[MARMAM] Solomon Islands dolphin populations

William Rossiter rossiter at csiwhalesalive.org
Mon Jun 18 05:39:53 PDT 2007

This is an urgent request for current, perhaps unpublished data, 
estimates, or expert opinions of the distribution and abundance of 
dolphin species in the territorial waters of the Solomon Islands.

Recently captured dolphins are being readied for export from the Solomon 
Islands, probably concurrent with the nation becoming a party to CITES 
about 24 June. Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavarehas has called publicly 
for evidence that such a take would be detrimental to dolphin 
populations.  While proponents of the development of the international 
trade in dolphins claim populations range from 300,000 to 800,000, and 
Fisheries Minister Nollen Leni has said publicly that 1,000 dolphins per 
year would not be detrimental, the evidence for these allegations is 
unknown. To export the government must first void a ban on exports 
imposed by the previous government, triggering a possible embargo of 
tuna products with associated economic consequences.

Given the difficulty of international researchers operating in the 
nation's waters it is possible that little reliable data exists. Data, 
estimates and opinions from researchers of similar regional populations 
will have value.

The government needs sound, expert advice. If you can provide it please 
contact: Prime Minister Mannesah Sogavare: <amaesulia at pmc.gov.sb> Fax 
(-)-677-28154 Fax (-)-677-28626

Whether or not you contact the government directly please pass your comment to me.
Thank you,

William W. Rossiter
Cetacean Society International
P.O.Box 953, Georgetown, CT 06829 USA
ph 203-770-8615, fx 860-561-0187
rossiter at csiwhalesalive.org

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