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April 14, 2019 - The Vegan Authority

Baby whale sighting for endangered North Atlantic right whales

Baby whale sighting for endangered North Atlantic right whales
Credit: NOAAFile Photo / © Photabulous!

North Atlantic right whale calves are being spotted again this year, offering a glimmer of hope for one of the world's most endangered whale species.

"The Center for Coastal Studies (CCS) in Provincetown, Massachusetts, said on Friday its aerial survey team had spotted two mother and calf pairs in Cape Cod Bay a day earlier. That brings the number seen in New England waters alone this year to three", reported The Guardian.

The North Atlantic and North Pacific right whales are among the most endangered whales in the world, with only an estimated 450 remaining, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NAOO). Some estimates are lower.

Right whales are protected under both the Endangered Species Act and the Marine Mammal Protection Act. They have been listed as endangered under the ESA since 1970 after being hunted almost to extinction in the 19th century. Their biggest threats now are now are climate change, with warming temperatures affecting their food chain, as well as by fishing nets, boats striking them and ocean noise.

Mankind remains by far the greatest threat to these species: the two leading causes of death are being struck by ships and entanglement in fishing gear. These two anthropogenic factors alone account for 48% of all known right whale deaths since 1970 with more than 85% of right whales have been entangled at least once.


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