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Old 19-12-2006, 11:05   #16
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When we used to race of West Oz coast frequently crossed paths with large whale pods and we also hoped audio noise might steer them clear of the fleet.
I'm not sure it always worked - although a compacted race fleet with stereos blaring and engines powered (but not turning props) - would normally scare off anything in their path.

They do sleep - and if you try to catch one you'll also appreciate how fast they can go when avoiding a boat. I'd guess at somewhere over 20 knots.

We did have one 30 foot yacht hit a sleeping whale on one noight race and the skipper recounted it similar to the others above.
'Like hitting a brick wall'.
The whale was apparently asleep. They just saw the whales back shape awash in the wave trough ahead as they began to surf down the wave face with spinnaker up. Far too late to take avoiding action. The whale woke with a huge thrash and rolled around in a widening pool of bloody seawater for some time. The yacht had problems of its own to sort out as with the spinnaker up the whole rig went forward over the bow. No person on board was significantly hurt. Not sure if the whale ultimately survived or not.
They said it is clear the whale did not 'hear' them coming.
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Old 19-12-2006, 13:36   #17
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Given the dire news the marine mammal experts, environmentalists, and others would have us believe (and I do), there’s probably a lot more lost shipping containers floating the oceans, than sleeping (or inattentive) whales.
Whales are sentient, whereas containers are not.
I (arrogantly) presume that whales would choose to avoid collisions, given the chance.
Ergo:
Both the numerical & behavioural statistics might favour yacht collisions with shipping containers (over those /w whales).

Why do we only (or mostly) hear reports of whale collisions, and not those (less "sexy") with shipping containers, and other flotsam/jetsam?
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Old 21-12-2006, 09:00   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stevens 47
I am considering installing forward scanning sonar. Mostly for getting a good look at the bottom and reefs as an avoidance tool. I have heard that the US Navy sonar has an effect on Whale's. Seems like this system would detect dense objects such as a container of maybe a whale. Forward Looking Sonar :: Forward Looking Sonar by EchoPilot

Jack
Forward looking sonars have serious limitations in scanning near-surface objects like floating containers or whales. Be sure to understand their limitations before your commit to buying one for collision avoidance.

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Old 22-12-2006, 04:50   #19
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Hi Gord - I've heard of both.......

Quote:
Originally Posted by GordMay
Given the dire news the marine mammal experts, environmentalists, and others would have us believe (and I do), there’s probably a lot more lost shipping containers floating the oceans, than sleeping (or inattentive) whales.
Whales are sentient, whereas containers are not.
I (arrogantly) presume that whales would choose to avoid collisions, given the chance.
Ergo:
Both the numerical & behavioural statistics might favour yacht collisions with shipping containers (over those /w whales).

Why do we only (or mostly) hear reports of whale collisions, and not those (less "sexy") with shipping containers, and other flotsam/jetsam?
But guess hitting a whale does involve a bit more drama and therefore more newsworthy - plus suspect more yachts sail away from a whale collission than ramming a 40 foot steel container with sharper edges!

Plus if the estimated population of 1.5 million whales do sleep on the surface, then maybe thats a greater number than floating lost containers?

Merry Xmas
JOHN
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Old 22-12-2006, 04:56   #20
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Hi Gord - I've heard of both but.......

...................if the whole whale population (estimated at 1.5 million) do indeed sleep on the surface, then maybe that is a greater number than floating lost containers??????

Or if the common coastal cruising routes do overlay whale migration routes as opposed to deep sea container routes??????

If both of the above are valid, then just maybe we should expect whale collissions as being more common of the two?

Merry Xmas

JOHN
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Old 22-12-2006, 07:43   #21
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Whales

I did the ARC in Jeannius back in 2002. We were followed (we think) by two Minke whales for about a week. We'd see them around mid-day every day generally one or two waves back from the boat. On a couple of occasions one of them came right between the hulls and then appeared off the bow. We didn't hit one but we were worried when they swam between the hulls as a couple of ton of whale could cause a lot of damage to a rudder even if they just 'leant' against it.
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Old 22-12-2006, 10:16   #22
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I can tell you that a noisy destroyer clanging away on active sonar will not "see" a surfaced whale, nor will it apparently wake one that is sleeping or ailing. Containers don't bleed; whales do so in prodigious amounts. Their blubber also gives off an indescribable stench.
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