by Mary Pemberton
The Associated Press
Monday, August 2, 2010
ANCHORAGE, Alaska -- Government scientists are recommending changes in fisheries management in Alaska so that endangered Steller sea lions can get enough to eat.
The National Marine Fisheries Service issued a draft biological opinion Monday that looked at the impact of Alaska's groundfish fisheries on endangered marine mammals, including sea lions and whales.
The agency says the greatest concern is in the western Aleutian Islands, where sea lion numbers are down nearly by half and pup production has declined almost as much. Scientists say the low birth rate is an indicator that sea lions aren't getting enough to eat.