Anaïs Remili

Anaïs is the founder of Whale Scientists. She is a PhD student at McGill University working on killer whale ecology and pollution. You can read more about her here.

Russian ship played classical music to rescue entrapped belugas

The Moskva was the largest and most powerful non-nuclear icebreaker at her delivery time. She got international attention in 1985 when she herded around 2000 ice-entrapped belugas back to the open sea … by playing classical music. Yes, you read that right! What is an icebreaker? An icebreaker is a class of ships that can […]

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Why are baby whales and dolphins born with whiskers?

Vibrissae, or whiskers, are found in most mammals, including cetaceans like dolphins, whales, and porpoises. These were likely inherited from terrestrial ancestors, serving as sensory organs during these species’ evolution from land to water. While in many cetaceans, whiskers disappear as they mature, leaving behind small cavities termed ‘vibrissal crypts’, certain species, such as the Amazon river dolphin, retain them, helping in food detection and possibly electroreception.

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Toxic Menus: Contaminants Threaten the Health of North Atlantic Killer Whales

In a ground-breaking new study just published in Environmental Science & Technology, a disturbing picture of contamination among North Atlantic killer whales has emerged. Persistent organic contaminants (POPs), including polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), pesticides (DDTs, Chlordanes, etc.), and flame retardants, were detected at alarming levels in these apex marine predators. This study sheds light on the

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Baby killer whales face many challenges in their first year

We just heard the news that a new killer whale baby was born into the L-pod of the critically endangered Southern Resident population. While we’re delighted to hear about the birth of a new killer whale calf, it’s important to be cautious. Unfortunately, newborn killer whales have a high mortality rate within their first six

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What do killer whales eat in the North Atlantic? Fat’s the question!

Here is a killer whale fact for you: despite decades of intensive research, we still do not know for sure what killer whales eat in most regions of the world. Killer whales are top predators, and the amount and types of animals they eat can greatly impact a whole ecosystem. To figure out how killer

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A curious whale: The Sowerby’s beaked whale

Happy new year! This January, we are happy to feature the Sowerby’s beaked whale, also known as the North Atlantic beaked whale (Mesoplodon bidens). This rare and elusive whale is quite understudied because it spends most of its life deep under the ocean’s surface, hunting for prey. Did you know that males sometimes compete with

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Bros for life! Dolphin males can form life-long relationships with one another

Dolphin males can sometimes form life-long friendships with one another. This type of relationship is known in the field as “male pair bonds.” These bonds are typically formed between two males (sometimes three) of similar age. The males in the pair bond will engage in a range of cooperative activities, like hunting and courting females,

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You can stop calling North Atlantic killer whales type 1 and type 2

A new paper by Dr. Andy Foote just came out; it encourages people to stop calling North Atlantic killer whales “type 1” and “type 2”. These two types were defined by Dr. Foote himself during his PhD research. Let’s find out why we should stop talking about two types in the North Atlantic. How the two

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