On alert for whales
Interactive map on the latest right whale observations
This map contains aerial, acoustic, and opportunistic data from a number of sources of survey groups in Atlantic Canada. It is updated every five minutes.
Right whales are constantly on the move. This map does not necessarily provide an accurate picture of all right whales in Atlantic Canada or their exact, present location. What the map does show are verified, reported sightings of right whales during the past 14 days.
- The button on the right-hand side of the map turns the list of map layers on and off.
- Definite sighting
- These mark the approximate locations of definite sightings of right whales. They are often associated with a dedicated survey platform, but can also be reported opportunistically and validated with photographic or video evidence. Click on the marker to learn more about the sighting.
- Definite acoustic detection
- These mark the position of an autonomous acoustic platform (glider or buoy) when a manual analyst determined right whale upcalls were definitely detected. More information on the platforms and analysis protocol can be found here. Click on the marker to learn more about the detection.
- Slocum glider survey track
- These lines indicate the approximate survey path of a Slocum glider equipped with a near real-time acoustic detection system. These autonomous underwater vehicles survey at slow speeds over weeks to months. Breaks in the lines indicate times when the glider stopped listening for more than 2 hours. [This layer 'Survey tracks' is turned off by default]
- Vessel visual survey track
- These lines show the paths of survey vessels while actively surveying for right whales. Breaks in these lines indicate times when the survey teams on board stopped surveying. [This layer 'Survey tracks' is turned off by default]
- Aerial visual survey track
- These lines indicate the approximate track of survey planes looking for right whales. Most do not reflect times when the teams were actively surveying, but simply show the entire flight path. [This layer 'Survey tracks' is turned off by default]
- Shipping lane
- These polygons show traffic separation schemes used to direct the flow of ship traffic in congested or dangerous areas. Most of the right-whale-relevant shipping lanes from Atlantic Canada are included, but these are not comprehensive.
- Protected area
- These polygons represent a number of critical habitat or areas of importance for right whales and other species in Atlantic Canada. Again, these are not comprehensive.
- Latest acoustic glider position
- These icons show the latest position of a Slocum glider that is currently operating and listening for right whales. Click on this icon to learn more details about the robot's latest call home. [This layer 'Latest robot positions' is turned off by default]
- Latest acoustic buoy position
- These icons show the latest position of a moored buoy that is currently operating and listening for right whales. Click on this icon to learn more details about the robot's latest call home. [This layer 'Latest robot positions' is turned off by default]
- Layer selection tool
- Click this button to show a list of map layers that can be turned off or on
- Measurement tool
- Click this button to measure distances or areas. It is also helpful for determining the latitude and longitude of a specific point of interest.
- Toggle fullscreen
- Use this button to make the map full screen [currently not available on mobile devices]
This map was designed to communicate the latest right whale observations and survey results to scientific, regulatory and industrial sectors to inform more effective planning of research and conservation activities. It is synchronized with data repositories from a number of sources of survey groups in Atlantic Canada.
The map was developed and maintained by the MEOPAR-WHaLE project at Dalhousie University. For more information, visit WhaleMap.
Data is collected from a variety of partners, including:
This third-party map should not be used for navigation or fisheries management purposes. Data may only be used for the coordination of field research efforts. Any other use of data requires permission from the originating data source. These are preliminary data and are subject to change. There may also be a delay between the publishing of tracks and observations.
We do not warrant the accuracy, reliability or timeliness of any information published in these maps. We assume no responsibility for errors in the content of the provided information. Any use of, reliance on or decisions made based on these maps are your own responsibility absolutely.
Under no circumstances will we be liable to any person or business entity for any direct, indirect, special, incidental, consequential, or other damages based on any use of information contained in these maps. This includes, without limitation, any lost profits, business interruption, or loss of programs or information.
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