[MARMAM] New Publication

Luis Bedriñana orcahuel at gmail.com
Sat Mar 24 18:38:50 PDT 2018

Dear all,

On behalf of all co-authors, I am pleased to inform you on the publication
of a paper concerning abundance and distribution patterns of blue whales in
Chilean Northern Patagonia.

Bedriñana-Romano, L., Hucke-Gaete, R., Viddi, F.A., Morales, J., Williams,
R., Asche, E., Garcés-Vargas, J., Torres-Florez, J.P. & Ruiz, J. 2018.
Integrating multiple data sources for assessing blue whale abundance and
distribution in Chilean Northern Patagonia. Diversity and Distributions:
doi: 10.1111/ddi.12739.


Aim: Species distribution models are useful tools for depicting important
habitat, assessing
abundance and orienting conservation efforts. For small populations in
poorly studied ecosystems, available data are often scarce and patchy. To
overcome this limitation, we aim to evaluate the use of different data
types within a hierarchical Bayesian framework with the goal of modelling
the abundance and distribution of a small and highly migratory population
of blue whale (BW, Balaenoptera musculus) summering in Chilean Northern
Patagonian (CNP).

Location: CNP, Eastern South Pacific (ESP).

Methods: We constructed a Bayesian hierarchical species distribution Model
(HSDM), combining a binomial N-mixture model used to model BW groups counts
in line-transect data (2009, 2012 and 2014) with a logistic regression for
modelling presence-availability data (2009–2016), allowing both models to
share covariate parameters for borrowing strength in estimations.

Results: Distance to areas of high chlorophyll-a concentration during
spring before
summering season (AHCC-s) was the most important and consistent explanatory
variable for assessing BW abundance and distribution in CNP. Incorporating
presence-only data reduced uncertainty in parameters estimation when
with a model using only line-transect data, although other covariates of
importance failed to be retained in this model.

Main conclusions: Our results remark the capability of HSDM for integrating
data types providing a potential powerful tool when data are limited and
Results indicate that AHCC-s, and possibly thermal fronts, could modulate
BW abundance and distribution patterns in CNP. Preliminary model-based
delimitations of possible priority conservation areas for BW in CNP overlap
with highly used vessel navigation routes and areas destined to aquaculture.

This is the link where you can download the paper


Otherwise, please feel free to contact me directly for a PDF copy at
luis.bedrinana.romano at gmail.com

Luís Bedriñana Romano
PhD Student
Universidad Austral de Chile
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