Endangered whale gives birth while entangled in fishing rope

Georgia

This Dec. 2, 2021, photo provided by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources shows an endangered North Atlantic right whale entangled in fishing rope being sighted with a newborn calf in waters near Cumberland Island, Ga. (Georgia Department of Natural Resources/NOAA Permit #20556 via AP)

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — Scientists off the coast of Georgia have spotted an endangered right whale that gave birth while entangled in fishing rope.

Wildlife officials from Georgia and Florida photographed the seemingly healthy newborn calf swimming alongside its mother as the adult whale dragged a length of rope snared in its mouth.

Biologist Clay George of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources said the mother and calf haven’t reappeared since they were spotted Thursday.

George says he’s aware of only one other instance of an entangled right whale giving birth.

He says experts deemed it too risky to try to free the mother whale last week.

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