Extension of Right Whale Slow Zone South of Nantucket, MA
On November 6, 2021, the Center for Coastal Studies aerial survey team detected the presence of right whales South of Nantucket, MA. The right whale Slow Zone (DMA) is in effect immediately and expires on November 22, 2021.
As a reminder, on November 4, 2021, NOAA Fisheries announced a voluntary right whale Slow Zone East of Portland, ME. The Slow Zone expires on November 19, 2021.
VOLUNTARY Right whale “Slow Zone” AREAS
Mariners are requested to avoid or transit at 10 knots or less inside the following areas where persistent aggregations of right whales have been detected. Please visit www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/
South of Nantucket, MA Slow Zone DMA: Effective November 6-22, 2021 (extended)
Waters bounded by:
NORTHERN BOUNDARY: 41°20′ N
SOUTHERN BOUNDARY: 40°35′ N
EASTERN BOUNDARY: 69°32′ W
WESTERN BOUNDARY: 70°32′ W
East of Portland, ME Slow Zone: Effective November 4-19, 2021
Waters bounded by:
NORTHERN BOUNDARY: 43°36′ N
SOUTHERN BOUNDARY: 42°56′ N
EASTERN BOUNDARY: 68°03′ W
WESTERN BOUNDARY: 68°58′ W
Give Right Whales Room
North Atlantic right whales are on the move along the Atlantic coast of the U.S. NOAA is cautioning boaters and fishermen to give these endangered whales plenty of room. We are also asking all fishermen to be vigilant when maneuvering to avoid accidental collisions with whales and remove unused gear from the ocean to help avoid entanglements. Commercial fishermen should use vertical lines with required markings, weak links, and breaking strengths.
Right Whales in Trouble
North Atlantic right whales are protected under the U.S. Endangered Species Act and the Marine Mammal Protection Act. Scientists estimate there are only about 400 remaining, making them one of the rarest marine mammals in the world.
North Atlantic right whales are NOAA Fisheries’ newest Species in the Spotlight. This initiative is a concerted, agency-wide effort to spotlight and save marine species that are among the most at risk of extinction in the near future.
In August 2017, NOAA Fisheries declared the increase in right whale mortalities an “Unusual Mortality Event,” which helps the agency direct additional scientific and financial resources to investigating, understanding, and reducing the mortalities in partnership with the Marine Mammal Stranding Network, Canada’s Department of Fisheries and Oceans, and outside experts from the scientific research community.
Find out more about our right whale conservation efforts and the researchers behind those efforts.
Download the Whale Alert app for iPad and iPhone.
Details and graphics of all vessel strike management zones currently in effect.
Reminder: Approaching a right whale closer than 500 yards is a violation of federal and state law.