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You may have heard the sad news this week of members of the Makah tribe of Neah Bay, without tribal permission and against the law, shooting and harpooning a California Gray whale up in the Strait of Juan de Fuca. California Grays, unlike the Orcas, are no longer on the Endangered Species list. Grays are covered under the Marine Mammals Protection Act, however. The whale attempted to head out to sea afterward and survived for a number of painful hours before going under, never to surface again. The tribe had legally hunted a whale a few years ago. At that time they used all parts of it and were attempting to reestablish ancient tribal practices abandoned over 70 years ago. The tribe was in a long process of negotiating permanent limited whaling rights with the United States in light of the Marine Mammals Protection Act. Apparently, impatient members acted without knowledge of tribal leadership. Some members of congress speaking to the news speculated that this may jeopardize the tribe's future whaling rights as a result.