July 15, 2018

The Center for Coastal Studies (CCS) Marine Animal Entanglement Response (MAER) team worked to disentangle the 2017 calf of the humpback whale, Rapier, yesterday off Cape Cod.

The whale had rope deeply embedded within the base of its flukes, indicating that it had been dealing with its entanglement for weeks or months. To reduce further potential injury to the whale, small lengths of rope were left in the wound for the whale to reject naturally, over time.

This operation would not have been possible without the incredible support of the local whale watch community who reported the entanglement and stood by the whale until the MAER team arrived on scene. This included the crews and passengers of the Hyannis Whale Watcher, the Dolphin Fleet and the Captain John and Sons, among others.

Boaters are urged to report any entanglement sightings of whales, sea-turtles or sharks to the MAER team (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 grants from the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries (MA-DMF), and the Massachusetts Environmental Trust. Support is also provided by the Pegasus Foundation, the Hermann Foundation, the Mary P. Dolciani Halloran Foundation, and contributions from CCS members. All disentanglement activities are conducted under a federal permit authorized by NOAA.

Contact Us

Entanglement Hotline: (800) 900-3622
ccs@coastalstudies.org
(508) 487-3622
5 Holway Avenue
Provincetown, MA 02657
(508) 487-3623

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