Southwest Fisheries Science Center (NOAA/NMFS) gray whale biopsy sampling protocol
Quick guide for UAS-based photogrammetry, GEMM Lab, OSU
This protocol was developed by the GEMM Lab at OSU for UAS-based photogrammetry of cetaceans.
Fecal sample collection protocol, GEMM Lab, OSU
Gray whale fecal samples can be opportunistically collected when defecation events are observed from the boat or during drone flight. After defecation when the whale leaves we approach the defecation site with a small boat (our research boat is a 5.4 m rigid-hulled inflatable boat) from behind the whale to avoid any disturbance, and scoop the fecal sample with two 300 μm nylon mesh dipnets, dragging through the fecal plume multiple times to capture as large a fecal sample as possible; then using ambient seawater in squeeze bottles, the fecal sample material from the two nets are flushed out of the net into a single sterile plastic jar and put on ice until we returned to shore and stored in a freezer (−20°C) for later analysis. The location, date, time and photo-id images of the sampled whale are recorded at each fecal sample collection. NOTE: make sure you obtain all necessary permit before conducting fieldwork.