Using a drone, scientists spotted the white right whale calf earlier this year. The goal of the project was to tag the whales using drones to better understand breeding and calving behavior. These tags also record the sounds whales produce.
Drone image courtesy of Dr. Fredrik Christiansen of Murdoch University.
Seeing the white southern right whale was a bonus for researchers. About five percent of southern right whales are born white and eventually turn grey.
After being hunted for many years, the population of southern right whales is now growing at a rate of about ten percent per year. Scientists continue to monitor breeding patterns and protect areas essential to the continued growth of the species.
To learn more about these southern right whales, click here!