Learn About Ecology
Data And Science
World Biomes
Marine Mammals
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mapping whales title

Maps offer a powerful tool for understanding what's happening over large areas. By putting together the data on whale sightings from many places up and down the coast, scientists have been able to determine whale migration patterns, as seen in the map below.

migrations map Many whales migrate south for the winter, especially those that feed in northern waters. For grey whales, the journey begins in the frigid waters of the Chukchi and Bering Seas between Alaska and Siberia. The whales spends the summer and the beginning of fall in the Arctic before heading south.

Around mid to late fall, the whales start their 5000-mile journey south to Baja California. The grey whales head south for two reasons: shelter and breeding.

You can check out sightings made in Santa Barbara or add your own sighting using the The Channel Islands Marine Sanctuary Marine Mammal Sightings Database. Another great source for grey whale migration data is available at Grey Whales Count.

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