North Atlantic right whales are in a huge danger of extinction, and might disappear if we do not take measures immediately. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) wants to act and make sure the species gets protected, so that it won’t get extinct.
Right whales are closer to extinction than ever
Right whales are among those animals with the most risk of endangerment in the entire world. Their populations need immediate recovery, or they might end up disappearing completely. A year ago, NOAA observed how their reproduction rate got severely low, while the mortality rate increased. Therefore, they performed some estimates which aren’t positive at all.
After finding 17 dead right whales throughout this year, they concluded there must be about 450 left in the world. This came as quite a shock for the US environment officials, who realized their populations need some help to recover. If this doesn’t happen, the extinction scenario can easily become a reality.
The biggest threat for these whales is represented by humans
This severe decline of right whales started in 2010, and is caused mostly by human action. Usually, these creatures either get entangled in fishing gear, or get hit by vessels. These cases occur mostly in northern areas. However, they migrate to the south during the warm season to mate and feed.
There might have been 450 right whales left, but only 100 of them are females at the age of breeding. Also, the threat posed by the fishing net is extremely stressful for both the males and the females, which are no longer able to reproduce as they should.
Researchers are afraid that the increasing water temperatures will put the whales in even more danger. This will make them roam outside the protected areas to search for more food, also making them more vulnerable to all kinds of threats. As a result, the federal government imposed some new laws regarding vessels and the speed and areas where they should be allowed to navigate.