In the ten years since the creation of the prestigious John H. Prescott Marine Mammal Rescue Assistance Grant Program, more than 392 grants have been awarded to 85 different recipient groups from more than 24 states and territories. Award funds have been used to: respond to stranded and entangled marine mammals; rehabilitate and release stranded animals; build the capacity of local stranding networks, including supporting new networks; investigate the causes of strandings and entanglements; and conduct research using stranding data.
In February, we learned that the proposed NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service budget for next year did not include the $4 million in annual funding for the Prescott Grant Program. Despite more than ten years of funding support, and the amazing accomplishments of the nation’s marine mammal stranding network, the Prescott Program may disappear.
The Association of Zoos and Aquariums explores this story on its Explore blog. Read more at http://wildexplorer.org/2012/04/10/marine-mammal-rescue-assistance-grant-program-faces-uncertain-future/