How Humpback Whales Feed Hawai`i

February 23, 2022

Jeannine Rossa, NOAA's Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary

The waters around Hawai‘i are low in important nutrients for life, like iron and phosphorus. As a result, the plankton biomass is low, and less plankton means less food for fishes. Enter the humpback whales! Whales boost the entire food chain by shedding their skin, which is made up of proteins and fats, perfect for zooplankton to eat. More zooplankton means more fishes, octopus, and coral. But, that's not all. Join us to hear the rest of the story!