[MARMAM] Six Beaked Whales stranded in Azores (URGENT)

Michael Stocker mstocker at msa-design.com
Sun Jun 28 04:38:02 PDT 2009

Dear Marc and all,


Of course we are sad to hear about this recent stranding. It is also
unfortunate that you didn't have the resources to perform necropsies on the
animals while they were still fresh to establish possible causes.  If the
animals were otherwise healthy in terms of body fat and physical vitality, I
would not exclude acoustical trauma as a possible cause. 


 You mentioned that there were no military operations in the area coincident
to the strandings.  In cases like these we look to see if there are any
unusual acoustical sources within 200 miles and 24 hours of the event, under
the assumption that an acoustically compromised beaked whale can travel 200
miles in 24 hours if they are looking for a place to strand.


Michael Stocker




From: marmam-bounces at lists.uvic.ca [mailto:marmam-bounces at lists.uvic.ca] On
Behalf Of marc fernandez
Sent: Saturday, June 27, 2009 3:48 AM
To: panigada at inwind.it; marmam at lists.uvic.ca
Subject: [MARMAM] Six Beaked Whales stranded in Azores (URGENT)


Dear Colleagues,

I want to report an unusual situation occurred during the last week and a
half in São Miguel island, Azores, and ask for help in order to get some
clear conclusions. 

During the last two weeks a total of 6 beaked whales stranded on this small
island, a really unusual fact. Of these 6 two were dead and 4 stranded alive
and returned to the open sea. From the first two animals (the dead ones) we
only can get one identification and it was a Cuvier's Beaked Whale, probably
an immature male. The other four animals stranded on a beach and they were
returned to the sea immediately by the lifeguards and the coastal guard, for
these reason we don't have a lot of information, but for the pictures they
send us probably were Sowerby's Beaked Whales, we only now that they
stranded alive and probably they were immature animals also, due to the body
lenght (about 3.5 meters).

We don't have any notice about military activities in the area, but is
really difficult to get this kind of information, for this reason i want to
ask you for help to find if there is any military or seismic prospection on
the area that could affect these animals.

Thanks for your help.

All the best,

Marc Fernandez Morron
Universidade dos Açores

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