[MARMAM] Drone images of fin whales feeding in the Mediterranean Sea

edmaktub edmaktub at edmaktub.com
Fri Apr 6 14:54:07 PDT 2018


Dear Colleagues,

We would like to draw your attention to the following new footage and 
information

**Fin whales lunge feeding off the coast of Garraf, Barcelona, Spain
**

*Barcelona, 6 April 2018 –*The EDMAKTUB research team filmed exceptional 
images that have never been seen before of two fin whales feeding at the 
surface in the Mediterranean Sea. The images were recorded off the coast 
of Garraf (Catalonia, south of Barcelona, northestern Spain) where 
numerous whales have been sighted feeding over recent days.

*You can see the video here*: https://youtu.be/_zoFWpNcEh8

*Images never seen before*. This is the first time aerial images have 
been recorded showing this behaviour on the part of the species 
(Balaenoptera physalus) in the Mediterranean Sea. In addition to the 
extraordinary quality of the images, this video is also of great 
scientific importance. It provides valuable information regarding how 
these animals feed, which will allow us to better understand their diet 
as well as their feeding behaviour.

It can clearly be seen that the whales repeat the same behaviour up to 
six times in the video.The whales turn on their side, and speed up 
before opening their vast mouths to trap several tons of water inside, 
which swells their bodies from the jaw to the middle section. Next, they 
close their mouths, expelling the water through their baleen plates, 
filtering out the food which they will then swallow. Within seconds, the 
body returns to its usual slender form.

*Large numbers of whales this season*. All of the images which appear in 
the two-and-a-half minute video come from the same sequence, which 
originally lasted some five minutes in total. As the video begins, a 
single whale appears, and then later, a second animal rises from deeper 
waters. In addition, that day ten individual whales were observed 
feeding in the same area.

*Scientific results*. The fin whale is a migratory species which visits 
the Catalan Coast to feed during the spring months. Since 2013, the 
EDMAKTUB Organisation has been studying these animals whenever ocean 
conditions that allow its presence through their Fin Whale Project. 
During that time, they have been able to establish that the Balearic Sea 
is an area where these whales come to feed. Up to now, it was believed 
that the animals were simply passing through these waters. The Fin Whale 
Project is supported by the Barcelona Zoo Foundation and the Vilanova 
Sailing Club (Club Nàutic Vilanova).

*More information*regarding the findings of the Fin Whale Project can be 
found in ANNUAL REPORT. This includes a detailed description of the 
Project and its results up to 2017:http://www.edmaktub.org/en/annual-report/


--------------------------------
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