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New Slow-Zone Aims Protect Right Whales
By Joseph Tepper, December 6, 2022 @ 12:45 PM (EST)
Source: Bangor Daily News


Slow down! After all, it’s the right thing to do for right whales.

Scientists at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) are asking boaters in southern Maine to adopt a “slow zone.” The implementation is aimed to protect critically endangered right whales, which have been heard migrating through the waters in the last month.

Boaters are asked to avoid a migrating area 70 miles east of Portland, Maine—or to maintain a speed of less than 10 knots. The advisory is voluntary and remains in effect until December 16.

North Atlantic right whales are considered one of the most endangered marine mammals, with fewer than 350 individuals believed to remain in the wild. In Maine, there is currently ongoing litigation between local fishermen, government authorities, and food distributors. Recently, Whole Foods stopped buying Maine lobster over concerns surrounding the impact on endangered right whales.

Read more about Maine’s ongoing lobster and whale debate in this in-depth article from Mother Jones.

 

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