More Than $13.5 Million Awarded to Help Stranded Marine Mammals Between 2011-2015

February 10, 2020

NOAA Fisheries continues to support saving and conserving stranded marine mammals through the John H. Prescott Marine Mammal Rescue Assistance Grant Program.

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Harbor seal rehabilitated at National Aquarium is released back into the wild in Ocean city, MD. Credit: Theresa Keil

From 2011 to 2015, the John H. Prescott Marine Mammal Rescue Assistance Grant Program awarded more than $13.5 million to help stranded marine mammals. The funding was awarded through 160 competitive grants to Stranding Network members and collaborators in 24 states. 

NOAA Fisheries sets aside a portion of Prescott funds for emergency assistance with unforeseen or catastrophic stranding events.The program provided $999,122 in emergency funds to help reimburse the Network for 15 events that required emergency support between 2011 and 2015. A review of how the funds were allocated and spent is now available in a 5-Year Report.

For the past 18 years, Congress has appropriated approximately $1 to 4 million annually to NOAA Fisheries to fund the Program. NOAA Fisheries funds eligible members of the National Marine Mammal Stranding Network and research collaborators through grants and cooperative agreements. The funding supports the recovery or treatment of marine mammals, the collection of data from living or dead stranded marine mammals for health research, and the support of facility operation costs. 

Prescott Grant funding has enabled Stranding Network members to:

  • Expand response coverage
  • Enhance response capabilities and data collection
  • Build and upgrade rehabilitation facilities
  • Allow network partners and research collaborators investigate marine mammal health. 

As a result, NOAA Fisheries and our Network partners operate a more comprehensive nationwide health and emergency response program. The response program aids stranded or entangled marine mammals in distress, and monitors and assesses the health of marine mammal populations. 

The Program awards competitive grants equitably across the five NOAA Fisheries regions, to enhance stranding response and investigations nationally. Below is a regional breakdown of the competitive Prescott Grant awards (Emergency Prescott Grants not included).

Greater Atlantic Region: 42 awards, 15 organizations (total $3,519,295)

Southeast Region: 46 awards, 17 organizations (total $3,740,194)

West Coast Region: 56 awards, 23 organizations (total $4,789,138)

Alaska Region: 9 awards, 4 organizations (total $831,769)

Pacific Islands Region: 7 awards, 2 locations (total $642,625)

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The locations of all Prescott Grant recipients from 2011-2015

Last updated by on February 11, 2020

Marine Mammal Strandings Prescott Grant Program