An Arabian humpback whale: newly discovered and already imperiled?
The Arabian and Persian Gulf waters off countries like Abu Dhabi, Iran, and Oman are home to a number of different types of marine animals. These include dolphins, at least 600 dugongs, several species of sharks, and sea turtles living in and around the Bu Tinah atolls. An even larger and more exotic marine mammal species, such as whales, may be sharing these waters as well. As reported recently in the English edition of the global Arab Network, a species of the Humpback whale, now known as the Arabian Sea Humpback Whale, have been located in the Arabian Gulf waters off Oman.
The whales, which were given their official name by the International Whaling Commission (IWC) are said to be distinct in that they do not migrate as most whale populations do, but tend to breed and remain in the same geographical area, which in this case is the Arabian Gulf.
Because of this uniqueness, it makes them one of the most vulnerable whale populations in world, according to the IWC.
As reported in the Global Arab Network article:”The scientists have just returned from breath-taking field research for the Renaissance Whale and Dolphin Project where they have recorded whale songs, behavioural patterns, DNA samples and over 10,000 photographs of this unique Arabian Sea Humpback Whale population that Baldwin and his team are dedicated to preserving.
“Oman marine biologists say that due to the vulnerability of these mammals, very careful planning must be done to help ensure the survival of these animals. This includes seeing that commercial development in the region does not endanger the whales, along with other species of marine life, including dolphins and dugongs.”
Bu Tinah dugongs: also vulnerable
Previous Green Prophet articles by Arwa have taken stock of the decimation of large numbers of sharks from fishermen who kill them for their fins, which are sold to ready markets in the Far East.
We’ve also reported a mass killing of dolphins off the Straits of Hormuz back in November 2007, which some articles say could have been caused by experimentation of a “death ray” that was the result of a project called HAARP or High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program, that began near the town of Gakona Alaska in the early 1990s and are still continuing today in various parts of the world – including possibly the Arabian/Persian Gulf region.
HAARP injured dolphins?
Like dolphins, whales are also attracted to high frequency sonar-type sounds, such as those being emitted by such atmospheric magnetic wave experimentation as that produced by HAARP.
The discovery and study of the Arabian Sea humpbacked whales is part of the Renaissance Whale and Dolphin Project sponsored by Omani listed company Renaissance Services. Most of the whales have been seen near Muscat and other coastal regions, particularly the Dhofar region and Gulf of Masirah.
Read more on threatened Gulf marine life: