The blue whale is the largest mammal that has ever inhabited Earth, yet not much is known about this fascinating creatures that roam our oceans. This research examines the physical description and habits of the blue whale, the habitat in which they live in, and the primary threats this endangered species face today. Even though hunting was ban in 1966 by the International Whaling Commission, blue whales are still exposed to numerous threats today, all of which are caused by humans. The population is so low that any further killing may lead to the extinction of this species in the future. The blue whale is the largest and loudest animal ever known to have existed on Earth. These magnificent creatures can grow up to 100 feet and can weigh …show more content…
Presently, it is estimated that there are about 5,000-12,000 blue whales remaining worldwide, with the largest concentration of about 2,000 blue whales in the North Pacific from Southern California up to the Gulf of Alaska. Blue Whale is currently one of the world’s most endangered species due to massive commercial whaling during the 1900s. Blue whales were hunted worldwide, 99% of their population was killed by whalers, reducing the population to almost extinction. Whalers used their oil to make products such as soap, and cosmetics. But whaling is no longer a threat because in 1966 the International Whaling Commission banned commercial whaling for blue whales in all the world’s oceans. Today, the primary threats to blue whale are vessel strikes and noise pollution. Along the coast of California blue whales are dying from ship strikes every year. Blue whales migrate to the offshores of California to feed on krill. Unfavorably for blue whales this feeding area overlaps with one of the busiest shipping lanes in California. Ship strikes have been determined to be a threat on the population causing slowed growth and a declined in the population. Recent studies from scientists at Cornell University in the US, demonstrate that noise pollution from military sonar activity is having a negative impact on the way blue whales act and communicate. Noise pollution creates confusion to
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The origin of modern day whales, a mystery that has puzzled paleontologists for years, may have just been solved with the discovery of an ankle bone. This discovery might sound simple and unimportant, but the bones of these ancient animals hold many unanswered questions and provide solid proof of origin and behavior. The relationship between whales and other animals has proven to be difficult because whales are warm-blooded, like humans, yet they live in the sea. The fact that they are warm-blooded suggests that they are related to some type of land animal. However, the questions of exactly which animal, and how whales evolved from land to water, have remained unanswered until now.
There is no debate that one of the most attractive, human friendly and intelligent beauties in nature is the killer whale, more commonly known as the orca. The orca is in the dolphin family, but capable of learning human traits and freely interacting with them without causing any harm. Their curious behavior and acrobatic moves make us enjoy their company through watching and spending time in the waters with them. However, the gradual decline in the population of the orca is a worrying trend that sparks another kind of debate. Our interactions with killer whales is endangering their survival in the ecosystem, which should not be the case (BioExpedition 1). Our interaction with the
There is no doubt that humans have always been intrigued with the majestic beauty of the large giants found in all of the world’s oceans. Whales and people have had a long history together, marked by many turns of events.
For years the killer whale, also known as Orcinus orca, has been drawing the attention of the public through the entertainment industry. These marine mammals have been bringing in billions of dollars to amusement parks such as Sea World, but at what cost? An idea that these killer whales can live happily and content while in captivity may be going through the minds of the public, but this cannot be further away from the truth. To have such complex creatures in captivity is not morally correct and there are many points against it, such as their level of emotional competence, violence between the killer whales, violence of killer of whales towards trainers, shorter lifespans, physical harm, and their level of intelligence. After taking a look at how these creatures function and the conditions they are put in while in captivity, there is no question about whether or not these mammals should be kept in captivity; an experience such as this affects these marine mammals just about the same as it would affect a human because of their high highly developed emotions and complexity. Since these industries do not have a natural authority over these creatures no matter the cause, the best thing they could do for these killer whales is to stop capturing them and return those who are capable back to the wild.
The second captive killer whale was in 1964. This eventually ended up as the first whale to be kept in captivity for a period of time. Today there are 52 killer whales in captivity that have great health and are with Sea World. Killer whales should stay in captivity because zoologists are finding better ways to help killer whale survival such as research and watching the things the orcas do. They are better taken care of and give zoologist and themselves the scientific benefits they need because scientists earn more information and the whales are provided with better health
Captive Killer Whales 150 Orca Whales have been taken into captivity since 1961. Currently, there is a total of 56 Orcas in captivity. 23 are wild captive and 33 are captive-born (“The Fate of Captive Orcas”). At least 44 Orcas have died at SeaWorld (“Killer Whales in Captivity”).
Killer whales, also known as Orcas, are very vocal animals and spend their time partaking in clicks, whistles, and pulsed calls. These giants can be found in nearly all oceans due to their migration patterns. Orcas have an unmistakable black and white patterning, making them easier to identify. The Orca is an apex predator, meaning that they are at the top of their food chain. They have been known to feast upon sea birds, squid, octopus, sea turtles, sharks, rays, and fish.
Though often seen as fierce killing machines, Orca whales, more commonly known as killer whales, are much different. In some ways, these mysterious creatures are much like humans. Many people are fascinated by these whales when they see them perform in marine parks such as SeaWorld. What most people don’t realize is that the life of these whales is not as great as it may seem. There is much evidence that proves captive life will never be adequate. There is no doubt that life in captivity is no match for life in the wild.
Orcinus Orca, or more commonly known as the Killer Whale, is found in waters worldwide ranging from the Antarctic to tropical regions. Killer Whales are considered to be apex predators of the ocean and have no natural predators. Killer Whales have been observed consuming a large diversity of different marine animals such as fish and squid (Coscarella et al., 2015) and also prey on Subantarctic Fur Seals, which is what they are more commonly known to feed on (Pistorius et al., 2012). Pitman and Durban (2010) also made observations of Killer Whales hunting penguins in the Antarctic. Trying to understand how this top predator regulates the food web involves knowing the relationships among species and also their population size and diet (Coscarella et al., 2015). Killer Whales use different hunting techniques while trying to catch their food and are also very social creatures and tend to hunt in pods. Some Killer Whales have been observed simply chasing their prey until they tire or using a more advanced hunting tactic such as diving to deep depths to get their food, also another unusual activity observed are Killer Whales playing with their food.
Based on this study, researchers can know what is the rate of fertilization and where mortality rate is greatest, also they can use this population to create a model population to see what is the cause and how they can prevent this. These results are important because it showed the evolution of the population and it helped to see if minimizing the threats is an effective solution and how these threats are affecting the right whales. Also, it can help assess the recovery of depleted populations, evaluate conservation threats and also to use whales as indicators of the health of local ecosystems (Fretwell 2014). Doing this study was complicated because the old population was not clear, and assumptions had to be made, such as the population size at each class. Therefore, the sample size can affect the end result. Also, assumptions had be made in the future population in regards of the population in each age class, but it was based from a journal.
Killer whales were first captured and separated from their family group (pods) to be put display for the public 1964. After years of research in their natural habitat and at marine parks throughout the world, it has become obvious that they belong in the ocean and not kept in captivity (Rose). The stress that killer whales feel at being kept in tanks for the general public’s amusement changes their natural behavior and makes them a danger to anyone who has direct contact with them. I feel that after so many years of having marine biologists and veterinarians studying these animals in captivity that little can be left to learn about the killer whales to justify breeding killer whales and keeping them in marine parks.
Last Wednesday, July 8, beachgoers stumbled upon the carcass of a 2,000 pound beached whale on Long Island Beach. Since its discovery, experts from the Riverhead Foundation for Marine Research & Preservation who specialize in marine life have begun looking into the possible causes of death. The cause of the 12-foot minke whale’s death is being investigated because many wounds were present on its body, but it was unclear whether the bite-like wounds were inflicted before or after the creature’s death.
Cetacean bycatch is an ongoing problem in the oceans of the world. Cetaceans are defined as whales, dolphins and porpoises(CBRC 1). Bycatch is “marine mammals that are “captured” but discarded”(Read 2). This happens when fishing industries are fishing for a certain type of marine animal and other marine animals are caught accidentally along with the intended catch. Many times, this leads to the death of the animal that was not meant to be caught, and the animal is tossed back into the ocean. This happens with all kinds of marine life, and it has caused the depletion of many different species. However, this is specifically bad for cetaceans, such as dolphins and whales, because they have such a long lifespan(Brown 2). They also take a very long time to mature(Brown 2). These factors make catching these animals very detrimental to the species as a whole because it takes longer for them to reach an age where they can reproduce(Brown 2). The population of many cetaceans have decreased exponentially. When there is someone watching the nets that cetaceans are accidentally caught in, many times they can be saved. However, there are only select few types of fishing methods that do this, and they are not of the prevalent fishing methods that produce cetacean bycatch. This is a problem because there is a connection between most living animals. If a certain part of the connection is eliminated, it will all fall apart. For example, the relationship between
Commercial whaling is a serious world issue that has always been difficult for those who are in support and those who are against it. Each group defends their side with convincing arguments. Morally, whaling is wrong, but do the reasons for whaling outweigh the reasons to cease the primitive hunts? By studying the effects of whaling,realizing how culture has changed over time, and taking note of the money that would be saved, it can clearly be seen that there is no longer a current need for whaling to continue. Efforts have been made to try to stop whaling, but with no help from any authoritative figure,nothing has been done to regulate the whaling. The famous sea shepherd, known for its strikes against whaling, can even be seen on
Whaling is defined as hunting and killing of whales by humans for resources, mainly meat, blubber and baleen (whalebone) obtained from whales. These resources are then sold for commercial purposes and thus, whaling has become economical important for centuries (Joanne 2007; The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia 2007). Scientific whaling is conducted by hunting whales for research purposes and further analysis to study on whale’s behaviour, characteristics and distribution (Joanne 2007). Commercial whaling is a controversial whaling practice that exploits whale products for trade and profit. Recently, Japan, Norway and Iceland are the major contributors of commercial whaling and deeply support any other whaling activities (Joanne 2007). Moratorium on commercial whaling 1986 is a global ban of hunting whales for commercial purposes, implemented by International Whaling Commission (IWC). Under Article VIII, unlimited scientific research is permitted but sufficient data and analysis are required by Science Committee set up by IWC (Papastavrou 2006).