At the most recent IORE Ocean Connector event, Dr. Chris Taggart, an Oceanography Professor and researcher at Dalhousie University, presented a thought provoking presentation to like-minded individuals on new real-time science techniques to identify whale habitats and reduce the number of deaths caused by large vessels.
It was shocking to hear from Dr. Taggart just how many whales are injured or killed on a yearly basis by large boats or cruise ships. It leaves the issue of social responsibility to the oceans whales up to science and it was great to hear that a team of researchers at Dalhousie University were up to the challenge to ensure these whales stayed protected.
Researchers like Dr. Taggart collect scientific data about whale locations and provide it to large vessels to help them avoid endangering whales. To do this they have teamed up with the Ocean Tracking Network and MEOPAR for help with funding and the use of valuable equipment like ocean gliders with hydrophones, echosounders and Ground-Based Vessel AIS receivers.
The project is still in the research phase but already there has been evidence to prove that the data collected is helping to save the lives of many otherwise endangered whales. We look forward to following this project and hearing more about it over the coming months.