Marine Technology Reporter Blogs - whales

Abrolhos National Maine Park – Part 2

November 21, 2014

baleias jubarte banco de abrolhos
An important marine reserve system started with the Abrolhos National Marine Park (Parque Nacional Marinho Dos Abrolhos) in 1983 and has been expanded to include three carefully managed "Marine Extractive Reserves": Canavieiras (2006), Corumbau, and, most recently, the Cassurubá Marine Extractive Reserve. This network of marine reserves is the first of its kind in Brazil and serves as a model for marine conservation. Nearly 20,000 families make a living from traditional fisheries in the Abrolhos region and they are becoming important conservation partners as they come to understand that marine protected areas are an effective tool for fisheries recovery.

Satellites to Count Whales

February 19, 2014

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New satellite technology is being used to count whales, and estimate their population size. Using Very High Resolution (VHR) satellite imagery, alongside image processing software, researchers were able to automatically detect and count whales breeding in part of the Golfo Nuevo, Peninsula Valdes in Argentina. The new method could revolutionize how whale population size is estimated. Marine mammals are extremely difficult to count on a large scale and traditional methods, such as counting from platforms or land, can be costly and inefficient. “This is a proof of concept study that proves whales can be identified and counted by satellite. Whale populations have always been difficult to assess; traditional means of counting them are localized, expensive and lack accuracy.

Abrolhos Islands - Reefs, Humpback Whales and Oil

December 7, 2013

Mapa Abrolhos
Portuguese explorers were the first to arrive at the Abrolhos National Marine Park., having named the islands and sailed along the Caravelas Rivers since 1503. The name Abrolhos is short for open your eyes in Portuguese, and is an indication of the dangers to navigation in the area, which has numerous reef and rock formations just shy of the surface of the sea or even awash, and is dotted with shipwrecks. In 1987, a small remnant humpback whale population was discovered during the Marine Park’s implementation and thus Abrolhos was suggested as the species’ main “nursery” ground on the Western South Atlantic. The Humpback Whale Project was then created to promote research and protection for these mammals in Brazil.

Abrolhos Islands - Reefs, Humpback Whales and Oil

December 7, 2013

Portuguese explorers were the first to arrive at the Abrolhos National Marine Park., having named the islands and sailed along the Caravelas Rivers since 1503. The name Abrolhos is short for open your eyes in Portuguese, and is an indication of the dangers to navigation in the area, which has numerous reef and rock formations just shy of the surface of the sea or even awash, and is dotted with shipwrecks. In 1987, a small remnant humpback whale population was discovered during the Marine Park’s implementation and thus Abrolhos was suggested as the species’ main “nursery” ground on the Western South Atlantic. The Humpback Whale Project was then created to promote research and protection for these mammals in Brazil.

Abrolhos National Maine Park – Part 1

November 17, 2014

ABROLHOS BA
The Abrolhos Marine National Park is located in the Abrolhos Archipelago since 1983. The Abrolhos are an archipelago of five islands with coral reefs off the southern coast of the state of Bahia state in the northeast of Brazil, between 17º25’–18º09’ S and 38º33’–39º05’ W., the so-called Whale Coast (Costa das Baleias). The marine biodiversity in the South Atlantic Ocean reaches its maximum level in the Abrolhos region. Seasonal populations of humpback whales go there to mate and give birth (and to nowhere else in the South Atlantic). It harbors some of Brazil's most important seabird colonies, extensive coral reefs, and several species of the world's most threatened sea turtles.

Japan’s Small Cetacean Overkill

November 12, 2013

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According to the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA), an independent organization committed to bringing about change that protects the natural world from environmental crime and abuse, over a million toothed whales, dolphins and turtles, have been killed in direct hunts in Japan in the past 70 years. Catch limits set by the Government of Japan for 2013 permit the killing of 16,655 small cetaceans. This represents the largest directed hunt of cetaceans in the world. A comprehensive analysis of the available scientific data demonstrates unequivocally that there are grave concerns regarding the sustainability of these hunts. Nine small cetacean species are targeted in Japan’s coastal hunts, which take the form of small-type coastal whaling, hand harpoon hunts and drive hunts.