22 November 2008

Lucky penguins

What is really remarkable here isn't the penguins avoiding orca attacks, but rather the fact that orcas did not attack the inflatable to feast on pinguins and humans...


P.S. forget abut the music...

20 November 2008

Amazing photos

Amazing underwater photos of common dolphins, sharks and birds feasting on sardines off the South African coast.

Absolutely wonderful!

Don't miss them, have a look!

16 November 2008

From a cetacean point of view

Have you ever wondered how it feels being a cetacean?

Some footage taken by swimming whales can be seen on the web site of Dr. Robin Baird

Thanks to a crittercam system attached to the animal with a suction cup, which rotates to face into the direction the animal is swimming, Dr. Baird and his team are studying the diving behaviour of cetaceans in Hawaiian waters.

Have a look at this amazing footage! You will see false killer whales, short-finned pilot whales, and oceanic white-tip sharks.

Silvia Bonizzoni

For more information:

15 November 2008

A mini-helicopter for studying whales

Dr. Karina Acevedo-Whitehouse (Post-doctoral Research Fellow at the Zoological Society of London), found out a new way to study disease in whales.

Forget about samples taken from stranded, dead or captive animals and think about a 3.5 feet-long helicopter! This small remotely-controlled machine flies over the whale as it surfaces to breathe expelling air through its blow hole. At that time, gases and mucus blown out are collected in sterile Petri dishes attached to the mini-helicopter, and are then examined to see whether the animal is carrying any disease.

The new research method has been tested in the Gulf of California and off the western coasts of Baja California.

Silvia Bonizzoni

For more information:
Mini-helicopter used to test whale health

01 November 2008

Rare footage of vaquita

Chris Johnson, an acclaimed cetacean filmmaker who worked with Tethys in the recent past, is currently busy in Mexico with the ‘Expedition Vaquita’.

There, he is working with scientists from Mexico, the U.S., the U.K. and Japan to film vaquitas Phocoena sinus, the most endangered and the smallest cetacean in the world.

After some days in the field, Chris was a little ‘upset’ as suggested by his Blog: “I kept thinking how I was probably the only one on the expedition who had not glimpsed a vaquita yet. I was so busy filming the unfolding action...

But... good things come to those who wait!” and, on October 23rd, he managed to film the rare vaquita!

This video is part of Whale Trackers, a series of documentary programmes that journey across the world’s oceans to explore the lives of whales, dolphins and porpoises.

Have a look to the first rare footage of vaquita!


For more information:
The vaquita porpoise
IUCN Red List: Phocoena sinus