[MARMAM] Article: Modeling cetacean habitat use in an urban coastal area in southeastern Brazil

Liliane Lodi lilianelodi at gmail.com
Fri May 29 06:26:04 PDT 2020

Dear Colleagues,


On behalf of my coauthors, I am pleased to announce our recent publication
in Marine Ecology Progress Series:


Lodi L, Tardin R, Maricato G (2020) Modeling cetacean habitat use in an
urban coastal area in southeastern Brazil. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 642:227-240.





Most studies of cetacean habitat use do not consider the influence of
anthropogenic activities. We investigated the influence of environmental and
anthropogenic variables on habitat use by humpback Megaptera novaeangliae
and Bryde's whales Balaenoptera brydei off the coast of the Brazilian city
of Rio de Janeiro. Although there are 2 marine protected areas (MPAs) in
this area, few data are available on cetacean habitat use or on the overlap
of different cetacean species within these MPAs. Our aim was to evaluate the
effectiveness of the MPAs and propose a buffer zone to better protect the
biodiversity of the study area. We conducted systematic surveys and
developed spatial eigenvector generalized linear models to characterize
habitat use by the species in the study area. Habitat use by humpback whales
was influenced only by depth, whereas for Bryde's whales there was the
additional influence of anthropogenic variables. For Bryde's whales, which
use the area for feeding, sea surface temperature and the distance to
anchorages had a major influence on habitat use. We also showed that neither
of the MPAs in the study area adequately protects the hotspots of either
whale species. Most of the humpback whale grid cells with high sighting
predictions were located within 2 km of the MPAs, while areas of high
sighting prediction of Bryde's whales were located up to 5 km from the MPAs,
closer to beaches. Our findings provide important insights for the
delimitation of protected areas and zoning of the MPAs.




Projeto Baleias & Golfinhos do Rio de Janeiro


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