CCRC conducts and facilitates benign research on whales and dolphins
The conservation status and biology of most cetaceans are poorly understood. Many cetacean populations are threatened; quite a few are endangered; all are susceptible to humankind's interference with marine ecosystems. Multidisciplinary scientific research is needed to develop appropriate conservation strategies. CCRC has undertaken studies on the biology, behavior, and ecology of a variety of cetaceans.
In 1996, CCRC researchers began documenting populations of bottlenose dolphins, spotted dolphins, and dense-beaked whales in the Bahamas. CCRC efforts over the past eight seasons have revealed a novel feeding technique by bottlenose dolphins, the first underwater footage of beaked whales and underwater footage of a sperm whale with a broken jaw.
In 1998, CCRC initiated Cook Islands Humpback Whale Survey, a long-term study of the depleted yet unstudied humpback whales of the central South Pacific. This study focuses on humpbacks while they are in the waters of the Cook Islands, a chain of 15 islands in the central tropical South Pacific. Humpbacks frequent the Cook Islands during the austral winter, to breed and calve. The Cook Islands offer an unprecedented opportunity to study the status and population identity of humpback whales in the central South Pacific, information vital for developing appropriate conservation measures for this endangered species.
© Nan Hauser
'MYSTERY' WHALE: click below for more images and information
Conservation - CCRC raises public awareness of marine conservation issues
Beaked Whales - CCRC shot the first quality underwater footage of beaked whales
Research Photos - Raw research materials including photo contact sheets