Action on Vaquita
The tiny vaquita porpoise of the Gulf of California, Mexico, is the world's most endangered cetacean species. The International Committee for the Recovery of the Vaquita (CIRVA) has just released a report indicating that the vaquita's decline toward extinction has accelerated - there may now be fewer than 100 left. Click here to access the CIRVA report. The report calls upon the Government of Mexico to take immediate action to eliminate gillnets from the entire range of the vaquita and to accompany this measure with strong fisheries enforcement action. Click here for more information. The Marine Mammal Commission supported the participation of international experts in the meeting and continues to do all it can to assist Mexico in its efforts to ensure the survival of the vaquita.
Follow the Commission
The Marine Mammal Commission is now on Twitter! Follow @MarineMammalCom to stay up to date on MMC news, activities, and events.
Capitol Hill Briefing
The Marine Mammal Commission, in conjunction with the National Marine Fisheries Service, will hold a briefing at the Capitol Visitor Center, room SVC-212, on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., from 10:30 to noon on Thursday, September 25. The briefing will focus on increasing awareness of the impacts of sound on marine mammals and their environment, with an emphasis on shipping. Please RSVP at MMC_Admin@mmc.gov by September 20th if you plan to attend. We look forward to seeing you on Capitol Hill! Click here for an agenda of the briefing.
Marine Mammal Science and Conservation Priorities
The Marine Mammal Commission has completed its "Priorities Project" based on a review of the National Marine Fisheries Service's marine mammal science and conservation programs. The final report, available here, provides guidance for those involved in funding decisions to help identify the most pressing science and management needs for marine mammals.
A word from the Chairman: Marine mammals and climate change
Following June's Our Ocean Conference hosted by Secretary of State John Kerry, Commission Chairman Daryl Boness reflects on 40 years of progress in protecting marine mammals, and considers today's challenges. While the Marine Mammal Protection Act has succeeded in reducing many of the direct threats to marine mammals in the U.S., the plight of many species around the world is direr today than 40 years ago. Read the Chairman's full thoughts here.
Solicitation for nominations for Committee of Scientific Advisors
The Commission is assisted in its duties by a Committee of Scientific Advisors on Marine Mammals, consisting of nine members appointed by the Chairman. The Commission is currently soliciting nominations from the public to identify qualified candidates for possible appointment to the Committee if and when vacancies occur. For more information and nomination instructions, click here.
Ten Years of Research on Southern Resident Killer Whales
The Marine Mammal Commission acknowledges the important 10-year effort by the National Marine Fisheries Service to conduct research on the endangered Southern Resident killer whale population. Thanks to Congressional support for this program, important targeted research has been able to address critical information gaps surrounding this species, thereby providing guidance for conservation actions. Follow the link below to read the report and explore videos and graphics highlighting 10 years of scientific work aimed at recovering the population of this important marine mammal.
2014 Annual Meeting
Brief summaries and PowerPoint presentations from the 2014 Annual Meeting of the Marine Mammal Commission are now available. Thanks again to all who participated in the various events.
Strategic Plan 2015-19
The Marine Mammal Commission's Strategic Plan for 2015-19 has been finalized and is posted on the Commission website. The Commission is grateful for the many comments received on the draft document posted in late 2013, which resulted in considerable revisions to the Strategic Plan. While this plan is formally intended for 2015-2019, the Commission is already using it to guide activities in 2014. For example, our 2014 Annual Meeting (May 6-8 in Washington, D.C.), will be guided by this Strategic Plan, as will current and future High Priority Projects, and funding priorities for the Commission.