Watch Out, Whale About

Pacific Whale Foundation’s (PWF) Senior Research Scientist, Dr. Emmanuelle Martinez, recently held a talk free to the public called “Watch Out, Whales About! (http://mauiwhalefestival.org/events/watch-out-whales-about-pacific-whale-foundations-research-prevent-vessel-whale-collisions)”  It was a presentation about the research PWF is conducting off the coast of Maui regarding data that contribute to our “Be Whale Aware” guidelines of how to safely maneuver vessels during whale season (see guidelines below).

It seems to be perfect timing for this presentation, as over the last week the Research Team photographed two individual humpback whales in Maui County with obvious propeller scars near their dorsal fin.  Both of these appeared to be deep cuts which implies interaction with larger vessels, and demonstrates just how susceptible humpbacks can be to whale-vessel collisions.  It is a strong reminder to all boaters to adjust vessel speed and keep a wary eye out in waters rich with whales.

If you are interested in learning more about safe whale watching guidelines, or if you would like to learn more about the research being conducted by PWF’s Research Team, we will be available to interact with the public on the quickly approaching Whale Day at Kalama Park (February 16, 2013).  Come check out some of the equipment and datasheets we use out in the field, learn about the important questions we are attempting to answer through our research, as well as test you skills at humpback whale photo-identification!  We look forward to seeing you on Whale Day!

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