PORTLAND, Maine - The Gulf of Maine is in the midst of its third-warmest year on record in a development that could further harm marine life.
The gulf is warming faster than most of the world's oceans in a well-documented phenomenon. The Portland Press Herald reports that surface temperatures in 2018 are now running nearly 3 degrees Fahrenheit above normal.
Gulf of Maine Research Institute chief scientific officer Andrew Pershing says that level of warming was exceeded only in 2012 and 2016 during the 37 years satellite records have been collected.
The warming of the gulf could further imperil North Atlantic right whales, which are down to only about 411 individuals. It's also bad news for puffin colonies.
Correction: An original version of this post stated that there were an estimated 440 right whales alive. The actual number is 411