Presence of right whales leads to more fishery closures

The closure will take effect May 30, 2018 at 4 p.m., DFO said in a news release Sunday.

Closure to take effect May 30, 2018 at 4 p.m., DFO said in a news release Sunday

North Atlantic right whales in Cape Cod, Mass. (Center for Coastal Studies/NOAA)

The presence of North Atlantic right whales has led to the closure of more fishery areas.

Fisheries and Oceans Canada said the temporary closure will start at 4 p.m. on May 30. It is providing a 72 hour advanced notice and extending the delay of the closure by 24 hours due to predicted high winds.

It's unclear how long the closures will last, but DFO said it would make an announcement to industry before it re-opens the area.

The following new grids will be closed:

  • GU37 (portion)
  • GU38 (portion)
  • GU39 (portion)
  • GU40 (portion)
  • GV37
  • GV38
  • GV39
  • GV40 (portion)
  • GW37.

DFO said six other grids that were closed last week will remain closed:

  • GW38
  • GW39
  • GW40
  • GX38
  • GX39
  • GX40

Closures will be in effect for fisheries where the fishing seasons are opened: snow crab, toe crab, rock crab, lobster and whelk.

DFO said closures will also be in effect for winter flounder (fixed gear), Atlantic halibut (fixed gear) and Greenland halibut (fixed gear) when gear is left unattended.

"DFO would like to ask licence holders to be vigilant during fishing activities concerning the arrival of North Atlantic right whales," the department said on its website Sunday evening.