[MARMAM] Extreme diving by Bottlenose dolphins

Andreas Fahlman afahlman at whoi.edu
Wed Jun 14 22:22:34 PDT 2023

Dear MarMamers
We would like to share our new open-access publication that investigated the dive behavior of bottlenose dolphins in Bermuda. We report the deepest dive recorded for a bottlenose dolphin of 1000 meter. The details about the paper can be found below, and please send me an email if you have any questions.
Title: Deep diving by offshore bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops spp.)
Authors: Fahlman, A., Tyson Moore, R. B., Stone, R., Sweeney, J., Faulkner Trainor, R., Barleycorn, A.A., McHugh, K., Allen, J.B., Wells, R.S.
Journal: Marine Mammal Science:
doi: https://doi.org/10.1111/mms.13045
Abstract: We used satellite-linked tags to evaluate dive behavior in offshore bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops spp.) near the island of Bermuda. The data provide evidence that bottlenose dolphins commonly perform both long (>272 s) and deep (>199 m) dives, with the deepest and longest dives being to 1,000 m and 826 s (13.8 min), respectively. The data show a relationship between dive duration and dive depth for dives longer than about 272 s. There was a diurnal pattern to dive behavior, with most dives deeper than 50 m being performed at night; deep diving began at sunset and varied throughout the night. We used the cumulative frequency of dive duration to estimate a behavioral aerobic dive limit (bADL) of around 560-666 s (9.3-11.1 min) in adult dolphins in this population. Dives exceeding the bADL spent significantly longer time in the upper-most 50 m following a dive as compared with dives less than the bADL. We conclude that the offshore ecotype off Bermuda, unlike the shallow-diving near-shore bottlenose dolphin, is a deep diving ecotype, and may provide a useful animal model to study extreme diving behavior and adaptations.
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