Report Inconclusive On What Killed Orca L112 – Earthfix

A new report out Tuesday stops short of determining what killed a young female orca that washed up near Long Beach, Wash. The scientists who produced it for a federal agency came up with new details about the whale’s trauma, bruising and hemorrhaging, and lack of broken bones.

The necropsy report’s findings have whale experts suspicious of naval activity as a possible cause of her death. The Navy is in the process of renewing its permits to conduct sonar and explosive tests in the Northwest.

http://earthfix.opb.org/flora-and-fauna/article/report-on-orcas-death-inconclusive-on-cause/

Sonar, explosives pose high risk for marine mammals – Tacoma News Tribune

The Navy is continuing to promote that they can expand their training here inside Puget Sound without harming marine mammals, yet more and more troubling information keeps coming out. Given that we have little ability to monitor the Navy actitivites, and strange things like porpoises and whales washing up dead with odd problems, it’s worthy of concern….

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The U.S. Navy may hurt more dolphins and whales by using sonar and explosives in Hawaii and California than thought, says an analysis that reflects new research and covers naval activities in a wider area than previous studies. The Navy estimates its use of explosives and sonar may unintentionally cause more than 1,600 instances of hearing loss or other injury to marine mammals each year, according to a draft environmental impact statement that covers training and testing planned from 2014 to 2019. The Navy calculates the explosives could potentially kill more than 200 marine mammals a year.

http://www.thenewstribune.com/2012/05/12/2140800/sonar-explosives-pose-high-risk.html

Navy decides not to do sonar training in Puget Sound – Chris Dunagan

Chris Dunagan of the Kitsap Sun uncovers the news that the Navy has apparently decided to not do any more sonar training use in Puget Sound. Good news for our marine wildlife. —-read the whole story and comment if you wish at…http://pugetsoundblogs.com/waterways/2009/07/30/some-sonar-questions-are-answered-others-remain/

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The Navy has decided not to conduct training exercises involving sonar within Puget Sound. That information was revealed in a proposed incidental take permit for the Northwest Training Range Complex, now subject to public review under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. See my story in today’s Kitsap Sun.

While this decision no doubt will be a good thing for area marine mammal populations, I’m still a bit confused about the extent to which sonar may be used in non-training conditions.

Use of sonar in the testing of equipment and new technologies will come under a separate take permit for the Naval Undersea Warfare Center, based at Keyport.

But, according to a statement I received from the Navy, that still leaves open the use of sonar for “safety and navigation,” “testing,” and “maintenance.”

As I understand the process, if the Navy were to harm marine mammals in one of these procedures without obtaining a take permit in advance, the Navy would be in violation of the Marine Mammal Protection Act.

more at the link above…

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