Talk: National Museum of Nature and Science in Tokyo

The National Museum of Nature and Science in Tokyo has been holding a special exhibition on marine mammals in conjunction with the Asahi Shimbun and WWF Japan.

The exhibition started on 10 July and winds up on 26 September. As of the middle of August, over 200,000 people have visited the exhibit!

Female sperm whale with giant squid in its mouth.

My photograph of a female sperm whale consuming part of an Architeuthis giant squid is on display as part of the exhibit, and I am scheduled to give a talk on what it's like to be in the water with sperm whales on Friday, 24 September, from 18:00 to 18:30.

Since the museum is in Tokyo, I'll be doing my best to give the talk entirely in Japanese (gulp). Fortunately, Tadasu Yamada from the Division of Vertebrates in the Department of Zoology at the Museum will be on hand to help translate when I exceed the limits of my Japanese vocabulary.

I'm not exactly sure how the talk will go, but I'm planning to take along some sperm whale images and video clips from my recent trips to Ogasawara and Dominica.

If you can make it to the talk, I'll tell you what it's like to be in the water next to the largest living carnivore on the planet, to have your fin chewed by a sperm whale, to get ping-ed by sperm whale sonar, to watch a large group of socialising whales, and even to stroke an unusual sperm whale named Scar that seems to seek out human attention.

My talk is free, but there is an admission charge of 1,400 Yen to get into the museum. There's a special rate of 2,000 Yen for two people together if you enter the museum after 17:00 on that day.

If you happen to be in Tokyo on 24 September, please drop by and say hello! Details are on this page (in Japanese).