[MARMAM] New publication: Basin-wide shift in bowhead whale migration in the Pacific Arctic

Angela Szesciorka angela at szesciorka.com
Wed Feb 21 14:32:43 PST 2024

Dear MARMAM colleagues,

On behalf of my co-authors, I am pleased to share our new publication in
the open access journal Geophysical Research Letters:

Szesciorka, A.R., Stafford, K. M., Berchok, C. L. (2024). Basin-wide shift
in bowhead whale migration in the Pacific Arctic. Geophysical Research
Letters, 51, e2023GL106416. https://doi.org/10.1029/2023GL106416

The paper is available here:

Abstract: In a rapidly changing Arctic, multiple lines of evidence suggest
that bowhead whale migration is changing. To explore these changes further,
we used passive acoustic data to examine bowhead whale presence in the
western Beaufort Sea (12 years) and Chukchi Plateau (11 years) spanning
2008 to 2022. Departure from the western Beaufort Sea shifted 45 days later
over the 12-year period. Summer presence increased at both sites,
suggesting feeding areas within the Chukchi Sea are becoming more
favorable. Likewise, findings from the Bering Strait suggest that some
whales are remaining north of the Bering Strait for the winter instead of
in the Bering Sea. These Pacific Arctic-wide changes to migration have
occurred over only one decade. Questions remain about prey availability in
the Chukchi Sea, implications of migratory changes, such as a northward
shift in the core overwintering area, and impact to communities south of
the Bering Strait.

Please contact me if you have any questions or if you need a PDF copy.



Angela Szesciorka, Ph.D.
Research Associate
Marine Mammal Institute
Oregon State University
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