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NOAA’s Fisheries Service Announces $1 Million for Five Tribes to Help Recover Threatened and Endangered Species


NOAA’s Fisheries Service today announced nearly $1 million in grants to
assist 5 tribal governments to recover Atlantic salmon, Pacific smelt,
Steller sea lions, humpback whales, and Southern Resident killer whales
listed under the Endangered Species Act and to monitor the delisted
eastern Pacific Gray whale.

“NOAA’s Fisheries Service recognizes the essential role that tribal
governments play as stewards of these endangered marine mammal and fish
species,” said Eric Schwaab, assistant administrator for NOAA’s
Fisheries Service. “This new tribal grant program provides a valuable
mechanism to fund initiatives led by the tribes that protect and
recover species in need.”

The principal objective of the Species Recovery Grants to Tribes
Program is to support recovery efforts that directly benefit threatened
or endangered species, de-listed species, or species being considered
for listing. Recovery efforts supported by the program may involve
management, research, monitoring, and outreach activities or any
combination of these recovery activities. Projects focusing on Pacific
salmon species are not part of this program; conservation efforts for
those species may be funded through NOAA’s Pacific Coastal Salmon
Recovery Fund.

"I'm pleased that so many of our tribal nation partners are taking
strong leadership roles in scientific research and natural resource
management in cooperation with NOAA,” said Don Chapman, the senior
advisor on Native American Affairs for the Secretary of Commerce. “The
grant awards to these 5 tribes are a testament to the dedication of
Indian Country to cultural and natural resource preservation."

The 5 proposals selected during the fiscal year 2010 grant cycle and
corresponding 2010 federal funding are:

1) Makah Tribal Council ($190,653): To conduct research and outreach
to identify and reduce threats to Steller sea lions, Humpback whales,
and Southern Resident killer whales and assess stock structure of
eastern Pacific Gray whales from Alaska to California in collaboration
with NOAA researchers.

2) Aleut Community of St. Paul Island Tribal Government ($158,085): To
investigate the Steller sea lion diet to determine how much of that
diet includes commercially used fish species and assess the levels of
contaminants that may be detrimental to the animals and the humans that
rely on them for subsistence.

3) Cowlitz Indian Tribe ($304,272): To determine habitat preferences
and impacts of sediment runoff from the land on habitat for Pacific
smelt, also called eulachon, in Lower Columbia River Tributaries.

4) Yurok Tribe ($193,975): To identify whether Pacific smelt are still
present in their historic range in the Klamath River, Mad River, and
Redwood Creek and estimate abundance if they are found.

5) Penobscot Indian Nation ($100,000): To hire a restoration biologist
to identify and implement measures to improve Atlantic salmon migration
and represent tribal interests regarding Atlantic salmon management.

The FY11 federal funding announcement will publish in December. For
more information about the program please visit:
http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/conservation/tribes.htm

NOAA’s mission is to understand and predict changes in the Earth's
environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun,
and to conserve and manage our coastal and marine resources. Visit us
at http://www.noaa.gov or on Facebook at
http://www.facebook.com/usnoaagov.

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