We started our false killer whale rapid response program in the summer of 2018 and it’s been incredibly successful! With one research vessel surveying our study area, we have a relatively low likelihood of encountering false killer whales, so we turned to the community for help. More eyes and ears on the water will benefit our research, which will, in turn, provide the science needed to assist managers in protecting and conserving this endangered population. We are also working collaboratively with other researchers to share data and expand our body of knowledge.

We are requesting that all water users in Maui Nui please notify our researchers immediately when false killer whales are sighted by calling/texting: (808) 990-5544. If weather conditions permit, we will launch a rapid response so we can get to the animals as quickly as possible and collect valuable data. Our researchers collect identification photographs, aerial footage, underwater footage, and behavioral observations.

Our flyer about false killer whale research in Maui Nui. To request a copy, please email: research@pacificwhale.org

Due to the reporting network and our rapid response program, we have had 6 encounters with false killer whales this year! As we expand our reporting network, we are excited to learn more about these special animals.

For more information regarding our current research projects, please visit https://www.pacificwhale.org/research/hawaii/.

Posted by:Stephanie Stack

Stephanie is a biologist from Newfoundland, Canada who is passionate about ocean conservation. She holds Bachelor of Science and Master of Environmental Science degrees from Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador. Stephanie has previously studied harp and harbor seals in eastern Canada, traveled to Belize, Central America, to research Antillean manatee and bottlenose dolphin populations, and worked with South African communities on the sustainable use of ocean resources and the need for marine conservation. She joined Pacific Whale Foundation in February 2013 and is researching surprise encounters with humpback whales, odontocete and marine debris distribution in Maui leeward waters.

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