baltic harbour porpoise

However, because traditional survey methods from ships or airplanes produce insufficient data in this low-density population, this classification is based on very uncertain abundance estimates. Bycatch, anthropogenic pollution, and underwater noise arethe major threats to the Baltic Proper . The Baltic Sea subpopulation has been assessed by IUCN as Critically Endangered. Therefore, we investigated the first signs of sexual maturity for a period of almost two decades … ; Pollution - toxic chemicals from plastic, litter and oil spills build up in harbour porpoise seriously harming their health and their ability to have young. For the Baltic Sea harbour porpoises to recover, we need more areas were these activities are restricted. The fishers set half of their nets equipped with PALs, the other half of their nets without PALs as control. The Baltic Sea harbour porpoise is a subpopulation, listed by the IUCN and HELCOM as “critically endangered”. The harbour porpoise is a small whale which actually lives in the Baltic Sea, but it is critically endangered. The Baltic Proper population is down to a few hundred individuals and is regarded as ‘Critically Endangered’ by IUCN; the more abundant Belt Sea population also appears to have experienced a severe decline. One parameter is the onset of sexual maturity in female harbour porpoises. The nets with the highest risk if bycatch are large mesh nets used to catch for example cod and flatfish, as well as salmon nets. Please show your support through our dedicated Facebook page and tag your photo of the sea with #SaveTheBalticPorpoise or #RäddaTumlaren. One, in the southwest Baltic Sea, is a known site, where a separate harbor porpoise population from the nearby Belt Sea goes to breed in the summer. With an effective management this area could be instrumental for the recovery of the Baltic Sea harbour porpoise. The project, which started in 2010, was named SAMBAH, Static Acoustic Monitoring for the Baltic Sea Harbour Porpoise. From the early days of the Agreement, one population caused scientists, conservationists and governments special concern: the Baltic Harbour Porpoise. CCB information on Harbour porpoise is now updated and available in Estonian with latest scientific findings on how many there are in the Baltic Sea, where they are and more importantly where they go to mate and bring up the calves. There are only approximately 500 animals left today, and now management measures are needed to save them. While dolphins live in larger social groups, porpoises often live alone or in pairs, and they do not use whistles like dolphins do. For many years, protected areas for harbour porpoises have been discussed, and in December 2016 a large protected area for porpoises was designated in Swedish waters south of Gotland. Without information on where the largest part of the population is, it is very difficult to take effective conservation measures. They are mammals and need to come up to the surface to breathe about once every other minute; this is the best opportunity to see these very timid animals. Instead, porpoises use echolocation clicks to “see” under water and to communicate with eachother. Based on the results from SAMBAH, in December 2016 the Swedish government designated a large Natura 2000 area south of Gotland. Whilst Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) cannot address all of these threats, they are generally considered important instruments in the protection of marine mammals such as porpoises. The harbour porpoise is the most common small cetacean species in the North Sea and the only cetacean species native to the Baltic Sea and therefore is the flagship species of the Agreement . At CCB, we are now working together with authorities and stakeholders to look at suitable conservation measures for this area. Also, if you spot a harbour porpoise at sea, please report it to your national reporting hub. Without knowledge on seasonal and geographical distribution, a common basis for conservation efforts has been lacking for the past decades. The main goal of this project is to establish a well-managed MPA covering the main breeding area of the harbour porpoises in the Baltic Sea in order to improve the status of the Baltic Sea population. This was previously completely unknown, and this new knowledge was instrumental in designating relevant areas for protection of porpoises. Hunting – harbour porpoises are hunted off the coasts of both South Korea and Greenland as well as in several other countries around the world. The project could also show what areas are most important to porpoises during different seasons, and could thereby also show where the Baltic Sea harbour porpoise reproduce. Because harbour porpoises use echolocation to orientate themselves, find prey and communicate, they are sensitive to underwater noise. Porpoises rarely get caught in trawls or other active gear, so set nets are the primary threat. Your voice is important in this work. The study helped identify a large area around the offshore banks in the Baltic Proper thought to be an important breeding site for the Baltic Sea population. Harbour porpoise are hunted in Greenland but targeted fisheries have ceased elsewhere. With increased noise, porpoises have problems hearing the echoes from their own echolocation clicks, which makes it harder for them to find prey. At a meeting of northern European nations held recently, the issue of the critically endangered harbour porpoise population in the Baltic Sea was discussed and debated. There are three separate harbour porpoise populations in the Baltic Sea Region, but the one in the Baltic Proper has seen its population decrease dramatically since the mid-1900s. Also, there was no knowledge on the distribution of animals in the Baltic. Today its geographical range is significantly smaller than what can be induced from historical records, and there are only a few hundred animals left. The primary threat to this species is by-catch in gillnet fisheries, but underwater noise from anthropogenic activities, environmental contaminants and ecosystem changes are also thought to affect the population status. To protect the porpoises here is very important to give the population a chance to recover. During the second half of the 20thcentury, numbers of harbour porpoises have declined and the distribution range narrowed. There are problems with all of these methods and different methods may be suitable in different areas, so it is important to have a good dialogue with stakeholders to adapt measures. With funding from the EU Life programme and the Baltic Sea Conservation foundation, CCB is now working with authorities and stakeholders to agree on suitable conservation measures for the harbour porpoises in the new Natura 2000 area south of Gotland. We are Member of IUCN, BSAC We are Partner of GWP We are Observer at HELCOM, NASCO, IWC. Incidental catches in fishing gear (especially gill nets) is the most significant threat to this species throughout its range. The dashed line indicates a proposed delimitation border between a summer cluster of the Baltic Proper porpoise population found the central Baltic Sea and another cluster found in the south-west, with porpoises from the Belt Sea population. One, in the southwest Baltic Sea, is a known site, where a separate harbour porpoise population from the nearby Belt Sea goes to breed in the summer. To decrease the impact of underwater noise in especially sensitive areas we can. The target group for objective 4 is CCB itself, to evaluate the project’s success, but also other NGOs who may want to carry out a similar project or be part of a similar process in another area and who may wish to learn from this project. The target group for objective 3 is the general public and ultimately decision makers such as politicians, who are responsible for taking final decisions on the management of the area. He has clear marks of nets around his mouth, showing that he was caught and drowned in a fishing net before drifting ashore on one of the long sandy beaches on the Polish coast. ABSTRACT: Harbour porpoise Phocoena phocoena abundance in the Baltic Proper (BP) is at a level where measures for improving the status of this genetically and morphologically discrete population are urgently needed. Genetic (Wiemann et al., 2010), morphometric (Galatius et al., 2012) and distributional studies (Sveegaard et al., 2015; SAMBAH, 2016a) indicate a separate harbour porpoise population in … Their high frequency sounds travel only short distances under water, and with increased noise levels it becomes even shorter. The harbour porpoise population in the central Baltic Sea is now only in the low hundreds and urgent action is needed to … Based on surveys in 1994, 2005 and 2016, the harbour porpoise population in this region is stable. Our Harbour Porpoise´s page in Swedish is available here. The Baltic Sea harbour porpoise is a subpopulation, listed by the IUCN and HELCOM as “critically endangered”. SAMBAH estimated the number of harbour porpoises left in the Baltic Proper population to approximately 500 animals. Southern Baltic Sea Region, mainly in Swedish EEZ, Total projekt budget:  € 274.330 We hope that all Swedish parties, authorities and other stakeholders can agree to build on this new protected area and cooperate to take effective management measures to save the Baltic Sea harbour porpoise. Ensure stakeholder involvement and buy-in, Support and extend political interest for the protection of harbour porpoises and the new MPA, Monitor and evaluate the process and the project, Establishing CCB as a facilitator for stakeholder dialogue, Mapping of Swedish and Baltic Sea Region stakeholders, Bringing in legal and scientific expertise, Preparing draft proposals for management plans and fisheries regulations, Lobbying directed at politicians, ministry and agency staff, Dialogue with national representatives in other countries. A 2016 report published by ASCOBANS estimated the population to be less than 500 individuals strong, and some earlier surveys resulted in even more pessimistic estimates of less than 250 animals. The harbour porpoise is a small whale which actually lives in the Baltic Sea, but it is critically endangered. The historic range of the harbour porpoise extended into the north-eastern parts of the Baltic Sea. The harbour porpoise Phocoena phocoena is widespread throughout the cold and temperate seas of Europe, including the North Sea, the Skagerrak, Kattegat, Irish Sea, the seas west of Ireland and Scotland, northwards to Orkney and Shetland and off the coasts of Norway. The area is more than 1 million hectares, and includes most of the area where the Baltic Proper harbour porpoises are thought to give birth to their calves and mate in the summer. It also becomes more difficult for porpoises to hear eachother. The target groups for objective 1 and 2 are the key players in the process, i.e. The Baltic Sea harbour porpoise population is classified as critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, IUCN. The harbour porpoise is the only cetacean species native to German waters. In 2016, a comprehensive survey of the Atlantic region in Europe, from Gibraltar to Vestfjorden in Norway, found that the population was about 467,000 harbour porpoises, making it the most abundant cetacean in the region, together with the common dolphin. This site is almost entirely situated in Swedish waters and was hence designated as a Natura 2000 site for harbour porpoises in December 2016 by the Swedish government. In this work, we need your help to convince the politicians that protecting the Baltic Proper harbour porpoise is important, so that they make the right decision about the management of this new Natura 2000 area. other donors:                € 64.100, https://www.facebook.com/coalitioncleanbaltic/?fref=ts, Restoring degraded peatlands in Słowiński National Park Poland (Peat Restore). It is not as large as its dolphin relatives, and rarely jumps over the surface like dolphins, so it is rather difficult to spot at sea. But the other site, centered off the Swedish coast, was new to the researchers, and the high density of clicks emanating from the region suggests the porpoises are congregating in high numbers. The only information came from reported observations collected by different national bodies and collected at the HELCOM harbour porpoise database. This project will support the County Administrative Boards (CABs) in engaging stakeholders about implementing suitable mitigation measures through practical arrangement of meetings, funding travel for participants, supplying expert support when needed, and facilitating dialogue. conservation status of harbour porpoise in the Baltic Marine Region classified the status of the Baltic Proper porpoise as “unfavourable-bad“ for the three consecutive assessments under Article 17. It was formerly infrequent in the English Channel and southern North Sea, but now appears to be returning to these areas. harbour porpoises. Such mitigation measures could include, for example, fisheries regulations and limitations for shipping. "When these harbour porpoises have disappeared from the inner Baltic, they are gone forever. The harbour porpoise is protected by the Habitats Directive. The results of SAMBAH allow countries to designate Natura 2000 areas for harbour porpoises in the Baltic Sea, to safeguard porpoises presence in their waters. Harbour porpoise presence in the Baltic proper overlap with quite a few marine protected areas. The level of noise in the oceans has increased significantly during the last decades, with noise from shipping, dredging, construction, leisure boats and jet skis. Historically large commercial catches reduced the population significantly and numerous incidental catc… The population of Baltic Proper harbour porpoises has been extremely low for many years and is listed as Critically Endangered by the IUCN. Harbour porpoises are threatened by fisheries, since they can get caught and drown in fishing nets. Because porpoises need to get to the surface to breathe, they drown if they get caught in a fishing net. Numerous species of small cetaceans live in the Baltic, Irish and North Seas and the North East Atlantic, including dolphins, whales and harbour porpoises. The probability of gill nets for bycatch of harbour porpoise is reduced by 70%. The Baltic Sea harbour porpoise is listed by IUCN and HELCOM as critically endangered. They will not be replaced by harbour porpoises in the western Baltic," says Dr. Harald Benke, director and whale researcher of the German Maritime Museum in Stralsund. The SAMBAH project (2010-2015) was the first to investigate the distribution and abundance of porpoises in nearly the entire Baltic Proper. Pingers emit sound signals scaring the porpoises or warning them of the presence of nets, Introduce speed limits for, or completely ban leisure boats, Prohibit construction of for example wind farms, or enforce strict rules on how construction must be carried out. This is one of the primary reasons there are so few porpoises left in the Baltic Sea today. To avoid bycatch some measures could be. funding baltfc:              € 210.230 But the other site, centered off the Swedish coast, was new to the researchers, and the high density of clicks emanating from the region suggests the porpoises are congregating in high numbers. The Baltic Sea harbour porpoise is one such population and listed by the IUCN as “critically endangered”, meaning that it is on a path to extinction. The aim is to celebrate the International Day of the Baltic Porpoise in May 2019 with a protected area, complete with effective management measures, where harbour porpoises can raise their young in peace. The Harbour porpoise is one of the smallest whales with a length of about 150 cm and a weight of around 50 kgs. With only 500 animals left, the Baltic harbor porpoises have been declared critically endangered. Sustainable Development in Coastal and Marine Areas, Harmful Installations and Maritime Transport, classified as critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, IUCN, Decrease fishing effort with set nets in important areas, Switch set nets for alternative gear such as pots or traps, Use pingers on any set nets used. Bycatch, pollution, and underwater noise all have an effect on this population. We need your help to convince the politicians that protecting the Baltic Proper harbour porpoise is important, so that they make the right decision about the management of this new Natura 2000 area. Harbour porpoises live in coastal waters around the whole northern hemisphere. The highest densities are in the southwestern North Sea and oceans of mainland Denmark Harbour porpoises are also exposed to underwater noise from heavy shipping traffic and fast leisure boats. It is usually assumed that Baltic porpoises form a separate population unit, although the evidence for this has been disputed lately. The harbour porpoise subpopulation in the Baltic Sea is classed as critically endangered (CR) on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List (Hammond et al. Established in 1964, the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species has evolved to become the world’s most comprehensive information source on the global conservation status of animal, fungi and plant species. Being killed as bycatch in fishing nets is the major threat for the animals, yet fishing is still permitted, even in Marine Protected Areas. The harbour porpoise is seriously depleted and threatened with extinction in the Baltic Sea. Harbour porpoises are threatened by fisheries, since they can get caught and drown in fishing nets. The Baltic Proper harbour porpoise is listed as Critically Endangered (CR) by IUCN and HELCOM. The Baltic harbour porpoise population is classified as critically endangered. the stakeholders and the authorities ultimately responsible for the management of the MPA. This photo shows a young harbour porpoise male found on a beach in Poland in October 2016. The Baltic Sea Conservation Foundation is another target group for this objective, both as the financer and as an organisation, which may be interested in this type of process in the future. The harbour porpoise is the only cetacean species occurring throughout the year in the Baltic Sea. The harbour porpoise (Phocoena phocoena) is a small toothed whale which lives in the Baltic Sea. However, for the MPA to have real effects on the status of the harbour porpoise population, measures to mitigate threats need to be specified in a management plan for this area. 2008). Since human pressures are suggested to shorten their reproductive lifespan, basic knowledge on reproduction is strongly required. But many marine areas important for porpoises are without protection status. The most severe threat to harbour porpoises is bycatch in fisheries. To achieve this, SAMBAH aims to increase the awareness and knowledge about the Baltic Sea harbour porpoise, estimating population densities and total abundance. status of the arbour HPorpoise in the Baltic Marine region as 'unfavourablebad’ for the three - consecutive assessments in 2007, 2013 and 2019, Recognizing the revised HELCOM recommendation 17/2 on protection of the Harbour Porpoise in the Baltic Sea areaand its aims to minimize bycatch and implementing protection measures both SAMBAH – Static Acoustic Monitoring of the Baltic Sea Harbour Porpoise – is an inter-national project involving all EU countries around the Baltic Sea, with the ultimate goal to secure the conservation of the Baltic Sea harbour porpoise. We hope that all Swedish parties, authorities, stakeholders and the public will join us in this effort to save the Baltic Sea harbour porpoise. Reported observations occur along the coasts, since this is where most people spend their time. ABSTRACT: During recent decades, the 2 distinct harbour porpoise populations of the Baltic Sea have decreased sharply in abundance. To gain more information, authorities and scientists from all EU countries around the Baltic Sea decided to start a common project using new acoustic methods to survey the distribution and abundance of harbour porpoises in the Baltic Sea. This can cause calves to loose their mothers, or females and males not finding eachother when it is time to mate. The harbour porpoise is the only cetacean species resident in the Baltic Sea. The harbour porpoise (Phocoena phocoena) is the most common cetacean in northern Europe, however, the Baltic Proper sub-population is listed as critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). See www.porpoisedetectors.co.uk for some background information on harbour porpoises. The harbour porpoise has a global population of at least 700,000. Sweden now has a unique chance to contribute to the conservation of harbour porpoises in the Baltic Sea and to be the first nation with a protected area this big and with relevant management measures. harbour porpoise… Probability of detection of harbour porpoise in Summer (May-October) and There are only approximately 500 animals left today, and now management measures are needed to save them. Chemical pollution, anthropogenic noise, vessel strikes, and chemical pollution are also ongoing issues. The aim is for this support to result in management measures that are widely supported by stakeholders, increasing the chances of success. In the Baltic region there are three separate populations: one in the North Sea, Skagerrak and northern Kattegat, one in southern Kattegat, the Belt Sea and southwestern Baltic Sea, and one in the Baltic Proper. During recent decades, the 2 distinct harbour porpoise populations of the Baltic Sea have decreased sharply in abundance. Concerning common dolphin in the Bay of Biscay and harbour porpoise in the Baltic Sea, ICES is requested to: •review current conservation status & threats to the populations, including threat due to commercial fisheries by-catches, taking account Figure 1a. There are three sub-species: one in he Pacific, one in the Atlantic and one in the Black Sea. After a significant decrease in numbers from the 1960’s and forward, in the beginning of the 21st century no one knew how many animals were left in the Baltic, despite surveys using different methods. The project will also carry out communication activities through the use of social media as well as in cooperation with the Kolmården Wildlife Park, ultimately aiming at increasing environmental awareness to obtain public support for protecting the Baltic Sea harbour porpoise and encouraging politicians to take actions on management of the protected area. 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