Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Whale And Dolphin Calves In The Bay Of Biscay

17.10.2005


The Biscay Dolphin Research Programme (BDRP) has recorded an increasing number of whale & dolphin calves and juveniles in the Bay of Biscay and English Channel during the spring and summer months confirming the importance of the area as a calving ground and an area probably used by many species during the post-natal period.



Clive Martin, BDRP Director and Senior Wildlife Officer said: “In May we started to record calves amongst the Common Dolphin (Delphinus delphis) pods which are often encountered bow riding the Pride of Bilbao, we have also encountered Harbour Porpoise (Phocoena phocoena) calves in the English Channel. A number of Fin (Balaenoptera physalus) and Sperm Whale (Physeter macrocephalus) calves and juveniles have also been encountered during May and June.”

The calves can easy be distinguished from adults by their smaller size (less than half that of adult) and their close association with an adult, presumably their mother.


Dr Tom Brereton, BDRP Scientific Officer said: “From the unique BDRP Biscay sighting database which spans the last 10 years, calves from a number of cetacean species start to be seen regularly in June and July. Encounters continue during the summer months when calves of Common (Delphinus delphis), Striped ( and Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), Harbour Porpoises (Phocoena phocoena), Fin Whales (Balaenoptera physalus), Sperm Whales (Physeter macrocephalus), Pilot Whales (Globicephala melas) and Cuvier’s Beaked Whales (Ziphius cavirostris) are seen.”

Clive Martin and Matt Hobbs also from BDRP, who was leading a Company of Whales tour, witnessed an incredible sighting of Common Dolphins (Delphinus delphis) on a July crossing of Biscay. Over 3500 dolphins were seen during the passage south with a single pod in excess of 1000 individuals, with more than 50 juveniles and calves – this clearly demonstrates the importance of the area for this species.

The Bay of Biscay may be a calving ground for several species of cetacean and is probably used by many of these species during the post-natal period. The northern Biscay-Celtic shelf-break in particular provides an abundant source of food for animals during the summer and autumn period due to highly elevated marine productivity. This productivity is driven by internal tidal waves mainly caused by the interaction of surface tides with steep and complex sea-bed topography. For Common Dolphins (Delphinus delphis) and other species, this super-abundance of food provides the ideal conditions to feed extra mouths.

With many cetaceans under threat from over fishing, by-catch and habitat destruction in many parts of the World, habitats such as Biscay which provide important feeding areas for a wide range of cetacean species and for mothers with calves are critically important and need to be protected.

Evidence from the Biscay Dolphin Research Programmes extensive database of cetacean sightings in the European Atlantic and its continuing research, together with its close links with members of the Atlantic Research Coalition (ARC), indicate that the Bay of Biscay is of high significance in European terms for a number of threatened species, including the Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), the Common Dolphin (Delphinus delphis) and the Fin Whale (Balaenoptera physalus) yet the slope and canyon waters of Biscay, which are favoured by cetaceans, do not currently have specific protection as a habitat.

For further information on the Biscay Dolphin Research Programme (BDRP) please contact Adrian Shephard, Public Relations & Publicity Officer at adrian.shephard@biscay-dolphin.com or visit the website at www.biscay-dolphin.org.uk

Adrian Shephard | alfa
Further information:
http://www.biscay-dolphin.org.uk
http://www.biscay-dolphin.org.uk/pressrelease/091005.html

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Dispersal of Fish Eggs by Water Birds – Just a Myth?
19.02.2018 | Universität Basel

nachricht Removing fossil fuel subsidies will not reduce CO2 emissions as much as hoped
08.02.2018 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Attoseconds break into atomic interior

A newly developed laser technology has enabled physicists in the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics (jointly run by LMU Munich and the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics) to generate attosecond bursts of high-energy photons of unprecedented intensity. This has made it possible to observe the interaction of multiple photons in a single such pulse with electrons in the inner orbital shell of an atom.

In order to observe the ultrafast electron motion in the inner shells of atoms with short light pulses, the pulses must not only be ultrashort, but very...

Im Focus: Good vibrations feel the force

A group of researchers led by Andrea Cavalleri at the Max Planck Institute for Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) in Hamburg has demonstrated a new method enabling precise measurements of the interatomic forces that hold crystalline solids together. The paper Probing the Interatomic Potential of Solids by Strong-Field Nonlinear Phononics, published online in Nature, explains how a terahertz-frequency laser pulse can drive very large deformations of the crystal.

By measuring the highly unusual atomic trajectories under extreme electromagnetic transients, the MPSD group could reconstruct how rigid the atomic bonds are...

Im Focus: Developing reliable quantum computers

International research team makes important step on the path to solving certification problems

Quantum computers may one day solve algorithmic problems which even the biggest supercomputers today can’t manage. But how do you test a quantum computer to...

Im Focus: In best circles: First integrated circuit from self-assembled polymer

For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.

In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Basque researchers turn light upside down

23.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Finnish research group discovers a new immune system regulator

23.02.2018 | Health and Medicine

Attoseconds break into atomic interior

23.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>