Report of the Workshop on Marine Turtle Longline Post-Interaction Mortality
Marine Turtle Longline Post-Interaction Mortality Workshop, 15-16 January 2004
The NOAA Fisheries, Office of Protected Resources (OPR), was charged with conducting a review of the NMFS post-hooking mortality criteria, established in February 2001, and determining whether, and if so, how, those criteria should be modified. As part of this review, OPR convened a Workshop on Marine Turtle Longline Post-Interaction Mortality (Workshop) in Bethesda, Maryland on 15-16 January 2004. Seventeen experts in the areas of sea turtle biology, sea turtle anatomy/physiology, sea turtle veterinary medicine, sea turtle satellite telemetry, and longline gear deployment participated in the workshop. Consideration of the workshop discussion, along with a comprehensive review of all of the information available on the issue, led OPR to establish revised post-hooking interaction mortality criteria. Despite the refinement of the criteria, knowledge of the effects of sea turtle interactions with longline gear remains limited and is unlikely to be elucidated further in ways that will be particularly relevant to sea turtle recovery. What is certain is that reducing sea turtle interactions with longline gear is necessary for the long-term survival and recovery of these highly migratory species.