Saving the North Atlantic Right Whale - North AmericaDon't fail our whale
Washington, DC – Today, the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) released a statement on two new North Atlantic right whale deaths.
IFAW is troubled to learn of the deaths of two more North Atlantic right whales in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. There have now been four right whale mortalities in this habitat area over the past month, three within the span of just one week. With only 411 right whales alive today, including fewer than 100 reproductive females, this is a devastating blow to the recovery of this critically endangered species.
As an organization, IFAW is deeply concerned about the fate of the remaining right whales migrating through Canadian waters. The Government of Canada has yet to adequately address human activities that continue to kill these whales. Unless meaningful conservation measures and additional protections are put in place immediately on both sides of the border, the extinction of the North Atlantic Right Whale will become a sad reality in our lifetimes.
IFAW’s Marine Mammal Rescue and Research team is on standby to assist with the necropsy required to determine the cause of death once both whales have been recovered.
Of all the known causes of death of right whale mortalities between 2003 and 2018, nearly 90% were a direct result of human-induced trauma resulting from entanglement in line and vessel collisions, according to IFAW-led research released last Thursday in the journal Diseases of Aquatic Organisms. This is a stunning confirmation of the impact of human activities on just this one species.
"Fresh thinking and bold action across sectoral, national, and political divides are urgently needed now. Working together we can and must be the generation that saves the right whale. #DontFailOurWhale,” said Patrick Ramage, Director of Marine Conservation for IFAW.