Canadian Fisherman Killed After Rescuing A Whale From Net – tentree

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Canadian Fisherman Killed After Rescuing A Whale From Net

Joe Howlett is proof that not all heroes wear capes, and that often times, acts of heroism can be dangerous.

Howlett, a Canadian lobster fisherman, has saved dozens of endangered whales who had become tangled up in fishing nets. Recently, after saving a whale caught in a net, Howlett was accidentally killed.

Northern Atlantic right whales have been in serious trouble. Their numbers have dwindled to around 525 and recently, more than 1% of their total population has been found floating dead off the coast of Canada. So when Howlett found a right whale tangled in a net, he knew he had to take action.

Howlett successfully freed the whale. After the whale was freed, Howlett was accidentally struck by the animal and killed.

“They got the whale totally disentangled and then some kind of freak thing happened and the whale made a big flip,” Green, who was not onboard the vessel, told The Canadian Press.

Howlett's death was confirmed by the federal fisheries department. They expressed sympathies to his family and friends.

“Taking part in whale rescue operations requires immense bravery and a passion for the welfare of marine mammals,” the department wrote in a statement. “There are serious risks involved with any disentanglement attempt. Each situation is unique, and entangled whales can be unpredictable.”

As for the whales that Howlett was dedicated to saving, researchers aren't sure why they're suddenly dying in such large numbers. A wide array of experts have been teaming up to figure out what is causing the mass die-offs. Necropsies are being conducted to try to assess causes of death.

The post Canadian Fisherman Killed After Rescuing A Whale From Net appeared first on tentree.
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