Conservation

The harbor porpoise – December 2021

Happy holiday season! This month, we decided to highlight a shy little odontocete, the harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena). They are not known for grand displays in the water, but we wanted to do them justice this month because we believe they do not get enough love! These shy little guys face various human threats, so …

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Why do baby orcas look orange?

Every time a southern resident calf is born, orca lovers all around the world sigh in relief. The critically endangered population is struggling to stay healthy in an environment full of stressors, including noise, chemical pollution, and a serious lack of food. You might have come across baby orca photos in the news. Have you …

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Kogia: dwarf and pygmy sperm whales – November 2021

Whalecome to our new whales of the month: the dwarf and pygmy sperm whales. Like their cousin, the sperm whale, they like to spend most of their time deep underwater to hunt their favorite prey: squid and deep-sea fish, and crustaceans. Did you know they can release “ink” from their butts to confuse predators?! Find …

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Live stranding! How you can help beached whales and dolphins

Stranding events (also known as beaching) involving cetaceans (whales, dolphins, and porpoises) have been documented since the 4th century. Originally, people considered stranded cetaceans a gift from the gods, providing food and other resources. However, today’s society has mostly shifted its vision of strandings to animals in need of human help. Most stranding events will …

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Pregnancy planning 101: lessons from seals’ embryonic diapause

For humans, pregnancy is generally predictable: boy meets girl, *you know what happens*, an embryo is implanted, and nine months later, a baby is born. In the seal world, things are a bit different. Seal boy meets seal girl, they do their business, but an embryo does not always immediately get implanted. By pausing their …

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Whale Scientists Story – Enrico Corsi

Enrico Corsi

Enrico Corsi is a 29-year-old Italian marine mammalogist. He is currently doing his PhD in the Marine Conservation Ecology Lab at Florida International University in Miami. Here is his story. A fascination for the living world I was always fascinated by the life sciences as far back as I could remember. I was that 90s …

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Good grief! When whales and dolphins mourn the dead

As an inevitable part of nature, death happens to all living things. Despite the certainty of it, coping with death is never easy for anyone. And by anyone, I don’t just mean humans… Some animals, including elephants, apes, and cetaceans, react unusually when a group member passes away. Could these animals be capable of experiencing …

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Photo-ID is the heart of whale research

Photo-ID has been around for decades: it allowed researchers to study the marine mammal populations and opened the door to awesome whale research worldwide. So what exactly is photo-ID, why is it important, and how can you gain skills in this discipline? Find out in this post. A picture says more than a thousand words …

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