A New Brunswick lobster fisherman who had just helped to release a whale caught in a fishing net was killed when the marine mammal accidentally hit him offshore.
The tragedy occurred Monday in the Gulf of St. Lawrence off Shippagan, in the Acadian Peninsula.
The victim was identified by his colleague Mackie Green as Joe Howlett, 59, of Campobello Island, in the extreme southwest of the province. The crew of which Mr. Howlett was a member was sailing aboard a vessel of Fisheries and Oceans Canada.
It appears that a few days earlier, Joe Howlett had participated in another expedition that had resulted in the release of a North Atlantic right whale that was entangled in a fishing net in the same area.
Mackie Green and Joe Howlett founded a whale watching and rescue business together in 2002. Mr. Howlett was originally from Nova Scotia, but moved to Campobello Island several years ago.