Scientists observe Cape Morgan

Population Assessments

Endangered Species

Population assessments provide the foundation for evaluating the status of and threats to marine mammals, sea turtles, and fish protected under the Endangered Species Act and to plan and implement species recovery and conservation actions.
Marine resource managers require accurate and precise information on a species or stock’s population structure, life history characteristics and vital rates, abundance, and threats (particularly those caused by human activities). This information informs agency decisions related to:

Information included in endangered species population assessments is vital to how we support and advise state and tribal-managed coastal areas. It also allows us to provide scientific and policy leadership to regional and international bodies such as multi-state marine fishery commissions, U.S. fishery management councils, international fishery management organizations, and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.

Improving Assessments

We provide funding support to our agency scientists as well as university, federal, and state partners to improve sea turtle population assessments through a competitive, peer-reviewed process. Funds are awarded based on relevance to management concerns and scientific research priorities.

For assessing acoustic impacts on endangered species, we also provide funding through a competitive, peer-reviewed process to support research conducted by NOAA scientists and partners.

We have established the National Protected Species Toolbox Initiative to support the development of analytical products and applications that aim to investigate impacts and consequences of human and environmental disturbance on endangered and threatened marine life and other protected species.