Researchers at the Center for Coastal Studies in Provincetown, Massachusetts, recently spotted three mom and calf pairs of an extremely endangered species of whale in Cape Cod Bay. The North Atlantic right whale is one of the rarest species of whale on the planet, numbering just 411.
That’s big news because the whale’s population has been falling, and no calves were seen last year. In all, seven right whale calves have been seen so far this year.
The whales give birth off Georgia and Florida in the winter and travel to feeding grounds off New England in the early spring, including the Gulf of Maine, a body of water that touches Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine and Canada.
Cape Cod Bay is part of the Gulf of Maine and is a critically important feeding ground. The animals often feed close to shore, providing watchers on land “unbeatable views of one of the rarest of marine mammals,” the Center for Coastal Studies said in a statement.