Sources of human-related injury and mortality for U.S. Pacific west coast marine mammal stock assessments, 2013-2017
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Sources of human-related injury and mortality for U.S. Pacific west coast marine mammal stock assessments, 2013-2017
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  • Description:
    This report contains human-caused injury and mortality records of pinnipeds and cetaceans that occur in U.S. west coast waters for the period 2013-2017, for those species evaluated in Pacific region marine mammal stock assessment reports (SARs) (Carretta et al. 2016a). Mortality records, while included in this report, were not a part of the SI/NSI status evaluation that included only live animals. Subsistence and directed takes (i.e., gray whales taken by Russian natives) are not reported here but are reported in SARs published by NMFS. Previous serious injury and mortality records, including cases from 2007 through 2016, are published in previous reports (Carretta et al. 2013, 2014, 2015b, 2016b, 2017, 2018). Sources of injury data include strandings, disentanglement networks, the public, researchers, and fishery observer programs. Stranding data include records of injured marine mammals at sea and ashore. Injury sources include, but are not limited to, vessel strikes, gillnet entanglement, pot and trap gear entanglement, shootings, marine debris entanglement, research-related injuries/deaths, hook and line fishery interactions, and entrainment in power plant water intakes. Most records originate from stranding networks in California, Oregon, and Washington, though a few Alaska records of Eastern North Pacific gray whales (Eschrichtius robustus) are included, because this population is assessed in the Pacific region SARs and occurs along the U.S. west coast. Other marine mammals, such as Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus), occur in California, Oregon, and Washington waters, but they are assessed in Alaska region SARs (Muto et al. 2016) and are not included in this report. Injury determinations for Pacific region species/stocks in the central Pacific from Hawaii westward are also included in separate reports (Bradford and Forney 2014).
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