Why scientists are collecting whale snot

It helps assess the health of the marine mammals
Whale snot  is not something you’d think of as a valuable commodity, but in certain corners of the scientific community it’s proving to be just that. The marine mammal’s nasal mucus is rich in DNA, viruses, and bacteria, and it helps researchers to assess the health of certain specimens. Dr Vanessa Pirotta, a marine biologist from Macquarie University in Australia, explains how the experiment is carried out.

(Picture: Snot collecting drone flies over humpback whales off Sydney. Credit: Dr Vanessa Pirotta, drone flown by Alastair Smith/Heliguy Scientific)
Minke whale washed up on Barra beach
A whale with rope wrapped around its jaws was found off the coast of the Western Isles and later washed up dead.
Is this whale a Russian spy?
A beluga whale was found with suspicious equipment off Norway's coast

Dolphins filmed off Cornwall

BBC Spotlight

A pod of what are thought to be Risso's dolphins has surprised sailors off the coast of Cornwall.

The mammals, who were seen leaping out of the water periodically, were seen from a fishing boat about 15 miles south of Looe on Sunday.

Whales.org said it was normal for the species to be found in temperate waters, such as those off the British coast.

However, commercial fisherman and trawler owner Andrew Giles, who filmed the video, said it was the first time he had seen such a sight "in 32 years at sea".

The real life Jonah and the whale

Rainer Schimpf found himself in a whale's mouth while filming off South Africa’s coast
Rainer Schimpf is an experienced wildlife photographer and conservationist who was documenting a 'feeding frenzy' off the coast of South Africa when a whale scooped him up while taking a mouthful of sardines. He's been telling Neal Razzell his story. (Photo credit: Heinz Toperczer/Barcroft Images.)