Summary of Deep Dive Into The Ocean Ecosystem With The Giants
The evidence of the benefits of whales speaks for itself. Whales are known as engineers of the ocean and without them and their whale pump, many species and organisms will disappear along with them, which will negatively affect the survival of humanity. The ways of being practiced by humanity need to change to include not just an appreciation of other species and organism, but rather humanity needs to increase their role as being stewards of the planet for the benefit of all life, not just their own. Even though whales are mostly out of sight, we need to keep them in mind to ensure their survival and in doing so, the survival of the planet, species, organisms and humanity.
There are many interest facts about whales, for example:
- whale’s ears are in their throats (Cranford et al, 2010) and
- they reduce their system functions to deep dive (Tian et al, 2016).
Diving deep into the ocean we can discover the differences between toothed whales and baleen whales (De luliis and Haddrath, 2017).
While I did not research every whale species and geography, research indicated whales can dive 2500 metres deep to the ocean seafloor where humans have not yet discovered (Nosengo, 2009).
There are a surprising number of reasons whales are under threat in the oceans (The Marine Mammal Centre, n.d.), (Harwood, 2001), (Roman et al, 2013), (Roman et al 2016), (Pschera et al, 2016), (Moss, 2017), (Fisheries & Oceans Canada, 2018), (Markus et al, 2018), (Oceans Canada, 2018), (Howard, 2019), (Svanberg et al, 2019), and (Zhu et al, 2019).
The history of whales suggests previous whale populations may be much higher than previously estimated as past records were unreliable (Pearce, 2010).
Genetic evidence reveals the population of whales could have been 1.5 Million before the commercial whaling era (Pearce, 2010).
The reduction of whales has a profound effect on the whale’s ability to engineer the oceans by:
- being a consumer by both eating and creating higher fish stocks,
- being prey to large sharks and killer whales,
- distributing nutrients across the oceans with their movements, fecal plumes and
The decimation of whale populations also affects interconnected species in the air, on land, and in the ocean, from large animals (Doughty et al, 2016) to tiny microorganisms (Ward, 2013).
Research includes various current technologies striving to help humans co-exist with whales and monitor whales due to their slow reaction times (Williams, 2016).
It is suggested Inuit knowledge and communities can monitor changes in the marine ecosystem in the Antarctic (Breton-Honeycomb et al, 2016).
A monitoring of krill species will be required as ocean temperatures warm (Klein et al, 2018) as movement to new feeding grounds will negatively affect whale reproduction.
The live global online AIS system, shows the number of ships of all types in our oceans (AIS Marine traffic & Cruise ship tracker ⋆ Live Free ⋆ 2019, n.d.).
Future research includes the necessity for humans to understand whales and how we can mitigate climate change with their free assistance (Roman et al, 2014).
With climate change tipping the points negatively (Galaz et al, 2016), there is a greater need for humans to co-exist with nonhumans (Elton, 2019).
With pollution increasing at alarming rates, our oceans are becoming unlivable for animals, let alone humans who could one day have to rely on the oceans for living on or in (Brugidou & Fabien, 2018).
Humans have many things in common with whales, including they are both mammals (The Marine Mammal Centre, n.d.).
While humans may consider themselves above animals in the circle of life, humans are actually a part of the circle of life, as actors the same as animals (Elton, 2019).
Whales are no longer goods in the sea to harvest, but rather ecosystem engineers who play vital roles in the ecosystem (Roman et al, 2014).
Video Link: Diving 1000m Below The Surface | BBC Earth Podcast
While humans may feel the planet belongs to them, nonhuman species freely and naturally provide something we can not: ingestion, digestion and defecation of plant matter allowing nutrients to be reused by other species, including:
- fecal plumes and urine,
- feces (Doughty et al, 2016),
- erosion prevention,
- antitumor activity,
- antibacterial activity,
- new drugs,
- degradation of pollutants,
- oil pollution control (Wang, 2013).
In economic terms, whales are worth two million dollars each and globally these giants collectively are an asset worth one trillion dollars to humanity (Nicklen, 2019).
The future of humanity is in human hands and we need to give back to the oceans what we took from it (Wang, 2013) in order for the survival of humanity.
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