[MARMAM] New paper: Shark predation attempts on bottlenose dolphins in temperate Australian waters.

Kate Sprogis K.Sprogis at murdoch.edu.au
Tue Sep 4 20:04:02 PDT 2018

Dear colleagues,

We are pleased to announce the publication of a new paper:

Sprogis KR, King C, Bejder L, Loneragan N (2018) Frequency and temporal trends of shark predation attempts on bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) in temperate Australian waters. J Exp Mar Biol Ecol. 508, 35-43, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jembe.2018.08.008


  *   Sharks are apex predators that influence the behavioural ecology of a range of prey species. Unsuccessful predation attempts from sharks are evidenced by fresh bites and scars, and these wounds provide indirect measures of predation pressure.
  *   To better understand the predatory dynamics of sharks on bottlenose dolphins, we investigated the frequency, sex and age class differences, seasonality and annual trends, and location (open vs. sheltered waters) of shark predation attempts on Tursiops aduncus off Bunbury, south-western Australia.
  *   Over seven years from 2007-2013, standardised boat-based, photographic-identification dolphin surveys (n = 600) were conducted year- round over 540 km2 in open coastal and sheltered waters (bay, estuary and river).

·         The overall frequency of shark predation attempts on dolphins (calves, juveniles and adults) was 16.9% (58 of 343). Shark bites were categorised as Open (n = 25, 40.9%), Intermediate (n = 16, 26.2%) and Scars (n = 20, 32.8%). Scarring frequencies did not differ significantly between sexes or among age classes.

·         Bites increased in frequency from 2009 to 2013, coinciding with sustained warm water temperatures from 2011 La Niña conditions, resulting in 34% of Open and Intermediate bites being recorded in 2013. The frequency of Open bites differed among seasons, with bites more prevalent during the summer of 2012/13. The proportion of dolphins with shark bites was significantly greater for individuals residing in the sheltered waters (24.7%, 19 of 77) compared to open waters (13.4%, 34 of 253).

·         Our findings provide knowledge into predator-prey dynamics of marine top predators by quantifying temporal and spatial incidences of failed predation attempts of sharks on bottlenose dolphins in temperate, south-west Australia.

This paper is available for free download from JEMBE<https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S002209811830008X>, or a PDF can be provided via email request: k.sprogis at murdoch.edu.au<mailto:k.sprogis at murdoch.edu.au>

For more information on the Bunbury dolphin population see: http://mucru.org/our-research/south-west-marine-research-program/ and our publication blog: http://mucru.org/new-publication-shark-predation-attempts-on-bottlenose-dolphins-in-southwest-australia/

Kind regards, on behalf of my co-authors,

Kate Sprogis, PhD
Marie Skłodowska-Curie Post-doctoral Fellow
Marine Bioacoustics Lab,<https://marinebioacoustics.wordpress.com/people/kate-sprogis/> Dept. of Bioscience, Aarhus University, Denmark
kate.sprogis at bios.au.dk<mailto:kate.sprogis at bios.au.dk> | Kate Sprogis Photography<https://katesprogisphotography.wordpress.com/>
Twitter, Instagram: @KateSprogis

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Recent papers:

-          Sprogis, K.R., Christiansen F., Raudino, H. C., Kobryn, H., Wells, R. S. and Bejder, L. 2018. Sex-specific differences in the seasonal habitat use of a coastal dolphin population. Biodiversity and Conservation, doi: 10.1007/s10531-018-1618-7<https://rdcu.be/5lXX>

-          Sprogis K.R., Christiansen F., Wandres M., Bejder L. 2018. El Niño Southern Oscillation influences the abundance and movements of a marine top predator in coastal waters. Global Change Biology, doi: https://doi.org/10.1111/gcb.13892

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