posted on May, 11 2013 @ 10:23 AM
Scientists still don't know why hundreds of baby southern right whales are turning up dead around Patagonia, a decade after observers first saw
signs of the worst die-off on record for the species, according to the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS).
They say kelp gulls at Peninsula Valdes land on the backs of the cetaceans to eat their skin and blubber
"The attacks are very painful and cause large, deep lesions, particularly on the backs of young 2-6 week-old calves," the researchers said in a
statement from WCS. "This harassment can last for hours at a time. As a result, right whale mothers and their calves are expending much precious
energy during a time of year when mothers are fasting and at a site where little to no food is available to replenish fat reserves."
The posted title from yahoo news is a misnomer IMO; an attention grabber.... the article points to the reason why the calves are not surviving.
Evidently Kelp Gulls have developed a taste for the young calves.
The Gulls I have met are omnivores and smart in a Gull sort of way when it comes to food. If one even looks like it has something to eat the
flockmates will pay attention, mob the scene, and even try to steal. So, all it takes is one or two landing on a calf to eat and all of a sudden
others will mimic and over time you have every Gull in the area looking for a whale..