Ecology, Population Structure and Dynamics - 2009 Reports

Genetic and contaminant sampling of mid-Sarasota Bay and new dolphins

Jan 24, 2009 No comments

Beginning in the mid-1990s there has been an unprecedented increase in the numbers of dolphins using Sarasota Bay, from a 20-year average of about 100-120 dolphins to more than 175 dolphins in the early 2000’s. Some of this increase was a result of recruitment through successful reproduction of long-term residents, but many of the animals [...]

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Effects of red tide on dolphin prey fish availability

Jan 17, 2009 No Comments

Since 2004 we have been measuring fish abundance, distribution, and species composition in Sarasota Bay, with particular interest in species that are important food sources of bottlenose dolphins. This has provided us with an opportunity to examine red tide effects on the estuarine fish community. The phenomenon known as red tide is a familiar sight [...]

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Assessing bottlenose dolphin health as an indicator of overall ecosystem health; an ongoing study in the Turtle/Brunswick River Estuary and Sapelo Island National Estuarine Research Reserve

Jan 16, 2009 No Comments

For my dissertation, I am working with NOAA to compare bottlenose dolphin populations near EPA superfund sites in Georgia to those at a nearby national estuarine reserve. The Turtle/Brunswick River Estuary (TBRE) located in Glynn County, Georgia, includes the Turtle and Brunswick Rivers, St. Simons Sound, St. Simons Island, and Jekyll Island. The LCP Chemical [...]

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Monitoring site-fidelity of bottlenose dolphins in the St. Joseph Bay region of the Florida Panhandle following multiple Unusual Mortality Events

Jan 14, 2009 No Comments

Intensive photo-identification and radio tracking studies during 2004-2007 have provided insight into the potential effects of multiple Unusual Mortality Events in and around St. Joseph Bay. However, the recovery rate of bottlenose dolphin populations along the Florida Panhandle cannot be determined without long-term photo-identification surveys in this region. In collaboration with the Florida Department of [...]

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Stable isotopes in bottlenose dolphin teeth as tools in population differentiation

Jan 11, 2009 No Comments

Bottlenose dolphins are the most frequently-sighted cetaceans in coastal waters of the southeastern U.S. Records also indicate that they are the most common species to strand in this area. As such, they are widely represented in marine mammal museum collections throughout the region. In the most extensive of these collections, a wealth of associated biological [...]

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Sarasota Bay dolphin monitoring program 2007-2008

Jan 09, 2009 No Comments

We have been able to continue our year-round monthly monitoring of the Sarasota dolphin community thanks to support from NOAA Fisheries Service. The Sarasota bottlenose dolphin community is the most thoroughly-studied, free-ranging dolphin population in the world. We continue to address increasingly refined questions about the lives of these animals with the benefit of information [...]

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Long-term site fidelity, residency, and ranging patterns of bottlenose dolphins in Charlotte Harbor and Pine Island Sound

Jan 09, 2009 No Comments

Longitudinal studies spanning decades allow documentation of long-term residency, site fidelity, behavior, ranging, and association patterns as well as trends in abundance. A lot has been learned about the dolphins that inhabit Sarasota Bay through such long-term studies. Do the dolphins that inhabit the next closest estuary to the south of Sarasota Bay show similar [...]

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Bottlenose dolphins in the Big Bend region of Florida

Jan 04, 2009 No Comments

The waters stretching from St. Vincent Sound to Alligator Harbor in the Big Bend of Florida represent one of the least understood areas of the state in regards to bottlenose dolphins. Recent large scale mortality events, together with an increasing potential for human impacts in this area, led to studies of abundance and stock structure [...]

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