2010-2011 Right Whale Results

April 4, 2011 at 8:43 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 2010-2011 Right Whale Results
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The 2010-2011 North Atlantic right whale season in northeast Florida/southeast Georgia has ended, so I want to provide an update about the whales that have come to this area every year at this time, and has done so since before humans could say ocean.

Because they spend lots of time at the surface, move slowly, and float when dead, early American whalers dubbed them the “right whale” to kill. One time numbering over 10,000, there are an estimated 450 right whales left today. With hunting of the animal illegal since 1935, their primary cause of mortality (over 50%) now is human impact, specifically ship strike (~40%) and commercial fishing gear entanglement(~10%).

From January to mid-March right whales can be seen from shore at vantage points along the Atlantic coast, but especially in St. johns, Flagler and Volusia Counties. Right whales come close to shore and can be seen with the naked eye within 1000 feet of the coast. Remember, though, federal law requires humans to stay 500 yards from these whales. This protects the whales and inquiring humans who can easily be injured by a protective adult or playful adolescent whale.

The 2010-2011 season, largely created by the need for pregnant females to give birth to calves in a temporate and relatively shallow ocean, also saw a variety of juveniles, non-pregnant adult females and a few adult males. Twenty calves were born this year, plus there were about 120 additional right whales observed by aerial, land-based and boat crews.

While not a banner year for births like the 2008-2009 season, and despite some unfortunate deaths of both adults and calves, this year still helped the species with a net plus gain.

If you have topics you’d like to know more about, let me know and I’ll work up something for a future blog.

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Guest on “Starstyle – Be the Star You Are!”

August 25, 2009 at 4:06 pm | Posted in Nature, Radio Show | Comments Off on Guest on “Starstyle – Be the Star You Are!”
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On Thursday, August 27th, Cynthia Brian, known as the “Oprah of the Airwaves,” will interview me on her national radio show “Starstyle – Be The Star You Are!” on www.starstyleradio.com.

I will talk about my role as a research assistant in the Marineland Right Whale Project, why my publishing company focuses on niche marketing, and an incredible surprise announcement!

I hope you tune in. It will be exciting and fun.

Right Whale Update

May 14, 2009 at 3:20 pm | Posted in Nature | Comments Off on Right Whale Update
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Yesterday I attended a meeting of scientists and other interested stakehoders in the North Atlantic right whale community. This all-day semi-annual meeting is a great information sharing and educational event for federal, state and private parties involved in the preservation and protection of one of the world’s most endangered large marine mammals, the right whale.

Although I am not a scientist, I am able to attend the meetings, and even present information and ask questions, because of my nine-year involvement in a whale research project in Florida. Given the talent around me at these meetings, I am excited to be a small part of the activity.

Acronym-based organizations such as NOAA, NMFS, GDNR, FWC, NEAq, USN, USCG, ASWH and others, share the most current information about the winter calving season nummbers (a record 39 calves born this year), bioacoustic  testing, mortalities, ship strikes, gear entanglements and disentanglements, and much more.

From these meetings I learn a great deal about the right whale species and the efforts of governmental and private organizations to save them. Importantly, I further develop the big picture view that is important for me as a publisher of books about marine life, environment and conservation. I already look forward to the October meeting.

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