The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) implemented new boat restrictions on water east of Boston on Monday to protect migrating North Atlantic right whales.
NOAA announced a new voluntary vessel speed restriction zone after North Atlantic right whales were spotted 18 nautical miles east of Boston. The whales are currently migrating along the Atlantic coast of the United States.
With only an estimated 400 remaining, North Atlantic right whales are one of the rarest marine mammals in the world. They are currently protected under the US Endangered Species Act and the Marine Mammal Protection Act.
With the implementation of the new restrictions, there are now three voluntary slow speed zones and three mandatory zones. Mariners are asked either to go around or to go less than 10 knots inside the areas in which the whales have been spotted. These restrictions remain in place until March 29.