[MARMAM] New paper on pre-modern whaling in the tropical western South Atlantic Ocean

Igor Morais igoliveira.igor at gmail.com
Tue Jun 14 11:16:47 PDT 2016

Dear MARMAM colleagues,

We are pleased to announce the publication of the following paper in the
Mammal Review:

*From the southern right whale hunting decline to the humpback whaling
expansion: a review of whale catch records in the tropical western South
Atlantic Ocean*

Igor Morais, Daniel Danilewicz, Alexandre Zerbini, William Edmundson, Ian
Hart and Guilherme Bortolotto

DOI: 10.1111/mam.12073


1. Historical catch records from whaling activity are crucial for
assessments of whale populations. However, several gaps in the exploitation
history for many populations from before the twentieth century create
limitations that may lead to overestimates of the recovery of these
populations. The history of modern whaling along the Brazilian coast is
relatively well known. However, several questions relating to the
pre-modern period, during and before the nineteenth century, remain
unanswered. For example, the level of exploitation of humpback whales
novaeangliae* and southern right whales *Eubalaena australis* in this
period is unknown.
2. Pre-modern whaling in Brazil began in 1602 and lasted until the 1920s.
Whales were captured using manual harpoons from either rowing boats or
sailing boats, and processed at land stations called ‘armações’. A review
of the history and oil production of these stations indicates that
substantial catches occurred.
3. Pre-modern whaling records also indicate the collapse of the southern
right whale population in the western South Atlantic Ocean. Increasingly
rare reports of sightings for the nineteenth century and the closing of the
last armação in the breeding grounds off southern Brazil indicate that this
population collapsed by 1830.
4. Armações operating in north-eastern Brazil remained active through the
1800s, and targeted humpback whales until modern whaling techniques were
introduced in the early 1900s. It is estimated that between approximately
11000 and 32000 individuals of this species were captured at these coastal
whaling stations from 1830 to 1924.

Full text is available at:

*Igor Morais*
*Biólogo */ Biologist
*Mestre em Zoologia */ Master of Science in Zoology
*CV Lattes:*

*Pesquisador colaborador - Instituto Aqualie*
Collaborator researcher - Institute Aqualie
*Associado colaborador e membro do Comitê de Bem-Estar Animal da Sociedade
de Zoológicos e Aquários do Brasil - SZB*
Collaborator associate and member of the Animal Welfare Committee of
Brazilian Society of Zoos and Aquariums - SZB

“*A humanidade é sublime. Não por estar acima das outras criaturas, mas
porque ao conhecê-las bem, eleva o conceito da própria vida*."
- Edward O. Wilson

*"Humanity is exalted not because we are so far above other living
creatures, but because knowing them well elevates the very concept of
- Edward O. Wilson
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