VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) – Larger vessels sailing off Virginia waters are being reminded to slow down for right whales. The Coast Guard has implemented “Operation Right Speed” through April 2012 to ensure the migratory mammals have a safe passage along the Atlantic seaboard.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has implemented regulations that require vessels 65 feet or greater to operate at 10 knots or less in areas where the right whales are known to migrate. That includes the waters off Virginia.
The first female right whale of the season was seen this month off Georgia. Right whales are among the most threatened of all the whales worldwide. The global population is estimated in the hundreds.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)