Monday, May 12, 2008

Rare Right whale birth captivates researchers

It's not often that a Right whale gives birth and it's rarer still that whales researchers happen to show up at the 'right' moment to witness the happy event. By pure luck, New England Aquarium scientists were able to photograph this tumultuous and hopeful moment for a species so threatened by extinction that every birth counts. It was the first time anyone is known to have captured images of a right whale giving birth (click thru to photo gallery).

Here in the Bay of Fundy (the summer feeding grounds of many species of whales), we feel quite connected to Right whales. Much whale research takes place in our region throughout the summer and fall - contributing greatly to worldwide scientific research on whales. In the winter, whales venture about 1000 km south to the coasts of Georgia and Florida (where this Right whale was born in January).

A few weeks after the birth, the mother whale (known to researchers by the nickname, Cat's Paw) and her calf were seen swimming side by side as seen in this photo. Later, the aquarium team ponder what to name the baby. Then it came to them: Resolution, in part to honor it's New Year's Day birth, but also the species' unending will to survive. Awww....


Anonymous said...

Hi Terri,

That's pretty cool stuff. Right whales are amazing... and we can only hope that there are many more births in the future.

I also wanted to let you know that the Hall promotional video is now posted on site . I thought you'd be interested in checking it out.


NEAQ said...

There's breaking news about this!
The same researcher that witnessed the birth and photographed it has identified that 3 year old in the Bay of Fundy!

Recent pictures of the grown-up calf are up in the right whale catalog, and thankfully it looks very healthy!