CONTENTS In Memoriam Acknowledgments Introduction References Cited Stock Assessments for 1996 List of Appendices List of Stock Assessments for All Years
NOAA Technical Memorandum NMFS-NE-114
U.S. Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico Marine Mammal Stock Assessments -- 1996Gordon T. Waring1, Debra L. Palka1, Keith D. Mullin2, James H.W. Hain1, Larry J. Hansen3, and Kathryn D. Bisack1
1National Marine Fisheries Serv., Woods Hole Lab., 166 Water St., Woods Hole, MA 02543
2National Marine Fisheries Service, 3209 Frederic St., Pascagoula, MS 39567-4112
3National Marine Fisheries Service, 219 Ft. Johnson Rd., Charleston, SC 29412
Web version posted September 25, 2002Citation: Waring GT, Palka DL, Mullin KD, Hain JHW, Hansen LJ, Bisack KD. 1997. U.S. Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico Marine Mammal Stock Assessments -- 1996. US Dep Commer, NOAA Tech Memo NMFS NE 114; 251 p.
Information Quality Act Compliance: In accordance with section 515 of Public Law 106-554, the Northeast Fisheries Science Center completed both technical and policy reviews for this report. These predissemination reviews are on file at the NEFSC Editorial Office.
Section 117 of the 1994 amendments to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) requires that an annual stock assessment report (SAR) for each stock of marine mammals that occurs in waters under U.S. jurisdiction, be prepared by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), in consultation with regional Scientific Review Groups (SRG). The SRGs are a broad representation of marine mammal and fishery scientists and members of the commercial fishing industry mandated to review the marine mammal stock assessments and provide advice to the Assistant Administrator for NMFS. The reports are then made available on the Federal Register for public review and comment before final publication.
The MMPA requires that each SAR contain several items, including: (1) a description of the stock, including its geographic range; (2) a minimum population estimate, a maximum net productivity rate, and a description of current population trend, including a description of the information upon which these are based; (3) an estimate of the annual human caused mortality and serious injury of the stock, and, for a strategic stock, other factors that may be causing a decline or impeding recovery of the stock, including effects on marine mammal habitat and prey; (4) a description of the commercial fisheries that interact with the stock, including the estimated number of vessels actively participating in the fishery and the level of incidental mortality and serious injury of the stock by each fishery on an annual basis; (5) a statement categorizing the stock as strategic or not, and why; and (6) an estimate of the potential biological removal (PBR) level for the stock, describing the information used to calculate it. The MMPA also requires that SARs be updated annually for stocks which are specified as strategic stocks, or for which significant new information is available, and once every three years for nonstrategic stocks.
Following enactment of the 1994 amendments, the NMFS and FWS held a series of workshops to develop guidelines for preparing the SARs. The first set of stock assessments for the Atlantic Coast (including the Gulf of Mexico) were published in July 1995 in the NOAA Technical Memorandum series (Blaylock et al. 1995). In April 1996, the NMFS held a workshop to review proposed additions and revisions to the guidelines for preparing SARs (Wade and Angliss 1997). Guidelines developed at the workshop were followed in preparing the 1996 SARs.
In this document, major revisions and updating of the SARs were only completed for strategic stocks. These are identified by the 1997 date-stamp at the top right corner at the beginning of each report. Except for some minor editorial changes, stocks designated by the 1995 date-stamp are unchanged from the 1995 document (Blaylock et al. 1995).
The authors wish to thank and acknowledge Janeen Quintal for her technical assistance throughout the preparation of this report and for the use of her original artwork. The authors also wish to acknowledge contributions by the Northeast Fisheries Science Center Sea Sampling Investigation, and by personnel of the Northeast and Southeast Fisheries Science Centers, listed alphabetically, who assisted in preparing this report: Nancy Friday, Patricia Gerrior, Aleta Hohn, Blair Mase, Daniel Sheehan, and Jim Tobias. Also, we acknowledge advice and comments provided by the Atlantic Scientific Review Group.
Blaylock, R.A., J.W.Hain, L.J. Hansen, D.L. Palka, and G.T. Waring. 1995. U.S. Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico marine mammal stock assessments. NOAA Tech. Memo. NMFS-SEFSC-363, 211p.
Wade, P. R. and R. P. Angliss. 1997. Guidelines for assessing marine mammal stocks: Report of the GAMMS workshop April 3-5, 1996, Seattle, Washington. NOAA Tech. Memo. NMFS-OPR-12, 93 pp.