Moreton Bay Dolphin Ecology Workshop poster 2017 LRbanner 2Love dolphins and want to learn more? Then come along to our Dolphin Ecology Workshop 22nd April 2017! Learn all about the biology, ecology and conservation of dolphins and how to assist in monitoring populations along our coastline. For more information and to make a booking CLICK HERE

Posted By: liz on April 4, 2017 in Education - Comments: Comments Off on Moreton Bay Dolphin Ecology Workshop

The Dolphin Research Australia Inc. Cetacea Tour Guide & Operator training course is back again in 2017! The 2 day course will be held 26-27th April in

Humpback whale tail fluke (photo: E. Hawkins)

Humpback whale tail fluke (photo: E. Hawkins)

Nambucca Heads, NSW. It is an extensive course that covers everything from the biology & ecology of whales and dolphins to best practice guiding. CLICK HERE for more information. Places are very limited so make sure you ENROL NOW so you don’t miss out!

Posted By: liz on March 7, 2017 in Education, Events - Comments: Comments Off on Whale & Dolphin Tour Guide Training 2017

The first issue of our CetusGeo Dolphin & Whale Emagazine is OUT NOW! Exclusive to Dolphin cetusgeo-issue-1-2016_lrResearch Australia Inc. members and dolphin guardians, the emagazine covers all the latest news in the world of whales, dolphins and so much more! Delivered to inboxes of our current members and dolphin guardians, CetusGeo is an emagazine for Cetacean and Nature lovers! For your annual membership or adoption, you’ll receive 2 issues per year. Our first issue features articles about marine debris & cetaceans, the issues with shark nets, latest cetacean news and so much more! To get your copy, simply become a member or adopt a dolphin today!

Posted By: liz on December 6, 2016 in Education - Comments: Comments Off on CetusGeo Issue 1 is Out Now!

Thinking about what to get your loved ones for Christmas? LOOK NO FURTHER FOR YOUR previewspermCHRISTMAS GIFTS! We have something for all ages! Our Dolphin Adoption packages make great gifts! or Check out our Artists for Dolphins online Etsy store. Full of environmentally and ethically friendly crafted gifts designed, created and donated by our Artists for Dolphins Collective. There’s SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE!

Posted By: liz on November 22, 2016 in Education - Comments: Comments Off on Christmas Is Coming!

IT’S HERE! We are very excited to announce our upcoming publication of CetusGeo Whale and Dolphin cetus-geo-advertisementMagazine! Exclusive to Dolphin Research Australia Inc. members and dolphin guardians, the magazine covers all the latest news in the world of whales, dolphins and so much more! Our first issue is due for release in November 2016. DON’T MISS OUT! To SUBSCRIBE TODAY simply become a member or Adopt-A-Dolphin and you’ll automatically receive 1 year subscription.

Posted By: liz on September 22, 2016 in Education - Comments: Comments Off on CetusGeo Whale & Dolphin Magazine!

Our Dive In Marine Education Holiday Program is back this NSW Spring Break! Come and join us20160421_124540 this Spring Break for a fun morning on Thursday 6th October 9.30am-12.00pm at the Ballina Surf Club! It’s a great morning of story telling, crafting and beach cleaning. Click HERE for more information and to book.

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Humpback Whale Fluke

Humpback Whale Fluke by E. Hawkins (c) 2010

ENROL NOW! Our 2-day Whale & Dolphin Tour Guide Training Course will be held in 3-4th May 2016 in Byron Bay, Australia! Our tour guide course provides an introduction to the biology, ecology, behaviour interpretation of cetaceans and regulations in Australia.  The course provides expert instruction for best practice approaches for the operation of cetacean tour businesses and guiding whilst taking into consideration the needs of clients, their expectations, and satisfaction.  The training is delivered by cetacean tourism experts and is available for those currently working or would like to work in the cetacean watching and swim-with industry. FIND OUT MORE HERE!

Posted By: liz on April 13, 2016 in Education, Events - Comments: No Comments »

Adopt A Dolphin for Christmas!

Jessie & Calf

Jessie & Calf

We are very excited to announce the expansion of our Adopt-A-Dolphin program. We now have four beautiful dolphins from Moreton Bay up for adoption adding to our six from Byron Bay. We have two female humpback dolphins and two bottlenose dolphins from Moreton Bay. Each have their own personal characteristics we’ve got to know from our time spent in the field. Please check out our Dolphin Adoption page and profiles and choose which you would like to adopt. They also make a great gift for Christmas!

Posted By: liz on December 4, 2015 in Education - Comments: Comments Off on Adopt A Dolphin for Christmas

Moreton Bay Dolphin Research Expeditions

Australian humpback dolphin in Moreton Bay Marine Park

Australian humpback dolphin in Moreton Bay Marine Park

Join us for an authentic and unique experience on our Moreton Bay Dolphin Research Expeditions.  Join the research team for one week or two weeks for our 2015 season.

The Moreton Bay Dolphin Research Expeditions offer a once in a lifetime experience to learn, participate and actively contribute to advancing the knowledge of coastal dolphins and aiding in their protection and conservation.

Our Moreton Bay Dolphin Research Expeditions in 2015 will be based at the University of Queensland Moreton Bay Research Station on North Stradbroke Island, Queensland, Australia.  For expedition dates and prices go to our Dolphin Expedition Page

Posted By: liz on March 24, 2015 in Education - Comments: Comments Off on Moreton Bay Dolphin Research Expeditions

Dolphin Ecology Workshop Byron Bay

Dolphin Ecology Workshop Byron Bay

Dolphin Ecology Workshop Byron Bay

Ever wanted to learn more about dolphins and find out how you can help be part of research to help in the conservation of dolphins in your local area? Come and join us for an evening of intrigue and enjoyment at our upcoming Dolphin Ecology Workshop 23rd March 2015 at the Byron Bay Services Club 6.30pm-8.30pm (please arrive 6.15). Entry is $30 which includes year membership to Dolphin Research Australia and workshop pack. Workshop is free for current members! contact us at info(at) for bookings and queries.

Posted By: liz on March 13, 2015 in Education - Comments: Comments Off on Dolphin Ecology Workshop

Dolphin Education Team teaching in the great outdoors

Our Dolphin Research Australia Education Programs are suited for all ages!! We are very happy to announce that we now have available both primary and high school education programs!! These incredible programs are fun for everyone and they provide a unique learning experience.  For more information about our programs check out our School Education page!

Posted By: liz on July 19, 2014 in Education - Comments: Comments Off on Dolphin Education Programs


Thinking how your children can have lots of fun and keep learning this holiday season?

Dolphin Painting

Join our ‘Dive In’ Holiday Program which is happening again this year during the month of January in Byron Bay.

The ‘Dive In’ program provides holiday fun and activities for children aged between 6 and 12 years.  They can learn all about the ocean, dolphins and other marine life during our 2hr holiday sessions that will be held every Wednesday morning between 2pm-3.45pm and Fridays between 10am-11.45am between 3rd January and 22nd January 2013 in Byron Bay. Click here for further details or contact us directly info(at)

Posted By: liz on November 11, 2013 in Education - Comments: Comments Off on ‘Dive In’ Summer Holiday Program 2014
sussex inlet dolphin

Sussex Inlet dolphin rescued May 2013

In September 2012 a young female bottlenose dolphin became trapped in Sussex Inlet on the south coast of New South Wales. Unable to return to the open ocean to rejoin her pod she became very tame and began interacting with people. The dolphin became so tame that  she was ultimately at great risk of injury or at some point injuring someone else. A decision was made to capture and return her to the open ocean and Dolphin Research Australia was there to help. Watch the video about this is the story and the journey to set the young dolphin free.

Posted By: liz on May 20, 2013 in Campaigns & Rescues, Education, Events, Research - Comments: Comments Off on Sussex Inlet dolphin set free!

Nambucca Heads Whale Day Festival- Guuruja Ngayan- 1st June 2013

festival hands

Festival Hands

Gumma Indigenous Protected Area (IPA), Dolphin Research Australia (DRA) both not-for-profit associations, in conjunction with The International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW)  are holding the  Annual National Whale Day – Guuruja Ngayan Nambucca Festival on National Whale day, 1st June 2013, at the Captain Cook look-out, Nambucca Heads. The day will start at 6am with a beach ceremony to welcome the migrating whales back to Gumbaynggirr Country. At the Captain Cook lookout between 8am – 12pm.  Marine Mammal Expert and Dolphin Research Australia founder, Dr. Liz Hawkins, will be giving free whale watching guided information talks on the different whale species you might see, tips for spotting them and what to note when whale watching such as body type, length and swimming characteristics. They will also explain how to identify different whale and dolphin behaviours and what they mean such as breaching, spy hopping and tail and pectoral slapping. We will also have market stalls, plenty of kids and adult marine themed craft activities and dreamtime story telling by the Baga Baga people of Gumbaynggirr Country. The Nambucca Youthie healthy food truck will also be there to provide refreshments. 

In the evening Dolphin Research Australia will be launching their mid-north coast travelling film tour of the film ‘The Whale’ from 6pm – 8.30pm.

Come along to the festival and learn more about local Gumbaynggirr culture, whale and dolphin ecology and how you can participate in helping to gather important information about these wonderful creatures.

Whale Festival 2013 Program

6.00am Sunrise Ceremony to welcome the return of the whales

8.00am Market & Food stalls open

8.45am Guided whale watching talk

10.00am Guided whale watching talk

10.30am Journey with Dolphin Children’s Activity I

11.30am Guided whale watching talk

11.45am Journey with Dolphin Children’s Activity II

12.30pm Guided whale watching talk

6.00pm-8.30pm Special film showing of the internationally acclaimed ‘The Whale’ (G)

All day activities – color your own t-shirt,  recycled bottle whales, sand art, whale toys, education, painting and add to the whale sculpture

Posted By: liz on in Education, Events - Comments: Comments Off on National Whale Day Celebrations
Beluga whale

Beluga whale

Researchers in the US have recently reported in Current Biology findings from a study showing the apparent mimicry of a Beluga whale mimicking human voice. Although it has been known that cetaceans can mimic sounds, this is the first to show that Beluga’s (Delphinapterus leucas) can spontaneously imitate human speech. Curiosity of researchers were raised when a diver in NOC, Beluga’s tank at the U.S. Navy Marine Mammal Program facility in San Diego, thought he heard someone calling him. After investigating the calls, it was not a human at all, but NOC vocalising sounds lower in frequency than ‘normal’ beluga calls and resembled the inflections of human speech. Sam Ridgway, lead researcher from the National Marine Mammal Foundation said “Our observations suggest that the whale had to modify its vocal mechanics in order to make the speech-like sounds.”

Posted By: liz on in Education - Comments: Comments Off on Beluga Mimics Human Sounds

Mother & Calf bottlenose dolphin

Boaters and swimmers are being reminded to give dolphins space as the summer calving period begins.  Although calving can occur all year round, Dr. Liz Hawkins from Dolphin Research Australia says this time of year we see a peak in the number of new calves born in and around Byron Bay, New South Wales.  Mothers and calves are highly vulnerable to human disturbance and can experience high levels of stress from such encounters.

Boaters (which include kayakers and surfers) are reminded to stick to the Australia dolphin watching regulations; no approach distance = 50m for vessels (non calf groups), 150m (for calf groups).

-December 2012-

Posted By: liz on in Education, Research - Comments: Comments Off on Summer Loving & New Calves to Care for

“A dolphin tangled in fishing line sought help from a diver in the waters of Hawaii.

Hawaii dolphin

The amazing encounter on January 11 2013 was captured on video and the diver, Keller Laros, spent the better part of eight minutes tending to the needy mammal who readily accepted the help.

Mr Laros was leading a group of snorkelers for a manta ray dive experience off the Big Island’s Kona International Airport when the dolphin squealed out.

The diver explained, ‘The way he came right up and pushed himself into me there was no question this dolphin was there for help.’”

This encounter is an amazing account of dolphins seeking assistance from people.  The divers did an amazing job untangling the line from the dolphin.  This highlights the threat of fishing practices to wildlife – without the help of these divers, the fate of this dolphin would not have been good.

This rescue was performed by experienced divers and it is not recommended that inexperienced or unqualified persons attempt such rescues.

If you see injured, stranded or entangled marine wildlife in Australia please contact your local National Parks & Wildlife Service. For whales and dolphins you can also contact us at for assistance.

Source: Daily Mail

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Dolphin Painting

Our Dolphin Research Australia summer education program is now in full swing!  For the month of January our dolphin education team are providing children (and their parents) a unique learning experience.  Children can learn all about dolphins, marine life and their conservation while enjoying fun activities! The program is taking place each Wednesday (10am-12pm and 1pm-3pm), Thursday (1pm-3pm) and Friday (1-3pm) with each day offering different activities and learning experiences. The program is running each Wednesday (10am-12pm), Thursday (1pm-3pm) and Friday (1pm-3pm) during the school holidays at the Suffolk Park Community Hall with different sessions each day.    Cost $15/child/session; $25 for 2 children/session; $30 for 3 children/session which covers the costs of materials.  Children must be accompanied by an adult and can also join in the fun.  For more information go to our holiday education page or contact us at to book your place

Posted By: liz on January 3, 2013 in Education, Events - Comments: Comments Off on Summer Education Program

Having trouble finding a great gift for a loved one?  How about giving a special gift to them this Christmas & making them a Dolphin Guardian!!! By becoming a Dolphin Guardian, they’ll be helping to safe guard our dolphins from the threats they face today & helping them survive into the future.  Check out our beautiful dolphin ambassadors up for adoption on our profiles page Be sure to send us an email at to send through the details of the loved one you’d like the adoption package to be sent to.  All funds raised help us continue Dolphin Research Australia’s conservation work helping to protect our marine environment!

Posted By: liz on December 6, 2012 in Education - Comments: Comments Off on Give a Dolphin Gift this Christmas
Nambucca Heads Clean Up Team

Nambucca Heads Clean Up Team

The first of the Dolphin Sighting Network workshops, held on 22nd September 2012 at Nambucca Heads (Gumbaynggirr), NSW, was a great success!  We had a great turnout from the local Gumbaynggirr community who learnt all about the ecology of dolphins and how they can contribute to the little knowledge of dolphins in their community.  The workshop was followed by the Nambucca River Clean Up in association with the Gumma Indigenous Protect

Area, the Solitary Island Underwater Research Group and many community volunteers.  The team removed many items of marine debris from the river including a childs scooter, car tyres, plastic and fishing line.  Thanks to everyone who came along for to take part and help clean up our rivers and learn of the animals that live within them!
Posted By: liz on October 28, 2012 in Education, Events - Comments: Comments Off on Dolphin Workshop Nambucca Success!