strawberry isle research society - tofino whale research

Tofino whale research: Strawberry Island - May '02

by Rod Palm, Tofino

Many people in many ways hail the coming of spring. For some it's the daffodils seemingly bursting out of the ground overnight. It can be the opening leaves of the Salmon Berry bushes giving promise of the first 'Chumis' of the new year. It may be the sight of noisy clouds of geese passing overhead.

In Tofino, on the west coast of Vancouver Island, there is no doubt that the tell-tale plumes of mist on the open ocean marking the path of the passing Gray Whales is our most dramatic portend to spring. There is a confidence and strength in their slow persistent pressing on to the rich feeding grounds of the Bering Sea.

The Gray's demanding 5,000 nautical mile journey from the warm and calm breeding lagoons of Mexico is the longest migration made by any animal on earth. There are many in route perils faced by these leviathans; collision with large vessel traffic, oil spills, Killer Whales and likely the most dangerous of all is the threat of entanglement in commercial fishing gear.

Nets are considered to be the greatest threat but, surprisingly, crab gear, though not a common occurrence, is a danger here in the Pacific Northwest. Almost every year Grays are reported fouled with as many as 3 crab trap float lines in their jaws and hitched around their bodies.

Think about that for a minute. The animal is not only restricted by the entanglement of line but with three traps is also burdened with over 100 kilograms of steel.

In January '99 Strawberry Isle Research Society hosted a disentanglement workshop in Tofino. In attendance, along with our membership were representatives from the government departments of Fisheries, Transport and Parks.

The outcome of this gathering was recognition of the threat and need for a coastal web of response teams that could be tasked to deal with entanglement reports. On the spot it was recognized that our society would be the first recognized team.

Our Next Goal

We raised $1,400 for the purchase of entanglement response. Well it took a couple of years and a lot of red tape but we are now in possession of an array of custom made cutters, knives and grapnels.

Our next goal is to establish a team of volunteers who would be willing to attend practice sessions and respond to incidents.


Call Rod Palm (725-2211) or Pete Schulze (726-5793).
Cool heads and good physical condition are a must.


tofino | tofino time | activities | accommodation | events | directory
maps | travel | food | art & artists | photos | horoscope | tides
search | magazine | issues | articles | advertising | contact us

hosted in tofino by & studio tofino
© 2002-2014 copyright Tofino Time Magazine in Tofino Canada
© 2002-2011 Tofino Time Magazine & ThinkTank Design Inc.

Tofino whale research article by Rod Palm: Report from the Strawberry Isle Research Society from May 2002

tofino time may 2002

quick links:
tofino accomodations
tofino calendar

tofino surf report
tofino horoscope
september horoscope
tofino map
tofino fishing report
tofino tides
tofino weddings

tofino events:
tofino concerts
tofino events
tofino movies
tofino festivals
tofino yoga classes

tofino time magazine:
tofino time september 2012
captain vincente tofino
readers choice: the best of tofino
floating gardens at freedom cove
tofino event listings for september 2012
tofino concerts in september 2012
tofino movies in september 2012
tofino tide table for september 2012
tofino surf reports for september 2012
cox bay | wickaninnish beach
chesterman beach
tonquin beach
tofino brewing co.
horoscope for april 2013
tofino wedding guide

tofino accommodation:
tofino cabin
tofino camping
bed & breakfasts in Tofino
tofino hostels
tofino motels
tofino hotels
tofino vacation rentals
petfriendly accommodation

tofino bike rentals
tofino bear watching
tofino bird watching
tofino boat charters & cruises
tofino fishing
hot springs cove
sea kayaking in tofino
tofino storm watching
tofino surfing
tofino whale watching
tofino yoga

tofino art galleries
tofino books
tofino boutiques & gift shops
food stores in tofino
tofino outfitters

tofino yoga, spa & wellness
tofino restaurants
tofino internet cafes
tofino travel & transportation
tofino real estate
tofino vacation rentals
tofino weddings

tofino events
tofino concerts
tofino movies
tofino calendar
tofino cabins
tofino maps
tofino jobs
tofino media