[MARMAM] New publication : Humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) post breeding dispersal and southward migration in the western Indian Ocean.

Sabrina Fossette sabrina.fossette at googlemail.com
Fri Dec 13 10:43:07 PST 2013

Dear all,

We are pleased to announce our recent publication:

Fossette, S., Heide-Jørgensen, M. P., Jensen, M. V., Kiszka, J., Bérubé,
M., Bertrand, N., & Vély, M. (2014). Humpback whale (*Megaptera
novaeangliae*) post breeding dispersal and southward migration in the
western Indian Ocean. *Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology*,
*450*, 6-14.


Investigating movement patterns of marine migratory species is critical to
understand habitat use and population structure, and help inform
conservation and management planning. Little is known about humpback
whale (*Megaptera
novaeangliae*) dispersal and migration in the western Indian Ocean. In
October 2011 and 2012, eleven satellite transmitters were deployed on
wintering humpback whales from the south-western Indian Ocean breeding
stock at the Comoros islands (Mohéli, n=6 and Mayotte, n=5). Eight
individuals were successfully tracked for 24.3±12.4 days (range=8–49 days)
and travelled between 146 km and 5804 km in total. Whales either remained
at their wintering site for several weeks (n=3) or dispersed along the west
coast (n=4) or east (n=1) coast of Madagascar where two main stop-over
sites were identified. In addition, two individuals travelled along
straight paths to distant, potential, foraging areas. One whale reached the
French sub-Antarctic islands while the other travelled to one of the
supposed Antarctic foraging areas for humpback whales of this breeding
stock. This is the first time movements of humpback whales from this area
are being described and their potential foraging areas in  the Southern
Ocean identified. Identification of these dispersal patterns is important
for delineation of breeding regions and for allocating abundance estimates
to stocks.

A pdf copy can be obtained upon request to: *s
<parranz at st-andrews.ac.uk>abrina.fossette at googlemail.com
<abrina.fossette at googlemail.com>*

Dr Sabrina Fossette
NRC Post-doctoral fellow

NOAA - Southwest Fisheries Science Center
1352 Lighthouse Avenue
Pacific Grove, CA, 93950

Tel (work): 001 831 648 9038
Tel (mobile): 001 831 717 7361
Email:sabrina.fossette at googlemail.com / s <s.fossette at swansea.ac.uk>
abrina.fossette at noaa.gov
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