Stock assessment of loggerhead and leatherback sea turtles and An assessment of the impact of the pelagic longline fishery on the loggerhead and leatherback sea turtles of the Western North Atlantic

National Marine Fisheries Service Southeast Fisheries Science Center (2001) Stock assessment of loggerhead and leatherback sea turtles and An assessment of the impact of the pelagic longline fishery on the loggerhead and leatherback sea turtles of the Western North Atlantic. Miami, FL, NOAA/National Marine Fisheries Service/Southeast Fisheries Science Center, (NOAA Technical Memorandum NMFS-SEFSC, 455)

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Abstract

On September 7, 2000 the National Marine Fisheries Service announced that it was reinitiating consultation under Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act on pelagic fisheries for swordfish, sharks, tunas, and billfish. 1 Bycatch of a protected sea turtle species is considered a take under the Endangered Species Act (PL93-205). On June 30, 2000 NMFS completed a Biological Opinion on an amendment to the Highly Migratory Pelagic Fisheries Management Plan that concluded that the continued operation of the pelagic longline fishery was likely to jeopardize the continued existence of loggerhead and leatherback sea turtles.2 Since that Biological Opinion was issued NMFS concluded that further analyses of observer data and additional population modeling of loggerhead sea turtles was needed to determine more precisely the impact of the pelagic longline fishery on turtles. 3,4 Hence, the reinitiation of consultation. The documents that follow constitute the scientific review and synthesis of information pertaining to the narrowly defined reinitiation of consultation: the impact of the pelagic longline fishery on loggerhead and leatherback sea turtles The document is in 3 parts, plus 5 appendices. Part I is a stock assessment of loggerhead sea turtles of the Western North Atlantic. Part II is a stock assessment of leatherback sea turtles of the Western North Atlantic. Part III is an assessment of the impact of the pelagic longline fishery on loggerhead and leatherback sea turtles of the Western North Atlantic. These documents were prepared by the NMFS Southeast Fisheries Science Center staff and academic colleagues at Duke University and Dalhousie University. Personnel involved from the SEFSC include Joanne Braun-McNeill, Lisa Csuzdi, Craig Brown, Jean Cramer, Sheryan Epperly, Steve Turner, Wendy Teas, Nancy Thompson, Wayne Witzell, Cynthia Yeung, and also Jeff Schmid under contract from the University or Miami. Our academic colleagues, Ransom Myers, Keith Bowen, and Leah Gerber from Dalhousie University and Larry Crowder and Melissa Snover from Duke University, also recipients of a Pew Charitable Trust Grant for a Comprehensive Study of the Ecological Impacts of the Worldwide Pelagic Longline Industry, made significant contributions to the quantitative analyses and we are very grateful for their collaboration. We appreciate the reviews of the stock definition sections on loggerheads and leatherbacks by Brian Bowen, University of Florida, and Peter Dutton, National Marine Fisheries Service Southwest Fisheries Science Center, respectively, and the comments of the NMFS Center of Independent Experts reviewers Robert Mohn, Ian Poiner, and YouGan Wang on the entire document. We also wish to acknowledge all the unpublished data used herein which were contributed by many researchers, especially the coordinators and volunteers of the nesting beach surveys and the sea turtle stranding and salvage network and the contributors to the Cooperative Marine Turtle Tagging Program. (PDF contains 349 pages)

Item Type: Monograph or Serial Issue
Title: Stock assessment of loggerhead and leatherback sea turtles and An assessment of the impact of the pelagic longline fishery on the loggerhead and leatherback sea turtles of the Western North Atlantic
Corporate Creator/Author: National Marine Fisheries Service Southeast Fisheries Science Center
Series Name: NOAA Technical Memorandum NMFS-SEFSC
Number: 455
Date: 2001
Publisher: NOAA/National Marine Fisheries Service/Southeast Fisheries Science Center
Place of Publication: Miami, FL
Issuing Agency: United States National Marine Fisheries Service
Subjects: Conservation
Management
Fisheries
Item ID: 2140
Depositing User: Patti M. Marraro
Date Deposited: 27 May 2009 19:07
Last Modified: 29 Sep 2011 19:32
URI: http://aquaticcommons.org/id/eprint/2140

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