**Some programs are limited. Please read solicitations carefully and consult your Office of Research for specifics, such as limited applications through your university and internal application deadlines.**

The Marine Mammal Commission will be accepting proposals between November 01, 2022 and April 12, 2023 for projects focused on understanding marine mammal population health in a changing climate. Funding requests are limited to $60,000 USD.

Marine Mammal Health in a Changing Climate

The Marine Mammal Commission’s mission, as defined by the U.S. Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), is to ensure that marine mammal populations are restored and maintained as significant functioning elements of healthy marine ecosystems. However, numerous stressors, including pollution, habitat loss, overfishing and fisheries bycatch, noise, and vessel traffic, threaten both the health of marine mammals and the health of marine ecosystems of which they are a part.  In addition, climate change is leading to warming seas, extreme weather events, ocean acidification, and shifts in range and abundance of many marine species and infectious agents, all of which can disrupt ecosystem processes and function, including impacts on the health of marine mammals. For example, some viruses and bacteria that cause disease in marine mammals and other marine wildlife have increased in prevalence or been detected outside of their previously documented range; harmful algal blooms (HABs) that produce dangerous toxins have become more frequent and extensive; increased freshwater discharge from terrestrial sources has dropped salinity in coastal waters and led to marine mammal unusual mortality events; and changes in prey distribution, nutritional quality, or availability are impacting body condition, growth, reproduction, and survival of some marine mammal species. Monitoring the health of populations may provide an early warning of emerging issues prior to observable changes in vital rates or abundance, and may also provide insight into the underlying causes of a population decline. Increased capacity to detect changes in marine mammal population health and understand the underlying factors and processes contributing to those changes is critically needed to be prepared to respond to and mitigate impacts related to changing marine ecosystems, particularly in the face of climate change.

We are seeking proposals for projects that further our understanding of how environmental factors affect marine mammal population health.

Application Deadline: Wednesday, April 12, 2023 at 11:59pm EDT