Andrew David Thaler is creating
ocean science and conservation outreach

Fighting for the oceans in a changing world.

Give $
per month
per month
Milestone Goals
1 Milestone Goals
Ocean Acidification Project
$200 per month
Help launch my next short outreach project, simulating the effects of ocean acidification using some commonly available household items. A short video will be followed by a series of lesson plans for educators to demonstrate ocean acidification in the classroom.
Southern Fried Server Upgrade!
$300 per month
Southern Fried Science has maxed out our server capacity, but we're still growing. If we reach this funding amount, we'll be able to move the site to a new, dedicated server that can handle way more traffic.
5 Second Phyla
$500 per month
Launch my next major ocean outreach project—5 Second Phyla—a Vine series explaining the major animal taxa in a rapid-fire format.
$2,000 per month
Add an OpenROV to my stable of ocean outreach tools, enabling me to shoot underwater videos from the comfort of shore and plumb the unexplored depths in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond.

At this level, I'll create a time-lapse video of the ROV assembly and let you suggest the first Bay Area locations for me to investigate. Depending on internet connectivity, I'll also host Google+ hangouts during the dives and possibly let you drive the robot remotely. 
Save some sharks!
$4,000 per month
I currently have a shark conservation genetics study partially funded. The extra income will allow me to rent lab space, purchase additional reagents, and commit the time needed to complete the project.

I'll produce a short video with my collaborators discussing the project and what we hope to learn from this research.


Marine Science and Conservation Mercenary. Deep-sea Ecologist. Population Geneticist. The deep sea is Earth's last great wilderness.


Vallejo, CA, USA

Andrew David Thaler is Supporting

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Who am I?

I am a deep-sea ecologist, conservation geneticist, and defender of the ocean. I investigate ways in which marine populations, particularly in the deep-sea, are connected across space and time using genetic data. My  research lies at the intersection of science, policy, and the environment.

Scientific funding in the United States is in decline. At the same time, the oceans are changing faster than ever before. We cannot afford to wait for the funding cycle to catch up with the crises facing our planet, so I am here, exploring new ways for scientists and ocean advocates to continue their work, with the freedom to explore and discover free of the barriers placed by traditional funding sources.

Science is one tool to help protect the ocean, but it is not the only one. When coupled with an effective outreach initiative, scientists and ocean advocates can leverage the authority of science to implement policy and social change. Seven years ago, I founded  Southern Fried Science, one of the most widely read ocean science and conservation blogs in the world, with an annual readership in excess of 1 million unique views.

Through Southern Fried Science, my team and I have implemented education and outreach initiatives ranging from the goofy to the deadly serious. We’ve leveraged our audience to produce diverse, engaging, and often viral ocean content. We’ve produced ocean art and even oceanographic instruments. We model sea level rise by request. My work in marine policy helped shaped international ocean policy. In short, we’re drawing from a vast toolbox to develop new methods of engaging the public on ocean issues.

What you’re funding

Your monthly donation will allow me to run Southern Fried Science and produce innovative ocean outreach initiatives. If you like  Deep Sea Fauna with Googly Eyes#DrownYourTownExploding Whales, the science of Aquaman, the OpenCTD, or any of my ongoing projects, your support will ensure that they continue.

But that’s not enough. We need to continue to develop new, novel education and outreach projects that bring ocean science and conservation to an even larger audience. Your support will allow me to commit to bigger, better, deeper outreach initiatives.

You’re also funding Science! I’m exploring new ways to fund conservation-directed scientific research as an independent scientist. Having financial stability will allow me to commit my time not only to ocean outreach, but also to my ongoing research projects, several of which are partially funded and can be completed with your help.

What kinds of outreach do I produce?

I think of my outreach projects along a wedge of activation. Some projects are designed to spread far and require minimal effort from the audience to engage with and are necessarily shallow in depth, while others target a more precise audience and require more activation energy but have deep content. Here are a few examples of my projects over the years, on a scale of increasing depth and decreasing reach:

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