Endangered humpback whales will get official protection from the US. According to the US administration, 116,098 nautical square miles of the Pacific Ocean will be protected as critical habitat. This rule could also help to protect whales that are migrating from problems like oil spills, ship strike, and entanglement in fishing gear.
In 2018, the Center for Biological Diversity, Turtle Island Restoration Network, and Wishtoyo Foundation, sued the federal government for not designating critical habitats for Endangered species.
Pacific humpbacks finally got the habitat protections they’ve needed for so long. Now we need to better protect humpbacks from ship strikes and entanglement in fishing gear, their leading causes of death. To recover West Coast populations of these playful, majestic whales, we need mandatory ship speed limits and conversion of California’s deadly trap fisheries to ropeless gear.Catherine Kilduff, an attorney with the Center
In January, the federal government was also sued by the Center for Biological Diversity for not protecting endangered whales from ships utilizing California ports. The wildlife organization is among the sponsors of the California Whale Entanglement Prevention Act which requires commercial trap fisheries in the state to start using ropeless gear by the end of 2025.
There are fewer than 800 endangered humpback whales that feed off the coast of California, making them vulnerable to human threats.