l LIHUE, Kauai (AP) — The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is starting to register volunteers on Kauai, Oahu and the Big Island for an annual humpback whale count. The project is looking for people to monitor whales from 60 locations statewide, including 15 sites on Kauai. The counts will take place Jan. 25, Feb. 22 and March 29. NOAA officials said population counts for humpback whales are still relatively unknown. Some of the endangered whales migrate south each winter from Alaska to breed. Kauai Program Coordinator Jean Souza of NOAA said people don’t realize how much whale activity they can see from shore.
Volunteers measure things such as tail slaps and breaches. Researchers also record sounds from the whales. NOAA says more than 2,000 volunteers participate in the program yearly.