Please visit our Sponsors

FAQs about Marine et al. Mammals

Related Articles: Marine Mammals Dolphin/Tuna Interaction,

Related FAQs:

What is this?     3/24/14
We saw this in the surf on Sand Key, Clearwater Beach, FL. It is as big as a steering wheel. I will send another photo also. Do you know what it is?
The fat finger like layer on outside were firm but not rock hard.
Kay Gregg
<Mmm, you may have hit the jackpot... this may be a lump of ambergris. Bob Fenner>

Bob Fenner - About Dolphins  3/23/08 Mr. Fenner, <Scott> I have not written in a long time, I guess this is good because that means my aquarium is doing well. I have a strange question to ask and you and your crew have always been so knowledgeable. I Live near the Gulf of Mexico and have a boat. Me and my sweetheart do not fish, I do not even own a pole. We love boating up and down the coast and enjoy the sites and wildlife, as we are animal buffs. Last time We went out we saw some Dolphins but they kept their distance, we kept ours. We went boating Easter Sunday and from the time we left the harbor they had seemed to follow me. I do not feed them as I know this is not good, as tempting as it may be, I do not want them to get use to humans as a lot of us are idiots when it comes t animals and fish, as I am sure you are aware. <Mmm, not all, thank goodness... Though the few that are... are too many> They followed me all day and they were swimming next to me, underneath me,  all over hanging by me. I only was traveling about 6mph. I kept cutting engines as I do not want to run them over, some were calves. They would leave a bit, then I would start up and a short time later they would return. Now I love looking at them I have been always fascinated and in love with them since my watching Flipper days. I wanted to own one when I was 5. <The issue of "ownership"... is a very western idea> Do they know enough not to go by the propeller? <Oh yes> Obviously starting and stopping did not help. I did not feed them so I am not sure why they found me so interesting. With the Manatee You can slow down to a crawl and go around. These guys were racing me and swimming under the bow and jumping, it was like they were playing with me. I don't want them to get hurt. Can you give me some info? I attached a PIC my stepson took when they were along the side of the boat. Thanks, <Much to be appreciated, enjoyed on our planet... some of the Delphinids included... BobF>

Just curious. Thank you. Body slime of marine mammals, human handling  7/14/06 Something has always bothered me and when I try to google for an answer I come up with some weird stuff but not the answer I seek: how do animal trainers protect the slime coat of the dolphins and porpoises they handle? Thank you :) <Is a very real concern... many such handlers advocate alcohol or other disinfectant use prior to contact, all advise careful, light touch. There are "dermatitis" issues in/with these animals... some deadly pathogenic to them. Bob Fenner, who was married with a marine mammal veterinarian...>

Daring rescue of whale off Farallones Humpback nuzzled her saviors in thanks after they untangled her from crab lines, diver says    Peter Fimrite, Chronicle Staff Writer    Wednesday, December 14, 2005       A humpback whale freed by divers from a tangle of crab trap lines near the Farallon Islands nudged its rescuers and flapped around in what marine experts said was a rare and remarkable encounter.   "It felt to me like it was thanking us, knowing that it was free and that we had helped it," James Moskito, one of the rescue divers, said Tuesday. "It stopped about a foot away from me, pushed me around a little bit and had some fun."   Sunday's daring rescue was the first successful attempt on the West Coast to free an entangled humpback, said Shelbi Stoudt, stranding manager for the Marine Mammal Center in Marin County.   The 45- to 50-foot female humpback, estimated to weigh 50 tons, was on the humpbacks' usual migratory route between the Northern California coast and Baja California when it became entangled in the nylon ropes that link crab pots.   It was spotted by a crab fisherman at 8:30 a.m. Sunday in the open water east of the Farallones, about 18 miles off the coast of San   Francisco.   Mick Menigoz of Novato, who organizes whale watching and shark diving expeditions on his boat the New Superfish, got a call for help Sunday morning, alerted the Marine Mammal Center and gathered a team of divers.   By 2:30 p.m., the rescuers had reached the whale and evaluated the situation. Team members realized the only way to save the endangered leviathan was to dive into the water and cut the ropes.   It was a very risky maneuver, Stoudt said, because the mere flip of a humpback's massive tail can kill a man.   "I was the first diver in the water, and my heart sank when I saw all the lines wrapped around it," said Moskito, a 40-year-old Pleasanton resident who works with "Great White Adventures," a cage-diving outfit that contracts with Menigoz. "I really didn't think we were going to be able to save it."   Moskito said about 20 crab-pot ropes, which are 240 feet long with weights every 60 feet, were wrapped around the animal. Rope was wrapped at least four times   around the tail, the back and the left front flipper, and there was a line in the whale's mouth.   The crab pot lines were cinched so tight, Moskito said, that the rope was digging into the animal's blubber and leaving visible cuts.   At least 12 crab traps, weighing 90 pounds each, hung off the whale, the divers said. The combined weight was pulling the whale downward, forcing it to struggle mightily to keep its blow- hole out of the water.   Moskito and three other divers spent about an hour cutting the ropes with a special curved knife. The whale floated passively in the water the whole time, he said, giving off a strange kind of vibration.   "When I was cutting the line going through the mouth, its eye was there winking at me, watching me," Moskito said. "It was an epic moment of my life."   When the whale realized it was free, it began swimming around in circles, according to the rescuers. Moskito said it swam to each diver, nuzzled him and then swam to the next one.   "It   seemed kind of affectionate, like a dog that's happy to see you,'' Moskito said. "I never felt threatened. It was an amazing, unbelievable experience."    Humpback whales are known for their complex vocalizations that sound like singing and for their acrobatic breaching, an apparently playful activity in which they lift almost their entire bodies out of the water and splash down.    Before 1900, an estimated 15,000 humpbacks lived in the North Pacific, but the population was severely reduced by commercial whaling. In the 20th century, their numbers dwindled to fewer than 1,000. An international ban on commercial whaling was instituted in 1964, but humpbacks are still endangered. Between 5,000 and 7,500 humpbacks are left in the world's oceans, and many of those survivors migrate through the Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary.   Whale experts say it's nice to think that the whale was thanking its rescuers, but nobody really knows what was on its mind.   "You hate to   anthropomorphize too much, but the whale was doing little dives and the guys were rubbing shoulders with it," Menigoz said. "I don't know for sure what it was thinking, but it's something that I will always remember. It was just too cool."   Humpback whales hold a special place in the hearts of Bay Area residents ever since one that came to be known as Humphrey journeyed up the Sacramento River in 1985. The wayward creature swam into a slough in Rio Vista, attracting 10,000 people a day as whale experts tried desperately to turn it around. Humphrey went back to sea after 25 days of near-pandemonium and worldwide media attention.   In the fall of 1990, Humphrey turned up again inside the bay in shallow water near the Bayshore Freeway, finally beaching on mud flats near Double Rock, just off the Candlestick parking lot. He remained stuck for 25 hours, until volunteers, helped by a 41-foot Coast Guard boat, pulled him free and sent him back to the ocean. He has not been seen since.   Humpbacks like Humphrey do seem to relate to people more than other whales, according to Stoudt.   "You do hear reports of friendly humpbacks, whales approaching boaters, especially in Baja California," Stoudt said, "but, for the most part, they don't like to be interacted with." We Don't "Do" Hamsters.. (?) >Hello, I am considering this an emergency!!  My girlfriends dwarf hamster pair just had 3 babies this past weekend.  The father is taking care of them most of the time.  My gf just noticed that two of the babies are missing part of one of their hind legs.  There is a red bump at the end of each of the missing legs as if one of the parents has bitten off the end of the leg.  Is this normal or should we separate the babies from the parents ASAP?   >>We're an aquatic site, but I used to breed hamsters when I was a kid.  So, here goes (though I think you *really* ought to Google this "Dwarf hamster breeding" and try one of the MANY sites that specialize ASAP).  If the male is in with the female, she may not only eat the babies, but HIM as well.  If you don't know whether or not the babies had this deformity from birth, there's not really a positive way to tell other than catching the female in act.  In my experience, they eat the whole baby, not just the drumsticks. >My GF is upset and thinks that this happened because she cleaned the cage out today and the parent(s) is eating the babies.  Please help ASAP so we can take immediate action.  Thanks in advance, Jeff   >>Get the male OUT, he's in danger.  Google this and go to a site dedicated to hamster care.  We're a group of people specializing in aquatic animals.  Marina

Humpback Whales Bob- <Howdy> Several years ago, you helped me with a long time problem I was having of fish not living more than a few weeks in my tank. With your help, I found I had a piece of rusted metal (part of a valve the LFS sold me) that was poisoning the fish. Since that time, I have had very few deaths and have watched an Emperor Angel progress from juvenile stage to full adulthood. To return this favor, I would like to tell you of a trip I took in the winter of 2001 that may be of some interest to you and the readers of this fabulous site. <Ah, good to hear of your success> Having grown up, and once been an avid SCUBA diver here in San Diego, it had been a long time dream of mine to see a whale underwater. At one point, this became a life Goal? of mine, and it was how I found out about Aquatic Adventures, based in Florida. Tom Conlin, the owner and naturalist of Aquatic Adventures, runs an excellent operation that specializes in soft -in-water? encounters of humpback whales of the Silver Bank, an area of ocean approximately 75 miles off the Dominican Republic. These soft-in-water? encounters are made using a mask, snorkel and fins, so you don?t need to be a certified SCUBA diver. The week we spent on the boat, The M/V Wind Dancer, we would go out twice a day in smaller boats in search of whales. There was only one time that we were unable to get in the water with them. Our encounters consisted of individuals, mothers with calves, mothers/calves with an escort, and males chasing after and hoping to become an escort. Once, we were able to get in the water when a whale was singing? and it turned out to be right under the boat. What an incredible sensation to not only see and hear, but also to feel the song of the whale while floating above it! I could go on and on but let me finish by saying, THIS TRIP WAS AWESOME!!! The food, crew and boat are very professionally run. <Thanks for the lead> Bob, I realize that what you photograph underwater tends to be a bit smaller than a humpback, but I would highly recommend this trip to anyone that has any interest. For more information go to their website: www.aquaticadventures.com. <Will post to WWM> Thank you so much for all you have done for everyone interested in aquatic life. Andy Lange

Become a Sponsor Features:
Daily FAQs FW Daily FAQs SW Pix of the Day FW Pix of the Day New On WWM
Helpful Links Hobbyist Forum Calendars Admin Index Cover Images
Featured Sponsors: