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Search underway to locate dead right whale in Gulf of St. Lawrence

North Atlantic Right Whales.
Jessica Taylor/New England Aquarium photo.
Two North Atlantic Right Whales. - Jessica Taylor/New England Aquarium photo.

Various agencies are scrambling to locate a dead right whale in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.

The search was initiated after the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) received a report June 4 of a dead whale drifting in the Gulf.

As of Wednesday morning, officials were still trying to locate the marine mammal.

A DFO report said the Marine Animal Response Society (MARS), Quebec Marine Mammal Emergency Response Network and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration are also involved in efforts to locate and recover the whale.

If the whale is located, DFO is hoping to have a satellite tag attached to it so that it can be easily tracked.

Recovery and necropsy options are being evaluated.

There were no reported North Atlantic right whale deaths in Canadian waters last year, but Canada and the United States are still reeling from the unprecedented deaths of 12 members of the endangered species in 2017.

Estimates place the number of North Atlantic right whales still in existence at fewer than 450.

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