Meeting of the Columbia Basin Partnership Task Force of the Marine Fisheries Advisory Committee
This notice sets forth the proposed schedule and agenda of a forthcoming meeting of the Marine Fisheries Advisory Committee's (MAFAC's) Columbia Basin Partnership Task Force (CBP Task Force). The CBP Task Force will discuss the issues outlined in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION below.
Public Conference Call Regarding Atlantic Bluefin Tuna Management Strategy Evaluation
NMFS is holding a stakeholder meeting by conference call to provide information on recent progress related to the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) bluefin tuna management strategy evaluation (MSE). NMFS will also receive input on issues to be considered at an upcoming intersessional meeting of ICCAT's Panel 2, which will focus on initial operational management objectives for the bluefin tuna MSE. The conference call is open to the public.
Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Southeast Fisheries Science Center and Texas Parks and Wildlife Department Fisheries Research
NMFS' Office of Protected Resources has received a request from NMFS' Southeast Fisheries Science Center (SEFSC) for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to fisheries research conducted in the Atlantic Ocean along the southeastern U.S. coast and select estuaries, the Gulf of Mexico and select estuaries, and the Caribbean Sea over the course of five years from the date of issuance. We have also received a request from the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to fisheries research in Texas bay systems. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is requesting comments on its proposal to issue regulations to the SEFSC and, separately, TPWD, to incidentally take marine mammals during the specified activities. NMFS will consider public comments prior to making any final decision on the issuance of the requested MMPA authorizations and agency responses will be summarized in the final notice of our decision.