of enrollment.
Course Application Form | Testimonials | Headlines
OERS-F500 (May 15-19, 2017)
Following on the heels of a series of enormously successful courses in the summers of 2007-2016, OERS will be offering its eighth dissection/autopsy experience which will be 5 days in length and consist of a detailed hands on anatomical exploration of a marine mammal. For the summer 2017 (May 15-19), it is a young adult pinniped (grey seal). The students will participate in the necropsy and dissection, getting a first-hand look at the wonders of pinniped adaptations. As well they will learn the state of its health and general condition. This knowledge will assist us in better understanding these amazing creatures and how our environment is impacting on them. Please be aware that if the participant so chooses, this is hands on and will be messy. All course materials provided, space is limited to ensure hands on experience for all participants who wish it. Cost $2500. Submitting the registration form with the non-refundable deposit of $500 ensures your space on this very popular and unusual experience. Registrations are now open, apply immediately if you really wish to be a part of this unique experience!
NOTE: If also enrolling in PSL378 (UofT) at the same time you get a discounted price of $1995 with confirmation of enrollment. Also note course is always subject to availability of specimen. For 2017 this has been confirmed.
Application Form | Testimonials | Headlines
UNDERGRADUATE DEGREE COURSES
If you are interested in university level education in Toronto with a marine mammal focus, there are a number of undergraduate degree level courses at the 2nd 3rd and 4th year levels, including filed courses available at the University of Toronto, through the department of Physiology. These courses are run as recognized and approved undergraduate courses at the University of Toronto. For more information, visit the Department of Physiology, University of Toronto website at http://www.physiology.utoronto.ca/undergraduate-courses.
In order to take these courses you must enroll through the University of Toronto.
|OERS Professional Career Experiences
A number of opportunities have been created to allow individuals to experience marine mammal science, research and biomedical topics. Costs and time commitment vary depending on the program.
Interested candidates should fill in the program application form, attach required documents and non-refundable deposit* and submit to OERS at 12 Burton Ave, Barrie Ontario, L4N 2R2. Unless otherwise specified, there are no specific deadlines as most experiences can be undertaken at any time of mutual convenience during the year. Please note that the costs listed are registration fees only and do not cover any other expenses which are the responsibility of the candidate. All candidates must be >18 years of age.
** $150 deposit goes toward registration fees, the balance of which is payable upon acceptance into the program. OERS is not responsible if the candidate does not complete the program as agreed to by all parties.
Further details on specific opportunities:
Pre-Veterinary Career Experience (ongoing)
Marine Mammal Research Skills (ongoing)
Biomedical Research Skills (ongoing)
Marine Biology Field Experience (ongoing)
"Taking part in the advanced pre-vet internship has been the smartest
move I made since entering university. Great mentors, awesome
opportunities to learn many things about vet medicine and too much fun!"
-- Hamsha 2008 Advanced Pre-vet Intern
"It is a pivotal experience for anyone considering research."
-- Arthur 2008 Advanced Biomedical Research Internship
"There is definitely a great energy among the OERS members that makes everyone who participates in their internships feel welcome."
-- Ashley 2007 Advanced Research Intern
"I would strongly recommend this course to anyone who wish to pursue an academic career in science."
-- Andrew 2007 Advanced Research Intern
"This is a worthwhile experience, especially if you don't have a lot hands on experience in a lab."
-- Deniece 2007 Advanced Research Intern
"Participating in the pre-vet internship was probably the most informative and worthwhile experience I've had during my years of university"
-- Patricia 2007 Pre-Vet Intern
“Great hands on experience…..unbelievable opportunity to experience the diversity of a veterinary career…..this has been the most exciting and worthwhile thing I have done ever…”
-- Ashley 2006 Pre-Vet Intern
"For any students planning of a future in research, this program is a must have."
-- Chelsea 2007 Research Intern
- Full Testimonials -
|Marine Mammal Profiles
Why Learn About Marine Mammals?
Marine mammals have a special appeal and fascination for humans as they live in a different environment and most of their physiology and biology remains largely unknown. They are often portrayed as cute, adorable animals with human-like traits (e.g. Flipper/Keiko).
The reality is that they are highly intelligent, live in organized societies (e.g. Killer Whales), families (e.g. Dolphins), or as solitary animals (e.g. Polar Bears, Sea Otters, Baleen Whales) and have become adapted to an environment that is varied and harsh.
Numerous human activities have become a threat to their survival, which has resulted in a recent upsurge of interest in marine mammal science to help protect and preserve these animals if they are to survive.
In the broadest terms, a marine mammal is defined as any aquatic mammal that spends part or all of its life in water (fresh or salt). Currently, there are approximately 124 living species, including: 84 cetaceans (whales, dolphins, porpoises), 36 pinnipeds (seals, sea lions, walrus), 4 sirenians (manatees, dugongs), sea otters and polar bears. Also included are fresh water species, such as river dolphins (Hong Kong, Amazon River) and seals in the Caspian and Baikal seas.
Click below for mor information on each marine mammal of interest:
- Whales, Dolphins and Porpoises
- Sea Lions, Seals and Walruses
- Manatees and Dugongs
- Sea Otters
- Polar Bears
Soothing Seas Video Series
OERS is planning on creating and distributing a series of videos portraying the beauty of the marine environment accompanied by relaxing music and descriptive English subtitles that can be used by people of all ages who are unable to get out and experience this for themselves.
Below is a list of titles and a short descriptor:
Status: to be released in 2010
Duration: Approx 60 minutes
Format: VHS (avail) DVD (to come)
Description: This consists of the playful and cuddly looking otter having a great time and enjoying life. A selection of appropriate music and subtitles provide relevant information to aid the viewer in understanding what is going on.
Use: It is hoped that this video will be a natural partner to the others.
A Day at the Beach
Status: to be released in 2010
Duration: Approx 50 minutes
Format: VHS (avail) DVD (to come)
Description: This consists of beautiful beach and coastal scenery with wildlife including birds, seals and other creature enjoying its natural habitat. Together with the soothing sounds of waves on the shore, a selection of relaxing classical and semi-classical music accompanies this video and subtitles provide relevant information to aid the viewer in understanding what is going on.
Use: It is hoped that this video will be a natural partner to the Manatee Moments video and provide e enjoyment and relaxation.
Status: Released 2001
Duration: Approx 54 minutes
Format: VHS (avail) DVD (to come)
Description: This consists of underwater scenes of the gentle sea cow, the Florida Manatee, in its natural setting and interacting with man. A selection of relaxing classical and semi-classical music accompanies the video and subtitles provide relevant information to aid the viewer in understanding what is going on.
Use: To date this video has been used on closed circuit TV at the Hospital for Sick Children, Royal Victoria Hospital (Barrie) and by various departments within the RVH including Cardiology, dialysis unit and EEG laboratory. Use for the elderly include IOOF and Grove park facilities in Barrie and other private families upon request. It has proven useful for those with Alzheimer’s and Autistic children.
|Christopher's Corner (Children's Section)
This portion of our website is dedicated exclusively to the children, whose limitless desire to learn and understand the oceans are the guiding light of the future! This can be used for children to learn and enjoy and for teachers and parents to use for such a purpose.
Create the Planet
Welcome to the planet's soup kitchen. Here you are the master chef and its up to you to add the right ingredients to the environment. Chose from the following environment and then click and drag the animals and plants you think belong (under construction)
Here is where you will be able to test your ability to identify marine animals. Chose your level and good luck:
Think I Know
Know I Know
Kiddy Colouring Book
Feel free to download, print then colour these marine mammal pictures!
Kids Drawing Board
Hey there kids, how about sending us your drawings about the world's oceans. See a few we have already received and visit often, you never know, your might be here next. (Richard, picture here)
For Earth day, draw a cool ocean scene and send it in to us and we will post the coolest on this webpage for all your friends to see. Some really neat prizes will be given out too. So don't wait the sooner you send something to us the better! Have a look at some done by kids just like you we have put on the KIDS ART BOARD!
Skulls, Teeth, Jaws
Pictures of teeth, skulls, sawbill with simple descriptions (under construction)
Updated February 21, 2014