Baleen whales and their prey in a coastal environment

Canadian Journal of Zoology
By: , and 

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Abstract

Patterns of abundance of humpback (Megaptera novaeangliae), fin (Balaenoptera physalus), and minke (Balaenoptera acutorostrata) whales are described in relation to the abundance of their primary prey, capelin (Mallotus villosus), during 1982–1985 at Witless Bay, Newfoundland. The abundance ratio of the three whale species was 10:1:3.5, respectively. Abundance of all whale species was strongly correlated with abundance of capelin through each season and between years. Capelin abundance accounted for 63% of the variation in whale numbers in 1983 and 1984, while environmental parameters (e.g., water temperatures) accounted for little variance. The amount of capelin consumed by whales was small (< 2%) compared with the amount available. All three species overlapped temporally at Witless Bay, but spatial overlap was reduced as fins occurred primarily offshore, minkes primarily inshore, and humpbacks in bay habitats of intermediate depth.

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Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Baleen whales and their prey in a coastal environment
Series title Canadian Journal of Zoology
DOI 10.1139/z89-217
Volume 67
Issue 6
Year Published 1989
Language English
Publisher NRC Research Press
Contributing office(s) Alaska Science Center
Description 8 p.
First page 1523
Last page 30
Country Canada
State Newfoundland
Other Geospatial Witless Bay