January 15, 2020
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Feds considering Maine lobstermen’s concerns about plan to save right whales

Michael Dwyer | AP
Michael Dwyer | AP
In this March 28, 2018, file photo, a North Atlantic right whale feeds on the surface of Cape Cod bay off the coast of Plymouth, Massachusetts.

The federal government said it’s considering the concerns of a lobster fishermen’s group about a plan to try to save an endangered species of whale.

The plan concerns the North Atlantic right whale, which numbers only about 400. The Maine Lobstermen’s Association pulled its support from the plan this summer because of concerns it placed too much onus on lobstermen, who would be called to remove miles of trap rope from the water.

The lobstermen’s group’s concerns included that right whales are also subject to entanglement in fishing gear in Canadian waters. Chris Oliver, assistant administrator for the National Marine Fisheries Service, released a letter Wednesday that said the U.S. is working with Canada to reduce that problem.

He also stated that “monitoring and research alone” won’t save the whales.

 



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