Protected Resources

International Sea Turtle Activities

Rachel O'Shea, ©SPC

The International Fisheries Program provides financial, administrative and technical support to sea turtle projects throughout the western and central Pacific region.

The International Sea Turtle Conservation and Management Liaison (the liaison) serves as the NOAA Fisheries International Program point of contact for sea turtle conservation and management projects in the western and central Pacific. The incumbent acts as a liaison between sea turtle conservation and management project principal investigators or relevant project staff and NOAA Fisheries Pacific Islands Regional Office (PIRO). The liaison also coordinates with the Western Pacific Fisheries Management Council, the Pacific Islands and Southwest Fisheries Science Centers (PIFSC, SWFSC), PIRO program staff, NOAA Fisheries headquarters offices, as well as relevant stakeholders (e.g., environmental non-governmental organizations).

Projects and Support Activities:

Click on the links below to access more information.

Support to SWFSC;
Support to Forum Fisheries Agency(FFA);
Republic of the Marshall Islands;
Federated States of Micronesia;
Papua New Guinea;
New Caledonia;

Support to NMFS Southwest Fisheries Science Center projects:

NOAA Fisheries Service PIRO International Fisheries Program provides partial funding for the following Southwest Fisheries Science Center activities: leatherback nesting beach research in Papua Indonesia, leatherback satellite telemetry, nesting beach monitoring and aerial surveys in Indonesia, Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands as well as socioeconomic investigations in the Pacific islands region. In addition, the International Fisheries Program funds collection of marine turtle skin samples for addition to the SWFSC Marine Mammal and Sea Turtle Molecular Genetics Sample Archive. Please use the link below for more information on these programs.

SWFSC Marine Turtle Research Program

Support to Forum Fisheries Agency:

The Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA) is provided technical expertise and fiscal resources to train observers placed on U.S. purse seine vessels.

The FFA trains observers on identification, data recording, handling and fisheries interaction mitigation measures for sea turtles. The FFA will provide equipment and materials required to implement appropriate turtle handling and bycatch mitigation including turtle resuscitation techniques. In addition, the FFA will coordinate with Pacific Island Governments, signatory to the South Pacific Tuna Treaty, to ensure that Pacific Island citizens who are trained to be observers on U.S. purse seine vessels are able to provide NOAA Fisheries Service with required information to ensure compliance with the Endangered Species Act and other relevant obligations related to protected species.

When requested by NOAA Fisheries Service, FFA observers will collect life history information on sea turtles captured by U.S. purse seiners, including but not limited to: species identification, measurements, condition, photographs and skin biopsy samples. FFA observers will record the presence and identifying number of tags on all sea turtles captured.