Southern Right Whales Versus Kelp Gulls in Valdes Peninsula



In Valdes Peninsula, Argentine Patagonia, there is a growing conflict between two native species, southern right whales and kelp gulls. In recent years the gull population has increased dramatically due to the availability of food in landfills full of garbage. Kelp gulls have learned to feed on the skin and blubber of right whales, alarming scientists and conservationists, posing a potential threat to these endangered whales. Mariano Sironi is a biologist with the  Whale conservation Institute (ICB) in Argentina. Mariano and ICB were the focus of a documentary film we produced in 2007 about southern right whales. A fierce debate has erupted about the best way to tackle this growing problem, including calls to cull one native species in order to protect another.
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