A humpback whale that had been entangled in nets has been saved.

The 20 foot whale was trapped in the Ambrose Channel of New York. Nets anchored the humpback to the sea floor, making it nearly impossible for it to make it to the surface to breath. The whale was also at severe risk of being struck by ships or attacked by predators.

The DEC along with National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Coast Guard and additional partners worked together for several days to save the whale, deploying buoys to help keep the tangled humpback afloat.

Photo Credit - NYDEC

“That was among the more challenging whale disentanglement cases we have dealt with. That whale was fighting to live," said Scott Landry, CCS Director of Marine Animal Entanglement Response. “Without intervention that whale would not have survived. While it’s not entirely out of the woods yet, it’s prospects are now 100 percent better than what they were. We are optimistic we will see the whale again and like the majority of humpback whales off our coast it will bear the scars of entanglement.”

Photo Credit - NYDEC

Recreational boaters first discovered and reported the trapped whale. Mariners are encouraged to immediately report sightings of injured or entangled whales. In New York, call 631-369-9829; outside of New York, call 866-755-6622.

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