Ecology, Population Structure and Dynamics - 2010 Reports

Co-occurrence of multiple algal toxins in dolphins

Dec 21, 2010 No comments

By Mike Twiner, PhD, University of Michigan and Spencer Fire, PhD, NOAA Marine Biotoxins Program Marine sentinel species such as bottlenose dolphins can be negatively impacted by toxic compounds produced by naturally occurring phytoplankton (single-celled marine algae). The Sarasota Bay bottlenose dolphin population is frequently exposed to toxic blooms of the marine algae Karenia brevis [...]

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Status of fish populations in Sarasota Bay post-red-tide

Dec 21, 2010 No Comments

By Elizabeth Berens McCabe, MS, Chicago Zoological Society Natural disturbances such as harmful algal blooms can greatly affect the community dynamics of estuaries and nearshore environments.  In Florida, red tides are a type of harmful algal bloom caused by the dinoflagellate Karenia brevis.  This naturally occurring alga produces brevetoxins (PbTx), lethal neurotoxins which affect the [...]

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Genetic susceptibility to red tides

Dec 21, 2010 No Comments

By Kristina Cammen, PhD student, Duke University Red tides of the toxic algal species Karenia brevis occur regularly in western Florida and can pose a great threat to coastal bottlenose dolphins. In the past two decades, four large-scale mortality events of bottlenose dolphins have been associated with red tides. Interestingly, dolphin populations appear to vary [...]

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Historical trends in Sarasota Bay bottlenose dolphin foraging habits revealed through carbon isotopes

Dec 21, 2010 No Comments

My contribution to dolphin conservation comes not from observing bottlenose dolphins directly in the warm Sarasota sun but rather by exploiting new mass spectrometric techniques that allow me to uncover various attributes of foraging habits by measuring tiny amounts of animal tissue. These techniques involve analysis of the stable isotopes of carbon. Different types of [...]

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Dolphin population monitoring program: 2009-2010

Dec 21, 2010 No Comments

By Jason Allen, BS, Chicago Zoological Society We have been able to continue our year-round monthly monitoring of the Sarasota dolphin community thanks largely to support from the Batchelor Foundation and the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund.  The Sarasota bottlenose dolphin community is perhaps the most thoroughly studied free-ranging dolphin population in the world. We continue [...]

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Deep Water Horizon Oil Spill: Impacts on estuarine bottlenose dolphins in the West Florida Panhandle

Dec 21, 2010 No Comments

By Graham A.J. Worthy, PhD (UCF), Steve Shippee (UCF), Randall S. Wells, PhD (CZS/Mote Marine Laboratory), Martin Shannon (FFWRI), and Peggy Ostrom, PhD (MSU) We have assembled a collaborative team of researchers from the University of Central Florida, the Sarasota Dolphin Research Program, and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute to study the potential [...]

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Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill: Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) of the St. Joseph Bay bottlenose dolphin community

Dec 21, 2010 No Comments

By Brian Balmer, MS, PhD Student, Chicago Zoological Society and University of North Carolina Wilmington In response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, we were contracted to perform a Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) on the St. Joseph Bay bottlenose dolphin community. The overall goals of the NRDA process, which is part of NOAA’s Damage [...]

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Sarasota Bay dolphin community monitoring program 2008-2009

Jan 30, 2010 No Comments

We had 1,065 group sightings that totaled 3,135 dolphins (including resighted animals).

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Genetic susceptibility to red tides

Jan 26, 2010 No Comments

In the past decade, four Unusual Mortality Events (UMEs) of bottlenose dolphins have been attributed to Karenia brevis, the red tide algal species that produces neurotoxic brevetoxins.

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