A exceptional set of pictures present humpback whales close to Alaska utilizing an unconventional methodology to catch their dinner — blowing bubbles.
Researchers from the College of Hawaii have been capable of seize the spectacular pictures utilizing a drone whereas learning the large mammals close to Alaska.
The method, generally known as bubble-net feeding, happens when a pod of whales close to the floor of the water rounds up their prey (often fish or krill) contained in the circle of bubbles they’ve created utilizing their blowholes. The bubbles could stun the prey, that are then consumed by the whales.
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The researchers additionally posted a video to their YouTube web page, exhibiting off the exceptional occasion.
“The footage is reasonably groundbreaking,” mentioned Lars Bejder, director of the UH Mānoa Marine Mammal Analysis Program, in an announcement. “We’re observing how these animals are manipulating their prey and making ready the prey for seize. It’s permitting us to realize new insights that we actually haven’t been capable of do earlier than.”
Along with utilizing drones to seize the photographs, the researchers additionally put cameras and accelerometers on the whales by way of suction cups to get video and information from a first-hand account.
That information gave the researchers recent insights into how bubble-net feeding is completed and the way typically they do it earlier than they ultimately migrate right down to Hawaii for breeding.
“We’ve got two angles. The drone’s perspective is exhibiting us these bubble nets and the way the bubbles are beginning to come to the floor and the way the animals come up by way of the bubble web as they floor, whereas the cameras on the whales are exhibiting us the animal’s perspective,” Bejder added. “So overlaying these two information units is kind of thrilling.”
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Bejder estimates that roughly 3,000 whales come to Alaska for the summer season feeding season. He added that as much as 10,000 whales will make the three,000-mile trek to Hawaii to breed in the course of the winter months, not stopping for meals till they attain their vacation spot.
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