Exploratory study of interactions between cetaceans and small-boat fishing operations in the Main Hawaiian Islands (MHI)
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Exploratory study of interactions between cetaceans and small-boat fishing operations in the Main Hawaiian Islands (MHI)

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    "NOAA Fisheries Pacific Island Fisheries Science Center (PIFSC) Cetacean Research Program (CRP) is currently working to assess human threats, particularly those associated with fishing activities, to cetaceans. Because cetaceans eat a number of species targeted and bait utilized by the recreational and commercial fishing sector, there is reason to believe that interactions may occur between fishing activities of the small vessel fleet and insular cetacean population. Ethnographic and survey research of small vessel-based fisheries in Hawaii have detailed that operators do occasionally interact with cetaceans while engaging in troll and handline fisheries (cf. Glazier 2007, 2009; Rhodes et al. 2007). Data from commercial catch reports (CML) reveal that fishermen lose catch to cetacean predation. Of particular concern to NOAA Fisheries, has been fishing threats to False Killer Whale (FKW) populations in the Main Hawaiian Islands (MHI). In 2010, NOAA Fisheries established a Take Reduction Team to address the incidental mortality and serious injury of FKW occurring as a result of the deep and shallow-set longline operations; a Take Reduction Plan was subsequently established in 2013. FKW in Hawaii are known to eat species targeted by the small vessel fleet - wahoo (Acanthocybium solandri), mahimahi (Coryphaena hippurus), yellowfin tuna (Thunnus albacores), albacore tuna (Thunnus alalunga), skipjack tuna (Katsuwonus pelamis), broadbill swordfish (Xiphias gladius), threadfin jack (Alectis ciliaris), and various Marlin species. The range of the insular population coincides with that of the small vessel fishery. Baird (2013) has suggested that small-scale fishing operations, which utilize a variety of non-longline fishing gear technologies, may cause injury or death of FKWs (c.f. Baird and Gorgone 2005; Baird 2009; Baird et al. 2014). The intent of this exploratory research was to improve understanding of how, when, where, and why interactions between fisheries and cetaceans (generally) and FKWs (more specifically) tend to occur in the MHI. A focused study was applied to improving understanding of: (1) The environmental conditions, fishing locations and gear types in which fishery cetacean interactions tend to occur--as observed by fishermen, (2) Methods small vessel operators employ to mitigate interactions with cetaceans in the MHI. Efforts were also made during this research study to identify long-time and knowledgeable fishermen to participate in any future working groups devoted to cetacean and fisheries interactions. This study was conducted February through June, 2015. It should be noted that the scope of this research is such that results cannot be used to estimate frequency or assess the distribution of cetacean-small vessel fishery interactions in the region or any parts of the region because of the small sample size and (non-random) sampling method"--Page 1. [doi:10.7289/V5/AR-PIFSC-H-16-07 (http://dx.doi.org/10.7289/V5/AR-PIFSC-H-16-07)]
  • Content Notes:
    Leila Madge.

    "October 2016."

    System requirements: Adobe Acrobat Reader.

    Includes bibliographical references (pages 15-18).

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