[MARMAM] Publication announcement: NOAA-TM-NMFS-SWR-044

Lauren Saez - NOAA Affiliate lauren.saez at noaa.gov
Tue Oct 29 14:36:23 PDT 2013

On behalf of my co-authors, I am pleased to announce the publication
Understanding the co-occurrence of large whales and commercial fixed gear
fisheries off the west coast of the United States. *

Large whale entanglement in commercial fishing gear in the Pacific Ocean
off the U.S. west coast has been identified as an issue of concern by NOAA
Fisheries because of the potential impacts to both large whales
(individually and at a stock/population level) and the commercial fishing
industry.  An average of 10 large whales were reported per year as
entangled off California, Oregon, and Washington from 2000 to 2012.  This
is likely an underestimate of total entanglements since sightings are
opportunistic.  Because so little is known about the origin of and
identification of entangling gear types, an investigation of large whale
entanglements was warranted.   As a result, we developed a model to analyze
the co-occurrence of fishing gear and whales.  Fixed gear commercial
fishery effort was modeled for 11 fixed gear fisheries in the off the U.S.
west coast based on reported landings.  Fishery effort was overlapped with
previously published whale density* *models to identify timing and areas of
low and elevated co-occurrence, and consequently entanglement risk, for
five species of large whales across the U.S. west coast.  This effort
represents the first assessment of whale entanglement risk on the U.S. west
coast across all of these fixed gear fisheries, describing the necessary
assumptions and limitations of the available data and analysis.  Our
expectation is that research on the elevated risk areas identified by this
paper should inform any future efforts to minimize or mitigate the risk of
large whale entanglements in the future.

The NOAA technical memorandum and appendices can be accessed at:

 If you have any questions or would like a PDF of the report, please feel
free to contact me.

 Have a wonderful day.


Lauren Saez
Contractor with Ocean Associates, Inc.
NMFS West Coast Region
Protected Resources Division
Phone: 562-980-3561
Email: Lauren.Saez at noaa.gov
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