- Sam RauchNational Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Save Dolphins from Drowning
We don't mean to fish for dolphins, but they're still getting caught.
Hundreds of dolphins die off of US shores every year, caught by nets or longline hooks and unable to surface for air. Sadly, many dolphins find themselves tangled in nets they couldn't see, and they will drown if the nets are not brought up in time.
No one wants dolphins to die this way, including the fishermen. It's a sad end for a noble animal, and we want to do something about it.
We can make the seas safer for dolphins. We're calling on the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) to ensure that dolphin deaths are kept to a minimum and that all incidents are properly reported. Sign TODAY to tell the government that we simply can’t stand by while dolphins drown.
- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Marine mammals such as dolphins are caught in commercial fisheries across the US. The highest cetacean mortalities occur in Northeast and Mid-Atlantic fisheries. Over 800 dolphins and 900 porpoises are estimated to be killed or seriously injured yearly in U.S. fisheries.
Mammals are important to the oceans. Many species are apex or top-level predators which control populations of fishes and squids and keep the ecosystem in balance.
While dolphins and other marine mammals are protected by the Marine Mammal Protection Act, more needs to be done to reduce the number of dolphins and other marine mammals harmed by commercial fisheries.
The National Marine Fisheries Service should reduce the number of marine mammals caught in U.S. fisheries. Specifically, the agency should:
- Increase monitoring of fisheries to provide more information on the number of marine mammals caught and killed by commercial fishing.
- Fully fund the implementation of the Marine Mammal Protection Act. While laws are on the books, efforts to protect mammals will be a challenge unless resources are dedicated to fully implementing the provisions of the law.
- Update stock assessments for populations with assessments over three years old and allocate additional observer coverage to fisheries, regions and sessions to come up with more precise bycatch estimates.
-Require commercial fisheries to minimize their bycatch of marine mammals, particularly in bottom trawls and gillnets.
Please help dolphins and other marine mammals now.
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