Protecting adult female north atlantic right whales from injury and death key to recovery

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Why is the endangered western North Atlantic right whale population growing far more slowly than those of southern right whales, a sister species also recovering from near extinction by commercial whaling? NOAA Fisheries researchers and colleagues looked more closely at the question and have concluded that preserving the lives of adult females in the population is by far the most effective way to promote population growth and recovery. The findings are reported in Royal Society Open Science.