Advertisement

Dead North Atlantic right whale on Cape Breton beach as experts seek cause of death

Pathologists from P.E.I.'s Atlantic Veterinary College examine the carcass of Punctuation the right whale on June 25, 2019. .
Pathologists from P.E.I.'s Atlantic Veterinary College examine the carcass of Punctuation the right whale on June 25, 2019. . Department of Fisheries and Oceans/Twitter

A North Atlantic right whale found dead last week in the Gulf of St. Lawrence has been brought to shore on western Cape Breton for a necropsy.

The whale – a 40-year-old female named Punctuation – was towed late Monday to Petit Etang, N.S., where pathologists from P.E.I.’s Atlantic Veterinary College were expected to examine the carcass.

READ MORE: Necropsy set for Tuesday on body of right whale found in Gulf of St. Lawrence

An aerial survey team discovered the body floating off the Magdalen Islands on June 20.

Researchers say they had been studying Punctuation, who gave birth to at least eight calves, for nearly four decades.

There are about 400 of the endangered whales left, with deaths outpacing live births.

Story continues below advertisement

WATCH: Another right whale death as new study indicates human activity the cause of species die-off

Another right whale death as new study indicates human activity the cause of species die-off
Another right whale death as new study indicates human activity the cause of species die-off

A study released last week found more than half the 70 right whale deaths recorded over the last 16 years were caused by entanglement in fishing gear or vessel collisions.