Subject: Case Study: ATOC and Whales (humpbacks II)

Michael Williamson (whe_william)
Mon, 16 Nov 1995 21:19:13

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Date: Thu, 16 Nov 1995 20:43:58 -0500 (EST)
From: Michael Williamson <WHE_WILLIAM@FLO.ORG>
Subject: Case Study: ATOC and Whales (humpbacks II)
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From:	SMTP%"MARMAM@UVVM.BITNET" 16-NOV-1995 14:32:12.56
To:	WHE_WILLIAM
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Subj:	Dead whales and ATOC press release
 
Date:         Thu, 16 Nov 1995 12:20:47 AST
Reply-To:     Marine Mammals Research and Conservation Discussion
              <MARMAM@UVVM.BITNET>
Sender:       Marine Mammals Research and Conservation Discussion
              <MARMAM@UVVM.BITNET>
Comments:     Warning -- original Sender: tag was rbaird@SOL.UVIC.CA
From:         Hal Whitehead/Lindy Weilgart <HWHITEHEAD@Kilcom1.UCIS.Dal.Ca>
Organization: Dalhousie University
Subject:      Dead whales and ATOC press release
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To:           Multiple recipients of list MARMAM <MARMAM@UVVM.BITNET>
 
     I have just received Scripps' press release as well as heard
about articles in various newspapers (San Francisco Chronicle, etc.)
in which Scripps ATOC office is maintaining that "it appears all
three whales died prior to the installation of the ATOC source" and
"there is no indication that the deaths of the whales are in any way
connected with ATOC".  Furthermore, the press release is clearly
slanted to imply that the dead humpbacks were found before ATOC
"officially" started its broadcasts.  Buried in the third paragraph,
we finally discover, if we read carefully, that, oh yes, "a few
engineering tests of the source were required during installation."
In fact, the source was on about 12 times over a period of roughly 6
days!
     I find such statements by Scripps irresponsibly premature and
wholly unsubstantiated.  Remember, no autopsies have been conducted
on any of the whales, and rough estimates of the window of time of
death for all 3 whales include when the ATOC source was on.  There is
no mention in the press release that Scripps failed to clearly inform
the Marine Mammal Research Program (MMRP) investigators (who
apparently were conducting "pretrial" control surveys!) that the
source would be broadcasting.  Remember also that, legally, the MMRP
is in control of the sound source.