British Wildlife 33.1 October 2021

The Humpback Whale’s tale – a cetacean in hot water

Humpback Whale sightings in British and Irish waters are increasing year on year, but despite the thrill associated with spotting these majestic creatures so close to home, the reasons behind this increase are not so positive. Jon Dunn takes a look at the history of whaling in Britain and discusses the role of climate change in the rise in Humpback Whale sightings.

As I settle down in my Shetland home to write this article, there is an actively feeding Humpback Whale Megaptera novaeangliae visible from my kitchen window. Every few minutes he or she breaks the surface, that distinctive knuckled back and dorsal fin visible through my binoculars.


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