The Marine Mammal Protected Areas Task Force (MMPA Task Force) was established in 2013 by the International Committee on Marine Mammal Protected Areas (ICoMMPA), the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the Vice-Chair of the World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA), and the Members of the IUCN Species Survival Commission (SSC).
This group organises scientific workshops whose objective is to identify and delimit habitats that are considered important for one or more marine mammal species, and which have the potential to be managed in terms of species/habitat conservation. The identified "Important Areas for Marine Mammals" (IMMAs) make it possible to put in place localised protection and/or monitoring measures, or simply zoning within existing and future marine protected areas (MPAs).
The objective of this document is to present the scientific protocol for the identification of IMMAs and the programme for identification in the marine regions of the world, to the scientific experts associated with the working groups of the CCAMLR Scientific Committee. IMMAs have the potential to be used as information layers in the designation of areas that deserve particular attention in terms of conservation.