What does harassment mean under the Marine Mammal Protection Act?

Under the 1994 Amendments to the Marine Mammal Protection Act, harassment is statutorily defined as, any act of pursuit, torment, or annoyance which—

  • Has the potential to injure a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild (known as Level A harassment); or

  • Has the potential to disturb a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild by causing disruption of behavioral patterns, including, but not limited to, migration, breathing, nursing, breeding, feeding, or sheltering but which does not have the potential to injure a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild (known as Level B harassment).