The Center for Coastal Studies’ Marine Animal Entanglement Response team disentangled a humpback whale on Monday, August 8 off Provincetown, MA.
The young whale was anchored in fishing gear but was able to pull the gear off the sea floor to access the surface for air. Sea Salt Charters discovered the whale, stood by and reported the entanglement to the MAER team. The team was on scene about an hour after the report and eventually was able to make a single cut to its entanglement using a thirty foot pole and knife.
Despite numerous lacerations from its entanglement the prognosis for the whale was much improved.
Boaters are urged to report any entanglement sightings of whales, sea-turtles and other marine animals to the Marine Animal Entanglement Response Hotline (1-800-900-3622) or the US Coast Guard on VHF 16, and to stand by the animal at a safe distance until trained responders arrive.
CCS disentanglement work is supported by a grant from the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) and the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries (MA-DMF). Support for the Marine Animal Response Team also comes from grants from the Massachusetts Environmental Trust, the Pegasus Foundation, the Hermann Foundation, the Mary P. Dolciani Halloran Foundation, the G. Unger Vetlesen Foundation, the Grace W. Allsop Foundation, the MALLRD Foundation, and contributions from CCS members. All disentanglement activities are conducted under a federal permit authorized by NOAA.