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Image: Peter Flood

Biden Administration Sinks Emergency Petition to Shield Right Whale Moms, Calves From Vessel Strikes

Image: Peter Flood For Immediate Release, January 20, 2023 WASHINGTON- The National Marine Fisheries Service...
A whale swims underwater while white text to the left of the whale says "AmazonSmile does make an impact to charities"

Amazon Announces End of AmazonSmile Program

Amazon announced on January 19th, 2023 that it is ending its AmazonSmile donation program by...
An orca lies in the surf as people look at it.

Orca Found Dead on Florida Beach

Credit: Flagler County Sheriff's Office On January 11th, a 21-foot-long female orca died after stranding...
A fluke of a North Atlantic right whale lifts out of the water

WDC Fights Back as Maine Delegation Strips Protections for Endangered Whales

Image credit: Peter Flood UPDATE: On December 29th, 2022, President Biden signed the omnibus appropriations...

US Protection Sought for Depleted Beluga Whale Stock

In response to the ongoing threats to beluga populations in Russia, WDC, along with the Animal Welfare Institute, Cetacean Society International, and Earth Island Institute has filed a petition with the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) to designate the Sakhalin Bay-Amur River stock of beluga whales in the Sea of Okhotsk as depleted under the US Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA).

Subjected to intense levels of historical hunting, these belugas have yet to recover and face serious ongoing threats, most notably from annual live captures for public display. Around 30 belugas are captured annually to be shipped abroad. At least 320 belugas have been captured for export from Russia between 1990 and 2012. From 2008-2010 there were 63 exported to China alone.

If successful, a depleted designation under the US MMPA for the Sakhalin-Amur beluga whale stock will encourage the United States and foreign governments, conservation organizations, the scientific community, and funding institutions to support research and conservation efforts to help recover these belugas and protect their habitat.

Press release can be found here.