View Full Version : A modern day Robin Hood

05-05-2010, 06:19 AM
Over the weekend, a team with the Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies used a unique new technique to free a right whale from a rope that ensnared its upper jaw.

Using a crossbow, the team cut the rope by shooting an arrow with four razor blades on its tip Saturday, said Scott Landry, director of the Marine Animal Entanglement Response Team. The whale was not injured.

“We did this because this species is notorious for two things: having wraps around their upper jaw, and being very evasive,’’ Landry said. “They really do not like to be approached. That makes disentanglement very difficult.’’

A stopper was placed below the tip to prevent it from going into the whale, Landry said.

The whale, a female nicknamed Wart, had a dangerous problem — rope wrapped around her upper jaw and zigzagged through her baleen plates, which filter food particles from water.

An intervention had to wait until the whale was spotted again.

That spotting came Saturday in the Great South Channel off Cape Cod.

Working under federal permit, Landry and his crew were able to get within 40 feet of Wart.

When Wart finally surfaced to take a breath, Landry knew he had just one second before she dove back underwater. He also had just one try.

“Truth be told, it was very difficult,’’ Landry said. “It all happened very quickly.’’

Landry shot the arrow. It zipped through the air, and one of the blades cut straight through the rope wrapping around the whale’s jaw.

Wart was not touched and did not seem to realize anything had happened, Landry said. But when she came back up from her next dive, she began opening and closing her mouth.

05-05-2010, 09:46 AM
Thats a video I'd like to see I hope they filmed it.

05-05-2010, 05:29 PM
cool story.... :banano:

05-05-2010, 05:53 PM
All over the Boston news tonight. Didn't seem to be any real video of "the shot".