Show Notes

Open ocean species of dolphins and whales are some of the most poorly known mammals on our planet. The vastness of the ocean prevents much research from occurring. In Hawai’i, however, due to unique environmental factors, a team of scientists from the Cascadia Research Collective have accumulated the most knowledge of many of these species anywhere. Led by Robin Baird, this team has learned more about a group of Dolphins referred to as the “Blackfish”, than anywhere else in the world. The Blackfish includes short-finned pilot whales, melon-headed whales, pygmy killer whales, and false killer whales. In today’s episode we discuss what Robin’s research has discovered, and specifically we focus on the endangered group of false killer whales that are resident on the main Hawai’ian islands. As you will hear, false killer whales are incredibly charismatic and show a keen interest in humans. Stories of their unique behavior, as well as threats to this endangered population, are discussed in depth. If you happen to live or spend time in Hawai’ian waters, please listen to the final minutes of this episode, and forward any footage captured of these animals to Robin’s team at Cascadia Research Collective. The more information Robin can obtain on these amazing animals, the better we can protect them.

Episode Specific Links 

Cascadia Research Collective youtube channel

Pygmy killer whales 

Melon-headed whales

Short finned pilot whales 

Perspective on pilot whale dive depth

False killer whale, mahi mahi, and oceanic white-tip shark 

False killer whale meal sharing 

False killer whale interacting with divers

Endangered resident false killer whales

Notable Quote

“False killer whales see something in themselves in humans” – Robin Baird – Cascadia Research Collective

Learn more

Cascadia Research Collective

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