|Humpback whales Spoon, Chromosome and Partition|
|Chromosome and Partition (see the injury near her tail?)|
|Humpback coming towards us!|
|Four humpbacks! Owl joined our trio!|
|Owl about to tail-breach next to Spoon!|
Such a great day! For anyone who wants to adopt Owl, or one of her friends, and didn't get a chance to do so today, be sure to find her on our website http://www.blueoceansociety.org/Store/store.html.
Also of interest were the injuries we noticed on Owl and Partition. This was a sad reminder of the threats these beautiful animals face daily. Owl has the large gash across her back that she got when she was just a few years old- likely from a collision with a ship. Partition has new entanglement wounds at the base of her tail that are still healing. And as we were leaving the whales, we saw a green latex balloon floating near our whales. Marine debris- trash at sea- is a huge problem for all marine life if they ingest it. It can clog their systems, choke them and even poison them with the chemicals they contain. People always ask me what they can do to help the whales. Here are a few simple things that WILL HELP WHALES:
1. Do not EVER release helium balloons. What goes up must come down, and as Earth is 70% water, balloons have a good chance of falling back to Earth and landing in the oceans. Sea turtles mistake the frayed balloons for jellyfish- a favorite meal. Whales can gulp them down along with the fish when they feed at the surface. Fish and birds might ingest particles of those same balloons, which can be toxic.
2. Know where and how your seafood is caught and be sure it is only caught by sustainable practices that are not threatening to whales or the marine life populations. Or better yet, avoid seafood all together. Even "safe" fishing methods, such as hook and line, that are intended to only catch one fish of a particular species can be threatening to marine life as those fishermen often use latex balloons as bobbers (and subsequently let them go on the ocean). And just last week we saw two humpback whales with hook/monofilament fishing line entanglements likely from the vast fleet of tuna boats that were fishing in the same area as the whales were feeding.
3. Shop locally. By purchasing products make in the USA, or better yet, close to home, you are reducing the need for shipping the items across the world, reducing ocean traffic. This reduction in ships on the ocean will lessen the amount of noise pollution in the ocean as well as reduce the chance of a whale getting hit by a ship.
In general, whenever you are in the position to make a decision, think like our good friend Willy does and ask yourself how your decision will help or hurt the whales. If everyone did this, the oceans would be a much better place.
Thanks again to our hearty passengers for accepting all of the elements that mother ocean threw at us today!
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