Subject: Population estimates

Jennifer D. Philips (jphilips@soest.hawaii.edu)
Sun, 25 Oct 1998 14:35:14 -1000

>Hi, i have a question, im doing a report on "Saving the Whales" for my
biology
>class and i was wondering, How many whales still exsit today? thanks
>
>lauren
>

Lauren - 

How many whales exist today?  In order to answer this question, scientists
spend time in the field counting whales encountered along controlled
"transect" lines.  The result is that we really can only ESTIMATE whale
populations, rather than say with certainty "how many whales exist".
Overall today there are probably from 1 million to a little over 2 million
whales alive:  minke whales are doing very well, with nearly 1 million in
their species alone.  The rest of the baleen species:  blue, bowhead,
Bryde's, fin, gray, humpback, minke, right, and sei whales, add up to a
total of about 1 million (I'm not including sperm whales, because they are
not a member of the baleen whale group).  This is a huge drop from their
original numbers before exploitation, and all whales (except the minke
whale)  have needed protection in order to survive the risk of extinction.

I hope this answers you question!  Write again anytime.

Aloha - 
Jen Philips

__________________________________

Jennifer D. Philips		
jphilips@soest.hawaii.edu

Marine Mammal Research Program
HIMB, University of Hawaii at Manoa
PO Box 1106			
Kailua, HI  96734
voice:  (808) 247-5063
fax: (808) 247-5831
__________________________________