Sunday, August 22, 2010

Importance of photo ID in order to study Sperm whales

U13 in 2010
U13 in 2009

August is usually a great month for spotting a variety of cetacean species in this area. This is usually also the time of the year when we encounter more Sperm whales than other months. Sperm whales divide into different pods based on gender, age and kinship. The pod travel over great distances and some return to these waters. This is the case with the pod of U13, an adult female that was first recorded here in 1990 (Lisa Steiner) and also has been seen in the Canaries. However when she returned this summer we first had dificulties to recognize her because the amount of marks on her fluke had increased since last year. This is a good example of the importance of continuous photo identification. For clients of us, if you got a good fluke shot during the trip we welcome you to participate to our Sperm whale catalogue by sending your photo to (please include date, boat and time if known).

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