Come join our Whale and Dolphin Research

I openly encourage you to include your students in the fascinating world of whale and dolphin research. I have found that teenagers are very eager to be in the presence of these majestic animals and to learn more about them. We have a very experienced and dedicated group of people that we work with, whom in the past decade have hosted schools, museum groups, television film crews, writers and countless individual whale enthusiasts in their respective visits to the sea.

Michael Fishbach
Tel: 1 919 967 8621

El Delfin Joven / SCHOOL OF THE SEA

Come join our ongoing Whale and Dolphin research on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica, in the Strait of Gibraltar between Spain and Morocco, in the Sea of Cortez off Baja California-Mexico, or our summer program on the St. Lawrence River in Quebec, Canada.

We offer 2 week all inclusive internships for all ages - especially catering to high school (14-18) aged students. All field sessions and studies will be hosted by professional groups already observing and studying marine mammals in the areas we will be visiting. Our presence will help to enhance these studies.

Participate in marine mammal research and be a part of our team. All 2 week programs include approximately 10 days on the sea, all high and dry accommodation, all meals, and all services of the guides and biologists. In addition we offer rainforest and coral reef visits in Costa Rica, marine ecosystem, cork tree, hilltown, and old castle visits in Spain, and cactus, desert and island ecology in Baja California. Spanish language classes will be offered in Costa Rica,Spain and Baja California as well as in depth talks and interactive methodology lessons concerning our marine mammal studies, in all locations.

Prices include all transportation and activities from the moment of arrival in San Jose- Costa Rica, Malaga- Spain, Loreto- Baja California, or Sept Iles- Quebec, until departure from any location. International air travel only where specified.

Our studies will be posted on the WhaleNet website (, which will allow students to become familiar with and to interact with our work before and after joining us, as well as while they are actually assisting us in the field. Students will be encouraged to use their own cameras to photograph the animals they observe, and have their photos included in our ongoing catalogs for each species.

All trips will have a minimum of one biologist from the El Delfin Joven school. All school groups are required to bring along at least one chaperone. We limit the number of participating schools in any one group to two. Group size is limited to 16 in Quebec, Costa Rica and Baja California, and 20 in Spain. All boats used are fully registered, insured and run by professional and experienced captains.

Our bases of operation are Quepos- Costa Rica , Tarifa- Spain, Loreto-Baja California, and Longue Pointe de Mingan- Quebec- Canada.


July 17-31, 2000 Quebec-Canada Mar.3-17, 2001 Costa Rica
Aug. 7-21, 2000 Quebec-Canada Mar. 17-31, 2001 Baja California
Dec. 2-16, 2000 Costa Rica Mar. 24 - Apr.7, 2000 Costa Rica
Dec. 16-30, 2000 Costa Rica Apr. 7-21, 2001 Spain
Jan. 20- Feb. 3, 2001 Costa Rica Apr. 14-28, 2001 Baja California
Jan. 27- Feb. 10, 2001 Baja California Apr. 28- May 12, 2001 Spain
Feb. 10- 24, 2001 Costa Rica May 12- 26, 2001 Spain
Feb. 17- Mar.3, 2001 Baja California June 2-16, 2001 Spain


  • For a two week internship/session in Costa Rica $2000 or
    $2350 including return airfare from Atlanta, Miami or Houston to San Jose-Costa Rica.

  • For a two week internship/session in Quebec-Canada or Spain $2000, no air incl.

  • For a two week internship/session in Baja California $1900, no airfare included.


    MICHAEL FISHBACH- Michael is the founder of the school. He has worked at sea with many prominent cetacean researchers, government agencies, and film crews, as well as countless tourists for the past decade. Michael has become a field specialist as a research boat pilot, naturalist, photographer and field team manager. For the past ten years he has worked with the Group for Research and Education of Marine Mammals, and the Mingan Island Cetacean Study (both of Quebec, Canada), studying bottlenose dolphins, blue, fin, humpback, minke, and beluga whales. His fieldwork has primarily been in Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean. Michael has over 15 years experience as a group leader facilitating thousands of tourists on land and sea adventures. Michael has been a regular visitor to numerous public and independent secondary schools where he has made presentations on his fieldwork with whales and dolphins.

    J. MICHAEL WILLIAMSON AND WHALENET- Michael is the associate professor of science at Wheelock College of Boston, Mass. He is also the founder and director of WhaleNet which will serve as El Delfin Jovenıs website. WhaleNet is an interactive and educational website devoted to the world of marine mammals. Michael is also the Associate Director of the Mingan Island Cetacean Study, which is the worldıs foremost research group studying the blue whale. He has been active in whale research for 25 years and education for 30 years. Michael is on the advisory board of the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary, and is a member of the Society of Marine Mammology, the Marine Technology Society, and the National Science Teachers Association, among many others. He will be writing the curriculum for all of the schoolıs programs in the field.

    MINGAN ISLAND CETACEAN STUDY (MICS)- Our host in Quebec. MICS was founded in 1979 by premier biologist Richard Sears. MICS is one of the foremost whale research stations in the world. Specializing in the study of large whales such as blue, fin and humpback MICS is the curator of the North Atlantic Blue Whale Catalog. Students will go out on the fascinating St. Lawrence River with MICS biologists, and get a firsthand look at a real time tested research station and interpretive museum. Other species of marine life such as minke whales, harbor porpoise, gray and harp seals as well as puffins, razorbills and gannets are likely to be observed.

    PLANET DOLPHIN- Our host in Costa Rica - Run by American Stephen Wofford in Quepos, Costa Rica since 1989. Planet Dolphin is a whale and dolphin watching business, with environmental education and the study of the cetaceans as a priority. Over 25,000 customers have enjoyed Planet Dolphins tours, enjoying the rugged coastline and calm protected bays for observing and studying undersea marine life. By joining forces with El Delfin Joven, Stephen expects to be able to study the diverse coral reefs, whales and dolphins as well as the sea turtles in much more depth. Students will get a firsthand education in the rainforest by living in it, and hiking with experts on this rainforest ecosystem. Three species of monkeys, parrots, toucans and anteaters should all be regularly observed.

    FIRMM - Foundation For Information and Research on Marine Mammals - Our host in Spain - Run by a Swiss and Spanish team, FIRMM is truly a whale and dolphin watching business dedicated to studying and learning more about the animals they observe. FIRMM has already compiled a catalog of many different pilot and sperm whales, as well as the orcas, striped, common and bottlenose dolphins they have observed. By spending longer hours at sea with our school their research area increases to a very exciting degree. The Strait of Gibraltar which separates Europe from Africa is a very dynamic place to work, with its beauty and diversity of life. In the nearby countryside students will visit ancient Roman Ruins, old cork tree forests, as well as countless old castles. FIRMM biologists speak no less than 7 languages and last September signed a convention that will enable FIRMM to assist with any stranded animals on the nearby coastline.

    MINGAN ISLAND CETACEAN STUDY (MICS) - Our host in Baja California. MICS researchers have been studying the Pacific blue whales in the Sea of Cortez for 19 years and documented over 300 individuals. In and around the Loreto National Marine Park, MICS researchers will guide us in their continuing search for new and "known" blue whales. The spectacular cactus studded Sierra de la Gigantica Mtns. and the island jewels of the Sea of Cortez will both serve as a magnificent backdrop to our visit. GRUPO ECOLOGISTA ANTARES (GEA) - will share their museum space and computer with us and host us on a more local level. Students may also observe fin, humpback, gray, sperm and short finned pilot whales as well as orcas, common and bottlenose dolphins and California sea lions in these rich and productive waters.


  • A complete reservation packet will be sent out upon request.

  • Detailed information about any of our locations can be sent out or discussed over the telephone.

  • One reservation form must be filled out by the chaperone in attendance, as well as all students filling out individual forms.

  • Space will be officially reserved once a $500 per person deposit is received. Final payment will be due no later than 90 days after deposit is received.

    Interested parties are encouraged to contact the school with any and all questions, directly at:

    Michael Fishbach, Director
    El Delfin Joven -School of the Sea
    1318 Keith Ln.
    Chapel Hill,NC 27516 USA
    Tel: 1 919 967 8621 Fax:1 919 942 1510