More than likely, you have heard of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. As more and more people become aware of how pollution is a big issue, they begin to realize that the ocean is little more than a dumping ground for many industries around the world.
Pollution is a problem that affects all of us, regardless of whether we live on the land or in the sea. For marine animals, however, pollution is more than an inconvenience, it can be a deadly problem in certain situations.
This could include many sea creatures that eat pieces of plastic, thinking they are food, or the whale in this story, which was in quite a predicament.
The humpback whale was spotted off Maui with more than 50 feet of rope trailing behind it. After being cited, the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary got busy trying to help the animal.
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This sort of problem has been seen before, and the NOAA Fisheries Marine Mammal Health and Stranding Response Program provided authorization for the Marine sanctuary to move forward with the rescue program.
Tour boats were the first to spot the humpback whale calf that had become entangled in more than 120 feet of rope. It seemed as if the calf had been separated from his mother, and without intervention, it was unlikely that it would survive.
It wasn’t only the rope that caused the difficulty, there was also some type of gear that was embedded in the whale at the back of the mouth. Although they weren’t able to remove the gear, they were able to remove much of the rope that was causing the problem.
After working on the problem, the whale eventually became uncooperative so they stopped the work.
According to a NOAA spokesperson in a release sent to IFLScience: “Less than [10.6 meters) 35 feet of gear is believed to remain on the animal with all the wraps from the left pectoral flipper being removed, no potential for wraps to the tail, and little drag remaining. While we have no way of knowing whether the animal will survive, its chances have been significantly improved. Mahalo to all that were part of the effort and the valuable roles that all played.”Whizzco