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USHawaii's humpback whales to be counted despite fed shutdown

01:40  13 january  2019
01:40  13 january  2019 Source:   msn.com

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26, 2019 despite the federal government shutdown . This year, the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation, the national non-profit Ocean Count is a community citizen science project hosted every year during peak whale season by Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary.

Hawaii News Now. The Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary' s annual Ocean Count will take place January 26 despite Shutdown leaves Hawaii immigrant cases in limbo. The impasse in Washington has raised fears in Hawaii funding will end for federal benefits used by

Hawaii's humpback whales to be counted despite fed shutdown© The Associated Press FILE - In this Jan. 23, 2005 file photo, a humpback whale leaps out of the water in the channel off the town of Lahaina on the island of Maui in Hawaii. West Hawaii Today reported Friday, Jan. 11, 2019, that volunteers from the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation will coordinate this season's annual humpback whale count in Hawaii that will take place despite the federal government shutdown. The survey is usually conducted by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon, file)

KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii — An annual humpback whale count in Hawaii will take place despite the federal government shutdown.

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The humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) is a species of baleen whale . One of the larger rorqual species, adults range in length from 12–16 m (39–52 ft) and weigh around 25–30 metric tons

An annual effort to monitor humpback whale migration numbers in Hawaii will proceed as scheduled despite the shutdown of the federal This year, participation in the count by the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary will be limited due to the ongoing government shutdown .

West Hawaii Today reported Friday that volunteers from the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation will coordinate this season's Ocean Count, a community citizen science project that occurs during the peak of whale season.

The survey is usually conducted by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary.

The National Marine Sanctuary Foundation is a nonprofit partner of the National Marine Sanctuary System.

Although removed from the endangered species list in 2016, most humpback whales remain a federally protected species.

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Whale Watching in Hawaii . Just as our idyllic weather welcomes tourists from around the world, the warm and shallow waters surrounding the Hawaiian Islands are a favorite destination for kohola, or humpback whales . Despite their size, humpback whales are graceful acrobats.

These humpback whales have migrated to the warm waters of Hawaii from as far north as the Aleutian Islands of Alaska, as far east as Glacier Bay and Humpback whales have expandable ventral throat pleats which increase the capacity of their mouths during feeding . Once all of the food is present in

Over 300 volunteers are expected to count whales from shore on Jan. 26.

Researchers say there has been an estimated 50 to 80 percent drop in humpback whale sightings in recent years.

"Fewer humpback whales are being observed in the main Hawaiian Islands in recent years, and we don't know why," said Kris Sarri, the foundation's president and CEO. "Unfortunately, critical sanctuary research that could help us understand these changes is on hold indefinitely due to the government shutdown."

Each year, about 11,000 humpback whales migrate from Alaska to Hawaii where they mate and give birth during the winter.

Ongoing speculation and theories have developed about the sudden decline in the whale population's presence in Hawaii. In November, a group of whale experts met in Honolulu to better understand the sudden decrease.

Information presented showed a correlation between warmer ocean temperatures and missing whales.

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Information from: West Hawaii Today, http://www.westhawaiitoday.com

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