New York

More Humpback Whales Visit New York Harbor: Study

Even humpback whales are in a New York state of mind. 

An increasing number of humpback whales have been spotted in New York Harbor, a new study published in Marine Mammal Science found. 

There were 45 humpback whale sightings from 2014 to 2016, researchers said. Compare that to only one sighting from 2011 to 2013. 

Like so many visitors, the whales appear to be drawn to the Big Apple by the area's great food. But the whales are usually after Atlantic menhaden, not Michelin stars. 

The New York-New Jersey harbor estuary includes the New York Harbor, Raritan Bay and the Hudson and East Rivers. 

Although the sightings delight onlookers, they may be dangerous for the whales. 

“This area can be dangerous to whales and to boaters who may not be aware of their presence," said the study's lead author Danielle M. Brown. "Sightings occur most often during the fall, so it is especially important for boaters to be cautious during this time of year.”

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