Dr. Salvatore Cerchio spotted a huge find last November off the coast of Madagascar when he caught underwater video of Omura’s whales. First discovered in 2013, they were thought to be a Bryde’s whale due to how infrequent they were spotted. Once they began being spotted more frequently, it was clear this was something else entirely.
You can check out the full scientific study Cerchio’s team published here: bit.ly/1Rb9MrT
“Once we realized they were Omura’s whales, it was mind boggling because first of all no one had studied these animal,” Cerchio told FoxNews.com. “No had seen them or documented them in the wild and they were not supposed to be in Madagascar. The work that we’ve done has extended their range significantly.”
The video captured by Cerchio captured a record number of 80 – previously 44 – individual sightings of the rare whale near Madagascar:
With hardly any feeding information on the Omura’s whales, the team was fascinated by the amount of information they were able to collect.
“They spend their entire lives in the tropics. That is really unusual and special because the tropics are a difficult to make a living,” Cerchio told Fox News of the clear waters that don’t have much food offering. “How does a whale, even a small whale, make a living in a desert? That, in itself, is a fascinating question. The fact we are seeing them feed – and getting data on what they are feeding on – is a great opportunity to learn about an ecosystem and how the species fits into that ecosystem.”