Marine biologists have developed a new model to improve estimates of abundance and population trends of endangered North Atlantic right whales, which have declined in numbers and productivity in recent years. Between 1990 and 2010 abundance increased to 482 animals, but since 2010 the numbers have declined to 458 in 2015, with 14 known deaths this year.
In this article they talk about how the Navy has a group of dolphins (four adult females) who they have trained to help them with tasks such as locating undersea mines using their natural sonar. They have trained these dolphins now to search and find the Vaquita Dolphins in the same way as finding the undersea mines (like search dogs). The Vaquita are a species of porpoise that are terrifyingly close to extinction with only about 30 left. The plan is to search, capture, and care for them in a protected enclosed facility. The risk of this plan is that Vaquita have never been kept in captivity before so it is unsure how they will react. This plan will be put into action October 12th.
Follow the link below to read the article in its entirety:
Submitted by MMRT Member Sophia C.
Beluga Blog is a space for MMRT to share club activities throughout the year and interesting marine mammals news shared by our very own club members!