[MARMAM] New publication: Occurrence of bottlenose dolphins in natural gas fields of the northwestern Adriatic Sea

Daniela Silvia Pace danielasilvia at oceanomaredelphis.org
Mon Apr 29 12:47:30 PDT 2013

 Dear colleagues,

we are pleased to announce the recent publication of the following paper on
bottlenose dolphin:

Triossi F, Willis TJ & Pace DS (2013). Occurrence of bottlenose dolphins
Tursiops truncatus in natural gas fields of the northwestern Adriatic Sea.
Marine Ecology. doi: 10.1111/maec.12020


Common bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus, were surveyed in offshore
gas fields off Ravenna, Italy, between Spring and Autumn, 2001–2005. These
visual surveys provide the first density estimates of bottlenose dolphins
in the Northwestern Adriatic Sea south of the Po River. Since no study has
examined the distribution of bottlenose dolphins relative to gas platforms,
when dolphins were encountered, their distance from the nearest gas
platform was estimated and behaviour was assessed. Dolphins were sighted on
ca. 36% of survey trips, which varied in duration from 1 to 6 h. Group size
ranged from 1 to ~50 individuals, with no seasonal trend evident in the
likelihood of encounter. Dolphin density was estimated to be approximately
80% higher within 750 m of gas platforms, relative to densities >750 m from
platforms, although variability around the estimates was high. From a
limited number of behavioural observations, slightly higher frequencies of
feeding and milling behaviour were observed closer to gas platforms,
whereas dolphins observed further away exhibited higher frequencies of
socialising and travelling. Gas platforms are known to provide habitat for
demersal fishes and act as aggregation points for pelagic fishes, and these
data provide some support for the idea that bottlenose dolphins may utilise
gas platforms opportunistically as feeding sites.

For pdf copies please contact:
fra.willis at hotmail.com
danielasilvia at oceanomaredelphis.org

Daniela Silvia Pace

Daniela Silvia Pace
Oceanomare Delphis Onlus
danielasilvia at oceanomaredelphis.org

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