[MARMAM] New publication

Dr Kevin Robinson kev.robinson at crru.org.uk
Thu Sep 21 00:39:14 PDT 2017


My coauthors and I are pleased to announce the publication of the following
paper in PLoSONE:

 

Robinson KP, Sim TMC, Culloch RM, Bean TS, Cordoba Aguillar I, Eisfeld SM,
Filan M, Haskins GN, Williams G, Pierce GJ (2017) Female reproductive
success and calf survival in a North Sea coastal bottlenose dolphin
(Tursiops truncatus) population. 

 

Abstract: Between-female variation in reproductive output provides a strong
measure of individual fitness and a quantifiable measure of the health of a
population which may be highly informative to management. In the present
study, we examined reproductive traits in female bottlenose dolphins from
the east coast of Scotland using longitudinal sightings data collected over
twenty years. From a total of 102 females identified between 1997 and 2016,
74 mothers produced a collective total of 193 calves. Females gave birth
from 6 to 13 years of age with a mean age of 8. Calves were produced during
all study months, May to October inclusive, but showed a seasonal birth
pulse corresponding to the regional peak in summer water temperatures.
Approximately 83% (n = 116) of the calves of established fate were
successfully raised to year 2-3. Of the known mortalities, ~45% were
first-born calves. Calf survival rates were also lower in multiparous
females who had previously lost calves. A mean inter-birth interval (IBI) of
3.80 years (n = 110) and mean fecundity of 0.16 was estimated for the
population. Calf loss resulted in shortened IBIs, whilst longer IBIs were
observed in females assumed to be approaching reproductive senescence.
Maternal age and size, breeding experience, dominance, individual
associations, group size and other social factors, were all concluded to
influence reproductive success (RS) in this population. Some females are
likely more important than others for the future viability of the
population. Consequently, a better knowledge of the demographic groups
containing those females showing higher reproductive success would be highly
desirable for conservation efforts aimed at their protection.

 

The open access article is available to download from:
http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0185000 

 

Dr. Kevin Robinson
Director, CRRU 
 <mailto:kev.robinson at crru.org.uk> kev.robinson at crru.org.uk 

Cetacean Research & Rescue Unit, PO Box 11307, Banff, AB45 3WB, Scotland, UK
| ( +44 (0)1261 851696 |  <http://www.crru.org.uk/> www.crru.org.uk
Whale and  Dolphin Research | Environmental Educational Outreach | Marine
Wildlife Rescue | Consultancy | MMO Services 

Recognised Scottish Charity No. SC035473

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P Please consider the environment before printing this e-mail

 

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