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Eaten to extinction?

Eaten to extinction?

Will you make a donation to help us stop dolphins being killed for meat? Thank you. The plight of the large whales at the hands of commercial whalers both historically and currently, is well documented. As a result of intensive and unregulated hunting, population figures plummeted, some even went extinct (the north east Atlantic population…

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Conserving Migratory Species

Some species of whales and dolphins can migrate many thousands of miles, travelling through the national waters of a number of different countries to get to their destinations. Others can live their lives more locally in the national waters of more than one country – take for example a dolphin in the Mediterranean Sea, in…

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Famine or Feast – Isle of Lewis Research Blog

It was a slow start to this seasons fieldwork here on the Isle of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides. High winds (at this time of year the remnants from the various hurricanes battering the Caribbean and USA) and lots of rain kept us on land and indoors for the first week however patience, being a…

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Why are beached whales taken to landfill?

The sight of any beached whale or dolphin can be really distressing for onlookers, even for scientists like me who visit strandings on a regular basis. After watching the ‘whale fall’ experiment on Britain’s Whales on ITV, many of supporters were asking why stranded whales are often taken to landfill rather than being placed to…

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The little porpoise making big waves

No matter what your opinion on ex-situ conservation is (and they can be varying), there is no doubt that the project to “save” the critically endangered Yangtze finless porpoise from extinction is reaping some early rewards.  This little porpoise is restricted to the middle and lower reaches of China’s Yangtze River (including two adjoining lakes)…

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Indus River dolphins be dammed!

Dolphins living close to humans face more threats than those that live far from land and far from human intervention. Dolphins found in coastal and riverine environments therefore are in more immediate danger of extirpation.  I recently gave an overview of the situation facing Nepal’s remaining dolphins where the biggest threat to their continued survival…

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Familiar Fins, New Faces and Bizarre Encounters … !!

Ask anyone and they’ll tell you that Scotland has been having a dismal summer this year, low temperatures and rain and wind galore. The weather however isn’t going to stop our dolphins go about their daily business and so we returned (even more determined than ever) to our field site on the Isle of Lewis…

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Nepal’s forgotten dolphins …

Rivers in Nepal are treated as goddesses, so why are the creatures found within them not given the same reverence? The Nepalese believe that their rivers are the “ever flowing and inspiring source of beauty, abundance and infinite adventure” yet one of the most iconic animals ever to have inhabited them – the Ganges River…

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Dolphin brains are more complex than initially thought

Hearing and seeing are largely thought to be two seperate senses. Dolphins however also use sound to see, a technique known as echolocation (see illustration below) where an individual dolphin sends out an acoustic signal (clicks etc.) and whatever it hits, or bounces off of sends back to the dolphin where it can then “see” what…

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