Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies

35 Years of Research & Education

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      Wednesday, April 20, 2011

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
    IMAGE AVAILABLE

    PCCS Contact:
    Tanya Grady
    508.247.7665
    tgrady@coastalstudies.org

    Record Numbers of Right Whales off Cape Cod

    (Provincetown, Mass.) - Record numbers of right whales have been recorded in Cape Cod Bay and adjacent waters. The whales are visible from Herring Cove Beach and Race Point in Provincetown.

    To date, the right whale program has documented 201 right whales in Cape Cod's waters. Over one hundred animals were sighted yesterday during one seven hour research flight. Approximately 473 animals remain in the entire North Atlantic right whale population.

    Vessel based research teams out of Provincetown have also observed unusual conditions including exceptionally high concentrations of planktonic food. It is likely that the rich concentration of the right whale's food resource is the reason for the continuing high concentration of right whales currently seen from the beaches that line the Outer Cape.

    Please be advised, PCCS does not encourage the public to approach right whales. These animals are extremely rare and are considered critically endangered. North Atlantic right whales are protected by the Endangered Species Act and the Marine Mammal Protection Act. Federal Law prohibits approaching within 500 yards of a right whale. PCCS approaches these rare animals while conducting research for the Massachusetts Department of Marine Fisheries under a federal permit issued by the National Marine Fisheries Service.

    PCCS right whale research provides resource managers with valuable information regarding population distribution, behaviors, habitat use, and food source abundance in an effort to learn more about these rare animals, increase conservation measures, and hopefully prevent their extinction.

    ***

    The Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies is celebrating 35 years of Research & Education. PCCS is dedicated to preserving coastal and marine ecosystems and providing educational activities which promote the responsible stewardship of our oceans. To learn more about our work and our results, email tgrady@coastalstudies.org



    Right whale images taken under NOAA Fisheries permit 633-1763, under the authority of the U.S. Endangered Species and Marine Mammal Protection Acts - please request PCCS permission for use.

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