Fox 5: Mystery of Dying Whales Concerns Scientists

Fox 5 NY's Jodi Goldberg met Atlantic Marine Conservation Society chief scientist Rob DiGiovanni at Jones Beach to talk about the recent whale deaths in New York and what he and his fellow scientists are working to uncover.

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Scientists are searching for answers about why humpback whales are dying at an unprecedented rate along the Atlantic Coast.

"Having six animals come up in six months is something that we haven't seen in years," said Rob DiGiovanni, the founder of the Atlantic Marine Conservation Society. "Between May and June, we had four animals come up in a 30-day period." 

Watch the interview and find the story here.

AMCS Performs Necropsy on Stranded Humpback Whale in Far Rockaway

On Tuesday, June 12, 2018, Atlantic Marine Conservation Society (AMCS) received a report of a whale swimming in Reynolds Channel in Far Rockaway. This event recalled memories of a humpback whale that had spent nearly a week swimming in that same area in November 2017, which was believed to have made its way out of the channel on its own. AMCS stayed in contact with their colleagues at the US Coast Guard and the next day, the whale was not seen in the channel. On Thursday, June 14 however, AMCS received a report of a deceased humpback whale on a sandbar near Atlantic Beach Bridge.

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Because of the whale’s location, many resources needed to come together in order to respond. Working with the Town of Hempstead, Bay Constable, and US Coast Guard, teams were able to secure the whale and tow it to Alder Island. Once the whale was moved, the team was able to conduct the necropsy examination, which took place on Friday, June 15.

The whale was male, 30 feet in length, and could have been between 3 to 5 years of age. The examination showed the whale had not been actively eating and may have been compromised. It was also fairly decomposed. Samples were taken and sent to a pathologist to help determine a cause of death. Those results may take several months to come back. AMCS had additional support from Mystic Aquarium and Mount Sinai Icahn School volunteers, and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Fisheries and NYS Department of Conservation. This was the fifth humpback whale to wash up on New York shores this year, and the fourth whale in less than 30 days.

As a nonprofit organization, we truly appreciate all of the organizations involved that were instrumental in these efforts. We ask that the public help by reporting strandings to the NYS Stranding Hotline by calling 631.369.9829.

4th Stranded Humpback Whale in 2018 Strands in Breezy Point

On Friday, June 1, 2018 Atlantic Marine Conservation Society (AMCS) was made aware of a deceased humpback whale in Breezy Point near the Silver Gull Beach Club. This whale was the fourth humpback to wash up on New York shores and the third one in less than 30 days. The following day, AMCS conducted the necropsy with support from Gateway National Park Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Fisheries, NYS Department of Environmental Conservation, and Sea Turtle Recovery to discover what happened to this animal.

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