We’re saving one of the world’s largest and most endangered animals.
Approximately 400 North Atlantic right whales remain in the world. Their migratory routes run right along the North American coastline—one of our oceans’ most industrialized areas— where commercial fishing gear and busy shipping lanes pose lethal threats.
In these waters, the whales are exposed to ship collisions and net entanglements. With collisions, the whales usually die quickly. With entanglements, an agonizing death takes months—or even longer.
Through education, advocacy and grassroots campaigning, IFAW is pushing for the US and Canadian governments and other stakeholders to take action to protect right whales and preserve their habitat. We’ve succeeded in securing and maintaining reasonable ship speed limits in critical areas and worked with mariners to increase their awareness of whales in shipping lanes.
Now, we’re working to provide focused government and private funding to develop alternative fishing gear to reduce the threat of deadly entanglements while maintaining sustainable fisheries.
As much as we’re changing laws and regulations, we’re changing the culture. We’re working with the Massachusetts Lobstermen’s Association and others North and South of the Canadian border to develop new tools for lobster fishing, like fishing traps. We’re also developing a “whale-safe” certification system so that people can tell whether lobster at a grocery store or restaurant was caught using whale-friendly fishing methods.
every problem has a solution, every solution needs support.
The problems we face are urgent, complicated, and resistant to change. Real solutions demand creativity, hard work, and involvement from people like you.