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A dozen whales, different species and ages, have washed up recently on nearly 300 miles of Northern California coastline. While this is not a record, it's still alarming. Why is it happening? Bay Area scientists are considering factors such as environmental changes, food distribution, shipping, ocean currents, and predator behavior. Meet staff from the California Academy of Sciences, Mission Science Workshop, and the Exploratorium, and explore evidence leading to and hypotheses about these tragic events.

Twenty-seven miles beyond the Golden Gate, the craggy Farallon Islands have been home to fur-seal hunters from Russia, a gold-rush-era egg business, and even a nuclear waste dump. Today they’re home to 250,000 sea birds, not to mention seals, sea lions, whales, and sharks. What makes these stark-looking islands so attractive to wildlife?

Footage of a small gray whale in the Chukchi Sea near the Barrow shoreline.

Produced by students from San Francisco's Aim High Program. Today they ask, how do our ears work? Can we communicate without words? How do whales communicate under water? Why don't bats slam into trees as they fly? Middle school students will interview Exploratorium Educator Ken Finn and Biologist Dr. Karen Kalumuck, plus special surprise guests!