Articles on Whales

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Sperm whales, like many other species, use echolocation which can be hampered by noise. Gabriel Barathieu/Wikimedia Commons

It’s time to speak up about noise pollution in the oceans

We tend to think of the oceans as quiet, when in fact they're anything but. Noise is the "forgotten pollutant", but the good news is that unlike many other pollutants it can be switched off if we try.
Some dolphins live close to the shore, where they regularly encounter humans. This is affecting their numbers. Simon Elwen

How insight into southern Africa’s dolphins is being deepened

Globally, a quarter of whale and dolphin species are endangered. Though South African dolphin populations are generally in good heath, the humpback dolphin is cause for concern.
A sorry end: beached whales in Flinders Bay. Bahnfrend

Do whales attempt suicide?

They are among the most intelligent creatures on the planet, but family ties can lead them into danger
Humpback whale populations have leapt on both Australia’s east and west coasts. Ari S. Friedlaender (under NMFS permit)

The big comeback: it’s time to declare victory for Australian humpback whale conservation

Chalk it up as a rare conservation win: humpback whales have bounced back so strongly since the whaling era that there is no longer a need to include them on Australia's official threatened species list.
Loggerhead turtle populations are facing a brighter future, but many other species are still in decline, while for others there are no data at all. AAP Image/Lauren Bath

We’ve only monitored a fraction of the Barrier Reef’s species

The Great Barrier Reef is home to some 1,600 species of bony fish, 130 sharks and rays, and turtles, mammals and more. Most have had no population monitoring, meaning we don't know how well they are faring.
Hefty problem: a local council was left with a huge clean-up bill after a dead whale washed up in Perth last year. AAP Image/City of Stirling

Dead whales are expensive – whose job is it to clear them up?

Dead whales can cost beachside ratepayers a lot to clean up. The alternative is to tow them away before they wash up - but the legal question of who does the job is far more complex than it sounds.

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