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Stranding of whales occurs 'more in the spring'

Updated: 2022-02-28 08:20 ( XINHUA )
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Researchers have discovered that, over the past 70 years cetacean (aquatic) strandings on beaches occurred more frequently in spring.

The researchers, from the Institute of Deep-sea Science and Engineering of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, established a data set by collating all available records of cetacean strandings (mostly whale and dolphin) along the more than 30,000-kilometer Chinese coastline over seven decades and studied the species diversity and spatiotemporal patterns.

Between 1950 and 2018, a total of 1,763 cetacean strandings were recorded across 36 cetacean species from eight families, according to the research, recently published in the journal Science of the Total Environment.

In terms of quantity, 89.9 percent of total cetacean strandings happened among Odontocete (toothed whales) species.

Cetacean strandings increased by year from 1950 to 2018 and occurred in all months, while a seasonal pattern could be observed with 38.5 percent of stranding happening between March and June.

Stranding data can provide conservation-valuable information on cetaceans over a long time and large space. The new findings are expected to serve conservation and management of cetaceans.

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