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Rare right whale song recorded for first time

Rare right whale song recorded for first time

Researchers in Alaska have documented the song of the North Pacific right whale. Most people...
Beluga whales safely land in Iceland

Beluga whales safely land in Iceland

Cargolux delivers Little Grey and Little White safely to Iceland on their way to the...
Canada ends whale and dolphin captivity

Canada ends whale and dolphin captivity

The Canadian government has officially passed Bill S-203, the Ending the Captivity of Whales and Dolphins Act. From...
Russian company behind infamous ‘whale jail’ is fined

Russian company behind infamous ‘whale jail’ is fined

A Russian company behind the ‘whale jail’ housing 10 orcas and over 80 beluga whales...

Belugas Of Cook Inlet Continue To Decline

The beluga population of Cook Inlet, Alaska – recently re-listed as endangered – has fallen to its lowest level in nearly 20 years. So say the estimates arrived at in the 2011 survey of these remarkable ‘white whales’, planned and organised by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The survey in June last year found just 284 belugas compared to a count of 340 in 2010. The first NOAA survey in 1993 counted 653.

Federal biologists are advising caution over the latest figures as the number of beluga deaths reported during 2011 was much lower than normal. It may be that differing survey conditions and the whales spending more time underwater feeding during June skewed the figures.

The belugas’ decline has been blamed on various factors. Subsistence hunting by native populations led to a ban on hunting belugas in 1999. However the whales’ population has not recovered as expected since then, casting suspicion on pollution in Anchorage’s waste water.

More on belugas here.