Are Gray Whales the Canary in the Climate Coal Mine?
NorCal Public Media explores the mystery of Gray Whales washing up on California beaches. Locals and tourists marvel at the yearly northward migration of the Gray Whales, which occurs every spring. But 2019 has been a year that has confused both locals and scientists. Not only did more gray whales than usual enter the highly trafficked San Francisco Bay in search of food, but 13 gray whales were found dead, washed up on our beaches or found floating in the water. Scientists and researchers are concerned about this unusual mortality event, and continue to search for not just for answers for the spike in deaths, but for solutions to protect and preserve our marine life. Though the science is currently inconclusive, climate change and melting arctic sea ice are thought to be responsible for causing inconsistencies in these mammals' primary food source.