Science for right whale conservation: an outsider's view
Co-Sponsored With CINAR
Dr. Peter CorkeronLeader, Large Whale Team
Protected Species Branch
NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center
North Atlantic right whales are among the most endangered mammals in North America. They are also one of the best-studied whale species. Right whale research in the western North Atlantic, and specifically that based in the Greater Boston area, is responsible for some of the more exciting developments in cetacean field biology of the past few decades. The North Atlantic right whale population is increasing very slowly. A few years with poor calving success coupled with the deaths of a few adults could turn that trajectory around. So how else can science inform coastal and ocean management to improve North Atlantic right whales' chances of survival? As I have recently become responsible for the large whale research program at the North East Fisheries Science Center here in Woods Hole, I have to address this question. In this talk, I shall use examples from Oman, Australia and New Zealand to suggest possible directions. As this is something of a brainstorming session, my intent is to keep the seminar rather informal.