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The latest entanglement response training workshop has taken place in Genoa, Italy. Italian responders were joined by colleagues from France and Monaco, the three signatories of the Pelagos Agreement which established a marine sanctuary of 87,500 sq km in the Mediterranean Sea.   

Training in safe and effective entanglement response was highlighted in the new Pelagos Agreement Management Plan and the two-day workshop followed a format which was developed by the IWC’s Expert Panel on Entanglement Response and has so far been delivered to 1300 participants from 36 countries.

The workshop began in the classroom, with a presentation on the specific populations at risk of entanglement in the Pelagos Sanctuary, case studies and demonstrations of the tools and methods of intervention.

On the second day, participants took to the water with exercises at sea aimed at practising the techniques learned in the classroom, including boat approach manoeuvres and use of tools such as pole-mounted knives.

An intervention toolkit will be made available to each member country of the Pelagos Agreement and the group aims to develop a network of specialist responders for the Sanctuary. This training follows two other recent training workshops in Italy, in October and May, and the organisations involved will coordinate to establish a response capability along the Italian coast, extending into the Sanctuary.

The training took place 16-17 May, a collaboration between the IWC, the Center for Coastal Studies, the Pelagos Agreement and the Coast Guard – Maritime Directorate of Genoa.  The IWC and the Center for Coastal Studies are partners in the global initiative to build entanglement response capacity and raise awareness of the problem and potential solutions.  Click for more information on the Global Whale Entanglement Response Network and its Expert Panel.