Calif. crabbers buy into efforts to save whales

The moment Justin Viezbicke receives a report of a whale wrapped in a crab pot line, the clock starts ticking.

Despite a whale’s size, a single nylon line can do massive damage. As the whale swims, the lines pull and tighten, slicing into the animal’s flesh and cutting off circulation. Whales can lose limbs — and their lives.

“Finding an entangled whale is like looking for a needle in a haystack,” said Viezbicke, a biologist who is one of only three people in the state certified to lead a whale disentanglement. “Granted, the needle is large — but the haystack is larger. And you can only see its surface.”

Read the full story

About the author

Jessica Hathaway

Jessica Hathaway is the editor in chief of National Fisherman. She has been covering the fishing industry for 13 years, serves on the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute’s Communications Committee and is a National Fisheries Conservation Center board member.

© Diversified Communications. All rights reserved.