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Marine Mammals

Humpback whale songs provide insight to population changes

Science Codex

Following reports of unusually low whale numbers that began in 2015-16, researchers at the University of Hawaii in collaboration with the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary, Oceanwide Science Institute and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, examined song chorusing recorded through long-term passive acoustic monitoring at six sites off Maui.

Film explores path to right whale’s extinction

Cape Cod Times

In May 2019, the United Nations released a report that said 1 million species on Earth were facing extinction, and that the rate of extinction was accelerating. Boston Globe reporter David Abel said it led him to make the film “Entangled” about the path to extinction for one species people on the Cape know well.

Ropeless Fishing Systems Hold Promise for Fishermen—and Whales

The Pew Charitable Trusts

To help advance the effort to find a feasible and cost-effective gear-marking solution, the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, The Pew Charitable Trusts and others are engaged in conversations with industry, enforcement, and regulators in the U.S. and Canada—which will culminate in a virtual workshop on gear marking in the coming months.

New Technology Can Save the Whales from Ship Collisions


In a bid to reduce the number of whale deaths, researchers Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and collaborators worked together to develop Whale Safe, a new detection system provides mariners with up to date information about whales present in shipping lanes.

Whale watching and learning

Santa Barbara News-Press

Whales aren’t the only large creature in the ocean; there’s also cargo ships. When the two collide, it’s fatal to whales and barely noticeable to large ships cruising through the Santa Barbara Channel.

Want to Save the Whales? Eavesdrop on Their Calls

wired logo

“Moorings are typically made from chain, so they clank a lot,” says Mark Baumgartner, whale ecologist and senior scientist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, who helped develop the technology. “And that’s not really good when you’re trying to hear animals that are many miles away making sounds.”