Some bowheads moved north annually through Bering Strait, while others remained in the Gulf of Anadyr and the northwestern Bering Sea.
Russian researchers, in collaboration with Chukotkan natives, have identified three groups of bowheads: 1) a group that remains in the Gulf of Anadyr and the waters north of St.
Matthew Island in late August 1851, and Captain Abraham Pierce (1854) of the Kutusoff reported that bowheads were taken in the western part of the Gulf of Anadyr in July 1853; others were reported captured on the south shore of the Chukchi Peninsula in Holy Cross Bay (Zaliv Kresta) in June 1866 (Hegemann, 1890:410-412).
Although some whales were taken in the latter half of July in the Gulf of Anadyr, in the same period of time a large number were harvested in the southwestern part of the Chukchi Sea, north of the Chukchi Peninsula.
The Russians have reported that, while some whales may spend the winter in the Gulf of Anadyr, a large number are found just south of there, in the waters near Cape Navarin (about lat.
Lawrence Island, and in the northern Gulf of Anadyr, with only a few seen outside these areas.
If larger whales either stayed in the Gulf of Anadyr or were the last to move north through Bering Strait, as the whalemen believed they did, then these large whales would have been the ones that were most vulnerable because the retreating ice would have left them more exposed to their hunters (Table 5, Fig.
1): 1) Liaodong Gulf (Huang, 1962; Wang, 1986; Dong and Shen, 1991); 2) Peter the Great Bay (Kosygin and Tikhomirov, 1970; Trukhin and Kosygin, 1988); 3) the western coast of Sakhalin Island in the Tatar Strait; 4) the eastern coast of Sakhalin Island extending to northern Hokkaido; 5) northern Shelikova Gulf (Fedoseev, 1970; Kosygin and Gol'tsev, 1971; Shaughnessy and Fay, 1977); 6) northeast from Kronotsky Cape on the eastern side of the Kamchatka Peninsula (Burkanov(4)) to Olyutorski Gulf; 7) the Gulf of Anadyr in the Northwest Bering Sea; and 8) from Bristol Bay, Alaska, to west of the Pribilof Islands (Gol'tsev et al.
Ice remnants remain stable into late spring in the Gulf of Anadyr more so than in Alaska waters, resulting in more ribbon seals occurring in the west and more spotted seals in the east.
In the Gulf of Anadyr, spotted seals feed on Arctic cod (which comprised 29% of the total weight of stomach contents (n=42)), pollock (13%), and sand lance (9%).
Aerial surveys along portions of the Gulf of Karaginski and the Gulf of Anadyr during April-May 1987 resulted in estimates of 28,000 and 50,000, respectively (Fedoseev et al.
Kosygin (1966) found, of the seals available to hunters in the Gulf of Anadyr, 90% were ribbon seals and, in the eastern Bering Sea, 50% were spotted seals.