[MARMAM] New paper on Humpback whales, habitat use and commercial exploitation in Greenland

Tenna Boye tebo at natur.gl
Fri Jul 16 04:51:56 PDT 2010

Dear Marmam subscribers


The following paper has just been published online by the Journal of Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom. Please contact Tenna Boye, tebo at natur.gl, with questions regarding the work.


Boye T.K., Simon M. and Madsen P.T. (2010) Habitat use of humpback whales in Godthaabsfjord, West Greenland, with implications for commercial exploitation. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom. doi:10.1017/S0025315410000755



North Atlantic humpback whales migrate from breeding grounds to high latitude feeding areas to where individuals display

large scale site fidelity. In Godthaabsfjord (Greenland), humpback whales are present from early spring to late autumn. To test

for small scale site fidelity and occurrence, identification-photographs were collected from May to September 2007 and 2008

and compared with an older catalogue. We found high small scale site fidelity where 40% of the whales present in 2007 were

resighted in 2008. The average resight rate from 1992 to 2008 was 30.2%. Individuals did not remain in the fjord the entire

season and the time spent in the fjord was highly variable amongst individuals varying between 7-60% of the time from May

to September. Individual humpback whales in the presence and absence of boats were tracked with a land-based theodolite to

test for effects of whale watching on whale behaviour. Whale watch vessels were shown to significantly increase whale swimming

speed, to shorten long dives and diminish the ratio between surfacings and long dives. It is concluded that the same

foraging whales use this fjord system year after year, calling for regulation of whale watching and for consideration when

discussing reopening the whaling of humpback whales in West Greenland


Keywords: humpback whale, photo-identification, site fidelity, habitat use, theodolite tracking, whale watching



Inussiarnersumik inuulluaqqusillunga / Med venlig hilsen  / Best regards  


Tenna Kragh Boye,  Project Scientist

Pinngortitaleriffik - Grønlands Naturinstitut - Greenland Institute of Natural Resources
Postboks 570,  DK-3900 Nuuk, Greenland

Phone: (+299) 36 12 00

E-mail: tebo at natur.gl <mailto:lara at natur.gl> , http://www.natur.gl <http://www.natur.gl/> 


-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.uvic.ca/pipermail/marmam/attachments/20100716/653ce505/attachment.html>

More information about the MARMAM mailing list