[MARMAM] Article: Cetacean biodiversity in the Bay of Biscay: Suggestions for environmental protection derived from citizen science data. Marine Policy.

Liam Matear Liam.Matear at myport.ac.uk
Mon Dec 9 01:48:21 PST 2019


Dear Colleagues,

On behalf of my co-authors, I am pleased to announce that the following
article has been published in *Marine Polic*y:

Matear, L., Robbins, J.R., Hale, M., Potts, J. (2019). Cetacean
biodiversity in the Bay of Biscay: Suggestions for environmental protection
derived from citizen science data. *Marine Policy. **109*:103672.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.marpol.2019.103672

Abstract:
Cetacean communities face significant threats from adverse interactions
with human activities such as bycatch, vessel collision, and environmental
pollution. Monitoring of marine mammal populations can help to assess and
safeguard marine biodiversity for future generations. Traditional surveys
can be costly and time-consuming to undertake, but we explore the ability
of citizen science to inform environmental assessments and subsequent
conservation management. We use data collected from platforms of
opportunity within the Bay of Biscay to investigate spatial changes in
cetacean diversity, with the aim of identifying hotspots which may be
suitable for further investigation and conservation. Seventeen species of
cetaceans were recorded over a ten year period, many of which are data
deficient in European waters (e.g. Bottlenose dolphin, Short-beaked common
dolphin, Striped dolphin, Risso's dolphin, Long-finned pilot whale, Killer
whale, Northern bottlenose whale, Cuvier's beaked whale, Sowerby's beaked
whale and True's beaked whale). Biodiversity (determined by Simpson's
Diversity index) ranged from 0.19 to 0.77. The central and southern areas
of the survey area indicated the highest biodiversity (0.65–0.77), and
these locations may benefit most from protection as Important Marine Mammal
Areas. We present a case for this designation, and discuss the benefits and
limitations of citizen science for informing conservation action.

This article can be accessed via the following link, but feel free to
contact me (Liam.Matear at myport.ac.uk) for a PDF.
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0308597X19302313

Kind regards,
Liam Matear
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