The Marine Resources Council's Right Whale Monitoring Program was established in 1995 to reduce human impacts to the endangered North Atlantic right whale. Citizens on the east coast of Florida report land‑based sightings of right whales to our hotline (1‑888‑97‑WHALE). This information is passed on to local ship traffic to avoid ship strikes, which account for over one‑third of documented right whale deaths in the North Atlantic Ocean.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

5th Calf Spotted!

The 5th known right whale calf of the season was spotted on Wednesday, January 25th by the Florida Fish and Wildlife aerial survey team. The new mother has been tentatively identified as right whale #3390. #3390's age is unknown and this is her first calf. To learn more about when and where she's been spotted, look her up in the right whale catalog at http://rwcatalog.neaq.org

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

First Calf of Season Missing

We're sad to report that the mother of this season's first calf was recently spotted by an aerial survey team with another adult, but not with her calf. This 29-year-old has had a total of 5 calves (including this year's). In addition to losing her 2012 calf, she also lost her previous two calves. A close eye will be kept on Half-Note (#1301) and photos will be analyzed to confirm the loss of her 2012 calf.

First Shore-Based Sightings of the Season!


Shore-based volunteers just had two sightings in two days! That's one way to get a late season started! A sighting was reported off Crescent Beach on Monday around 3:15pm. By 4:45pm, the Marineland Right Whale Project verified a single right whale close to shore and headed south. This morning around 7:40am, a call from Susie Rhonemus put us on alert again and four other reports followed hers. Once again, the Marineland folks trekked to Daytona Beach Shores looking for the whale from land while the AirCam searched from above. After being elusive and staying under water a lot, the whale was finally verified and photographed from the AirCam. Both sightings were reported to local ship traffic in a timely fashion. Incidentally, photographs are being analyzed to determine if both sightings were of the same whale. If so, it swam almost 50 miles overnight. That's a swim speed of 3 mph, or about 2.6 knots. We typically see speeds of about 1 mph (less than 1 knot), so this whale's in a hurry! It's entirely possible that if this whale keeps moving south at this speed, it could be in Brevard County on Wednesday! The photo here is courtesy of the Marineland Right Whale Project and was taken off Daytona Beach Shores on Jan. 24th. For more information on the sighting, you can visit Marineland's blog at marinelandrightwhale.blogspot.com

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Volunteer Office Help Needed


Hi all,

We will soon be doing a mailing of anywhere from 500 to 1000 envelopes and we are looking for volunteers to help stuff and label them. A wonderful volunteer is helping us contact Melbourne Beach residents in hopes of gaining more access to the beachfront to verify and document whales. We are hoping to do the mailing around the first week of February, so if you're interested in helping at the Lagoon House in Palm Bay, please call the office at 321-725-7775 or on the hotline at 1-888-979-4253 to let us know. We appreciate any help we can get! Thanks!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Whale Movie Fundraiser!


Please join us on Thursday, February 23rd for a volunteer appreciation movie event and fundraiser! MRC volunteers and staff will enjoy "Big Miracle," the new whale movie coming out with Drew Barrymore and John Krasinski. Premiere Theaters in Melbourne (the Oaks on Hibiscus Blvd.) has welcomed our whale watchers to enjoy the movie and a kid's sized popcorn and drink. Tickets are $10 each and must be purchased through MRC. We are currently taking reservations for tickets and will know a showtime as Feb. 23rd gets closer. Here's a link to read about the movie: http://www.everybodyloveswhales.com/story.php

Please call the whale hotline at 1-888-979-4253 to reserve your tickets. We will be asking everyone to pre-pay soon by picking up tickets at our office or sending payment by mail and we'll hold your tickets at the door. Watch the blog for more information!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

2012 Brings Colder Weather to Florida

We definitly woke up to some chillier than usual weather here in Palm Bay this morning. Quite a shocker compared to the 80 degree days we enjoyed on Christmas and New Year's Eve!

However, because of this cold weather, we will keep our eyes peeled for any signs of Right Whales in the area.

There were several Right Whale sightings a bit North of here on New Year's Eve and New Years Day...On the 31st 1 adult was spotted 6.5 miles north of Jacksonville Beach, FL. On the 1st of the year 3 adults were spotted of the coast of Georgia, just 5 miles north of the Florida line. There were also acoustic detections of right whales in North Georgia and 2 adults spotted off of South Carolina.