Several factors threaten beluga whales, including a changing climate, noise from ocean vessels, commercial fishing practices, pollution and habitat destruction, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Like many threatened and endangered marine mammals, beluga whales face threats primarily from humans. The increasing encroachment of humans into whale territories also poses a threat to belugas, as the whales become injured, disoriented and killed through human recreational activities like boating and fishing, and from oil and gas production.Continue Reading
Beluga whales live in colder, Arctic waters around the world, including the Arctic Ocean and seas around Russia, Greenland and parts of North America. These whales have very thick skin, which makes fine leather when treated. Historically, belugas faced threats from illegal hunting and poaching, primarily for their fine skin. Native tribes in the Cook inlet hunted belugas for subsistence, although limitations on permissible beluga takes, imposed through laws and regulations, has reduced that threat.
Although some historical threats to belugas have disappeared, others take their place. Belugas, like many whales, communicate using a sonar system. Increasing shipping traffic and use of military vessels in their habitats hinders whales' communication, which in turn reduces their ability to navigate, find food and mates and raise young, as related by the World Wild Life Fund. Retreating glacial ice also threatens belugas, as they swim slowly and have historically relied on large ice floes as shelter from predators. As with other ocean creatures, belugas also face threats from oil spills and accumulating pollution.Learn more about Marine Mammals
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration maintains a detailed record of historical data relating to climate and weather events. Rainfall totals are among the data sets which are publicly searchable and indexed over a customizable time period.Full Answer >
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration provides records of past weather and climate data through Climate Data Online, available on the NOAA website. The AccuWeather Premium website also provides daily rainfall and snowfall totals as far back as 1992.Full Answer >
Sea turtles are endangered for many reasons including population decline from human activities such as poaching, commercial fishing and illegal trade, along with climate change, pollution and erosion. These ocean creatures are valued for their shells, meat and eggs, which makes over-harvesting one of the leading threats to sea turtles.Full Answer >
Killer whales are endangered due to a number of threats, including oil spills, bio-accumulation of PCB and other contaminants, noise pollution, collisions with ships, entanglement in fishing gear, shootings by fishermen, and habitat disturbance by whale watchers. Additionally, the depletion of populations of prey, such as marine mammals and certain species of fish, affects its ecosystem.Full Answer >