A newsletter focusing on the research conducted by the Marine Mammal Research Unit and the North Pacific Universities Marine Mammal Research Consortium at the University of British Columbia.

Marine Mammal Research Newsletter – March 2018 – Issue 17

Into the Field

Bowhead rubbing

Sometimes the coolest things happen, when you least expect it. <see full story>


From the Lab

It’s a drag wearing a tag

What impacts do tracking tags have on the behavior and swimming costs of marine mammals?  <see full story>

Science Outreach

Marine mammalogists share their latest findings

A full house gathered in a hockey rink in eastern Canada as the pinniped scientists took on the cetacean scientists.<see full story>

Science Inreach

Workshop held on the availability of prey for southern resident killer whales

What can be done to make more salmon available to southern resident killer whales? <see full story>

This Just In

7 new publications…

Molting bowhead whales, northern fur seal diets, killer whale foraging behavior, measuring stroke rates of sea lions and fur seals, and more … <see full story>

Marine Mammal Research Newsletter – August 2017 – Issue 16

Into the Field Harbor seals prey on salmon smolts Biologging tags reveal specialist-feeding behaviors by seals that have implications for conservation of salmon <see full story>

From the Lab How fat is that sea lion? Estimating the body condition of Steller sea lions may be as simple as pushing a button <see full story>

Off the Bench Steller sea lions as power generators High school student finds heat given off by Steller sea lions can be used to recharge data loggers  <see full story>

Science Outreach 21st Annual meeting of the Northwest Student Chapter of Marine Mammalogy Nearly 60 people from BC, Washington and Oregon came to discuss their marine mammal research and latest findings <see full story>

This Just In 7 new publications… Energy expenditure & reproductive success of fur seals, physiological constraints faced by Steller sea lions, reconstructing swimming paths of seals, Dynamic Body Acceleration to estimate cost of swimming, and determining prey encounter rates. <see full story>

Crunching the Numbers Stroke Signals Counting flipper strokes to estimate numbers of calories burned <see full story>

Marine Mammal Research Newsletter – November 2016 – Issue 15

copyright VDOS Global LLC 2016 Into the Field Stunning drone footage of bowhead whale behavior Seeing bowheads from the water is one thing, but seeing them from the air provides a whole new perspective. <see full story>

in-the-news-tIn the News Open Water Research Station seeks funding to continue important Steller sea lion research We have learned so much, but have much more to do  <see full story>

beringsea-tScience Outreach Bering Sea Days Flights had been cancelled for the 3 days to St. Paul Island until a group of researchers from across North America boarded a small plane to take part in a unique education experience with the school children from the Pribilof Islands. <see full story>

fromthelab-tFrom the Lab Diving hard at it What happens when a sea lion has to work harder for its prey?  The answer to this question may help determine whether declining sea lions in Alaska are indeed having a hard time catching fish. <see full story>

thisjustin-tThis Just In 8 new publications… Flipper strokes predict energy expenditure in fur seals; Biologging tags; depredation by marine mammals, microparticles in Steller sea lions; bowhead whales and seismic operations; DNA metabarcoding; video-validated foraging success; protozoal-related mortalities in monk seals <see full story>

Marine Mammal Research Newsletter – Issue 14


From the Lab The scoop on poop and stress levels in Steller sea lions A pilot study shows that concentrations of stress hormones in the blood of animals corresponds to levels found in their feces, and that changes in the concentrations of certain thyroid hormones respond to changes in nutritional status.  <see full story>

field-t Into the Field How many juvenile coho are harbor seals eating? New technology records tag numbers of fish consumed by harbor seals, and allows the timing and location of predation events to be identified. <see full story>


Science Outreach The Society for Marine Mammalogy Biennial Conference 2015 This week-long conference in December was full of impressive research that included 15 presentations about some of our recent findings. <see full story>

batailleThis Just In 8 new publications… Energy transformation and digestibility of macronutrients; foraging strategies of northern fur seals; putting confidence limits on reconstructed swimming paths of marine mammals; feeding performance of sea lions and fur seals…<see full story>


September 2015 Newsletter – Issue 13

field-tInto the Field Nothing but ice all summer long Bowhead whale researchers had contingency plans for everything that might go wrong while in the field. However, they never anticipated being shut down by sea ice in summer! <see full story>


lab-tFrom the Lab Sea lions give up earlier when prey are scarce Researchers find that sea lions faced with reduced prey availability forage less efficiently and therefore have greater difficulty meeting daily energy requirements. <see full story>

numbers-tCrunching the Numbers Decoding the mysterious songs of fin whales Recordings of fin whale calls reveal the year-round presence of two populations of fin whales in British Columbia. <see full story>

thisjustin-tThis Just In 11 new publications… Steller sea lion competition with fisheries, new fur seal behaviors, deferred digestion during diving, detecting nutritional stress, diets of sea lions, fish eating killer whales, and more<see full story>



February 2015 Newsletter – Issue 12

outreach-tScience Outreach Researchers have once again successfully completed their annual migration to Anchorage.  [more]

lab-tInto the Lab How important is diet diversity to northern fur seals? [more]


Into the Field  In search of fatty prey and foraging bowheads. [more]

numbers-t Crunching the Numbers Impacts of grey seals on east coast fisheries. [more]

justin-tThis Just In Indigenous insights, DNA diet estimates, collapsing chests, and diving physiology of nutritionally stressed sea lions. [more]

September 2014 Newsletter – Issue 11

crunch-t Number Crunching A new way to estimate energy expenditure in Steller sea lions [more]


From the Field Terrestrial Parasites are infecting and causing disease in Hawaiian monk seals [more]

ben-t Into the Field Is predation by harbor seals on juvenile fish responsible for the poor recovery of salmon? [more]

Dalton-et-al-2014This Just in Energetic linkages, killer whales, energy expenditure, fur seals, thermal capacity, seasonal effects of food restrictions, thermal limits, diets and predator-prey relationships, Steller sea lions, swim speeds [more]


MARINE MAMMAL RESEARCH NEWSLETTER     |     July 2014 (Issue 10)

lab2-t FROM LAB TO THE FIELD … Counting salmon smolts as they pass down the throat of a seal one fish at a time [more]

lab-t INTO THE LAB … Fur seal fur is warmer than sea otter fur. Who would have thought?  [more]

gerlinsky-t THIS JUST IN Steller sea lion diving awarded Gold Medal! [more]

outreach-t SCIENCE OUTREACH Diving into beer and suds — marine mammal style!  [more]


February 2014 (Issue 9)

  October 2013 (Issue  8)  

northern fur seals May 2013 (Issue 7)

thisjustin-tFebruary 2013 (Issue 6)

October 2012 (Issue 5)

steller-tJune 2012 (Issue 4)

crunch-tFebruary 2012 (Issue 3)

field_tOctober 2011 (Issue 2)

steller-tJuly 2011 (Issue 1)