Inshore-offshore movements of two fin whales (Balaenoptera physalus) tracked by satellite off West Greenland

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M. P. Heide-Jørgensen
L. Witting
M. V. Jensen


Two fin whales (Balaenoptera physalus) were tagged with satellite linked radio transmitters in a costal area near Aasiaat in West Greenland and tracked for 76 and 32 days in 2000 and 2001 respectively. In 2000, one whale was tagged on 30 September; it stayed in the tagging area until at least 13 October. On 16 and 17 October it was found further south off the coast of West Greenland. On 20 October it had moved approximately 250km southeast to another inshore area. It moved another 100km south along the coast and up to 50km off the coast until 2 November, then appeared back in the area it was located on 20 October until contact was lost on 20 December. In 2001, one whale was tagged on 24 August, it stayed in the coastal area until mid September, where it travelled south along the coast to an area approximately 100km off the coast. From here it continued south to the same inshore area occupied by the whale in 2000. It remained in this area until the last position was received on 25 September. The tracking data suggest a connection between inshore and offshore ( > 22km) fin whales and indicates the potential range of fin whales in West Greenland.

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