Many of you may know that I love Kauai – it feels like a spiritual home to me. So I get notes from there from several sources. This one is from Beat of Hawaii (which watches ticket prices if you want to visit).
At the beach on Kauai yesterday, something was noticeably wrong. It was our beloved humpback whales – they weren’t there. We begin to see them anytime starting in October or November, but while a small number have been seen in Hawaii this season, we have not spotted even one.
Annual humpback whale migration
10,000+ of these behemoths travel to Hawaii from Alaska each winter, typically in groups of three or four, to mate and give birth. Humpbacks are a protected endangered species with fewer than 10% of population remaining.
Missing whale theories abound
One theory is that the humpbacks are traveling south later this year as a result of an increase in their population. They may need to compete for food sources longer in Alaska to prepare for the arduous two thousand mile journey to the Hawaiian Islands. Another theory is that the change is due to this year’s El Nino conditions. And lastly, this phenomena might be somehow related to the humpbacks’ first sighting in twenty years this past fall in Long Island Sound. So it is thought that their migrations could be changing as a result of increasing ocean temperatures.
From me: WHAT CAN YOU DO
If you live in Hawaii you can help with the whale counting Jan, Feb and March. If you live elsewhere you can help with the Audubon society great backyard bird count in Feb (missed the Christmas one). You can stop feeding processed foods to your pets (excess packaging, shipping of ingredients and finished product and may cause use of drug because of poor health) and yourself. Lessen your footprint. Lessen your pet’s footprint (create a stool composter. Stop using plastic bags – when you pick up poop, it and the bag fill the dump. Instead, carry a container, scoop it up, then dump back home in your composter then use that to fertilize non edibles and even the woods around you. (Maybe not if your dogs are ill). Cats – use compostable litter and put it in the can, too. Make your own dog toys from leftovers in the house rather than buying them. Contribute time and money to organizations helping our planet – do what excites you and makes you happy.
All this can help the whales!