NMFS/PSB Aerial Survey May 23, 2000 (fwd)

From: mike williamson (williams@www1.wheelock.edu)
Date: Wed May 24 2000 - 13:32:35 EDT

Flight Summary for May 23, 2000 - NEFSC/PSB

 The NEFSC/PSB aerial survey for 5/23/00 explored the Western Gulf of Maine including the waters
of Platts Bank and Wilkinson Basin (4317N 7005W and 4317N 6925W by 4242N 7005W and 4242N 6925W)
and Fippennies Ledge and Cashes Ledge (4257N 7005W to 4257N 6858W 4252N by 7005W to 4252N
6858W). Sightings conditions ranged from good to moderate, except in fog patches where
visibility was poor.
 An overnight rain storm had cleared the region but the low ceiling (clouds 500' to 1000'),
offshore fog banks and persistent Northeast wind restricted our survey area and only allowed us
this small window to survey the Northwestern Gulf of Maine. Beaufort sea state ranged from 1-3
for the entire day. The aerial survey was flown at altitudes ranging from 500' to 750'.
 Small, widely scattered groups of humpbacks, finbacks, and minke whales were observed over the
survey area.
 At 12:24 (EST) we observed a dead Minke whale (Code 4/5) at 4311.5N/7003.4W. This location is
northern Jeffries Ledge and west of the Portland, Maine shipping lanes. This animal was approx.
24 feet in length, distinctive pointed rostrum, ventral side up (ventral grooves), small pointed
pectoral flippers and an attractive shade of “decomposing white”. Photos were taken.

No Right Whales or harbor porpoise were observed during this survey.

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