What do Belugas Teach Us about the St. Lawrence and about Ourselves? (3/8)

  • 18 / 09 / 2015 Par Christine Gilliet – Mots et Marées - / /

    Beluga stories: this is the third episode of the transcript of the training lecture given by Robert Michaud at the CIMM on June 22, 2015. In this text and audio episode:
    Robert Michaud’s answers to questions from the audience on the first part of his lecture.

    On June 22, Robert Michaud, scientific director and co-founder of the Group for Research and Education on Marine Mammals (GREMM), gave a training lecture at the Marine Mammal Interpretation Centre (CIMM) in Tadoussac. The biologist and St. Lawrence beluga specialist shared stories about these whales and raised questions about the current decline in the St. Lawrence population.

    Whales On Line brings you excerpts of this presentation, in the form of a sort of written and audio series to be followed all summer and fall. In the last episode
    of News from Near and Afar, Robert Michaud will answer additional questions. How about you, do you have any questions regarding belugas? We urge you to ask them in the “Questions from the Public” section of the website or on the Whales On Line Facebook page.

    What was your role in the 1980s?
    How a young biologist interested in fin whales makes the switch to belugas.
    Listen to the reply (1 min 15 s) (in french)

    Could we import belugas from the Arctic into the St. Lawrence?
    Some biologists have considered such a scenario, as this “import” would aim to increase the genetic diversity of the St. Lawrence population. But this approach becomes problematic in other regards.
    Listen to the reply (2 min 00 s) (in french)

    Capture-d’écran-2015-09-18-à-14.46.47
    Photo: © GREMM

    What is the status of other beluga populations in the circumpolar regions?
    The population of Cook Inlet, Alaska, now numbers only 300 individuals. It represents a considerable challenge in the United States.
    Listen to the reply (5 min 20 s) (in french)

    What about the other populations?
    Listen to the reply (3 min 56 s) (in french)

     

    To learn more:

    On the Fisheries and Oceans Canada website: The Beluga

    On the France-Science website: Après la protection de l’ours polaire, la baleine Beluga est classée parmi les espèces en danger (in french)

    On Whales Online website:

    About the beluga (data sheet)

    Robert Michaud bio

    Previous episodes of the training lecture:

    Episode 1

    Episode 2