[MARMAM] New publication on large whale entanglements

Diane Borggaard - NOAA Federal diane.borggaard at noaa.gov
Tue Aug 1 11:21:23 PDT 2017


My co-authors and I are pleased to announce the publication of our paper:

Diane L. Borggaard , David M. Gouveia , Mary A. Colligan , Richard Merrick
, Kathryn S. Swails , Michael J. Asaro , John Kenney, Glenn Salvador, and
John Higgins. Managing U.S. Atlantic large whale entanglements: Four
guiding principles. Marine Policy, Volume 84, October 2017, Pages 202–212.


Fatal entanglements in fishing gear threaten marine mammal populations
worldwide. The management of entanglements of large whales, such as the
North Atlantic right whale (*Eubalaena glacialis*), with commercial
fisheries, is a challenge given the species’ small population size,
economic consequences of regulations, and the general lack of data on
entanglements. The U.S. Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) requires
development of programs to limit marine mammal entanglement in commercial
fishing gear. Following a retrospective look at implementing aspects of the
MMPA, a set of guiding principles were developed with associated best
practices useful in reducing fatal large whale entanglement in fishing
gear. Among these are: 1) involve stakeholders early in the decision making
process; 2) establish a transparent management strategy that includes
critical needs to guide research; 3) use a variety of tools such as an
established process for receiving new information and ideas; and 4)
incorporate adaptive management which considers the constraints of dynamic
(rapid) changes to some fixed fishing gear. Efforts to reduce worldwide
marine mammal bycatch will typically occur in a data limited environment as
experienced with U.S. Atlantic large whale entanglements. The guiding
principles will remain as key tools for reducing large whale bycatch in
fisheries as they build upon common practices. These insights developed
over two decades of management can potentially help others to address
similar bycatch problems.

The paper is available here: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.marpol.2017.06.027


Diane Borggaard
NOAA Fisheries Service
Greater Atlantic Region

Protected Resources Division
55 Great Republic Drive
Gloucester, MA 01930
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