Against the Harassment of Marine Mammals for Photographic Purposes

WHEREAS, a number of films shown on national television have recorded the willful harassment of marine mammals; and

WHEREAS, a particularly flagrant incident showed high speed outboard motor boats repeatedly crossing the blowholes of a mother and calf humpback whale, thereby preventing them from breathing properly and preventing them from leaving the vicinity of photographers; and

WHEREAS, such harassment could cause injury and death to these animals; and

WHEREAS, the humpback whale is classified as a rare and endangered species; and

WHEREAS, it is unlawful under the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 (PL 92522) to harass any marine mammal;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the American Society of Mammalogists censures and condemns the use of harassment to obtain pictures of marine mammals; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Secretaries of Interior and Commerce investigate the legality under PL 92522 of showing photographs of the harassment of these animals on the public television media.