Estimates of the abundance of common minke and other species of whales in the North Atlantic have been based largely on sightings surveys conducted from ships and airplanes. The North Atlantic Sightings Surveys (NASS) provide a time-series of abundance estimates from 1987 to 2007, covering a large part of the North Atlantic. Norwegian “mosaic” surveys cover most of the Northeast Atlantic, surveying a portion of the area annually on a six year rotation. Variation in distribution from year to year is incorporated into the variance of the resultant abundance estimate (Skaug et al. 2004).
In addition the European CODA and American SNESSA surveys have contributed to our knowledge of minke whale abundance and distribution. Available abundance estimates by stock area are provided in the table below.