EAST COAST–The North Atlantic right whale species was recently re-classified from endangered to critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature( IUCN ), it was reported on July 9.
The IUCN classification augments the high-risk categories the North American right whales are already listed on: “endangered” per the Endangered Species Act and “strategic and depleted” per the Marine Mammal Protection Act.” Both classifications are the highest possible risk categories under those respective federal laws.
IUCN’s classification change- which is part of the organization’s Red List Category- does not have a direction relationship with class under the Endangered Species Act or Marine Mammal Protection Act. NOAA Fisheries, nonetheless, stated it “shares the IUCN’s concern for North Atlantic liberty whales.”
“We continue to use our authority under the MMPA and ESA to protect and recover the categories, ” NOAA Fisheries organization stated.
NOAA Fisheries staff lent there are only 400 -some remaining right whales remaining, with fewer than 100 of them as breeding females.
“Research published in 2017 made it clear that after two decades of slow recuperation, the population began decrease in 2010, ” NOAA Fisheries personnel said. “This drop-off was exacerbated by the 17 freedom whale mortalities in Canadian and U.S. sprays in 2017. This prompted NOAA Fisheries to declare an bizarre death happen for North Atlantic right whales.”
Fishing fear intrigues and jug strikes are the leading causes of death, according to NOAA Fisheries.
A North Atlantic right whale recovery plan was established in 2005; the plan aims to reduce vessel strikes and fishing gear entanglements, protect whale habitats and, according to NOAA Fisheries, “maximize efforts to free entangled right whales.”
Volunteer crews exist within the NOAA Fisheries’ system of states on the East Coast; the teams respond to right whale intrigues and attempt to free them from the paraphernalium whenever possible.
The right whale population is also monitored via aerial surveys.