Whales “open” its network of fast food restaurants

Whales “open” its network of fast food restaurants

Humpback whales seem to have started my own “chain of fast food restaurants” in South-East Alaska, looking at the salmon hatchery.

Hatchery — not fish farms, and nurseries. Their goal is to increase the number of salmon available to catch, and keep the population down.

Wild salmon the first part of its life in the streams where the competition is fierce, and many individuals can not cope with it. In incubators this critical stage is supported, allowing the salmon to breed in captivity for six months before fish go in the “wild” water, says New Scientist.

Ellen Chenoweth from the University of Alaska Fairbanks first became interested in the behavior of humpback whales, who are addicted to the salmon, when I saw the videos taken by the staff of the hatchery.

Usually whales feed at depth, filtering water with plankton and small crustaceans and fishes, however, the hatchery became for them a real discovery.

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In the period from 2010 to 2015 team Chenoweth controlled five hatcheries on the Eastern side of the island Baranof registering the visits of the whales every morning and in the afternoon. The researchers noticed that for the first time came to the breeding of salmon, the whales have brought new relatives.

The Humpbacks are well known for their ability to learn new areas and to diversify the diet, so the results are a bit surprising, but it is an important example that helps to assess how quickly the whales have a new resource available.

Salmon is the humpback whale an important source of food, but for small groups it is, apparently, vital. It is such an individual and visit their “restaurants”.