Endangered whale population sinks close to 20-year low

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — A group of scientists and ocean life advocates says a type of whale that is one of the rarest marine mammals in the world lost nearly 10% of its population last year. The North Atlantic right whale numbered only 366 in 2019, and its population fell to 336 in 2020. The estimate by the North Atlantic Right Whale Consortium is the lowest number in nearly two decades. The whales have suffered high mortality and poor reproduction in some recent years. They’re vulnerable to collisions with ships and entanglement in fishing gear.