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Amanda Banks Writes about Marine Life Studies



Amanda Banks from Brighton, England is in Monterey for the coming month to volunteer with and write about Peggy Stap of Marine Life Studies.


Amanda's background is in the arts, having worked in England as a dancer and teacher for the last 15 years. Last year she decided to take time out from her career to explore additional interests in writing and conservation. In summer 2010 she began working as a researcher for Planet Whale provides information to the public on whale and dolphin watching trips all around the world. Uniquely, the websiteAmandaDance also provides information on whale and dolphin conservation groups worldwide. Amanda's role at Planet Whale involved researching cetacean conservation organizations to be included in a global report and feature on the website. She was responsible for co-writing and editing the report, writing articles for the site and liaising with individuals from 100 organizations worldwide.


While working at Planet Whale Amanda dreamed up an unusual plan. She decided that she would like to volunteer with some whale and dolphin conservationists and while doing so write about their work and lives. The idea appealed to her because she is fascinated by the strength of character required to be a conservationist and she believes that stories of their passionate and dedicated lives have the power to inspire and motivate others.



When Amanda approached Marine Life Studies on behalf of Planet Whale she was struck by Peggy's openness and friendly attitude. So when Peggy emailed the welcoming suggestion "If you are ever in California it would be great to meet you!" Amanda immediately decided to take her up on the offer. Six months later and this idea has become a reality.


Amanda will be working with Marine Life Studies until late May assisting Peggy with the multitude of jobs involved in the day to day running of the organization. After this she travels to Peru to work for and write about Stefan Austermühle of Associacion Mundo Azul. In July she will be working for and writing about Laurie Murison of Grand Manan Whale and Seabird Research Station in Canada.


Amanda is thrilled to be here in Monterey working for Peggy and is already fascinated by Peggy's life, aspects of which she hopes to document during her time here. Read her accounts of Peggy's life and work at:


If you would like to view Planet Whale's report 'A Global Directory of Cetacean Conservation Organizations’, go to: