HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
News tip: Duke marine biologist calls for whale-proof fishing gear

Current efforts to disentangle an endangered right whale whose flipper is wrapped in fishing gear off the North Carolina coast, while essential, are "really only a Band-Aid," says a Duke University marine mammal expert who has participated in past whale rescues.

"It's something to do in the interim while we search for better solutions," says Andrew Read, the Rachel Carson Associate Professor of Marine Conservation Biology at Duke's Nicholas School of the Environment and Earth Sciences. "What we're doing is kind of like emergency room care for whales that become entangled. The real answer is developing fishing gear that doesn't entangle whales in the first place."

Read said such big marine mammals usually become entangled in fixed lines extending from fishing equipment like nets or lobster pots on the ocean bottom to floats or buoys on the surface. Ideas currently being tested to address the problem include weak links in the anchoring line that will give way if a whale is ensnarled, or lines that decompose when exposed to the sun, he says.

Read, who is based at Duke's Marine Laboratory in coastal Beaufort, N.C., was on an expedition several years ago that disentangled a humpback whale off Cape Lookout after attaching floats to slow the animal down.

"But humpback whales are easier to disentangle than right whales," he says. "Right whales are stronger and less amenable to work with. They can be very aggressive. They'll thrash their tails. People have had much less success disentangling them.

"And the stakes are much higher," he adds. "There are about 350 right whales in the entire North Atlantic Ocean, and only a very few right whales in the Pacific.

"So every loss is a significant one to the population. We think the population has been declining slowly for the last decade. A really good bumper crop of calves a couple of years ago helped. But the population is highly endangered and has a s
'"/>

Contact: Monte Basgall
monte.basgall@duke.edu
919-681-8057
Duke University
26-Mar-2004


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. UAF scientists discover new marine habitat in Alaska
2. Students build submarine to track Octopuses
3. Gulf of Maine marine ecosystem may have entered new phase
4. Melting ice cap gives urgency to new census of marine life project in Arctic Ocean
5. Into the dead zone: Galveston researcher examines loss of marine life
6. Biological oceanographers examine regime shifts in complex marine ecosystems
7. Gulf marine reserves given new life
8. Fish no exception to trend in marine-organism disease
9. Freeing Nemo: Aquarium owners releasing non-native fish could endanger marine ecosystems
10. Report in BioScience details global decline of nonmarine mollusks
11. New Seascape initiative stretches from Costa Rica to Ecuador and protects key marine habitats

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:3/22/2017)... YORK , March 21, 2017 ... Marketing Cloud used by retailers such as 1-800-Flowers ... its platform — Product Recommendations and Replenishment. Using Optimove,s ... give more personalized product and replenishment recommendations to ... but also on predictions of customer intent drawn ...
(Date:3/20/2017)... At this year,s CeBIT Chancellor Dr. Angela Merkel visited ... to the DERMALOG stand together with the Japanese Prime Minster Shinzo Abe. ... the largest German biometrics company the two government leaders could see the ... well as DERMALOG´s multi-biometrics system.   Continue Reading ... ...
(Date:3/16/2017)... Against identity fraud with DERMALOG solutions "Made in Germany "  ... ... solutions provide a crucial contribution against identity fraud. (PRNewsFoto/Dermalog Identification Systems) ... Used combined in one project, multi-biometric solutions provide a crucial contribution against identity fraud. ... ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/20/2017)... , ... April 20, 2017 , ... ... the scientific and clinical research community’s growing body of knowledge during its ... the Gracie Theatre and the adjacent Darling Atrium. During the event, undergraduates, graduate ...
(Date:4/20/2017)... ... April 20, 2017 , ... Energetiq Technology ... announced today that Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Debbie Gustafson has been appointed to ... global industry association connecting the electronics manufacturing supply chain. The mission of the ...
(Date:4/20/2017)... Dutch philosopher Koert van Mensvoort - founder of the Next Nature ... Eindhoven - has written a ,Letter to Humanity, in support of ... becoming a slave and victim to its own technology, but to employ technology ... ... Mensvoort – founder of the Next Nature Network and Fellow of ‘Next Nature’ ...
(Date:4/19/2017)... ... 2017 , ... The Vibrating Orifice Aerosol Generator (VOAG) was ... droplets of known diameters for research applications such as for calibrating droplet measuring ... monodisperse droplets. , The VOAG requires forcing liquid out of an orifice ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: