We’re kick-starting the 2020 year with another right whale calf sighting.
A calf spotted Thursday is the third sighted with its mother during the 2019-2020 calving season. The whale, named Harmonia, was spotted off Cumberland Island, Ga.
The first two sightings happened in December off the Georgia coast. The first was a 15-year-old mother with her first known calf. The second is known to be a 32-year-old mother who last calved in 2013. This would be her seventh calf.
Looking back at the past calving season, zero calves were spotted in the 2017-2018 season and seven were recorded in the 2018-2019 season.
The largest known calf production was back in the 2008-2009 season when 39 calves were spotted.
These large endangered whales like to socialize at the surface of the water, which opens them up to being hit by boats and caught in entanglements.
Most importantly, as we continue through the new year, let’s remember to keep a safe distance from these large whales.
Federal law requires 500 yards from right whales, by air and sea, including drones. This is an important time for these critically endangered right whale moms and their calves to bond.