A new paper from the Ocean Modeling Forum’s Working Group on Marine Mammal Bycatch provides a summary on the various methods available for assessing the abundance of pinnipeds, cetaceans, and sirenians. Authors discuss key issues, including:
- General principles in estimating abundance
- Methods for estimating abundance and their strengths and weaknesses in relation to practical issues
- Resources needed to collect and analyze data
- Challenges that may arise during implementation phase
Why is This Important?
Understanding the abundance of marine mammal populations in a given area is a fundamental component to enhancing marine mammal monitoring programs and reducing bycatch in fisheries. While numerous methods exist to estimate marine mammal abundance, expertise and resources vary widely. By summarizing existing literature and offering guidance on trade-offs among methods, authors aim to increase access to this information.