Lights, Camera, Action! Animal-borne Video Cameras Show a Whale’s Perspective
Whales are the largest animals on the planet and inhabit oceans around the world from the tropics to the poles. Whales spend nearly all of their lives underwater and out of view of researchers. While biologging tools have allowed us to track the underwater movement of these ocean giants and describe their behavior, the development of tags that include animal-borne video cameras has opened up a new world to researchers and the general public. From a whale’s perspective, we can now visualize the environment in which whales live and better understand the decisions they make and the behaviors they employ. In this talk we will explore the underwater lives of the largest and the smallest baleen whales in local and the the most remote parts of the planet: blue whales from California, humpback whales from South Africa, and minke whales from the Antarctica. Not only does this novel perspective provide information about the whales and their environment, but it also provides insights as to how anthropogenic impacts including climate change are affecting these animals.