- Prof. Lars Bejder
- Prof. Kenneth Pollock
- Dr. Halina Kobryn
- Dr. Randall Wells (Sarasota Dolphin Research Program)
Continued monitoring and development of solid baseline data are necessary for management and conservation efforts for this population. Further, examining variation between the sexes in population parameters such as seasonal abundance, home range size and habitat usage allow for better management practices of the population.
- Continue long-term monitoring of the population
- Assess sex-specific variation in population parameters
- Estimate sex-specific patterns in abundance, apparent survival and temporary emigration of dolphins and to investigate fluctuations in population parameters with environmental conditions
- Investigate sex-specific differences in home range size for adult dolphins and explore whether dolphins could be portioned into groups based on home range size
- Examine the influence of biotic and abiotic factors on the seasonal spatial distribution and habitat use of adult male and adult female dolphins
- Discuss sex-specific and seasonal patterns in the local dolphin population and make recommendations for future research directives
Between 2007 and 2013, year-round standard boat-based photo-identification techniques were used as a capture-recapture method for documenting individual bottlenose dolphins, based on nicks and marks on the dorsal fin and body surface, encountered along pre-determined transect lines.
The study area was expanded from 120 km2 to 540 km2 to six transect zones: the three initial transect zones from the Population abundance and ranging patterns project (Zone 1: Buffalo Beach; Zone 2: Back Beach; and Zone 3: Bunbury Inner waters; Figure 1) and three additional transect zones (Back Beach offshore, Buffalo Beach offshore and Busselton. Surveys were conducted from a 5 m centre console research vessel driven at a speed of 8 -12 kn along transect lines. Transects followed a predetermined track in a zigzag pattern up to five nautical mile from shore.
Map of the 540 km2 study area in the near-shore environment around the Bunbury, Western Australia, showing the extent of the six transect zones and zig-jag patterns of each transect line. Zone 1: the northern area off Buffalo Beach; Zone 2: the southern area off Back Beach; and Zone 3: Bunbury inner waters including the Leschenault Estuary and Inlet, Inner and Outer Harbour, Koombana Bay and the lower reaches of the Collie River. Additional transects were added (Buffalo Beach offshore, Back Beach offshore, and Busselton).
- Sprogis, K.R., Pollock, K.H., Raudino, H.R., Allen, S.J., Kopps, A.M., Manlik, O., Tyne, J.A. and Bejder, L. (2016). Sex-specific patterns in abundance, temporary emigration and survival of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) in coastal and estuarine waters. Frontiers in Marine Science 3:12. doi: 10.3389/fmars.2016.00012
- Sprogis, K.R., Raudino, H.C., Rankin R., MacLeod, C. and Bejder, L. (2016). Home range size of adult Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) in a coastal and estuarine system is habitat and sex-specific. Marine Mammal Science. 32:287–308.
Completed PhD thesis
- Sprogis, K.R. (2015). Sex-specific patterns in abundance, home ranges and habitat use of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) in south-western Australia. PhD thesis, Murdoch University. (Supervisors: Lars Bejder, Kenneth Pollock, Halina Kobryn, Randall Wells).
- New publication: Complex prey handling of dolphins on giant cuttlefish
- New publication: Sex-specific patterns in abundance, temporary emigration and survival of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins in coastal and estuarine waters
- New publication: Sex-specific home ranges in bottlenose dolphins
- Congratulations to Dr. Kate Sprogis on her PhD completion on sex-specific behavioural ecology of bottlenose dolphins
- Winter at Duke University, USA and Summer in Bunbury, Western Australia
- Whales, flying fish, sea lions and dolphins galore
- “Fish tales” from the SWMRP
- WA winter wanderers
- Update from Bunbury: male dolphins, lots of calves and hammerhead sharks
- Post-mortem results of the Gray’s beaked whale stranding
- Bunbury summer dolphin transects complete
- Bunbury spring surveys complete
- Investigating marine mammal health
- Bunbury dolphin winter surveys complete – including observation of recent shark bite
- Six cycles within one season
- Update from Bunbury