Target: Marine Biologists
Goal: Conduct more studies of the endangered blue whale population near Sri Lanka in order to prevent extinction
Blue whales are in danger of becoming extinct. There are only 5,000-12,000 left in the world, and they are dying in ways that can easily be avoided. This is especially prevalent in the blue whale population of Sri Lanka, where many die from collisions with both shipping and whale-watching boats.
Collisions with boats are one of the major causes of death among blue whales. A mere fifteen miles off the southern coast of Sri Lanka is one of the busiest shipping ports in the world. It is estimated that the commercial shipping traffic is almost double that of the Santa Barbara channel in California. This is mostly due to the fact that the Sri Lankan waters present a heavy traffic way for boats passing through to the Indian Ocean.
Last year, at least 20 blue whale carcasses were seen around the island, many visibly battered from collisions. And since blue whales often sink after an impact with a boat, the number of actual deaths could be many times greater than that.
Since there are such huge numbers of blue whales near the Sri Lankan shores, some scientists believe that an increase in whale watching excursions may be forcing the animals to go further to look for food, pushing them closer to the route of larger ships.
Until recently, these waters were not even controlled and were unregulated for whale watchers especially, resulting in even more unnecessary deaths. But despite the recent regulations for whale watchers to obtain permits, the blue whale still remains endangered and at risk of death with the high boat densities.
Many blue whale groups migrate to either pole annually, but the Sri Lankan blue whales differ in that they remain in Sri Lankan waters year round, yet scientists have been unable to fully understand the behavior patters and habitat of these whales.
There needs to be a higher desire for scientists to study the blue whale population, specifically those found near Sri Lanka, to better understand their habits and surroundings. This will help eventually develop an environment where these majestic creatures can be fully protected. Please sign the petition below urging scientists to take a stronger interest in the blue whale population, specifically in Sri Lanka.
Dear Marine Biologists,
The blue whale population is declining. With only 5,000-12,000 left in the world, the blue whale is already an endangered species, but if things continue as they are, they are in real danger of becoming totally extinct. Colliding with boats is one of the leading factors in the deaths of blue whales, something that can easily be avoided. These collisions are a regularity that has developed especially in Sri Lanka, where their waters are highly populated with both shipping boats and whale-watchers alike.
Although there has been a greater effort in regulating boating restrictions in the Sri Lankan waters, this is only one factor in the effort to save the blue whales. The waters of Sri Lanka have hardly been surveyed, leaving the habitats and patterns of blue whales largely a mystery. Please make the blue whale population of Sri Lanka a priority and stop these magnificent creatures from dying at the hands of humans.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: fr.fotopedia.com