[MARMAM] Volunteers required for humpback whale survey, Western Australia

Rebecca Dunlop r.dunlop at uq.edu.au
Mon Mar 31 16:20:54 PDT 2008

Shark Bay Humpback Whale Survey, 2008

Project title: Population status of Western Australian humpback whales


Project outline: This project will complement a major existing data set
from surveys undertaken in 1999 and 2005 on northward migrating humpback
whales from one of seven currently recognized southern hemisphere
breeding stocks (Breeding Stock D). As in 2005, there will be two
components (i) an aerial survey over two months, covering the peak
migration period past Shark Bay, WA, where regular aerial surveys
provided relative abundance and trend information over 1982-1994; (ii) a
land-based survey over a shorter period, to 'ground-truth' the aerial
survey. The result should be an estimated current absolute abundance for
this Breeding Stock for use in comprehensive assessments of southern
hemisphere whale stocks, essential for their conservation and rational


Up to 6 participants are needed as part of a team to help with the
land-based element of an aerial survey for humpback whales off Shark
Bay, Western Australia. Shark Bay is located on the most western point
of the coast of Australia and fieldwork will be undertaken on Dirk
Hartog Island, an island within the Shark Bay World Heritage Area world
renowned for its significant conservation values due to its diverse and
ecologically important species of plants and animals.


When: for approx 2 weeks from approx 6th July 2008.


What: to observe, count and record northbound humpback whales within
visual range of the cliffs of Dirk Hartog Island, off the west coast of
Shark Bay.


Who: Participants must

 - have an interest in marine biology

 - show common sense and have proven ability to work as part of a team

 - have general outdoor field experience (camping will be involved)



 - have a first degree in science



 - have previous cetacean experience

 - previous experience in theodolite tracking and Cyclopes


4 wheel drive ability would be an advantage.


All expenses will be covered during the survey. Some limited assistance
may be available for transport Perth/Denham and return.


Anyone interested should email Rebecca Dunlop and Joshua Smith (see
below) immediately, with a cover letter, CV, the names of two referees
and contact details.



Dr. Rebecca Dunlop

School of Veterinary Sciences

University of Queensland

St. Lucia

QLD 4072

Tel: +61 7 33652088     0437434041

Email: r.dunlop at uq.edu.au




Joshua Smith

School of Integrative Biology

University of Queensland

St Lucia, Qld 4072, Australia 

Phone: +61 7 3365 4825  

Email <j.smith at sib.uq.edu.au>



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