Monday, March 18, 2013

Divers Free Whale From Fishing Line

Last week, divers near the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary in Maui  discovered a humpback whale caught in fishing rope.
Buoys and line
Rope & Buoys on Humpback Whale Tail

It took several efforts to remove more  than 200 feet (61 m) of line and two buoys from around the whale.

Under the sea
Fishing Rope Caught on Humpback Whale

These gentle giants swim 3,000 miles from Alaska to the warmer waters of Hawaii in the winter.  They rest and give birth to their calves--usually from January thru April.

Photos and story courtesy of NOAA.

Young Paddleboarders Clean Florida Waterway

Photo from SUP  Magazine
A waterway in Florida often clogs with trash.  The trash lands in the waterway after a rain storm, and then the trash makes its way to the ocean.  

Recently, young volunteers on paddleboards swept the waterway clean.  They used a special paddle with a net that captures the trash, and then they put the trash into a trash can attached to their paddleboard.

Paddleboarders have collected more that 2200 pounds of trash--that never reached our beautiful seas.

 Sea Stars all around!

Source: SUP Magazine

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

The Biggest Seals on Earth Hanging with King Penguins

Northern Elephant Seals. Adult female, adult male and pup
There are two kinds of elephant seals.  Northern Elephant Seals and Southern Elephant Seals. The biggest is the Southern Elephant Seal.

Imagine walking along the shoreline in Antarctica and meeting face to face with a seal that is 20-feet long(6m) and  8000 pounds  (4,000kg) or more!

Northern Elephant Seals are found along the west coast of the Pacific Ocean and range from the Aleutian Islands to the islands near Baja California.An adult male can measure 16-feet long (5m), and weigh up to 5000 pounds (2 267kg)  That is still big.

The yellow shows where elephant seals live
Did you know that there was a time when all elephant seals were hunted to near-extinction?  That means that hunters killed so many of these big seals--for oil--that barely any elephant seals were left on the planet.  

Here's a video about Southern Elephant Seals hanging around King Penguins.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Entangled Sea Lions Rescued

Here's that big word again: Entanglement.  This time we can change the word to: Disentangled--or rescued.

Two sea lions near Monterey, Ca. took a dive in the salty water, maybe hunting for food, and were caught  (entangled) in fishing line that wrapped around each sea lion's neck and head.  Ouch! 

A special team of rescuers from the Marine Mammal Center near San Francisco, including a specialty veterinarian, found each of the entangled sea lions, and made a daring rescue.


Both sea lions had the fishing line successfully removed.  

Remember when you go fishing, even in your local lake, stream or river, to dispose of old fishing line in a proper way.  Many popular fishing locations have tubes to collect and recycle your fishing lines.  The sea lions will thank you!