1st newborn right whale of calving season seen off Georgia

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This Dec. 16, 2019, photo taken by an aerial survey team from Clearwater Marine Aquarium shows a right whale calf and its mother swimming in the Atlantic Ocean near Sapelo Island, Ga. (NOAA Permit #20556-01/Clearwater Marine Aquarium via AP)

SAVANNAH, Ga (WSAV) – Scientists say the first newborn right whale of the winter calving season has been spotted off the coast of Georgia.

The critically endangered whales migrate each winter to give birth in warmer waters off the southeastern U.S. coast.

Scientists estimate just over 400 North Atlantic right whales remain, so each newborn calf is important.

This Dec. 16, 2019, photo taken by an aerial survey team from Clearwater Marine Aquarium shows a right whale calf and its mother swimming in the Atlantic Ocean near Sapelo Island, Ga. (NOAA Permit #20556-01/Clearwater Marine Aquarium via AP)

The Georgia Department of Natural Resources said in a news release that a survey team spotted a mother whale and her newborn calf Monday near Sapelo Island.

Right whales have been dying at a faster rate than they have reproduced in recent years.

Seven births were recorded last winter, while at least 10 right whales were found dead in 2019.

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