THIS PAGE IS A RESOURCE FOR FILMS AND SHORTS WE HAVE SHOWN ON OUR OCEANS FILMS SERIES NIGHTS BUT ALSO THERE ARE LINKS TO ACTIONS YOU CAN TAKE THAT HAVE BEEN MENTIONED IN THE SUBJECT MATTERS COVERED IN THOSE VIDEOS. WE HOPE YOU FIND THIS HELPFUL IN REDUCING DANGEROUS NANO PLASTICS IN OUR OCEANS
Fed and state agencies team up to save right whales
PLYMOUTH – More needs to be done, so federal and state agencies are mobilizing.
While nine North Atlantic right whales have been born so far this year, at least 30 of these critically endangered mammals have died in the last three years due mostly to ship strikes and entanglements in fishing gear.
The Division of Marine fisheries issued a Large Whale Seasonal Trap Gear Closure recently that will run through April 30 to protect local populations from entanglements. Now, state and federal agencies are exploring further measures to protect right whales that teeter on the brink of extinction, with approximately 400 left in the world.
Half that population was tracked migrating into Cape Cod Bay last year, hence the fishing gear and traffic restrictions.
Whale and Dolphin Conservation North America Executive Director Regina Asmutis-Silvia said Massachusetts fishermen have been the most proactive in testing modified fishing gear to protect right whales. Their concern for the survival of right whales is a credit to them, she added.
“They are the only ones who have taken that initiative,” she said.
Experts say global warming is likely to blame for right whales migrating to Massachusetts waters for longer stretches of time to feed on phytoplankton, which isn’t just critical to sustaining whales. Whale excrement fertilizes and sustains phytoplankton that generates half the earth’s oxygen. Last year, researchers identified 265 right whales in Cape Cod Bay from December of 2018 to May of 2019.
Asmutis-Silvia noted that of the nine right whales just born, one has already been injured.
“One of the calves was seriously injured by a vessel strike, antibiotics were administered, but mom and calf have not been resighted since,” she said.
With human activity poised to wipe out the species, The Division of Marine Fisheries has scheduled two scoping meetings to discuss the state’s response to anticipated changes to the federal Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan, Asmutis-Silvia added.
In response to recent population trends, NOAA Fisheries’ Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Team, or TRT, has been working to amend the NOAA Fisheries’ Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan, or ALWTRP, to reduce mortalities due to trap fishing gear. Buoys that release lines only when traps are being taken are a possible way to significantly reduce entanglements. The NOAA team involved in this research and analysis has come up with a way to reduce these entanglements by as much as 60 percent with the possible use of this new gear.
The Division of Marine Fisheries will hold two meetings to discuss anticipated changes to the ALWTRT, on Feb. 18 and 19.
“The purpose of this meeting will be to review NOAA Fisheries analyses regarding how the state can achieve this federally-imposed risk reduction target,” Asmutis-Silvia said. “Comments received will help DMF engage on federal rule making moving forward.”
OUR SHORTS ON REBUILDING THE KELP FOREST
OCTOPUS ENCOUNTERS & SUPER SEA SLUGS
AS WELL AS OUR FEATURE; SONG OF THE SPERM WHALE
CAN BE WATCHED BY SUBSCRIPTION HERE
FILMS AND INFO SHARED ON Jan. 25th, 2020
Experts from Oceana, NOAA and the Consortium for Ocean Leadership describe how chronic over fishing has damaged ecosystems and threatens the entire food chain. But this crisis is solvable. Well-managed ocean fisheries hold out the promise of limitless seafood — and a home for all sea life
SECRET UNDERWATER PLANET
Take a journey with famed underwater photographer Peter Kragh, as he explores the coast of California, and reveals some of the most spectacular life found under the sea.