More Right whales

Whalers harpoon a right whale in this 1856 Currier & Ives print.
Whale baleen, the stiff bristly mouthparts that sieve small prey from the water, was strong yet flexible, and was used to provide structure in many human products, including umbrellas, corsets, and...
Stretching up to 16.8 meters (55 feet) long and weighing up to 62 tons (70 tons), the North Atlantic right whale is one of the world’s largest animals—and one of the most endangered whales...
When a critically endangered North Atlantic right whale becomes entangled in fishing gear, members of a response team from the Atlantic Large Whale Disentanglement Network spring into action. In the...
Two North Atlantic right whales ( Eubalaena glacialis ) swim at the surface of the water. Learn more about this species in the North Atlantic Right Whale section.
New England Aquarium researchers Dr. Moira Brown and Yan Guilbault conducting aerial surveys for North Atlantic right whales over the Roseway Basin, Canada. More about right whales can be found in...
A drawing of Phoenix from the Right Whale Catalog documents her callosity pattern and other identifying marks. More about whales can be found in our Tale of a whale featured story .
There were fewer than 450 North Atlantic right whales in 2006. Yet it has been illegal to hunt them since 1935. Why haven’t populations increased? Traits that made right whales easy to hunt make them...
A right whale opens its mouth wide, revealing huge plates of baleen hanging from its upper jaw. There are between 200 and 270 baleen plates on each side of a right whale's upper jaw. They work like a...
This early whale was well suited to life at sea. But it also may have spent time on land. An ancestor of the right whale , Maiacetus lived 49-40 million years ago. It had flipper-like limbs and...
A white scar on Phoenix’s lip (at right) was caused by her entanglement with a fishing line. Learn more about the life of Phoenix, an actual North Atlantic right whale, in the Tale of a whale photo...
Whalers hunted right whales for their blubber, which could be turned into oil to burn in lamps or make soap, and their baleen. Baleen is the series of fringed plates hanging in their mouths that they...
A model marker applies paint to the life-size, meticulously detailed model of the North Atlantic right whale Phoenix which today is on exhibit in the Smithsonian’s Sant Ocean Hall in the National...
In 1996, at age nine, Phoenix has her first calf (North Atlantic right whale #2605) off the southeast coast of Florida. More about the right whale can be found in our Tale of a Whale featured story .
The North Atlantic right whale is one of the world's largest animals, but scientists estimate that fewer than 450 remain. In the past, they were hunted for their oil and baleen; now they get tangled...
Since 1987, researchers have been tracking Phoenix. More about whales can be found in our Tale of a whale featured story .
This illustration shows how fishing lines attached to traps and buoys on the ocean floor present a potentially deadly hazard to North Atlantic right whales. Freeing entangled whales involves a...
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