Using Math in Finding whales

From: Phil Clapham (
Date: Wed Mar 12 2003 - 08:53:04 EST

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    The main application of trigonometry in whale work is the use of
    theodolites (surveyer's instruments) for determining position.
    Sometimes scientists conduct land-based studies in places where whales
    are close to shore, and they use theodolites to track the animals. This
    way there is no disturbance to the animals from a research boat, so the
    natural behaviors can be observed.

    This technique has been used quite a lot in Hawaii, where humpback
    whales are often close to the coast.

    Phil Clapham wrote:
    > How do you use trigonometry in your field and what kinds of instruments
    > do you use when collecting data?
    > Thank You,
    > Jon Lunceford


    Phillip J. Clapham, Ph.D. Large Whale Biology Program Northeast Fisheries Science Center 166 Water Street Woods Hole, MA 02543, U.S.A.

    tel. 508 495-2316 fax 508 495-2066 email:

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