Humpback whales in Australia were less stressed during the pandemic

Humpback whales were less stressed during the pandemic

Scientists from the University of Queensland found that humpback whales off Australia’s east coast were less stressed during the pandemic.

The study was conducted to determine the health of these whales. During the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, there was a significant change in human activity.

Researchers used drone photos and small skin and blubber samples to check the health of whales near North Stradbroke Island during 2020 and 2021.

This whale population has recovered well from historical whaling, so the researchers wanted to give them a thorough health check using the latest technology. They found that the whales had lower levels of a stress hormone called cortisol in 2021 compared to 2020.

The researchers believe that less human activity and changes in the climate during the pandemic helped reduce stress for the whales. This study shows the importance of protecting these whales to help them stay healthy in a changing world.

“Eastern Australian humpback whales have demonstrated a remarkable ability to adapt to changes in their environment, but our study emphasizes the importance of mitigating human impacts so they can continue to thrive in our rapidly changing oceans,” Jacob Linsky, who led the study, said.

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