Acoustic Monitoring of Beluga Whales (Delphinapterus leucas) in Cook Inlet, Alaska
Beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas) in Cook Inlet, Alaska, are listed as endangered and share habitats with a variety of anthropogenic activities including coastal development, oil and gas exploration, shipping, and military activities. Their population has declined from an estimated 653 animals in 1994 to 321 in 2009 (Hobbs et al. 2009). As a result, there is an urgent need for data that will help regulatory agencies such as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and Alaska’s Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) implement effective management and recovery plans. Among the principal types of information needed are quantifiable measures of seasonal presence in the inlet, temporal and spatial patterns of habitat preference, and the occurrence of animals in areas impacted or considered for industrial development.
- Hobbs RC, Sims CL, Shelden KEW, Rugh DJ (2009) Estimated abundance of beluga whales in Cook Inlet, Alaska, from aerial surveys conducted in June 2009. Unpublished Report, National Marine Mammal Laboratory, National Marine Fisheries Service, Seattle, WA.Google Scholar