Blue whales are one of the most interesting creatures in the world as not too much is known about them. Nonetheless, each time people encounter blue whales, they are amazed by the huge size of these creatures.
Scientists want to find out more about blue whales, these 30 meter long mammals, weighing 180 tonnes, with tongues weighing as much as an elephant and hearts bigger than a car. Researchers from 5 countries will sail from Hobart to track down blue whales in the Southern Ocean.
Mike Double from the Marine Mammals Centre explains that these creatures have amazed researchers for many years: “To give you some context, in 30 years of studying these whales there were 220 sightings. They were very close to extinction in the 1970s, and we think they’re recovering, but we know little about their recovery at the moment and that’s why we’re starting this international project, to deliver a new abundance estimate for this species.”
It seems that now there are many blue whales in the Souther Ocean, but scientists still don’t know to much about them, especially about breeding patterns or life span.
There will be used acoustic techniques, which should make the technology should make the search easier: “Underwater listening devices transmit the sounds that they hear back to the ship over a radio link and then we sit on the boat with our headphones on listening for whale sounds to come in.” Nonetheless, it doesn’t mean that there will be no errors, but even so, the experience will be great.