Tuesday, 8 May 2012

4 white Southern Right whale calves spotted off South Australia

Great Australian Bight Marine Park zones closed to protect whales
April 2012. Great Australian Bight Marine Park manager Saras Kumar said "May signals the start of the southern right whale breeding season as the mammals migrate from their summer sub-Antarctic feeding grounds to their winter breeding and nursery grounds along the southern coastline of Australia."

Ms Kumar said the Head of the Bight is one of the most important calving sites in Australia and each year between 25 and 67 calves are born at or near the Head of Bight.
"More than 1000 whales have been recorded in the region and some whales have been observed returning to the Great Australian Bight Marine Park regularly since 1991," she said.
Four white calves
"Last year DENR staff counted 67 calves born at the Head of Bight, including four white calves.
"Cows (pregnant whales) give birth once every three years, they nurse calves for up to one year before having a year to recover (cows lose up to 20 tonnes during the calving season because they don't feed while in Australian waters) before returning the following winter to mate."

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