Humpback whales are having a 'baby boom' in Antarctica
Once hunted to near-extinction, humpback whales living in southern oceans near Antarctica are making a comeback. But will it last?
Once hunted to near-extinction, humpback whales living in southern oceans near Antarctica are making a comeback.
Some quick facts about humpbacks:
- They live long lives, about the same as humans.
- Treaties were signed to protect them in 1959; otherwise, they probably wouldn’t be here anymore.
- Estimates are that, before the treaties were signed, whale populations were down to less than 10 percent of their pre-whaling levels.
- A new study found there were more pregnant females in a group of humpback whales on the Western Antarctic Peninsula than had previously been noted. In addition, the number of pregnant females has been trending upward for several years.
- Humpback whales are actually benefiting from global warming; there are now 80 more ice-free days per year, which allows them to feed on krill in the open water
However, that last fact is not likely to last; krill stock is being fished by some countries, and reduced sea ice actually endangers the crustaceans.
Some other species rebounding, though not as quickly as the humpback, are fin whales, blue whales, and the southern right whale.
From the published study:
“Our research demonstrates that this feeding aggregation of humpbacks exhibits high pregnancy rates and a high proportion of females that are simultaneously pregnant and lactating. Both of these findings are consistent with a rapidly growing population.”
Pay attention to the decisions made by the provinces.
- China leads the world in numerous green energy categories.
- CO2 emissions in the country totaling more than all coal emissions in the U.S. have recently emerged.
- This seems to be an administrative-induced blip on the way towards a green energy tipping point.
NASA astronomer Michelle Thaller is coming back to Big Think to answer YOUR questions! Here's all you need to know to submit your science-related inquiries.
Big Think's amazing audience has responded so well to our videos from NASA astronomer and Assistant Director for Science Communication Michelle Thaller that we couldn't wait to bring her back for more!
And this time, she's ready to tackle any questions you're willing to throw at her, like, "How big is the Universe?", "Am I really made of stars?" or, "How long until Elon Musk starts a colony on Mars?"
All you have to do is submit your questions to the form below, and we'll use them for an upcoming Q+A session with Michelle. You know what to do, Big Thinkers!
If you want to be a better and more passionate communicator, these tips are important.
If you identify as being a socially conscious person in today's age of outrage, you've likely experienced the bewildering sensation when a conversation that was once harmless, suddenly doesn't feel that way anymore. Perhaps you're out for a quick bite with family, friends, or coworkers when the conversation takes a turn. Someone's said something that doesn't sit right with you, and you're unsure of how to respond. Navigating social situations like this is inherently stressful.
Below are five expert-approved tips on how to maintain your cool and effectively communicate.
Calling all big thinkers!
- The next Mega Millions drawing is scheduled for Oct. 23 at 11 pm E.T.
- The odds of any one ticket winning are about 1 in 300 million.
- This might be a record-setting jackpot, but that doesn't mean you have a better chance of winning.
Or how I learned to stop worrying and love my tsundoku.
- Many readers buy books with every intention of reading them only to let them linger on the shelf.
- Statistician Nassim Nicholas Taleb believes surrounding ourselves with unread books enriches our lives as they remind us of all we don't know.
- The Japanese call this practice tsundoku, and it may provide lasting benefits.
Money makes the world go 'round. Unfortunately, it can make both children and adults into materialists.
- Keeping a gratitude journal caused children to donate 60 percent more to charitable causes.
- Other methods suggested by researchers include daily gratitude reflection, gratitude posters, and keeping a "gratitude jar."
- Materialism has been shown to increase anxiety and depression and promote selfish attitudes and behavior.
The Boring Company plans to offer free rides in its prototype tunnel in Hawthorne, California in December.
- The prototype tunnel is about 2 miles long and contains electric skates that travel at top speeds of around 150 mph.
- This is the first tunnel from the company that will be open to the public.
- If successful, the prototype could help the company receive regulatory approval for much bigger projects in L.A. and beyond.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.