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Critters

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Associated Press
A humpback whale breaches the surface in waters off Hawaii.

Humpback may lose endangered listing

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has launched a review of whether it should take North Pacific humpback whales off the endangered species list.

NOAA Fisheries is responding to a petition filed by a group of Hawaii fishermen saying the whale should no longer be classified as endangered because its population has steadily grown since the international community banned commercial whaling nearly 50 years ago.

There are more than 21,000 humpback whales in the North Pacific, compared with about 1,400 in the mid-1960s.

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