News for 2016


After successful 4 months in Raja Ampat, we are now continuing our field work on Lofoten in Norway.
In Raja Ampat we could finally collect enough information in order to develop a long-term research project. We found Benjamin Kahn from Apex environmental, who has conducted whale research in RA since 2007, as our main collaborator in the project. During the next few months we will work on a detailed proposal and look for more partners and funding. We aim to work closely together with the State University of Papua and Conservation International. Our next visit is planned in January 2017, more to this as it happens…

Here is the plan for this year:

  1. Launch the research boat and start with field work on Lofoten. Field work will be done as good as we can until the whales leave Lofoten around October.
  2. We have to focus on fund raising, all our applications for research and conservation grants (from WWF, WDC and National Geographic) were for this year declined!! The new engine of the boat was very expensive and if we can’t find all the money, the boat has to be sold and our field work in Norway would be terminated forever! Please help us that this will not happen!
    You can buy our CD, soon T-shirts and pictures online, look for grant applications or simply give a donation!
  3. Conduct a field course for students from the University in Nord, 2 teams of 10 students each will come to Henningsvaer in June and will learn how to do field work with whales in Lofoten. We are looking forward to teach students from all over the world about our local whale population!
  1. We work on Photo-ID and finalizing the acoustic analysis of the pilot whale recordings and will publish it soon in cooperation with the Cognitive Ethology Lab at the University of Goettingen and the Max Planck Institute in Goettingen. Then we can publish it openly on our website, so that a comparison with other places in the northeast Atlantic will be possible!
  2. The work on our Orca research will continue and we aim to find out more about the vocal behavior in different contexts, for example during different feeding behavior (carousel feeding versus salmon feeding or marine mammal feeding). By the end of the year we expect to publish our results in cooperation with scientists from the Cognitive Ethology Lab at the University of Goettingen and the Max Planck Institute in Goettingen.
    And we are of course also interested in the Orcas health, and if they get enough food, which we can determine through our photos, videos and sound recordings. We do this of course for all marine mammals we encounter 😉
  3. We aim to continue the project on automatic fluke detection to help with the strenuous work on sorting out photos for whale ID’s by hand. This will be done in cooperation with scientists from the University in Goettingen, more to this soon….
  4. We have a plan for an exciting new project which would involve a social project in Mahrzahn in Berlin..I can’t tell you much more now, we first have to initialize it and then you are welcome to help!
  5. Continue even if things get tough!!!

But now in Lofoten, we are preparing for our first field trip tomorrow, a group of Orcas has been spotted and we aim to find them and hopefully find out who it is and get good sound recordings!
Cross fingers and follow us here and on facebook!

Wish for a successful whale summer whale,

Thank you

Heike

Sperm-whales-Raja-Ampat (1 of 1)-2
Breaching Sperm Whale in Raja Ampat

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Group of Killer whales in May in Lofoten, Norway