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Southern Right Whale 5-Year Review


Endangered Species Act
Action Status
Affected Species


In 2020, NMFS announced the initiation of a 5-year review for the southern right whale (Eubalaena australis).

NMFS is required by the Endangered Species Act (ESA) to conduct 5-year reviews to ensure that the listing classifications of species are accurate. The 5-year review must be based on the best scientific and commercial data available at the time of the review.

We requested submission of any such information on the southern right whale, particularly information on the status, threats, and recovery of the species that has become available since its last status review in 2015.

We have now completed the 5-year review and recommend that southern right whales be reclassified from endangered to threatened based on population growth in some regions, and rangewide abundance and distribution.

Last updated on 04/28/2021

5-Year Review