“We will be on the boat and with the whales in a few weeks!”
The beginning of each year's field season is always exciting! Getting all the team together after flying from all over the world, Thanks to Aeroplan and your donations!
Our first day on the water alwyas comes with the excitment of who we will meet up with first. We have been following over 20 different whale familes over the last 10 years. They dont have specific defined seasons or ranges so we never now which family will be out there until we get there. Families might spend a few days to a few weeks in the waters off Dominica and then move off - at which point another family moves in a few days later. Each of us have our favourites, mine is probably, The Group of Seven. You can meet them here: http://www.thespermwhaleproject.org/GOS.html They got that name because a little canadian art history never hurt anyone, but also because when we first met this family there were seven of them. Scientists are simple and direct like that! I think i like them in part, because they are the family with which I have spent the most time, but also because I have followed four of the calves since birth. It have been an amazing priviledge to watch the little ones grown older, wean from their mothers, and make deep hunting dives on their own for the first time. Its odd, but I feel an odd sense of pride in those little whales.
Given that I spend so much time on a boat with their families, I feel a responsability to them, a burden of their trust, driving me to share their stories and advocate for their conservation. The Group of Seven, and their neighbours, are a small part of our understanding of life in the deep ocean. We have put a man on the Moon and a robot on Mars, but the part of the ocean in which the sperm whales have made their home is still mostly a mystery.
Posted by: The Dominica Sperm Whale Project on March 25, 2014.