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Whale, dolphin and porpoise strandings

4 Posts tagged with the killer_whale tag
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White Orca spotted

Posted by Strandings Officer Apr 23, 2012

You occationally get white whales and dolphins but for obvious reasons they tend to be young (predation). This animals looks like it's a fully grown adult, and is just beautiful!

 

Scientists have made what they believe to be the first sighting of an adult white orca, or killer whale.

 

The adult male, which they have nicknamed Iceberg, was spotted off the coast of Kamchatka in eastern Russia.

 

It appears to be healthy and leading a normal life in its pod.

 

iceberg.jpg

 

 

 

Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-17783603

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This is a very cool project!

 

 

The people at St Andrews in Scotland, they have tagged 25 pilot and killer whales in various locations and recorded their calls. They are now asking volunteers to match up the vocalisations, to help them better understand their communication. 'Citizen Scientists' from around the world are being asked to listen to and classify the various calls.

 

The increasing size of current acoustic datasets and the large call repertoire make it very difficult for scientists to address these questions. A single person would take months to go through the data, and the outcome would still depend on a single persons’ interpretation.

 

For this reason we want to ask you to help us solve this problem, by categorizing the calls of killer whales pilot whales that you find on this website. The dataset generated by this project will allow us to address interesting questions, such as:

 

  • How well do different judgements of volunteers agree, and how well can we categorize calls of vocal species such as pilot whales?
  • How large is the call repertoire of pilot whales? (is size repertoire sign of intelligence?)
    • Do the long and short finned pilot whales have different call repertoires (or ‘dialects’?).
    • Does this repertoire change during sonar transmissions? if so, how does this related to changes in behavior of the individuals and the group as a whole?

     

     

    Go to http://whale.fm/ to take part!

     

    Write up from the BBC as well: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-edinburgh-east-fife-15929295

     

     

    Right I'm off to match up a few more calls before lunch! (hope my boss isn't reading this!)

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    We ladies have been known to go to great lenghts for softer skin but new research suggests killer whales may be showing us all up!

     

    A new study for the first time shows that some killer whales wander nearly 10,000 kilometres from Antarctica's Southern Ocean into tropical waters - but not to feed or breed.

      
    Rather, these fearsome predators at the apex of the marine food chain traverse the sea at top speed, slowing as they reach warmer climes to exfoliate, the study speculates.
      
    They are driven, in other words, by the urge or need to make their skin all shiny and new.
    killer whale.php
    Durban and Pitman suspect that killer whales move into warmer waters in order to shed a layer, along with an encrustation of single-celled algae called diatoms, without freezing to death.
      
    Orcas are the smallest cetaceans, a group including whales and dolphins, which live for extended periods in subzero Antarctic waters. Replacing and repairing outer skin in waters where the surface temperature is minus 1.9 degree Celsius, may be dangerous, even lethal.
      
    Surface temperatures at the killer whales' tropical destinations, by contrast, were a balmy 20.9 to 24.2 C.

    Original source: http://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/1599657/latest-from-wire/

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    You don't have to look deep into your hearts to know that keeping these animals in tanks just feels wrong. I think the caption on the picture says it all really.

     

     

    g_image.jpg

     

    In a new study, nearly a year in the making, former SeaWorld trainers Jeffrey Ventre, MD and John Jett, Ph.D, take us deep behind the scenes of Marine parks and their ability to provide environments adequate for keeping killer whales alive in captivity.


    Drs Ventre and Jett introduce us to detailed observations and strong statistical calculations that add up to an abundance of evidence that captivity kills orcas, usually at a young age… and that stresses, social tensions and poor health are chronic issues in marine park facilities.

     

    Interview with Jeff Ventre: http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2011/09/killer-whale-trainer/

     

    Full report: https://theorcaproject.wordpress.com/2011/01/20/keto-tilikum-express-stress-of-orca-captivity/