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Ringed and Bearded Ice Seal Populations Endangered Species

December 31st, 2012 · No Comments

NOAA Lists Ringed and Bearded Ice Seal Populations Under the Endangered Species Act

Dec. 30, 2012 — NOAA Fisheries announced on December 21, in compliance with a court ordered deadline, its final listing decision for four subspecies of ringed seals and two distinct population segments (DPSs) of bearded seals under the Endangered Species Act. Specifically, in line with the proposal, NOAA will list as threatened the Beringia and Okhotsk DPSs of bearded seals and the Arctic, Okhotsk, and Baltic subspecies of ringed seals. The Ladoga subspecies of ringed seals will be listed as endangered. The species that exist in U.S. waters (Arctic ringed seals and the Beringia DPS of bearded seals) are already protected under the Marine Mammal Protection Act.

A ringed seal pup peeks out from its protective snow cave near Kotzebue,
Alaska. (Credit: Michael Cameron, NOAA's Alaska Fisheries Science Center)

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