LETTER OF THE DAY: Beware the speeding whale killer
READER COMMENT: MOST of us are in awe at the size and mere existence of those giants of the sea, whales.
But compared to a 300m cargo vessel, there is no contest, particularly if the whale is pregnant or has calved.
If the mother is killed or seriously injured, chances for the calf's survival are greatly reduced.
Should a vessel strike at 12-13 knots, the chance of whale fatality is 50-70%.
We are so fortunate to live in an area where we can see whales passing on their annual migration, quite close to the coast.
The threat of whale strike from shipping is growing daily.
By 2020 shipping passages through the Barrier Reef are estimated to almost double to about 23 per day.
Not good news for our marine life as a whale that is hit is likely to die an agonising death.
The speed of these vessels needs to be limited.
The International Fund for Animal Welfare is seeking assistance from the community to write to Environment Minister Hunt in Canberra to reduce the speeds of ships in the area where these amazing creatures have their nurseries and pass by.
The scenario for our marine life can only be improved by community support and education.