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The natural world. Looking pretty for 3.5b years.

Whales & Drones

Author: Hugh Bollinger/Tuesday, October 31, 2017/Categories: natural history, video, marine life, sustainability, environment, Archive Pick of the Week

Marine mammals like orcas, dolphins, and whales are hard to follow in boats so as not to disrupt their feeding, breaching, and other social activities. Remotely controlled drones provide a good alternative and can capture animal behavior without any disturbance. Such was the case when pods of humpback whales in Prince William Sound were observed by a research vessel in Alaska. The crew used a drone to watch cooperative  bubble net feeding behavior  among humpback whales, a phenomenon unique to Alaska. If the whales noticed the drone, they probably thought it was some strange bird and went along with their business.


Humpback Whales Feeding in Alaska (credit: Outer Shores Expeditions )

The drone saw the whales feeding but it wasn't able to pick up their famous underwater harmonies.

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