Entanglement in fishing gear is a major threat to marine wildlife. Ropes and nets that are sent adrift during storms or abandoned by the fisherman are out there in the environment for quite some time just waiting for an innocent animal like this four-year-old male right whale (Eubalaena glacialis) to come along. Lucky for this guy, someone spotted him in an aerial survey and biologists from the Georgia DNR and Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission came to his aid. In this video, you will see their efforts to free the whale from the ropes wrapped in his mouth.
There are only estimated to be about 400 right whales left in the wild. They have baleen in their mouths and eat primarily plankton. Right whales can be close to 50ft long and have been known to live for 50 to 70 years if not prematurely killed by entanglements and boat strikes.