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Saturday, August 12, 2017

Why do endangered right whales keep dying off the coast of Canada?

Why do endangered right whales keep dying off the coast of Canada?

Researchers are scrambling to figure out why one of the world’s most endangered whale species is dying in “unprecedented” numbers, after at least 10 north Atlantic right whales have been found floating lifelessly off the coast of Canada.

The first whale carcass was reported in early June. Within a month, another six reports came in, leaving researchers reeling. This week, after several carcasses washed up on the shores of western Newfoundland, Canadian officials confirmed that the number of whale deaths had risen to at least 10, making 2017 the deadliest year for the whales since researchers began tracking them in the 1980s.

“This is a huge blow to the recovery of the north Atlantic right whale,” said Moira Brown of the Canadian Whale Institute. “This is an animal that maybe numbers 500 animals.”

The north Atlantic right whale – which lives along the eastern seaboard of Canadaand the US and can reach up to 16m (50ft) in length – has struggled since being nearly hunted to extinction by whalers in the late 18th century.

Full story at

Source: The Guardian

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