Five distinct humpback whale populations identified in North Pacific

Publication: NBC News   Date: December 4, 2013   View Article

Five distinct populations of humpback whales ply the North Pacific Ocean each year between winter breeding and summer feeding grounds, according to a new study. The finding adds a layer of complexity to ongoing efforts to conserve the majestic marine mammals.

Humpback whales are found throughout the world’s oceans. In the North Pacific, they number more than 21,000 today, up from less than 1,000 at the end of commercial humpback whaling in 1966. “That is a great thing,” Scott Baker, a marine biologist with Oregon State University’s Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, told NBC News.

Oldest Antarctic Whale Found, Shows Fast Evolution

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: November 16, 2011   View Article

The oldest known whale to ply the Antarctic has been found, scientists say.

A 24-inch-long (60-centimeter-long) jawbone was recently discovered amid a rich deposit of fossils on the Antarctic Peninsula.

The creature, which may have reached lengths of up to 20 feet (6 meters), had a mouthful of teeth and likely feasted on giant penguins, sharks, and big bony fish, whose remains were also discovered with the jawbone.

Seven icons of science at the Smithsonian

Publication: MSNBC.com   Date: May 22, 2009   View Article

In “Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian,” Ben Stiller returns to the movie screen as security guard Larry Daley for another adventure among animated artifacts and historical figures. The museum and research complex houses more than 136 million objects, works of art and specimens. Check out seven iconic items from the museum’s science collections, including a few that come to life under Daley’s watch.

Animal Photos Weekly: Albino Whale, Baby Giraffe, More

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: August 27, 2008   View Article

Captions for photos of animals in the news. Shots include a young seal set for release in the North Sea, an albino southern right whale in Australia, a newborn giraffe in San Diego, and a Beal’s four-eyed turtle.

“New” Killer Whale Types at Risk From Antarctic Warming

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: August 4, 2008   View Article

Two newly identified types of killer whales that hunt prey off of Antarctic sea ice risk losing food sources to global warming and melting, according to a new study on the whales’ movement patterns.

The study reveals that killer whales that feed primarily on fish that congregate under ice shelves are more or less “homebodies,” sticking close to the ice, whereas seal-eating killer whales wander wide and seemingly aimlessly.

Animals Photo Weekly: Bubble Blowing Beluga, More

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: July 30, 2008   View Article

Captions for photos of animals in the news around the world. Shots include a bubble blowing beluga whale in Japan, a giant panda cub in China, hippos in Zambia, a three-month old black howler monkey at the Edinburgh Zoo, and a baby chimp at the Knoxville Zoo in Tennessee.

Legalize Whaling (a Little), Some Conservationists Say

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: June 26, 2008   View Article

Could a little legalized commercial whale hunting actually help save the animals? That’s one idea floating around this year’s meeting of the International Whaling Commission in Santiago, Chile.

The still unofficial proposal involves backing off a 22-year-old moratorium that bans all but a small amount of whaling for scientific and sustenance purposes.

© 2008-2010 Collected Writings By John Roach