About this special issue ...
The method, then, to achieve the issue's mission is to elaborate on activities of the chapter that Mary especially enjoyed. These, of course, form a wide-angle lens on the wealth of marine diversity in the Monterey region. Because of the resourceful people who have shaped the chapter all these years, we have been able to look through that lens with clarity and understanding. Species of cetaceans seen locally present a source of amazement and inspiration to anyone with an interest in marine mammals. The monthly meetings draw on an impressive body of local work concerning these animals and their world. The cash awards (grants) to students for their degree projects are one entre into the area's research (see "The ACSMB Grants and Common Dolphin"). The children's whale watch experience was the essence of an interest in creating a way for cetaceans to touch peoples' lives (see "The Whales for Kids Program"). The bi-annual whale watches continue that opportunity in another way - and support the chapter's finances. Mary herself was an avid watcher of whales, and of other people watching whales (see "Blue Whales for the First Time"). Volunteers with beached marine mammals had another unique experience through Beachwatch, Seal Watch, and now Bay Net (see "Volunteers Don't Work for Nothing,"). Setting the stage is a continual alertness to events and studies that revise known facts about marine mammals (see "The Whale Year", "Blue Whales in Central California", and "Gray Whales and Humpbacks").
The special issue has had enthusiastic support from the ACS Monterey Bay board and busy people gladly wrote the articles. Alan and Sheila Baldridge have given the necessary depth to both the plans and the information. Evelyn Starr, our web master, gave her skills to the layout. She also has made sure all the articles and information from this special issue appear, sometimes at greater length, on the chapter's web site at: http://www.starrsites.com/acsmb/.