US Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico marine mammal stock assessments 2009
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US Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico marine mammal stock assessments 2009

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US Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico marine mammal stock assessments 2009
  • Alternative Title:
    United States Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico marine mammal stock assessments 2009 ; U.S. Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico marine mammal stock assessments 2009 ;
  • Description:
    "Under the 1994 amendments of the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) were required to generate stock assessment reports (SAR) for all marine mammal stocks in waters within the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). The first reports for the Atlantic (includes the Gulf of Mexico) were published in July 1995 (Blaylock et al. 1995). The MMPA requires NMFS and USFWS to review these reports annually for strategic stocks of marine mammals and at least every 3 years for stocks determined to be non-strategic. The second edition of the SARs (1996 assessments) was published in October 1997 and contained all the previous reports, but major revisions and updating were only completed for strategic stocks (Waring et al. 1997). In subsequent annual reports, including this current 2009 edition, updated reports are indicated by the corresponding year date-stamp at the top right corner of the report and are included in the main body of the document. Stock assessments not updated in the current year are included, in full, in an appendix. Also included in this report as appendices are; 1) a summary of serious injury/mortality estimates of marine mammals in observed U.S. fisheries (Appendix I), 2) a summary of NMFS records of large whale/human interactions examined for this assessment (Appendix II), 3) detailed fisheries information (Appendix III), 4) summary tables of abundance estimates generated over recent years and the surveys from which they are derived (Appendix IV), and 5) the first revision of the USFWS West Indian manatee assessments since 1995 (Appendix VI). Table 1 contains a summary, by species, of the information included in the stock assessments, and also indicates those that have been revised since the 2008 publication. A total of 39 of the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico stock assessment reports were revised for 2009. In addition to this, the Mesoplodon beaked whales report was re-divided by species into four reports, and nine new bottlenose dolphin Atlantic bay, sound, and estuary stocks reports were added this year, bringing the total to 71 reports. Most of the proposed changes incorporate new information into sections on population size and/or mortality estimates. The revised and new SARs include 16 strategic and 36 non-strategic stocks. This report was prepared by staff of the Northeast Fisheries Science Center (NEFSC) and Southeast Fisheries Science Center (SEFSC). NMFS staff presented the reports at the January 2009 meeting of the Atlantic Scientific Review Group (ASRG), and subsequent revisions were based on their contributions and constructive criticism. This is a working document and individual stock assessment reports will be updated as new information becomes available and as changes to marine mammal stocks and fisheries occur. The authors solicit any new information or comments which would improve future stock assessment reports"--Executive summary.
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