What does Antarctica look like to a humpback whale? Now we know, and it’s incredible
Let’s go for a swim! Well, not actually. We’re talking more of a virtual underwater tour, but equally gratifying nonetheless. As The Daily Mail reports, researchers from the World Wildlife Fund came up with the wonderful idea to attach webcams to humpback and minke whales in Antarctica, granting us a fascinating view of a day in the life of the giant mammals.
The team of American and Australian scientists hoped to gain deeper insight in to the feeding habits of the whales but managed to capture some pretty spectacular whale footage in the process.
One whale’s journey takes viewers beneath the layers of thick ice into the frigid waters and back above the surface, giving us an up close look at water spewing forth from its blowhole.
As Business Insider notes, the researchers gathered information on how whales are impacted by any changes in the population of krill that are brought by on by climate change, commercial fishing, or the decrease in the pH of Earth’s oceans.
To utilize the whale cameras, scientists attached re-usable suction cups to the backs of the sea creatures and used non-invasive, electronic tags to on the smaller minke whales.
So far, researchers have determined that the whales spend most of their day socializing and resting, while foraging for food is mainly reserved for the evening and night time.
“Once we have an idea about where the whales feed, how often, where they go and rest, we can use this to inform policy and management to protect these whales and their ecosystem,” ecologist Ari Friedlaender said of the research, which is backed by the International Whaling Commission.
We couldn’t agree more. We’re all about the ongoing efforts to protect these gorgeous sea mammals and ensure that they continue to thrive in safe, non-toxic living environments.