Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 

NIWA and DOC to embark on blue whale research expedition

26 January 2018

NIWA and DOC to embark on blue whale research expedition

A two-week research expedition to gather data on the elusive, endangered blue whale within New Zealand’s shores is due to set sail on Sunday 28 January.

Researchers from the Department of Conservation (DOC), the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) and Blue Planet Marine (BPM) will be on board for the NIWA-led expedition in the Cook Strait and off the coast of south Taranaki, where they’ll tag and biopsy blue whales.

DOC’s Deputy Director General Biodiversity, Martin Kessick, says the more we can find out about this endangered species, the better.

“Blue whales were almost hunted to extinction last century. They’re slowly coming back, but will need much more help through local and international efforts.”

Mr Kessick says the research will add to our current understanding of the size, health and migration patterns of New Zealand’s blue whale population.

“There are ongoing discussions regarding the proposed marine mammal sanctuary off the South Taranaki coast. DOC will use the research results to inform decisions on protection measures for blue whales.”

NIWA megafauna expert and marine ecologist Dr Kim Goetz, who is leading the expedition, says the team is hoping to tag up to eight whales.

“While the Taranaki region is thought to be an important foraging ground, we currently have little idea about how these whales use the region, including movements in and out of the area which has important management implications.”

DOC is contributing $60,000 towards staff time for the expedition and analysis of the data on the blue whales’ movements.

The research expedition is also supported by OMV, University of Auckland, the Australian Antarctic Division and Western Work Boats.

DOC and NIWA would also like to recognise the input of the Pew Charitable Trust, which has been instrumental in helping to get this research off the ground.

–Ends–

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Land Report: Issues With Soil Degradation

An environmental report released today has found we are damaging and losing our soils and our native plants and animals. More>>

ALSO:

Water Quality Report: Cause For Optimism

National River Water Quality Trends released by Land, Air, Water Aotearoa (LAWA) this week, reveal that for all river water quality parameters monitored over a 10 year period, more sites were improving than deteriorating. More>>

ALSO:

IMF Report On NZ: Positive Economic Outlook

Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has welcomed the IMF’s Concluding Statement, released following its annual visit, which provides an independent assessment of the strength of the New Zealand economy. More>>

ALSO:

Retail Power Price: Review Panel Named

The Energy and Resources Minister Megan Woods has released the details of who will sit on an expert advisory panel which is tasked with leading a review into the price of electricity in New Zealand. More>>

ALSO:


Increasingly Disruptive Threats: Govt Cyber Security Refresh

Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Minister Clare Curran today announced a comprehensive refresh of New Zealand’s approach to cyber security. More>>

ALSO:


Regional Growth: Action Plan To Modernise Taranaki’s Economy

The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) will invest up to $20 million to help future-proof the Taranaki region by diversifying its economy, creating additional jobs and leveraging off the strong base the region has established through its oil, gas and agricultural ... More>>

ALSO:

Winding Down Irrigation: Funding Ends For Crown Irrigation Investment

The Government has begun winding down public funding for large-scale irrigation through Crown Irrigation Investments Limited (CIIL), in line with the Coalition Agreement and the Confidence & Supply Agreement. More>>

ALSO: