[MARMAM] 2009SMM: Workshop - Taxonomical status of the Tursiops in the Indian Ocean - Closing date registration

Ada Natoli ada.natoli at gmail.com
Tue Sep 8 00:32:28 PDT 2009

Dear All,

This is the last announcement for the following workshop that will take
place on October 11th, a day before the 18th Biennial Conference. CLOSING

*Taxonomical status of the Tursiops in the Indian Ocean*

Taxonomic status of the genus Tursiops spp. in eastern African and
Australasian waters: The taxonomic status of the genus Tursiops is
unresolved and highly controversial. Currently, only two species are
recognised world-wide within this genus, the common bottlenose dolphin (T.
truncatus) and the Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (T.aduncus) (LeDuc et al
However, LeDuc and colleagues recommended a full taxonomic revision of the
sub-family Delphininae. This recommendation was based on their finding that
T. aduncus has closer affinities to the genus Stenella (ie. S. coeruleoalba,
S. frontalis and S. clymene) as well as to common dolphins Delphinus spp.
than to the common bottlenose dolphin T. truncatus. The taxonomic
uncertainty has been confirmed in more recent studies. A geographically
broad phylogenetic study suggested that aduncus-type dolphins from South
Africa may represent a different species from T. truncatus and aduncus-type
Chinese dolphins (Natoli et al., 2004). Furthermore, a mtDNA study of
bottlenose dolphins southern Australia showed that animals in this area may
represent an undescribed taxon (Charlton et al., 2006). This was confirmed
in a recent study by Möller et al. (2008) who described a new species of
bottlenose dolphin in southern Australia based on multi-gene evidence.

In the past, there have been several attempts by various institutions and
researchers to form consortia aimed at addressing these question on a
world-wide scale. However, these efforts have not been successful presumably
because of the large scale at which the projects were aimed at, resulting in
difficulties to coordinate such an effort. Yet, the taxonomic uncertainty of
the genus Tursiops remains still a pressing question.

We therefore propose to start on a smaller scale by addressing these issues
in Indian Ocean and adjacent waters, as there is already a wealth of data
generated at numerous study sites available, with some of the most
interesting findings have been made in these waters. Our proposed workshop
will be relevant for all attendees interested in unresolved taxonomic issues
in cetaceans, especially since it concerns some of the best studied cetacean
species. Furthermore, the increasing availability of behavioural data within
the genus Tursiops will make it soon possible to draw direct comparisons
between different populations. However, given the taxonomic uncertainty of
this species, it is often still not clear whether comparisons are inter- or
intrageneric, hence seriously limiting the conclusions that can be drawn
from comparative studies. We intend to divide the day in two sections. In
the first part (public), researchers will present their latest results.
Depending on the number of contributions, we could accommodate for oral
presentations and 2 min slots for poster presentations. The second part will
be a workshop in which we identify geographic regions for future work, agree
on a set of genetic and morphological markers, and identify institutions
(laboratories) willing to collaborate.

For further information on the Timetable, please contact:
michael.kruetzen at aim.uzh.ch or ada.natoli at gmail.com

Organizers: Michael Krutzen,  Ada Natoli

Date: October 11, 2009

Time: 8.30am - 5p.m. (Full day)

Location:  RM 205A

Cost: approx $30 CAN  (payment at location)
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