Sixth North Atlantic Right Whale Calf of 2018-2019 Calving Season Sighted Off Florida
February 16, 2019
North Atlantic right whale #3370 and her calf swim off the coast of North Peninsula State Park in Volusia County, Florida on February 12, 2019
credit: Ralph Bundy, Marineland Right Whale Project, permit #20626
The sixth North Atlantic right whale calf of the 2018-2019 calving season was sighted off the coast of North Peninsula State Park in Volusia County, Florida on February 12, 2019. The mother has been identified as #3370, a North Atlantic right whale who is at least 16 years old. This is her second known calf. The Daytona Beach News-Journal reports that #3370 was first spotted this season on New Year’s Day, with Boomerang (#2503). Boomerang was the fourth new mother of the year and was first seen with her new calf on January 25, 2019, she was also recently seen with her calf off the coast of Daytona Beach Shores.
Six births is wonderful news, especially since there were no calves seen in 2018 and only five in 2017. However, six calves is still the fourth lowest in 20 years (after the 5 in 2017, 1 in the 1999/2000 calving season and none in 2018). The population has also dropped from an estimated 451 in 2016 to 411 at the end of 2017 with a record 17 deaths in 2017 and 3 known deaths in 2018. Entanglements in rope from lobster and snow crab traps and ship strikes are the two major threats to North Atlantic right whales and even entanglements that aren't deadly are affecting the females in the population bad enough that it's lowering the birth rates. We are celebrating these six calves and are hoping that there are more to come - these whales need every new member to the population that they can get.
6th right whale calf seen off Flagler Beach - The Daytona Beach News-Journal
Fifth North Atlantic Right Whale Calf of 2018-2019 Calving Season Sighted Off Florida
Fourth North Atlantic Right Whale Calf of 2018-2019 Calving Season Sighted Off Georgia
To find out more about what is happening to North Atlantic and North Pacific right whales and how we can all take actions in our everyday lives to protect them, please visit our Facts and Action sections on our website. We also post updates and pictures on Facebook, Tumblr and Twitter.