nova scotia whale sanctuary

This whale sanctuary in Nova Scotia will be the first of its kind in North America

Canada is officially getting the first whale sanctuary in North America.

On Tuesday, Executive Director of The Whale Sanctuary Project Charles Vinick announced that Sherbrooke, Nova Scotia has been selected as the home for a pod of beluga whales.

Up to eight whales will find a new home in the water just off the coast of Port Hilford. Nets will be put in place to keep the whales safely inside an area of 100 acres — just under the size of the Vatican City.

The whales — who were previously in captivity — no longer have the survival skills to make it in the wild, but the sanctuary will allow them the freedom to stretch their flippers.

Whale Sanctuary Project president Lori Marino said, "They are going to be able, for the first time in their life, to swim in a straight line for many, many, many body lengths."

"They probably won't even know they can do that until they finally discover that they do have the space."

Naturally, Canadians are pretty excited about the prospect of cute beluga whales living in the country.

Sherbrooke even threw a whale-themed party to celebrate the event, which included beluga artwork, singing, and even a cake decorated with icing that read "Belugas Belong Here!"

Fortunately, Canadians won't have to wait for long — the whales are expected to move in their new home by 2021.

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