SEPTEMBRE 9, 2016
09 / 09 / 2016
The summer of 2016 – our 32nd season at sea with the belugas – was once again rich in encounters and surprises. Amongst other sightings, we saw Hector on at least three occasions! He was observed in mixed herds and in herds of adults accompanied by young. He does not yet seem to have joined any of the large networks of males.
September 9, 2016: We don’t make it out of the Tadoussac marina until afternoon, our departure having been delayed by the fog. We’re excited! This is the first day of biopsy collection – for the fourth and final sampling season – to determine the proportion of pregnant female belugas. The samples collected will allow our colleague Véronique Lesage (researcher at MLI-DFO) to answer a fundamental question: is the pregnancy rate in St. Lawrence belugas “normal”?
Our encounter with Hector took place shortly after our departure, in the vicinity of Anse à la Boule in the Saguenay. He’s in a herd of about forty individuals: adults, young and three newborns. They’re all heading rapidly toward the mouth of the Saguenay, with our boat following “in their wake.” At Pointe Noire, weather conditions worsen: the waves grow stronger and we gradually lose track of the animals, including Hector.
Update : November 28, 2017