The International Whaling Commission meetings wrapped up in Jersey, England Thursday, North Slope officials, including Borough Mayor Edward Itta were pleased with the tone of the meetings. The real test will come next year when Alaska’s five-year bowhead whale quota will be up for renewal. In preparation for that, North Slope biologists have been hard at work on a whale census. New data on the Bowhead population count was given the IWC scientific committee during the just concluded meetings.
Earlier this spring, KBRW’s Jake Neher went out on the Arctic sea ice with researchers to see how the census is done, and how the results could affect the way subsistence whaling is viewed around the world.