Re: please help! science project troubles!

From: Erich Hoyt (
Date: Wed Jan 05 2000 - 16:35:29 EST

Sounds like an interesting project.

You need to look at a map to determine your exact location north of Maui,
but the only whales passing regularly close to land in the Hawaii area are
humpback whales, Megaptera novaeangliae. They would start arriving in
December (or even late November) from Alaska and would stay around the
islands in various concentrations until April when they return north.

To find out exactly where the whales are found around Hawaii (and therefore
where to put your research station), you really need to consult some of the
many papers that have been published on humpback whales around Hawaii, some
of which may have maps. Does your library have the journal Marine Mammal
Science? - that's the key one (e.g., vol. 1, no. 4, 1985; vol. 12, nos. 2
and 3, 1996; and others). You could also look at indices for National
Geographic or Equinox, two popular magazines both of which have published
articles on humpback whales since studies began around Hawaii in the late
1970s. You could obtain information from the National Marine Sanctuary
recently designated to protect the humpbacks around Hawaii (email:; web page:
Finally, you could obtain species accounts for humpbacks in the Pacific in
books such as The Oceanic Society Field Guide to the Humpback Whale (H.J.
Bernard & M. Morris, Sasquatch Books, 1993); The Whales of Hawaii (Balcomb,
K., Marine Mammal Fund, 1987), and Marine Mammals (Ed. by Delphine Haley,
Pacific Search Press, 1978 + more recent editions)

Hope this helps and good luck.


Erich Hoyt

From: "Paul and Wendy Liviniuk" <>
To: <>, <>,
Subject: please help! science project troubles!
Date: Tue, Jan 4, 2000, 11:13 PM

Dear mr Hoyt,

   I am doing a science project at school and we are to pretend that we were
sent to a tropical island just slightly north of Maui at 156 degrees north
and 22 degrees west. I am to find out what types of whales will pass closely
to this island and when they will be passing. I need to know where on the
island to locate my research station (N,S,E or W) in ability to watch the
whales travel. Thank you for your time.

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