Whalemen’s Natural History Observations and the Grand Panorama of a Whaling Voyage ‘Round the World.

[Original anthology (see PDF version under “Anthologies” menu) contains the full text and illustrations.]

‘Apart from the specific species that they were targeting during the hunt, whalemen were adequate, but unsystematic observers of wildlife. It is not that plenty of animals were not encountered. Rather, it is challenging for today’s researchers and historians to determine what exactly it was that whalemen actually saw. Some whalemen expressed knowledge of different types of fish and birds, calling most tuna-like fish “bonito” or “albacore,” and most albatross species “goneys.” Storm petrels were “Mother Carey’s chickens,” and the occasional “woggins” was a toss-up between a penguin and an auk, depending upon which ocean the ship was cruising in.’