Why Whales Strand!
If you want to understand why whales strand, do not look in the sand. Instead, look at the rough waves washing ashore because this is the energy guiding the whales to the beach! But why is it alway a beach? Because the shoreward flow of the current guiding the whales is the same energy that carries each grain of sand to build the beach in first place. The is so because currents give direction to anything that has no heading of its own. In other words, the simple reason why whales strand on a beach is because they are lost. Where there is no beach, there is no shoreward flow to carry the sand or guide the lost whales. However, there is one exception. When a big storm nears a rocky shoreline, it is possible that lost whales can be guided into the rocks by the strong current running ashore.
But why don’t the lost whales swim away from the beach before they get stuck? Again, the answer is shockingly simple. Since all mass stranded whales and dolphins have lost their acoustic sense of direction, they are like blind Olympic swimmers thrown overboard 50 miles offshore. They come ashore only when and where the tide and the wind-driven currents guide them.
Any lost swimmer, dead or alive, can only swim or drift downstream with the current simply because downstream is the path of least drag. Said differently, a sense of direction in absolutely mandatory to fight the current and swim upstream! If you don’t believe me, blindfold yourself and try to swim straight across a flowing river. You’ll never make it to the other shore! Said differently, if you have no idea which way to swim, drag forces will turn you and point you downstream in the path of least resistance. Bottom line id that the current builds the beaches and deposits the lost whales thereon!
As proof, notice in videos that pods of whales and dolphins never strand when the surface current is washing back out to sea. You can also see this easily by observing rescue efforts. Whale rescue teams know that stranded whales must be released during the outgoing tidal flow. If not, they will never swim out to deep water. If pushed off the beach while the surface current is flowing in towards the sand (as shown in the picture above) resistance (drag forces) to the flow of the current will turn the lost whales around and point them back to the beach. But the stranding teams don’t tell you this because they want your donations. They do not want you to know that the whales and dolphins that they push back into the offshore flow will never survive, especially without giving them lots of fresh water and food and letting them rest for few weeks.
By now you are thinking if the above is true, why is it the whale scientists never mentioned it? Keep reading. I promise to convince you that a massive cover-up has been ongoing for decades.
One thing you must first know. Diving whales, human divers, pond frogs, diving birds, sea otters, sea turtles, manatees, polar bears, seals, walrus, and fish with air-filled swim bladders all face the same danger. As experienced divers, they instinctively know that the air contained in their internal air spaces must be balanced with the external pressure at the depth of their dive. A diver’s body can only function normally when the forces acting inside and the forces acting outside are nearly equal. Every diver must constantly equalize pressure as the depth of their dive changes.
Pressure, whether due to the weight of the atmosphere plus the water, or caused by exposure to low-frequency sonar waves, explosions, or seismic p-waves generated during natural seafloor upheavals, must always be equalized. Said differently, if rapid changes in the surrounding water pressures suddenly exceed the diver’s ability to counterbalance, internal barotraumatic injuries in the cranial air spaces cannot be avoided.
Boyle’s gas law states that at a constant temperature, the absolute pressure and the volume of air are inversely proportional. This means the volume of internal air pockets decrease by 100% if the external pressure doubles. On the other hand, the volume of the internal air pockets doubles if there is a sudden 100% drop in external pressure. To avoid injury, pressure differences must be constantly near equal.
The average frequency of seismic p-waves given off by an underwater earthquake is 7 cycles per second. These are compressional waves identical to US Navy sonar waves. Each cycle has a positive pressure phase followed a split second later by a negative pressure phase. This means that exposure to the average underwater seismic p-waves will cause the volume of entrapped cranial air to increase and decrease 14 times per second. Sonar waves are much higher in frequency.
Imagine the volume of air in your sinuses and your middle ear air cavities bouncing up and down by 100% at a rate of 14 times every second. Your nose and ears would be bleeding profusely.
When any underwater diver’s ability to compensate cannot coup with the either the speed or the intensity of the pressure fluctuations, the cranial air spaces will suffer a pressure-related rupture call barotrauma.
Barotrauma is the most common injury in all divers including fish, fowl, reptiles and diving mammals. Barotrauma is every diver’s weak spot. It is the most common injury in all divers including fish, fowl, reptiles, marine mammals, and in US Navy dive teams. The US Navy is the world’s leading expert of sinus and middle ear barotrauma!
Because of their loud sonars and the use of underwater explosives, barotrauma in any species of undersea life is the absolute last thing the US Navy and the oil industry want to talk about. It is the #1 taboo topic for whale scientists! Don’t believe me? Try to find a scientific report on sinus or middle ear barotrauma in deep diving whales! You will not find any detail information no matter where you look! Barotrauma is a forbidden topic in marine mammals!
Whale scientists sponsored by the US Navy and the oil industry are covering up the fact that sinus barotrauma will disable the biosonar system of a pod of diving whales and cause them to swim blindly downstream until the incoming tide points them to a beach!
Is this too simple for you?
In his Posterior Analytics, Aristotle argues that nature does nothing in vain or needlessly so only simple theories of natural behavior can be possible. Several centuries later, at the beginning of the modern scientific revolution, Galileo espoused a similar view, holding that, “nature does not multiply things unnecessarily; that she makes use of the easiest and simplest means for producing her effects.” Similarly, at the beginning of the third book of the Principia, Isaac Newton included the following principle among his “rules for the study of natural philosophy”:
“No more causes of natural things should be admitted than are both true and sufficient to explain their phenomena.”
As the philosopher Newton said. “Nature does nothing in vain, and more causes are in vain when fewer will suffice. For Nature is simple and does not indulge in the luxury of superfluous causes.”
The simplest solution to explain mass strandings would be that pods of whales beach because they are lost. No scientist has ever advanced such a simple idea or proven it otherwise. Does it make you wonder why?
As mentioned above, the US Navy is the world’s expert in diving accidents. But they are not worried about the alarming number of dead and dying whales washing ashore with busted sinuses. The reason is simple. The Navy, with help from the oil industry, have been bribing whale scientists and the media for over 40+ years so they are not concerned about pressure-related sinus injuries in whales. The truth is that our whale scientists sold out to the US Navy and the oil industry decades ago. They have been lying to us ever since!
The video below will give you some idea of the scientific fraud involved.
Can crooked whale scientists ever come clean and admit that whales strand simply because they are lost at sea due to a sinus injury? Oh my… what a deep hole they have dug for themselves! History will never forget the great whale stranding fiasco.
The fraud and bribery are both weird because the number one reason why whales strand is Mother Nature, not the Navy or the oil industry. For example, an average 1,500 undersea earthquakes greater than magnitude 5 occur annually along subduction zones near continents and islands and along the mid-ocean ridges that circle the globe like seams on a baseball. These seismic danger zones are where lots of squid and fish hangout — the whales simply follow their food into harm’s way.
Read just one example of a ship hit by a seaquake.
One more important piece of the puzzle must be added. Ninety percent of the above-mentioned tectonic borders course along the bottom of our oceans and seas. This means that 90% of all the seismic upheavals happen in the rocky seafloor below where whales and dolphins dive to feed as many as 3-4 times a day.
Add several hundred more submarine volcanic explosions annually (link) and then add in another 10 to 20 space rocks slamming into the water’s surface, and you begin to see that the feeding grounds of whales and dolphins is not such a safe place to dive, especially when you realize that during a natural undersea upheavals, the rocky bottom jerks about, pushing and pulling the water column, generating rapid and excessive changes in ambient water pressures. Even more amazing, the speed at which the seabed shifts vertically (acceleration) determines the intensity of the pressure changes, not the magnitude of the quake. Such oscillations in pressure can easily traumatize the cranial air sinuses of an entire pod of diving whales all at the same time. In fact, one seaquake might even cause two or even three pods of pelagic odontoceti to mass beach.
Mother Nature has been the main reason why whales strand ever since coastal dolphins first ventured out into the deep sea some 30 million years ago. The US Navy knows that undersea earthquakes produce the loudest noise on earth. They have hundreds of listening stations all over the globe. They even know when a blue whale passes gas.
Another reason why whales strand is undersea explosions and the high-intensity noise generated by the US Navy and the oil industry. Their powerful sonar, air gun arrays, and underwater blast emit practically the same low-frequency pressure oscillations as seafloor seismic disturbances and space rocks slamming into the ocean’s surface. In fact, an underwater blast off the East Coast of Florida was recently reported as an undersea earthquake by the USGS. (link)
Underwater ship shock trials, as shown in the above video, natural seafloor upheavals, sonar, air guns, space rocks, and other underwater explosions all generate strong low-frequency positive and negative pressure oscillations that crisscross the bodies of diving whales at 1,500 meters per second. These high-speed pressure pulsations cause drastic alterations in the volume of air in the cranial air spaces of any air-breathing mammal. If excessive, the membranes tear and the escaping air leaks into their heads. Such an injury causes their cranial air spaces to stop working as acoustic mirrors, bouncing sound around to enable their biosonar. In other words, busted sinuses cause whales to lose their ability to echo-navigate and echolocate their food. Nor can they dive deeper than a few feet due to severe sinus pain. This is exactly why whales mass strand!
This also explains why beached whales and dolphins never have any fresh food in their stomachs and are severely dehydrated (all their fresh water comes from the food they eat). They’ve been lost at sea for weeks without being able to dive and feed so naturally they have only non-digestible squid beaks and hard scale of fish eyes in their stomachs.
They lose their acoustic sense of direction simply because the proper volume of air in each cranial air space is mandatory for the workings of their biosonar system.
There is the additional danger that the rapidly changing air volumes inside their skull during intense fluctuations in the surrounding water pressure might do other damage such as force the Eustachian tube closed or snap a small bone that plays an important part in biosonar function. Much can go wrong when the volume of internal air bounces back and forth in excess of the diver’s ability to compensate.
The whales on the beach in the above picture do not look injured because sinus barotrauma is the slightest, yet deadliest internal injury any diving mammal can possibly receive and still look outwardly healthy. They don’t look skinny because their external coat of blubber is a wetsuit that they cannot digest, otherwise they would die of hypothermia.
But the truly mysterious part is not why whales strand. The real enigma is why both the US Navy and the oil industry refuse to fund an investigation into how extreme changes in diving pressures generated by natural underwater seismic upheavals kill marine mammals. You’d think they would be thrilled to prove that undersea earthquakes explained why whales strand just so they could get themselves off the hook.
It is even more strange when you consider the US Navy’s Maritime Safety Division warned us back in 1966 that underwater seismic disturbances are extremely dangerous to marine life. They said: “MARINE LIFE CAN BE DESTROYED BY A SEAQUAKE.” If you doubt me, read page 59 of this pdf)
The US Navy’s Maritime Safety Division even warned on the last page of the above article:
“Damaging seaquake: The ship may be thrown about in the water with such force that mast, booms, superstructure, and machinery as well as the hull may be damaged. It is possible for seams to be opened to such an extent that flooding cannot be contained and the vessel sinks.”
Think about it! If the US Navy says a seaquake can crack the hull of a ship and sink it, surely seafloor seismic activity can injure the sinuses of a pod of diving whales in a fashion to destroy their acoustic sense of direction.
You might look at acoustically blind whales on the beach and think they committed suicide. Or, maybe they followed a sick pod mate because they love each too much. Then there’s two dozen other nonsensical scientific hypothesis to explain why they look so healthy laying there in the sand.
But the simplest idea of all — that stranded whales previously lost their sense of direction — is never mentioned by whale scientists. Not only is this idea never talked about, the injurious loss of their biosonar system has never been ruled out or even investigated in a public document.
Lost whales would swim into a beach on an incoming tide, which is exactly when all strandings occur. That’s right, strandings never happen when the tide is flowing back out to sea. (see whales guided ashore by current)
So why don’t the US Navy and the oil industry blame strandings on undersea seismic disturbances? Even if seaquakes were not the real cause of why whales strand, the Navy, and big oil could still blame these events on Mother Nature and take the spotlight off their instruments.
Here’s another strange set of facts: The US Navy pays for 50% of all whale research worldwide (link). The oil industry (by way of various taxes and fees) pays for 47 percent. Why are the two worse underwater noise polluters on the planet paying for all the research to study the world’s most acoustically dependent animals?
What are they trying to cover-up?
Do you remember how big tobacco controlled all the lung cancer research in the 1950s and 1960s? They were even paying doctors to advertise cigarettes. They paid for the lion’s share of cancer research because they wanted to control the best available scientific information on smoking and lung cancer. If the scientists didn’t come up with the results big tobacco wanted, they got blacklisted and never got another dime. Plenty of crooked, lying, mud sucking scientists step forward, stuck out their greedy hands, and wrote all about how healthy it was to inhale cigarette tar, benzene, and a hundred other deadly chemicals into your lungs. They didn’t give a rat’s ass if you died of lung cancer or not. All they cared about was making money!
The obvious conclusion is that science is for sale and always has been! Lying scientists are ten times more dangerous than lying car salesmen. A lying car sales agent can steal your money; a lying scientist can kill you. Doubt me? Just ask those that died of lung cancer from smoking!
But why does the oil industry and the US Navy want to control all the whale scientists? More important, why does Congress, the Secretary of Commerce, NOAA, the National Marine Fisheries Service, and the Marine Mammal Commission allow the two worst acoustic polluters of the marine environment such absolute power over the financial success of whale scientists?
And why do they want to keep you in the dark about barotrauma in the cranial air sinuses of whales as a result of pressure waves generated by natural underwater disturbances? Especially after the US Navy already told you that seaquakes kill marine life. You’d think they would be telling us more specifically how seaquakes do the killing, especially when it comes to marine mammals. So why all the secrecy? Watch the video below… this goes on all the time!
Their motive is simple. As mentioned above, military sonar, oil industry air guns, and underwater explosives cause the same injury in diving whales as does undersea seismic upheavals. The low-frequency pressure waves generated by nature or by man are about the same and they cause the same barotraumatic injuries. This is true because the cranial air spaces are the most delicate part of any diver’s anatomy when exposed to rapid changes in water pressures.
The reason they cannot reveal that natural undersea catastrophes cause sinus barotrauma in marine mammals is because there is no difference between barotrauma caused by their underwater noisemakers and explosions and barotrauma caused by Mother Nature. In other words, they are covering up for Mother Nature to keep from convicting their own noise makers and explosions.
Why Whales Strand
The US Navy knows that busted sinuses (barosinusitis) explain why whales strand. But they refuse to allow the scientists they bribe to talk about it. Doubt me? Search online for “sinus barotrauma and whales.” You find mostly my work.
Here is more specific evidence: The first scientific goal in one US Navy sponsored research paper (link) was: “To understand how the ears of deep-diving marine mammals are structured to prevent barotrauma.”
The author considered her report special because it would be presented at the 1998 NATO meeting to discuss the sonar impacts on beaked whales. Regardless that the stated purpose of this research was to understand how deep-diving whales prevent barotrauma, Dr. Darlene Ketten, the world’s leading whale hearing expert who has received hundreds of grants from the Navy, declared:
” . . .we (scientists) have no knowledge of what auditory structural adaptations these animals evolved to endure bathypelagic and rapidly changing pressures . . .”
There was no mention of the massive air sinuses and air sacs in the heads of these deep divers. How can Dr. Ketten, the world’s leading expert on hearing in whales, discuss barotrauma in diving mammals and not mention the sinuses and air sacs, the part of their anatomy most vulnerable to excessive low-frequency pressure changes? I suggest that the only purpose of this US Navy-sponsored scientific doublespeak was to have the world’s leading scientist officially declare that there was “no available scientific information on barotrauma in whales.”
Here’s another scientific article in which Dr. Ketten said scientists have no knowledge about hearing in whales (link). Everywhere you turn, whale scientists are claiming to be just plain stupid about sinus barotrauma and hearing injury in cetaceans. Naturally, there is a huge ongoing argument about how sonar kills whales. Many scientists, bought and paid for by US Navy grants, blame the injury on the whales. They say it’s the whales’ fault because they get spooked and swim to the surface too fast.
“…over the past 20 years, the media has implicated intense sounds from naval vessels and seismic testing in several stranding events. A few cases of cetaceans we have worked with in rehabilitation showed signs of hearing impairment, with one dolphin being completely deaf. However, whether these cases can be connected with anthropogenic noise requires “further investigation” resulting in understanding the effects of intense noise and contributing to the development of mitigation strategies. Ultimately, the aim is to find a balance between the basic needs of marine mammals and the important role the ocean plays in the exploration for natural resources and in maritime defense.”
In other words, scientists have argued auditory trauma in marine mammals for over 20 years with the expressed goal of balancing the acoustical slaughter of marine mammals against the needs of the oil industry and naval forces around the world. They are not solving the mystery of why whales strand; they are setting up a scientific argument as a mean of evading the laws that protect whales.
Who do you think is losing this argument? Here’s a hint… as mentioned above, the oil industry and the US Navy pays for 97% of all whale research worldwide. In other words, the two worst acoustic polluters of the underwater world are bribing whale scientists so they never reach a scientific conclusion.
Their purpose would naturally center around the legislation that controls exactly how much noise these two groups can make underwater! Congress named this law the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972. Click the link and look for the yellow highlights. The legislation that protects our whales and dolphins states over and over (17 times) that the Secretary of Commerce must protect marine mammals according to the “best available scientific information.”
There is no protection if the scientists guiding the Secretary of Commerce are arguing with each other. Read it with your own eyes! The US Navy and the oil industry are doing the same thing big tobacco did in the 1950s and 1960s. In order to defeat the law protecting the whales, the two worst acoustic polluters bribe the whale scientists to make sure there is never any “best available scientific information.” There is only scientific disagreement. Bottom line is that the Marine Mammal Protection Act protects the world’s worst underwater noisemakers, not our marine mammals.
Said differently, the scientists who develop the scientific information to determine the level of dangerous noise in the marine environment are on the payroll of the US Navy and the oil industry, the two worst acoustic polluters of the marine environment.
The scam is easy to see. The US Navy and the oil industry defeated the Marine Mammal Protection Act by using taxpayer money and tax deductions to control whale scientists so that the “best available scientific information” never emerges.
The Marine Mammal Protection Act has been a worthless scrap of toilet paper since the day President Richard Nixon signed it into law.
Equally obvious, the US Navy and oil industry are not going to use taxpayer money to sponsor any research that will show how their operations cause rapid pressure changes that kill marine mammals. Nor do they want to see earthquake-induced barosinusitis accepted as the main reason why whales strand since it is only a small step over to barosinusitis induced by explosives, sonar, and/or air guns.
How does it feel to know you’ve been conned for 40 years?
Capt. David Williams
(the world’s oldest whale conservation group)
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