[MARMAM] New paper: Common and Antarctic Minke Whales: Conservation Status and Future Research Directions

Denise Risch denise.risch at gmail.com
Wed May 15 01:36:44 PDT 2019


Dear all,
I am pleased to announce the recent publication of our review paper:
Risch D, Norris T, Curnock M, Friedlaender A (2019) Common and Antarctic
Minke Whales: Conservation Status and Future Research Directions. Front Mar
Sci 6:247

Abstract
Minke whales comprise some of the most widely distributed species of baleen
whales, some populations of which are still regularly targeted by
commercial whaling. Here, we review the conservation status of common
(*Balaenoptera
acutorostrata*) and Antarctic (*Balaenoptera bonaerensis*) minke whale
populations, against the backdrop of ongoing whaling operations and other
anthropogenic threats, including climate change, entanglement in fishing
gear, ship strikes, and noise pollution. Although some coastal minke whale
populations have been studied in detail, others, which inhabit remote and
ecologically sensitive locations, such as the Antarctic ice shelf, are
among the least understood populations of marine mammals. The unresolved
taxonomy of dwarf minke whales further highlights some of the existing
knowledge gaps concerning these species. Due to their relatively small size
and elusive behaviors, large uncertainties exist for almost all minke whale
populations with respect to behavior, migratory routes and winter
distributions, hindering effective conservation and management. However,
recent advances in research technology, such as passive acoustic monitoring
(PAM), unmanned aerial systems (UAS), multisensor recording tags, and
machine learning assisted photo-identification, are increasingly being
applied to study minke whales and their habitat, and are starting to open
new windows into their life history and ecology. In future research, these
non- and less-invasive methods should be integrated in larger-scale
comparative studies aiming to better understand minke whale behavior,
ecological interactions and their varying habitats to drive and support
effective species conservation.

The paper is open access and available here:
https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fmars.2019.00247/full

Best, Denise
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