NEWPORT, Ore. - The Oregon State University Marine Mammal Program will be featured on national television this week, during a public broadcasting "Nature" show on humpback whales.

The special will be aired from 8 to 9 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 9, on Oregon Public Broadcasting. OPB will repeat the special the following Sunday, Jan. 16, from 10 to 11 a.m.

The BBC-filmed special, narrated by David Attenborough, highlights three different research efforts on whales, including a project by OSU's Bruce Mate, director of the university's Marine Mammal Program. In his work, Mate has tagged and tracked humpback whales via satellite at their breeding and calving areas in Hawaii, and at feeding areas in southeast Alaska.

"There is some spectacular feeding footage as the whales make bubble nets to capture herring in Alaska, and again when they compete for mates in Hawaii," he said. "It is beautifully filmed."

The special also touches upon Mate's pioneering work in tracking whales from Hawaii to Russia, the first time whales had been tracked by satellite from breeding to feeding areas.

More information on the OSU Marine Mammal Program is available on the web.

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Bruce Mate, 541-867-0202