Northern resident orca whales (Orcinus orca), near Campbell River, Vancouver Island, BC Canada

Humpback Whale Monitoring

Humpback whale populations have been dramatically reduced by whaling practices (ending in 1967) and pollution off of the West Coast.

In recent years, humpback whales in coastal BC have made a comeback; in 2022, over 396 individual humpback whales were recorded, the highest number documented in the past century.

The Sunshine Coast Conservation Association would like to support the acquisition of scientific information regarding humpback whale numbers to support local governments in making informed conservation practices, and to support literature on the success of humpback whale returns.

How You Can Help

You can help! If you see a humpback whale, you can record this helpful information (printable PDF) and share it with us:

  • date of sighting
  • approximate location (closest beach or landmark)
  • number of humpback whales
  • direction of travel (if you can tell)
  • any distinguishable behavior (fin slapping, breaching, feeding, etc)
  • photos or videos, which can be used for individual identification of the whale(s) using their fluke (tail)

How this Information Helps

By collecting whale sightings information, we can better understand migratory patterns of humpback whales; these whales return to coastal BC in the summer months from their winter breeding grounds off Hawaii and Mexico.

How will this Information be Used?

For this project, we are collaborating with the Saturna Island Marine Research and Education Society (SIMRES). We will provide the information to them to be consolidated and sent to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) for entry into the national database.

What Next?

If you'd like to be notified of the results of our season's humpback whale monitoring, subscribe to the SCCA's email list. We'll send out a summary at the end of the season.

Scroll to Top