Recent sightings of the bowhead whale (Balaena mysticetus) in Northeast Greenland and the Greenland Sea

University of Helsinki Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences, Division of Population Biology P.O. Box 65 00014 Helsinki Finland
Polar Biology (Impact Factor: 2.07). 10/2005; 28(10):796-801. DOI: 10.1007/s00300-005-0001-9

ABSTRACT By the end of the 19th century, European whalers had brought the bowhead whale (Balaena mysticetus) in the “Spitsbergen stock” ranging the waters between eastern Greenland and the western Russian Arctic to the verge of extinction.
This paper presents observations of this species in Northeast Greenland and in the Greenland Sea between 1940 and 2004. The
number of observations has increased in Northeast Greenland since the mid-1980s. Only three observations are known for the
period 1940–1979 but during the 1980s, the 1990s and between 2000 and 2004, six, six and eight observations of bowhead whales
were made, involving an absolute minimum of three, five and eight to ten different individuals, respectively. It remains uncertain
whether this represents an increase in survey effort, an immigration from other areas, a recent recovery of an eastern Greenland
relict “tribe” belonging to the Spitsbergen stock, or a combination of these factors.


Available from: Olivier Gilg, Jun 14, 2015
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    Arctic 01/2012; 65:76-86. · 1.08 Impact Factor
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    Arctic 01/2012; 65:76-86. · 1.08 Impact Factor