Great whale watching near Santa Barbara!

Wow, whale watching off Santa Barbara’s coast is amazing right now. On Saturday, ACS/LA hosted their Summertime Blues Whale Watch Adventure aboard the Condor Express and we watched whales galore lunge feeding on mass amounts of krill in the Santa Barbara Channel. Every where we looked there was either a humpback whale or a blue… [read more]

Gray whale moving on down the road

Yesterday I received an update from the MARMAM (Marine Mammals Research and Conservation Discussion) email list on the famous gray whale recently spotted near Israel. In the last 23 days, the gray whale has been on the move and was just spotted near Barcelona, Spain on May 30th! Apparently, the gray whale “was consistently heading… [read more]

Sexual maturity in whales and dolphins

Ah puberty, those awkward years on the road to sexual maturity. It’s not clear if whales and dolphins must also suffer the dramatic ups and downs of the human teenager, but some do have to suffer big differences between the sexes when it comes to the actually timing of sexual maturity. In several posts we’ve… [read more]

Whales and dolphins have big babies

For those of you with your legs still crossed after reading the average gestation time for whales and dolphins, I now present you with one more reason to really think twice about ocean living. It turns out at birth that many whales and dolphins enter the world already quite large. Here’s the low down straight… [read more]

Dead gray whale ate sweat pants for lunch

I have heard many stories about the devastating impacts of pollution, how fishing gear entangles and strangles marine mammals, how bits of plastic end up in birds’ stomachs, and how plastic bags are mistaken for jellyfish by turtles. But sweat pants in a gray whale’s stomach?! That is a first. And unfortunately won’t be the… [read more]

Cetacean communities and coexistence

How do whales, dolphins and porpoises all get along and share their ocean home? This question is another one scientists hope to answer through the study of cetacean ecology. Possibly they make pacts with each other and agree to go after different prey and stay in certain locations to prevent fighting over resources and bad… [read more]

4 main types of cetacean prey

1. The first types of prey that many cetaceans prefer are tiny critters that form large schools closer to the surface. This includes several types of crustaceans (krill) and small fish (sardines, anchovies). And ironically enough, the largest whales prefer this type of dinner and have a built-in filter system called baleen that allows them… [read more]