- ID number : DL2217
- Sex : Male
- Year of birth : Around 1990
- Known since : 2004
- Adopted since : 2018
Its field marks
Gaston is recognized by two round scars that face one another; these two scars are found on the muscle of the left flank.
Our first encounter with Gaston took place on July 6, 2004 while we were aboard our research vessel, the Bleuvet. At that time, Gaston’s skin was light grey in colour. When we saw him again in 2006, his skin had turned completely white. Belugas fade from grey to white between the ages of 12 and 16, meaning Gaston would have been born around 1990.
His two characteristic scars make him easily recognizable from the left side. Thanks to these markings, we have identified Gaston almost every year since 2013.
His habits and associations suggest that Gaston is a male. Indeed, he is frequently observed in large herds that are particularly active in the downstream part of the species’ summer range, between Tadoussac and Les Escoumins. There are two male networks that frequent the Saguenay, its mouth as well as the portion of the Estuary as far as downstream as Les Escoumins.
Within these networks, bulls form stable groups of companions. Gaston has been observed a few times in the company of Solidaire, DL0058 and Mirapakon. Will they become his companions? These associations are established gradually and may play a role in belugas’ reproductive lives.
How Gaston’s story unfolds will teach us volumes on the evolution of belugas’ social lives. By better understanding how belugas live, we will be able to better protect them.
Gaston observations history
The Famille Pratte adopted Gaston (2018).