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Local humpback obtains longest re-sighting record


Submitted Photo

Researchers studying whales in Frederick Sound this summer identified a male humpback that was first sighted 44 years ago near Lynn Canal. Old Timer's fluke is shown here during the recent, July 12 sighting (left), and the first sighting in 1978 (right) by researcher Charles Jurasz. Patterns and markings on the whale's flukes help researchers in identifying and documenting whales.

A humpback whale that was first sighted in Lynn Canal in 1972 was re-sighted by researchers earlier this month feeding off Cape Fanshaw in Frederick Sound. The 44-year span between the two sightings of the whale, dubbed "Old Timer" by researchers, is the longest re-sighting span of an individual humpback in the world.

Dr. Adam Pack, a marine mammal researcher at the University of Hawaii (UH) at Hilo, and photographer Jim Nahmens spotted the whale on July 12 while doing research aboard the M/V Northern Song.

In a press release, Pack said that the crew aboard the vessel high-fived each other...

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