The U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has published its intent to issue a permit for a period of three years authorizing the incidental, but not intentional, taking of three stocks of marine mammals listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act by the Hawaii deep- set and shallow-set longline fisheries. NMFS proposes to issue this permit pursuant to the U.S. Marine Mammal Protection Act.
NMFS has made a preliminary determination that incidental taking from commercial fishing will have a negligible impact on the endangered humpback whale, Central North Pacific stock; sperm whale, Hawaii stock; and false killer whale, Main Hawaiian Islands insular stock.
Recovery plans have been completed for humpback and sperm whales, and a recovery plan has been initiated for MHI insular false killer whales.
NMFS solicits public comments on the draft negligible impact determination and on the proposal to issue a permit to vessels that operate in these fisheries for the taking of affected endangered stocks of marine mammals. Comments must be received by July 14, 2014.
Click here for NMFS’ Federal Register notice of this proposed action.