76 U.S. Whale Entanglements Reported in 2017

NOAA Fisheries recently issued a report stating that there were 76 confirmed whale entanglements nationwide in 2017.

“Although the overall number of entanglements in 2017 is within the 10-year average, the number of entanglements exhibits a decrease from the higher numbers seen in recent years in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic and West Coast regions,” NOAA Fisheries stated in its report.

According to the report, more than half of all confirmed entanglements occurred in Massachusetts and California. There were 20 entanglements in Massachusetts waters, or 26.6 percent of the total.

“The entanglements off the coast of Massachusetts were concentrated along Cape Cod and Stellwagen Bank and primarily involved humpback whales,” according to the report, which also stated that 70 percent of the entanglements were caused by fishing gear.