[MARMAM] Beaked Whale Strandings in Canary and main Hawaiian Islands Publication

Meghan Faerber mfaerber at gmail.com
Wed Mar 17 12:53:45 PDT 2010

We are pleased to announce the publication of the
following paper.

Faerber, M .M., R. W. Baird. 2010. Does a lack of observed beaked
whale strandings in military exercise areas mean no impacts have
occurred? A comparison of stranding and detection probabilities in the
Canary and main Hawaiian Islands. Marine Mammal Science DOI:

Anthropogenic activities must be monitored to determine effects on
marine mammal species, but the difficulty lies in how to measure
impact. Mass strandings of beaked whales have occurred in association
with naval exercises, with two species most affected, Cuvier's
(Ziphius cavirostris) and Blainville's (Mesoplodon densirostris)
beaked whales. Six such events have occurred in the Canary Islands but
there have been no reported mass strandings in Hawai'i. We assess the
hypothesis that factors that influence the likelihood of strandings
occurring and/or being detected differ between the Canary and main
Hawaiian Islands, such that beaked whale stranding/detection
probabilities will be lower in Hawai'i. On an archipelago-wide basis,
nearshore bathymetric comparisons indicate that the Canaries have a
greater proportion and a total greater amount of appropriate beaked
whale habitat closer to shore, with a steeper slope. Hawaiian
shorelines are more dominated by steep cliffs, human population
density is much lower, and human population per kilometer of shoreline
is 53% lower than in the Canaries. All of these factors suggest that
there is a higher probability of a carcass washing onshore and being
detected in the Canary Islands. It cannot be concluded that the lack
of mass strandings in Hawai'i is evidence of no impact.

A pdf copy of this can be obtained on the Cascadia website,
www.cascadiareserach.org - it can also be accessed directly through the
journal Marine Mammal
Science at the following link.

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