Subject: Humpback migration

NAMMACETA@aol.com
Mon, 5 Apr 1999 19:59:07 EDT

Hi...thanks for your excellent questions.  Exact migration times are as yet 
kind of fuzzy (like this answer).  Although radio-tagging has been attempted, 
the results are not definitive enough for us to have solid answers.  Photos 
taken of a humpback whale in Cape Cod Bay in late December, for example, and 
then again of the same whale in the waters of the Dominican Republic or the 
British Virgin Islands in January or February, tell us that the whale arrived 
safely, but do not supply us with exact departure and arrival times.
One way to estimate, is to figure out the straight line mileage between a 
likely point of departure, and a likely point of arrival.  Then take the 
typical swimming speed of a humpback or a California grey whale into 
account....(2-3 knots/hour.  A knot is 1.1 mph), and do some math to get a 
rough idea.  You'll have to throw in variables like whale naps, possible 
feeding sessions, etc., and see what you come up with.  Your estimate will be 
as good as anyone elses!

Dead whales are generally buried with the use of large equipment.  Towing 
offshore often results in another visitation from the carcass.

Thanks again,

Scott Mercer