The U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service has proposed a rule under the Marine Mammal Protection Act that would establish a framework for authorizing the take of marine mammals incidental to NMFS’ Northwest Fisheries Science Center
research activities in the California Current and Pacific Northwest. The regulations would be valid from 2016 to 2021.
These proposed rules include the following requirements:
• Required monitoring of the sampling areas to detect the presence of
marine mammals before deployment of certain research gear.
• Required use of acoustic deterrent devices on surface trawl nets.
• Required implementation of the mitigation strategy known as the ‘‘moveon
rule mitigation protocol’’ which incorporates best professional judgment,
when necessary during certain research fishing operations.
NMFS must receive any Comments and information about these proposed rules no later than July 13, 2016.