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The two minke whales are still near Île Sainte-Hélène

MONTREAL — The two minke whales that were seen this week in the St. Lawrence River were still near Montreal on Friday evening.

In an update published in the early evening, the Group for Research and Education on Marine Mammals (GREMM) indicated that the two minke whales were present on either side of Île Sainte-Hélène.

In the morning, the group had specified that the first animal was between the Old Port of Montreal and Île Sainte-Hélène, near the Trois-Disques sculpture, while the second had moved in the Le Canal. Moyne, between the Cosmos footbridge and the Jacques-Cartier bridge.

At the same time, the GREMM asked boaters, who are more numerous on the river due to the current heat wave, to stay away from the two mammals.

Under the Marine Mammal Regulations of the Canadian Fisheries Act, boats must remain at least 100 meters from the whales, which is why the GREMM recommends curious passers-by try to observe the animals from the shore.

The first minke whale was seen in the river near Montreal on Sunday. Already, fears for the survival of the animal have been raised, since it was some 450 kilometers upstream from its usual habitat.

According to GREMM data, the first minke whale measures 3.4 meters and its age is estimated between 0 and 2 years.

Three days later, a second mammal found itself in the same area. On Friday, the Quebec Marine Mammal Emergency Network (RQUMM) indicated that it is also a young minke whale and that it is emaciated.

Surveillance teams took turns on site Friday to document the animals.

Earlier this week, RQUMM coordinator Robert Michaud explained to The Canadian Press that the group only intervenes to help mammals in certain specific cases, especially when there is a direct human cause, for example if a whale is taken. in a fisherman’s net.