When North Atlantic right whales get caught in fishing gear, they can drown immediately or suffer a slow a death from injury, infection or starvation.
They're some of the rarest whales on Earth — fewer than 360 are left.
They don't have time to lose, so we just ramped up our fight to save them.
You can help with a gift to the Saving Life on Earth Fund.
In 2017 alone, in what's called an "unusual mortality event," at least 17 right whales died.
Sadly, what was once considered unusual is now the norm.
We first went to court to save these whales in 2018. And last year we won a ruling that NOAA Fisheries had violated the Endangered Species Act by not doing enough to protect right whales.
That resulted in new regulations to reduce the risk of right whale entanglements in lobster gear. But the rules don't go nearly far enough. The agency admits that once the rule is in place, 9% of the right whale population — 32 right whales — will still get caught in fishing gear each year.
Even when entanglements with fishing gear don't kill them, right whales can become so sapped of strength they're not able to reproduce.
This spells disaster for an endangered population already on the brink.
So we've taken new legal action against NOAA Fisheries for failing to prevent right whales from getting tangled up and killed in lobster gear.
The solution is clear: Vertical fishing lines must be kept out of right whale habitat, and industry must convert to on-demand ropeless fishing gear.
The law is equally clear: NOAA Fisheries is violating the Endangered Species Act and Marine Mammal Protection Act by not doing everything needed to save these imperiled whales.
We won't stop fighting for right whales and all species facing the threat of extinction.
This is our core mission, and we need you with us.
Please give today to the Saving Life on Earth Fund.
For the wild,