Always ask naturalists questions

Humpback whale from wiki

Some friends went on a cruise to Alaska and were excited to tell me about all the ocean wildlife they saw and all the interesting facts they learned. In particular, they were very eager to discuss whale evolution. My friend exclaimed, “We learned from the naturalist on board that whales descended from kangaroos!” My reaction,… [read more]

Thoughts on World Oceans Day

Another World Oceans Day has come and gone. (It was yesterday, June 8th, in case you missed it!) And I can’t stop thinking about an article I read yesterday titled “Goodbye Holocene, hello Anthropocene.” The article discusses how humans have managed to make such an impressively destructive impact on planet earth that we are transitioning… [read more]

Cheryl McCormick ran 55 miles for the Dolphin Dash!

Cheryl McCormick, executive director of the American Cetacean Society, ran 55 miles yesterday, she really did it! As a member of the support team I wasn’t really sure what to expect. The concept of running 55 miles reaches beyond the limits of my imagination. I’m capable of knowing such a feat would be tough, pain… [read more]

Classifying marine mammals, clades shmades

As of the writing of this post, there are four clades of marine mammals. Things could change if some crazy fossil is found that alters all current knowledge, but for now we only have to know about four clades. Now is a good time to explain what a clade is. According to the fabulous glossary… [read more]

Whales and dolphins in the womb

The Encyclopedia of Marine Mammals takes us to some interesting places and this article is no exception: Cetacean Prenatal Development. Okay I was being sarcastic in this instance, a bit of a dry topic if you ask me. But there were a few pretty interesting facts. For instance, whales, dolphins and porpoises evolved from a… [read more]

Oceans movie is worth seeing

I don’t dare post the actual Oceans poster image for fear of being sued by Disney, but I have to say the movie is definitely worth seeing on the big screen. There is amazing underwater footage of sea creatures you will most likely never have the chance to see and of course many great shots… [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]