To provide the best protection for marine mammals we need to understand more about them, especially understudied species. The first project of its type in the region, MAPS draws on the expertise of scientists, industry, and the public, to fill the gaps in our knowledge about the deep diving species like sperm and beaked whales, and certain baleen whales such as sei which are difficult to study, but can be impacted by human activities.
MAPS is researching marine mammals on the outer continental shelf, shelf-break, and deep ocean waters off North and South Carolina.
This area hosts some of the highest diversity of marine mammals within U.S. waters. Many species found here are also found in U.S. Pacific, Gulf of Mexico, and Alaska waters, allowing the information from this study to be applied to many other regions in the United States.