|Photo courtesy NOAA|
American Admiralty Books Safety & Privacy Policies EU VISITORS WARNING POSSIBLE COOKIES AHEAD
NOAA, The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shares with the Coast Guard a mission of protection of marine mammals. While the Coast Guard concentrates mostly on enforcement of harvesting laws and shares with the NOAA fleet manned by the uniformed NOAA corps the protection of U.S. marine sanctuaries , it is NOAA that studies the health of the herds , suggests measures for additional protection of species recovery enhancement. While its the health of the heard that is the focus of the NOAA programs it boils down often to the testing , measurement , tracking, and analysis of a sample collection of individuals. Some such activity relies on sophisticated telemetry, the selected animals wearing data transmitters. But how does
one select an individual from a pod of killer whales? Once you have a suitable individual in mind, how do you tag him or her?
The short answer is that you walk out on the ice to the edge of an open water lead where a pod is feeding, stick the transmitter on a "dart", put the "dart" in a crossbow, and shoot into the selected individual. The work is cold, up close and personal. It is also dangerous, close to an open lead is dangerous ice, not only might the area you're standing on beak off. But you are often within actual reach of these large alpha predators. To get an idea about why you don't want to be within reach of a Killer Whale check out the links at this site: Killer Whales At the Beach.
NOAA is the home of the uniformed NOAA CORPS, America's, smallest naval service. The NOAA Corps traces its origins back to the Louis and Clark Expedition of 1803 and their impromptu "Corps of Discovery. The Corps operates NOAA ships, air craft, runs ice camps, and dives, and provides other services in support of "arduous research activities. The members of the Corps are uniformed, carry naval rank and receive naval pay scales and retirements. The people in the video we link you to here may not be NOAA Corps Officers but all of them are no doubt being supported by NOAA Corps commanded units. For more information on the NOAA Corps, an oceanography career opportunity that many students never hear of, click here: NOAA CORPS
To watch a video of NOAA personnel tagging killer whales on the edge of an open ice lead click here:
KILLER WHALE TAGGING