Effectively, change is almost impossible without industry-wide collaboration, cooperation, and consensus.
— - Simon Mainwaring

Hi everyone, Pacific Marine Mammal Center here on our first blog post. Our goal is simple, to facilitate a space for creative thinking, collaborative research and discussion to improve upon the marine mammal, oceanic and environmental field. This once monthly blog hopes to bring together like-minded individuals, working together toward a collaborative goal.

On a recent trip out East PMMC worked with over six different organizations trying to tackle the issues that are currently facing our marine mammals and the environment we share. 

PMMC and AMCS Seal Survey.jpg

is an organization of biologists and volunteers with decades of expereince in marine mammal and sea turtle research and response. Their mission is to promote conservation of the marine enviornement through action. 

Working with the Atlantic Marine Conservation Society (AMCS), we conducted seal population and observation surveys and seal necropsies to capture and collect data. AMCS works closely with other organizations to disseminate that data to other environmental managers. 

To study the crucial role pinnipeds and other marine mammals have in our enviornment, takes more than just one organization. Traveling up the coast we stopped at National Marine Life Center  (NMLC) in Bourne, Massachusetts to assist in the satellite tagging of a harp seal.

Grey Seal Taggin.jpg

has a unique opportunity to learn more about their species undergoing rehabilitation like PMMC. This harp seal presented a middle ear issue. Using the satellite tag technology we can study this animal once it is released back into the wild, ensureing it is diving adequately. 

The collaboration of many different organizations has provided the resources to make further research possible; Marine Mammals of Maine, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Pacific Marine Mammal Center, Atlantic Marine Conservation Society and National Marine Life Center

Bringing this all together we head to New Bedford, MA for the semi-annual North Atlantic Seal Research Consortium meeting. 

meeting is a one-day conference to incorporate scientific and informal observation, presentation, panel discussion, open community forum and synthesis.

This conference hosted 19 speakers associated with the NASRC community to discuss the relationship pinnipeds have within our ecosystem, environment and interaction with humans and fisheries. It brought together diverse perspectives from students, biologists, commercial fisherman, marine tourist and other professionals to address those bigger picture issues. 

The conclusion is the same on both the East and West coasts, we have the same issues, just different species; unusual mortality events, entanglements, population management levels, the balance between human needs and societal values, education and outreach, coexistance and ecosystem roles. 

By sharing information and data and having cross continental collaboration we can address these issues we are facing and prove that together we can do more. 

Posted by Krysta Higuchi May 9, 2018