Unsupported Browser Detected

Internet Explorer lacks support for the features of this website. For the best experience, please use a modern browser such as Chrome, Firefox, or Edge.

Whale Week: Celebrating the Wonder of Whales

April 24, 2023

Celebrate Whale Week 2023 with us! Discover NOAA's work to study, recover, and conserve these magnificent marine mammals.

Graphic for Whale Week 2023 featuring illustrations of long-finned pilot whale, sperm whale, beluga whale, and North Atlantic right whale

Join us in celebrating Whale Week, April 24-28, 2023! Whales are among the largest and oldest animals on Earth. They can be found in every ocean and range in size from the small dwarf sperm whale to the massive blue whale, the largest animal on the planet. 

At NOAA Fisheries, we work to ensure the conservation and protection of all marine mammals. This Whale Week, explore whale science and conservation through the features and videos below.

Follow along on our NOAA Fisheries social media channels and stay tuned for more content throughout the week.

Whale Week Features

Deploying Passive Acoustic Recorders for North Atlantic Right Whale Calving Season

Scientists from the Southeast Fisheries Science Center have deployed passive acoustic recorders to monitor endangered North Atlantic right whales in the Southeast for the 2023 calving season.

Monitoring North Atlantic right whale calving season with passive acoustic recorders

a North Atlantic right whale and it's baby during calving swimming in ocean along the surface.
North Atlantic right whale “Medusa” and calf. Credit: Clearwater Marine Aquarium Research Institute (NOAA permit 20556-01)

Meet Héloïse Frouin-Mouy, Bio-acoustician

As a bio-acoustician at the Southeast Fisheries Science Center, Héloïse works for the Cooperative Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Studies. Her work mainly involves fieldwork preparation, data collection, data analysis, as well as writing manuscripts, reports, and grants. Héloïse's current research aims to better understand beaked whales’ diving and calling behavior in the Gulf of Mexico using passive acoustic tracking, an alternative tool to tagging. This knowledge will be used to obtain more reliable and robust population density estimates from passive acoustics data.     

Learn more about Héloïse Frouin-Mouy and her work

Heloise and Dr. Ludovic Tenorio retrieving moorings on a ship in the Gulf of Mexico.
Dr. Héloïse Frouin-Mouy and her colleague, Dr. Ludovic Tenorio, retrieving moorings in the Gulf of Mexico. Credit: NOAA Fisheries/ Melissa Soldevilla

Celebrate Whale Week with Us: A Message from Janet Coit, Assistant Administrator of NOAA Fisheries

Join us for a celebration of whales and the 50th anniversary of the Endangered Species Act as we reflect on the past 50 years and look to the future.

Read Janet's leadership message 

A Gulf of Mexico Bryde’s whale just under the surface of the water. Photo: NOAA Fisheries NMFS ESA/MMPA Permit No. 21938.
A Gulf of Mexico Bryde’s whale just under the surface of the water. NMFS ESA/MMPA Permit No. 21938.

A Whale’s Perspective: Using Tags to Understand North Atlantic Right Whales

NOAA Fisheries and our partners are always seeking ways to monitor and track endangered North Atlantic right whale movements to better understand whale behavior and mitigate threats impeding their recovery.

Using tags to understand North Atlantic right whales

An endangered North Atlantic right Whale (#3503, “Caterpillar”) swims close to the water’s surface
An endangered North Atlantic right Whale (#3503, “Caterpillar”) swims close to the water’s surface. Credit: Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (NOAA permit #20556-01). Aerial survey funded by US Coast Guard, US Navy, USACE, and NOAA Fisheries.

Video: Wondrous Whales

Love whales like we do? Check out the various species of whales in the United States.

See more whale videos

Whales and Climate Change: Big Risks to the Ocean's Biggest Species

Climate change is impacting ocean ecosystems and resulting in many challenges for a variety of marine species, including whales.

How climate change is affecting different whale species 

Group of beluga whales, including a mother-calf pair in Cook Inlet, Alaska
Group of beluga whales, including a mother-calf pair in Cook Inlet, Alaska. Credit: NOAA Fisheries (NMFS MMPA/ESA permit 20465).

Encountering Giants: Inspiring Moments with Whales

Whales astonish us. Witnessing their behaviors has inspired careers in marine biology and energized action for ocean conservation. Many NOAA Fisheries scientists have had unique opportunities to spend time on and in the ocean, studying marine mammals like whales in their habitats. To celebrate Whale Week, we asked our staff to recall a favorite moment with these incredible and majestic creatures. 

Explore our scientists' inspiring moments with whales

Humpback whale under rainbow
Humpback whale under rainbow. Credit: Shutterstock

Podcast: Checking In On Endangered Southern Resident Killer Whales

Learn the latest on endangered Southern Resident killer whales with Dr. Megan Wallen, a marine mammal specialist in NOAA Fisheries West Coast Protected Resources Division.

Listen to the podcast

 Southern Resident killer whales encountered during NOAA's PODs (Pacific Orcinus Distribution Survey) in October 2021
Southern Resident killer whales encountered during NOAA's PODs (Pacific Orcinus Distribution Survey) in October 2021 near the west end of the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Credit: NOAA Fisheries

Go Slow—Whales Below

You can help save endangered North Atlantic right whales by slowing down to 10 knots or less in waters where they are likely present.

Go Slow—Whales Below

Aerial image of a North Atlantic right whale mother and calf
North Atlantic right whale mother and calf. Credit: NOAA Fisheries

Whales: Did You Know?

5 Icebreakers About Bowhead Whales

Conversation starters about an Arctic whale.

Bowhead whale with calf by its side swim between floating Arctic sea ice.
Bowhead whale and calf. Credit: NOAA Fisheries

Bowhead whale facts

11 Facts about Whales, Dolphins, and Porpoises

Marine mammals in the cetacean family include whales, dolphins, and porpoises. These animals are often referred to as “sentinels” of ocean health, providing insight into marine ecosystem dynamics. 

Cool facts about cetaceans

Three finback whales at the water surface.
Finback whales. Credit: NOAA Fisheries

10 Wonderful Whale Facts

How much do you know about different species of whales? As we celebrate Whale Week, take a look at some interesting tidbits and see if you learn something new about these majestic creatures.

Check out 10 wonderful whale facts

Humpback whale breaching. Credit: NOAA Fisheries.

Last updated by Office of Communications on June 13, 2023

Whale Week