The silty waters off Anchorage may no longer see the white whales swimming into it once the Cook Inlet Beluga whales go extinct off Alaska’s largest city. According to a study by the National Marine Mammal Laboratory in Seattle, there is a 26 percent chance of the Cook Inlet belugas’ going extinct in just next 100 years!
And if not, they will disappear completely from the region in just 300 years and the chance of it is 68 percent! To worsen the prevailing situation, the whales are found to be becoming increasingly vulnerable to a catastrophic event! It is because they are slowly gathering in a restricted area in the upper Cook Inlet.
According to the study report,
The population is discrete and unique with respect to the species, and if it should fail to survive, it is highly unlikely that Cook Inlet would be repopulated with belugas.
At reduced numbers and with contraction of their range, this population is far more vulnerable to stranding, predation or disease.
With their numbers along with their contraction range reduced, to add to their dire state, this population is far more vulnerable to stranding, predation or disease. Scientists seem to be pondering on the way to restore the species here as one said,
They have this downward trend and we don’t know why that is!
Photo Courtesy: AP Photo/NOAA