Populations

Pacific white-sided dolphin dorsal fin photos and breath samples

October 24, 2018

In August, part of our team traveled to the Broughton Archipelago off the coast of northern Vancouver Island to continue our long-term study on Pacific white-sided dolphins.  This study is multi-faceted. We are studying the health of the population by taking dorsal fin photos for statistical analysis, but we are also studying the health of […]

Please help us keep orca habitats clean, quiet, and full of fish

September 20, 2018

    The critically endangered southern resident killer whale population now numbers 74 individuals. The ability of the population to recover is hindered by a perfect storm of threats—not enough salmon, too much noise, and toxic chemicals affecting calf survival—but lack of access to salmon is at the eye of that storm. We need to […]

One fish, two fish

August 11, 2017

Knowing how many animals are in a population is at the cornerstone of many conservation and management decisions. For whales, dolphins & porpoises, ship time to estimate abundance can be prohibitively expensive — often running into the tens of thousands of dollars each day. We’ve just launched our Animal Counting Toolkit to share some of the […]

Telling stories about wildlife populations, one photograph at a time

July 09, 2017

Guest post from our newest team member, Natalie Mastick “I look at pictures of dolphins all day,” is my most common answer when asked what I do for work.   It’s an over-simplified statement, albeit accurate, and it usually leads to many follow-up questions. The most frequent being “Why?” That’s a fair question. I then proceed […]

The dolphin days of summer

August 27, 2016

Our team has arrived in the Broughton Archipelago and we are poised to carry out our dolphin photo-ID, health assessment, and disturbance studies. This year, we are thrilled to have an amazing team Laura Bogaard and Doug Sandilands. Laura, a student from Quest University, is our newest research assistant. Doug Sandilands has been working with […]

Which raindrop caused the flood?

April 30, 2016

A lot of the research our charity, Oceans Initiative, conducts is to see how human activities — all of them — affect marine wildlife, both in the Pacific Northwest and around the world. The iconic orca we study illustrate this problem well. According to the latest census by Center for Whale Research, the population is hovering at 84 individuals. […]

Counting and protecting Amazon river dolphins

March 12, 2016

Did you know two species of river ‪dolphin‬ live in the ‪Amazon‬? The pink one is called ‪boto‬, or Inia; the grey one is called ‪tucuxi‬, or Sotalia. Both are gorgeous, ancient species that have become adapted to live their entire lives in freshwater. They are also incredibly tough to spot in muddy waters, and have a […]

COUNTING WHALES IN A CHALLENGING, CHANGING HABITAT

March 31, 2014

  Few marine conservation issues are more contentious than Japan’s “scientific whaling” program, which allows for the killing of up to 935 whales each year. This number is large, relative to hunts of other whales in other parts of the world, but small relative to the hundreds of thousands of Antarctic minke whales in the […]

A Rare Visit

December 29, 2012

  Grey whales are pretty neat.  We were lucky enough to encounter two of them on Boxing Day.  Their visit to inshore waters of British Columbia in December was a bit of a surprise.  Grey whales are legendary for their migration, which is among the longest of any mammal.  We’d expect to see grey whales […]

WHERE THE WHALES (AND WHALE RESEARCHERS) ARE

September 12, 2012

  Rob and his colleagues published a neat new paper today in the open access journal, PLOS ONE.  The paper, led by Dr Kristin Kaschner at the University of Freiburg, examined >1100 estimates of the abundance of whales, dolphins and porpoises reported in more than 400 surveys conducted worldwide between 1975 and 2005. It is […]