[MARMAM] Marine mammal bycatch in gillnets

Kate McClellan kamcclellan at gmail.com
Fri Mar 22 05:30:08 PDT 2013


We are pleased to announce a new publication in Endangered Species Research
on global marine mammal bycatch in gillnet fisheries from 1990-2011.

Citation: Reeves RR, McClellan K, Werner T. 2013. Marine mammal bycatch in
gillnets and other entangling net fisheries, 1990-2011. Endangered Species
Research 20: 71-97

The paper is Open Access:
Full article: http://www.int-res.com/articles/esr_oa/n020p071.pdf
Supplements: http://www.int-res.com/articles/suppl/n020p071_supp.pdf

ABSTRACT: Since the 1970s the role of fishery bycatch as a factor reducing,
or limiting the recov- ery of, marine mammal populations has been
increasingly recognized. The proceedings of a 1990 International Whaling
Commission symposium and workshop summarized fishery and bycatch data by
region, fishery, and species, and estimated the significance of the
‘impacts’ of bycatch in passive gear on all cetacean species and subspecies
or geographically defined populations. A global review of pinniped bycatch
in 1991 concluded that incidental mortality in passive gear had contributed
to declines of several species and populations. Here we update the
information on cetacean gillnet bycatch, assess bycatch data on marine
mammals other than cetaceans (i.e. pin- nipeds, sirenians, and 2 otter
species), determine where important data gaps exist, and identify species
and populations known or likely to be at high risk from bycatch in
gillnets. We found that at least 75% of odontocete species, 64% of
mysticetes, 66% of pinnipeds, and all sirenians and marine mustelids have
been recorded as gillnet bycatch over the past 20-plus years. Cetacean
bycatch information in some areas has improved, facilitating our ability to
identify species and populations at high risk, although major gaps remain.
Understanding of the scale of pinniped and sirenian bycatch has also
improved, but this bycatch remains poorly documented, especially at the
population level. This study reveals how little is known about marine
mammal bycatch in gillnets in much of the world. Even as other significant
threats to marine mammals have become better documented and understood,
bycatch remains a critical issue demanding urgent attention if there is to
be any hope of preventing further losses of marine mammal diversity and
abundance, and of protecting, or restoring, ecological health.
 Full article: http://www.int-res.com/articles/esr_oa/n020p071.pdf
Supplements: http://www.int-res.com/articles/suppl/n020p071_supp.pdf

Kate McClellan

Assistant Scientist II
Consortium for Wildlife Bycatch Reduction
New England Aquarium
Boston, MA
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