Between October 22nd and 24th, a training workshop on marine mammals abundance was held in Valparaíso, organized by the South Pacific Permanent Commission (CPPS), in conjunction with the Latin American Society of Aquatic Mammals Specialists (SOLAMAC ) and for Fisheries Development Institute(IFOP).
Carlos Montenegro Fisheries Evaluation Department Chief , referred to this workshop importance: “We believe that these type of activities will substantially help to know marine mammal populations status in Chile. To address this highly complex issue, research designs, data collection and estimation methodologies that incorporate uncertainty are required. ”
Maritza Sepúlveda, Universidad de Valparaíso Faculty of Sciences professor, and SOLAMAC current president , also stressed that this is a great opportunity for researchers from different countries to address these issues with similar methodologies, in order to compare estimates of abundance of marine mammal species shared among our countries.
This workshop objectives were:
To strengthen the region technical capacities on the most used methodologies to estimate marine mammals abundance with aims to fill knowledge gaps of Southeast Pacific fisheries affected populations.
To promote technical cooperation and experiences exchange with national and international institutions on development of national monitoring programs progress, facing United States requirements for trade in fishery products.
The Workshop was aimed at researchers from institutions in Panama, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Chile that are responsible for fisheries management and / or conservation of marine biodiversity, as well as academics and researchers working in partnership with these institutions in related subjects. This training was led by Dr. Philip Hammond, a specialist with extensive experience in modeling marine mammal populations and University of St. Andrews, Scotland professor .
From CPPS they affirmed “The Executive Secretariat has been developing marine mammals and fisheries interaction related activities in the last two years due to United States Marine Mammal Protection Act enforcement (MMPA) which, among other things , demands that countries that export fishery products to that market after 2022 must comply with international standards for incidental mortality of marine mammals, so that fishing activities do not compromise natural populations viability of these species. As part of the requirements to access authorization, countries must technically demonstrate that marine mammal mortality levels in their fisheries are below the permissible biological clearance level (NRBP). To estimate NRBP of different species of marine mammals affected by fisheries, reliable information and standardized methodologies are required to estimate parameters such as abundance, reproduction and level of mortality in each fishery ”.
Source CPPS / IFOP