A group of tourists were whale watching off the coast of Massachusetts when they noticed that one of the humpback whales was tangled in some fishing gear. The tourists called the MAER team and waited for help to arrive. Once the MAER team showed up, rescuers were able to get all of the fishing gear off that whale.
They did the right thing! Entanglement responders are highly trained individuals who spend years learning how to safely disentangle whales and other marine animals. Members of the public should never attempt to undertake this incredibly dangerous task themselves; instead, they should call one of the entanglement hotlines — 800-900-3622 or 866-755-6622 — or hail the US Coast Guard on VHF 16.
Next, a blacktip shark was tangled in some fishing net. Since it was close to the shore, Hilson Atkins got the attention of pier manager Mike Phillips, who helped to get the shark onto the beach so he could cut the netting off and release it back into the water. We're glad Mike knew exactly how to handle this situation!