[MARMAM] New publication: Micro-scale spatio-temporal patterns in porpoise activity

Johanna Stedt johanna.stedt at biol.lu.se
Thu Mar 23 06:53:22 PDT 2023

Dear all,

We are pleased to share our new publication: Micro-scale spatial preference and temporal cyclicity linked to foraging in harbour porpoises.

Stedt J, Wahlberg M, Carlström J, Nilsson PA, Amundin M, Oskolkov N & Carlsson P. (2023)

Mar Ecol Prog Ser, 708:143-161. doi: 10.3354/meps14268

Habitat heterogeneity is a crucial driver for species distribution across scales. Harbour porpoise Phocoena phocoena basin-wide distribution is linked to prey availability, and small-scale (kilometres to tens of kilometres) differences in distribution are prevalent. However, information on porpoise distribution and foraging-behaviour variations on a micro-scale (~100 m to kilometres) is limited. To monitor harbour porpoise distribution and foraging activity on a micro-scale, we deployed passive acoustic dataloggers, logging porpoise acoustic activity at 6 sites in a small, high porpoise-density area in southern Sweden. Data were collected for almost a year, giving detailed time series on porpoise activity. The time series were analysed using dynamic time warping to compare activity patterns between sites. Large differences were found between sites separated by only a few hundred meters, indicating micro-scale spatial preference. Spectral analysis for temporal cyclicity in activity revealed a dominant peak for 24 h cycles with higher activity at night for all sites. All sites also had a second peak for 29.5 d, linked to the lunar cycle with higher activity during full moon. Activity was overall highest during autumn and winter (September-December). Spatial and temporal patterns were linked to foraging, showing a positive correlation between porpoise presence and the percent of time present with detected foraging. The study demonstrates that harbour porpoise spatial distribution on a micro-scale should be considered in e.g. behavioural, management and conservation studies and actions. In addition, we show that time series statistical methodology is informative and appropriate for analysis of acoustic temporal data.

The paper is open access and can be freely downloaded at: https://www.int-res.com/articles/meps_oa/m708p143.pdf

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

Best regards,
Johanna Stedt

Johanna Stedt
PhD student

Aquatic Ecology
Department of Biology
Lund University
Sölvegatan 37, 223 62 Lund, Sweden
Phone + 46 (0)73 738 30 36
E-mail: johanna.stedt at biol.lu.se<mailto:johanna.stedt at biol.lu.se>
Personal webpage: Johanna Stedt<https://portal.research.lu.se/portal/en/persons/johanna-stedt(d8f35e4a-cb7e-4720-b11b-02f0215f9d2b).html>

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