Soviet-American Cooperative Research on Marine Mammals. Volume 1- Pinnipeds: Under Project V.6. Marine Mammals, of the US-USSR Agreement on Cooperation in the Field of Environmental Protection
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AbstractSome 25 to 30 yr ago, when we as students were beginning our respective careers and were developing for the first time our awareness of marine mammals in the waters separating western North America from eastern Asia, we had visions of eventually bridging the communication gap which existed between our two countries at that time. Each of us was anxious to obtain information on the distribution,biology, and ecological relations of "our" seals and walruses on "the other side," beyond our respectivepolitical boundari~s where we were not permitted to go to study them. We were concerned that the resource management practices on the other side of the Bering and Chukchi Seas, implemented in isolation, on a purely unilateral basis, might endanger the species which we had come to know and were striving to conserve. At once apparent to both of us was the need for free exchange of biological information between our two countries and, ultimately, joint management of our shared resources. In a small way, we and others made some initial efforts to generate that exchange by personal correspondence and through vocal interchange at the annual meetings of the North Pacific Fur Seal Commission. By the enabling Agreement on Cooperation in the Field of Environmental Protection, reached between our two countries in 1972, our earlier visions at last came true. Since that time, within the framework of the Marine Mammal Project under Area V of that Agreement, we and our colleagues have forged a strong bond of professional accord and respect, in an atmosphere of free intercommunication and mutual understanding. The strength and utility of this arrangement from the beginning of our joint research are reflected in the reports contained in this, the first compendium of our work.The need for a series of such a compendia became apparent to us in 1976, and its implementation was agreed on by the regular meeting of the Project in La Jolla, Calif., in January 1977. Obviously, the preparation and publication of this first volume has been excessively delayed, in part by continuing political distrust between our governments but mainly by increasing demands placed on the time of thecontributors. In this period of growing environmental concern in both countries, we and our colleagues have been totally immersed in other tasks and have experienced great difficulty in drawing together the works presented here. Much of the support for doing so was provided by the State of Alaska, through funding for Organized Research at the University of Alaska-Fairbanks. For its ultimate completion in publishable form we wish to thank Helen Stockholm, Director of Publications, Institute of Marine Science, University of Alaska, and her staff, especially Ruth Hand, and the numerous referees narned herein who gave willingly oftheir time to review each ofthe manuscripts critically and to provide a high measure of professionalism to the final product. (PDF file contains 110 pages.)
Publisher or UniversityNOAA/National Marine Fisheries Service
Series : NrNOAA Technical Report NMFS