[MARMAM] Contract report available on satellite tagging of beaked whales

Greg Schorr GSchorr at cascadiaresearch.org
Wed Oct 15 21:00:32 PDT 2008

A contract report regarding satellite tagging of beaked whales (citation and abstract below) is now available on Cascadia Research Collective’s Website . 
The report can be found at: 

Additional information on satellite tagging can be found at:

Schorr, Gregory S., Robin W. Baird, M. Bradley Hanson, Daniel L. Webster, Daniel J. McSweeney, and Russel D. Andrews, 2008. MOVEMENTS OF THE FIRST SATELLITE-TAGGED CUVIER’S AND BLAINVILLE’S BEAKED WHALES IN HAWAI‘I. Report prepared under Contract No. AB133F-07-SE-3706 to Cascadia Research Collective, Olympia, WA from Southwest Fisheries Science Center, National Marine Fisheries Service, La Jolla, CA 92037 USA 

Studies on the movement patterns and habitat use of cetaceans are often constrained by numerous factors including ship time, logistics, and the ability to track individuals over time. Obtaining information on beaked whales is especially difficult both due to their habits and their low population densities. To better understand movements of beaked whales in Hawai‘i, Argos-linked satellite tags were remotely applied to the dorsal fins of three Blainville’s beaked whales (Mesoplodon densirostris) and three Cuvier’s beaked whales (Ziphius cavirostris) in 2006 and 2008, representing the first time that beaked whales have been tracked by satellite. Transmissions for Blainville’s were received for 15, 16 and 23 days and for Cuvier’s for 2, 13 and 24 days. All six individuals were tagged west of the island of Hawai‘i. Five of the six individuals moved out of the study area but continued to remain associated with the island. All of the Blainville’s and one of the Cuvier’s moved into the Alenuihaha Channel, a site of naval anti-submarine warfare exercises that is difficult to survey due to unfavorable sea conditions. Movement patterns of tagged animals support the results of photo-identification studies which suggest the populations of both species are island-associated and that individuals exhibit strong site fidelity, both of which potentially increases the susceptibility of these small populations to anthropogenic impacts. 


Greg Schorr 
Cascadia Research Collective 
218 1/2 W. 4th Avenue Olympia, WA 98501 
360.943.7325 Office 
206.931.4638 Cell 
gschorr at cascadiaresearch.org 

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