WEATHER IN LINCOLN COUNTY


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Insights in to Gray Whales?

Gray Whale
Wikipedia photo


The Oregon Chapter of the American Cetacean Society is having our monthly meeting on Saturday November 10 at 10:00 AM. The meeting will be held at the Newport Public Library, 35 NW Nye, Newport. The event is free and open to the public. Join us for “A Small Piece of a Large Puzzle: Investigating the fine-scale foraging ecology of gray whales in Port Orford, OR” by guest speaker Lisa Hildebrand.

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Gray whales along the west coast of the United States follow a well-documented migration every year. They breed and nurse their calves in the lagoons of Baja, Mexico between December to April/May, before they head north to their feeding grounds in Alaska and the Arctic. Once there, whales spend the summer months feeding on zooplankton to regain crucial body mass that they have lost while on the breeding grounds. Towards the end of the summer, the population will start their migration back south, restarting the annual cycle. However, a small subset of this large population strays from the norm and does not continue all the way to Alaska. Instead, they make the waters off the coasts of northern California, Oregon, Washington and southern British Columbia their feeding grounds for the summer. Who are these individuals and why exactly do they do this? Come hear about the research that a team of Oregon State University researchers undertakes every year in Port Orford, OR to help answer some of these fundamental questions about gray whales.

Lisa Hildebrand graduated from Newcastle University in the U.K. with a Bachelor of Science First Class Honors Degree in Marine Zoology. Her undergraduate dissertation investigated the abundance, group composition and behavior of a population of offshore bottlenose dolphins around Catalina Island off the coast of California. Lisa has undertaken research on a handful of marine mammal species including bottlenose dolphins, harbor seals, humpback whales, blue whales and now gray whales. She is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in Wildlife Science at Oregon State University in the Department of Fisheries & Wildlife under the tutelage of Dr. Leigh Torres in her Geospatial Ecology of Marine Megafauna Lab. In the future, Lisa hopes to continue researching the foraging ecology of whales and potentially investigate the effect climate change may have on interspecific interactions and prey availability.

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Contact Joy Primrose, ACS Oregon Chapter President at marine_lover4ever@yahoo.com or (541) 517-8754 for more information.

The American Cetacean Society protects whales, dolphins, porpoises, and their habitats. The non-profit organization was founded in 1967 and is headquartered in San Pedro, CA. Information on the ACS can be found on the website: www.acsonline.org

You can also find us on Facebook now at American Cetacean Society-Oregon Chapter

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