The Caribbean island of Dominica is declaring 300 square miles of ocean a no-fishing no-shipping zone to create the world’s first sperm whale reserve.
The Good News Network reported Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit stated, “The 200 or so sperm whales that call our sea home are prized citizens of Dominica.”
“Their ancestors likely inhabited Dominica before humans arrived,” he added.
Then he noted, “We want to ensure these majestic and highly-intelligent animals are safe from harm.”
This area of gulf water is the only known area where sperm whales are spotted throughout the entire year. It is where they thrive and choose to breed — despite being oceanic nomads.
In the 1800s and early 1900s, sperm whales were hunted for their oil to make candles and fuel oil lamps, per the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries (NOAA).
A moratorium to protect this species was placed on commercial whaling by the International Whaling Commission in 1986, but the endangered sperm whale population is still in recovery.
Sperm whales take between 30 and 50 years to mature and gestate calves for over a year.
They are social creatures. The females create their own family unit, caring for each other and their young, while the males go off to form “bachelor schools” where they congregate in groups once they are old enough to leave their mothers.
These large whales grow between 40 and 52 feet and they live for about 60 years, but their lives are threatened by vessel strikes, entanglement in fishing gear, ocean noise, and marine pollution.
Skerrit’s dedication to marine life preservation is not only displayed in his conservation efforts, but also his support of sharing oceanic awe.
He posted to X, formerly Twitter, Wednesday urging people to watch the newly released “Dominica-The Nature Island,” documentary which displays an image of sperm whales on the cover.
He noted, “Experience the wonders.”
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