Gross Evidence of Human-Induced Mortality in Small Cetaceans
NOAA Technical Memorandum NMFS-OPR-15
One can document evidence of anthropogenic trauma such as entanglement in fishing gear, vessel collisions, and gunshot wounds by careful evaluation of stranded marine mammals. Identification of such human-induced mortality and serious injury is an important function of the regional marine mammal stranding networks. Currently, several reference manuals exist to assist marine mammal network members in responding to stranding events, perform necropsies, and collect samples. However without proper training and experience, it can be difficult to identify some of the more subtle indications of anthropogenic trauma. This manual was designed to assist marine mammal researchers and stranding network members in the identification of evidence of adverse human interactions impacting stranded small cetaceans.