What happens when you're delivering a technical talk on cetacean strandings and you don't want to put your audience to sleep?Here's what Joe Gaydos did recently when he presented a talk on whale research at the North American Veterinary Conference in Orlando, Florida: he included videos of exploding whale carcasses.
The North American Veterinary Conference attracts nearly 16,000 people annually and is one of the largest veterinary conferences in the world. SeaDoc's parent organization, The School of Veterinary Medicine at UC Davis, was represented on many of the scientific panels. Joe and Kirsten Gilardi chaired the wildlife section.
Joe's talk (one of three he presented), was full of interesting information about whale strandings, diseases of whales and what we can learn from stranded whales. Read excerpts and find a link to the full version of the talk on our website.
So why DO whales explode? When whales die and decompose, gasses build up to high pressures inside the body cavity. If the skin ruptures suddenly... BOOM!
See our playlist of exploding whale videos on our YouTube channel. There's even an hour-long documentary about the whale pictured above (which did not explode, thanks to the intervention of Irish veterinarian Dan Crowley and anatomist Joy Reidenberg, Ph.D.). While you're watching, be sure to subscribe to the channel.