Today, June 8, is World Oceans Day, a global initiative to celebrate and build awareness about the importance and need to conserve the world’s oceans.
This year, Canada’s most significant ocean bay, the Bay of Fundy, is a finalist in an international quest to determine the New7Wonders of Nature. The Bay of Fundy is the only Canadian entry among 28 finalists in the global campaign. Other worldwide ocean finalists include Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, Vietnam’s Halong Bay and New Zealand’s Milford Sound.
Bay of Fundy Tourism leads Canada’s campaign to have the Bay of Fundy recognized as one of the New7Wonders of Nature. Executive director Terri McCulloch suggests voting for the Bay of Fundy, and other ocean finalists, as an ideal way to celebrate World Oceans Day.
“With the online voting system, people can vote for seven of the top 28 finalists. World Oceans Day seems like a perfect chance to support several of the world’s most significant ocean wonders….and Canada’s Bay of Fundy is one of the most impressive,” McCulloch says. “It’s a chance to celebrate oceans and to help Canada claim its place among the New7Wonders of Nature.”
The Bay of Fundy is home to the world’s highest tides, with more than 100 billion tonnes of sea water flowing in and out twice a day: more than the combined daily flow of the world’s freshwater rivers. The Bay of Fundy’s spectacularly diverse marine ecosystem supports a world-renowned array of marine life including: sea turtles, sharks, porpoise, dolphin, whales and seals. One of the more notable inhabitants of the Bay is the North Atlantic Right Whale, an endangered species that is studied closely in its habitat in the Bay of Fundy.
Dr. Moira Brown, senior scientist with the Canadian Whale Institute, says the Bay of Fundy’s ocean currents and tides create perfect conditions to support large patches of plankton, which, in turn, draw as many as 200 Right Whales to the Bay each summer. Brown spends her days cataloguing and observing Right Whales, and occasionally rescuing them from fishing gear helping the volunteer fishermen of the Campobello Island Whale Rescue Team.
“We can see as many as half the world’s population of Right Whales in the Bay of Fundy during a summer. Right Whales return each year and bring their calves to spend the summer in the Bay of Fundy. The Bay of Fundy is one of the only locations where people can see the endangered species in its vibrant marine habitat. It’s a spectacular and very rare wildlife experience, and one that makes the Bay of Fundy one of the most notable marine locations on the planet,” Dr. Brown says.