A sample of current published literature and links to the papers or abstracts is found below organized by species and population where appropriate. Papers are a combination of scientific and local knowledge from Canada only. New papers will be added as they become available. Scroll down for links to current news articles.


Western Hudson Bay

Chmelnitsky and Ferguson, 2012: Beluga whale, Delphinapterus leucas, vocalizations and their relation to behaviour in the Churchill River, Manitoba, Canada

Richard, 2005: An estimate of the Western Hudson Bay beluga population size in 2004

Smith et al., 2014: Beluga whale (Delphinapterus leucas) summer habitat associations in the Nelson River estuary, Western Hudson Bay

Watts et al., 1990: Preferential use of warm water habitat by adult beluga whales

Westdal et al., 2016: Behavioural changes in belugas (Delphinapterus leucas) during a Killer Whale (Orcinus orca) attack in southwest Hudson Bay


Baffin Bay

Innes and Stewart, 2002: Population size and yield of Baffin Bay beluga (Delphinapterus leucas) stocks

Richard et al., 1998: Fall movements of belugas (Delphinapterus leucas) with satellite-linked transmitters in Lancaster Sound, Jones Sound, and northern Baffin Bay


Beaufort Sea

Harwood et al., 2015: Change in the Beaufort Sea ecosystem: Diverging trends in body condition and/or production in five marine vertebrate species

Loseto et al., 2006: Segregation of Beaufort Sea beluga whales during the open-water season

Loseto et al., 2009: Summer diet of beluga whales inferred by fatty acid analysis of the eastern Beaufort Sea food web

Luque and Ferguson, 2006: Age structure, growth, and mortality of eastern Beaufort Sea beluga (Delphinapterus leucas): a comparison among Canadian populations

Richard et al., 2001: Summer and autumn movements of belugas of the eastern Beaufort Sea stock


Hudson Bay

Westdal et al., 2010: Migration Route and Seasonal Home Range of the Northern Hudson Bay Narwhal (Monodon monoceros)

Westdal et al., 2013: Availability bias in population survey of Northern Hudson Bay narwhal (Monodon monoceros)


Baffin Bay

Marcoux et al., 2011: Local passive acoustic monitoring of narwhal presence in the Canadian Arctic: A pilot project

Richard et al., 2010: Baffin Bay Narwhal Population Distribution and Numbers: Aerial Surveys in the Canadian High Arctic, 2002–04


Killer whales


Ferguson, Higdon & Westdal, 2012: Prey items and predation behavior of killer whales (Orcinus orca) in Nunavut, Canada based on Inuit hunter interview

Higdon, Westdal & Ferguson, 2013: Distribution and abundance of killer whales (Orcinus orca) in Nunavut, Canada—an Inuit knowledge survey

Westdal, Higdon & Ferguson, 2013: Attitudes of Nunavut Inuit toward Killer Whales (Orcinus orca) 

Westdal, Higdon & Ferguson, 2016: Review of killer whale (Orcinus orca) ice entrapments and ice-related mortality events in the Northern Hemisphere


In the News

In the News



Aug 15, 2015: Darnley Bay researchers use drones to monitor N.W.T. beluga whales

Nov 8, 2015: Tagging endangered belugas to find winter habitat

Jan 7, 2016: Province wants feds to protect Hudson Bay beluga whales

Feb 5, 2016: Jack Orr, Whale Hunter

Feb 8, 2016: St. Lawrence beluga researchers point to 'worrisome' deaths of mothers, newborns

Feb 11, 2016: Noise research the focus of new Cook Inlet beluga plan

Feb 17, 2016: Beluga whales dive to great depths to catch cod, Alaska study shows

Feb 22, 2016: Mackenzie Delta beluga research shows preference for less ice

Feb 24, 2016: Researchers study beluga ears to learn more about impact of noise

Mar, 2016: Why Do Beluga Whales Blow Bubbles?

Mar 17, 2016: Ex-Mountie who smuggled narwhal tusks extradited to U.S.

May 9, 2016: What’s Going to Happen to the Narwhal in the Northwest Passage? An interview with marine biologist Kristin Westdal.

May 13, 2017: Narwhal hunting with their tusks caught on video for the first time

May 17, 2016: Ottawa strengthens protections for beluga whales in St. Lawrence Estuary

Jul 31, 2016: Are Quebec's rivers getting too loud for belugas?

Sept 9, 2016: The belugas of St Lawrence: serious decline

Sept 21, 2016: How baby beluga whales dive deeper and longer than any others

Nov 10, 2016: Narwhal echolocation beams may be the most directional of any species

Nov 16, 2016: Arctic haven for belugas becomes Canada’s newest protected area

Dec 6, 2016: Meet the Arctic’s New Top Predator—Killer Whales

Dec 9, 2016: Wonky numbers, narwhal quota cuts anger Nunavut community

Jan 5, 2017: U.S. releases plan for Alaska endangered beluga whales

Jan 16, 2017: With Arctic freeze-up coming later, some belugas delay fall migration

Mar 26, 2017: Shrinking Arctic sea ice threatens the majestic Beluga whale

Apr 4, 2017: Oil Leak in Alaska’s Beluga Whales Habitat Could Threaten Species on the Brink

May 3, 2017: Warmer weather, more killer whales bad news for Hudson Bay belugas

May 3, 2017: Canada Classifies Beluga Whale Population As Endangered

Jun 2, 2017: Nunavik beluga hunt quota gets bump, but it's complicated

Jul 30, 2017: 'Snot for science': How blow-hole goop could help track stress in Manitoba belugas

Sept 3, 2017: Quebec beluga whales now officially listed as endangered

Sept 15, 2017: Why Scientists Are Firing Air Guns at Narwhals

Sept 26, 2017: Researchers puzzle over why beluga whales in Alaska haven't recovered

Oct 5, 2017: Vancouver Aquarium staff helping with baby beluga rescue in Alaska 

April 20, 2018: Protect Churchill's belugas with national marine conservation area, report urges

May 4, 2018: B.C. researcher urges shipping industry to slow down in Arctic to protect belugas and bowhead whales