Craig George, a scientist based in Barrow, has correlated records going back into the last century, and believes the whales do better in warmer years with less ice, perhaps because they can stay longer in the northern feeding grounds.
And the Inupiat say the feeding season is now a couple of weeks longer than it used to be.
Whether the whales will continue to get fatter as the ice melts further, or whether the trend will reverse, is another matter.
Scientists can see the future! You just need more faith.
Science News : March 1, 1975
The Ice Age Cometh