Seal eating fish

Marine Mammal Protection

Key Issue

In line with our mission, the National Aquarium is committed to:

  • Advocating for the protection of marine mammal species. Marine mammals, including whales, dolphins, seals, manatees and other species, play a critical role in maintaining a healthy ocean.
  • Informing and educating our guests, members and local community about the importance of funding and research that supports healthy marine mammal populations.

We care about this issue because:

  • The habitat of marine mammals is increasingly overlapping with human maritime activities such as shipping, fishing and offshore drilling.
  • For decades, the United States has relied on science-based policies to balance the demands of human activity with the protection of marine mammals.
  • Marine mammals significantly rely on sound to find food, communicate and mate. Over the last century, the underwater world has become increasingly noisy with shipping traffic, military sonar and offshore energy exploration.

We help by:

  • Participating in a network of stranding organizations, always at the ready to respond, rehabilitate and release any sick or injured marine mammals found along the East Coast.
  • Urging our state and federal representatives to safeguard and prioritize public investment in responsible environmental policies and oversight bodies such as the Marine Mammal Protection Act and Marine Mammal Commission.
  • Raising public awareness of the inextricable link between ocean and human health.

Updated: January 2019