Are these humpback whales really too close?

Are these humpback whales really too close?

In the crowded shipping port of Boston Harbour, around six humpback whales were spotted. According to a professor of the Northeastern University, Joseph Ayers the whales were not lost but were looking for snacks. They were probably attracted to the fish baits around that area.

 

Ayers, who has been a part of the Marine Science Centre and has specialised on neurophysiology, is of the idea that whenever people spot the whales close to the shore, they are usually hunting. He has often spotted humpback whales in the closest proximity possible. Although the whales come close to the shore during this time, it is not really usual for them to swim so close to the Boston Harbour. Ayers believes that it is, in fact, really dangerous.

 

To explain how it can turn out to be dangerous, Ayers says, “Boats are the biggest problem for whales. If a whale swims into the propeller of a boat, especially something as big as a shipping vessel, it could be deadly”. To making boaters aware of the presence of these whales, a warning had been issued.

 

Ayers provided a solution to this situation by stating that boaters can steer clear off the whales by avoiding large flocks of birds on their path. He says, “Whenever you see a flock of birds, it means there are fish around”. This, in turn, indicates that with the presence of fish, humpback whales might also be around.

 

After studying the behaviour of these whales, Ayers concluded that they are displaying signs of feeding behaviour. Their hunting method is quite unique, they blow air bubbles to entrap the fish and then swim from below to consume them.

 

Even though the crowd of people watching these humpback whales are uncertain about their appearance, Ayers is sure that their appearance is no strange occurrence. He says, “It’s their ocean, and they feed where they find food. It’s a very opportunistic lifestyle”.

 

Subarna Basu

Subarna Basu
Subarna Basu

pami.tuli@gmail.com

A final year English Honors student, waiting for Godot.

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