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Sample records for bottlenose dolphins tursiops

  1. The bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) faecal microbiota.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soverini, Matteo; Quercia, Sara; Biancani, Barbara; Furlati, Stefano; Turroni, Silvia; Biagi, Elena; Consolandi, Clarissa; Peano, Clelia; Severgnini, Marco; Rampelli, Simone; Brigidi, Patrizia; Candela, Marco

    2016-04-01

    Cetaceans have evolved from herbivorous terrestrial artiodactyls closely related to ruminants and hippopotamuses. Delphinidae, a family included in this order, represent an extreme and successful re-adaptation of mammalian physiology to the marine habitat and piscivorous diet. The anatomical aspects of Delphinidae success are well understood, whereas some physiological aspects of their environmental fitness are less defined, such as the gut microbiota composition and its adaptation to their dietary niche. Here, we explored the faecal microbiota structure of nine adult bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) and one breast-fed calf living in a controlled environment. According to our findings, dolphins possess a unique microbiota profile within the Mammalia class, highly resembling that of carnivorous marine fishes. The breast-fed calf showed a distinctive compositional structure of the gut microbial ecosystem, which partially overlaps with the mother's milk microbiota. Taken together, our data indicate that in dolphins the adaptation to the marine niche and piscivorous diet involved the convergence of their gut microbiota structure with that of marine fishes, overcoming the gut microbiota phylogenetic inertia previously described in terrestrial mammalians. PMID:26960390

  2. Records of bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops spp., in New Caledonian waters

    OpenAIRE

    Borsa, Philippe; Andréfouët, Serge; Juncker, Matthieu

    2012-01-01

    International audience Observations of bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops spp. were made opportunistically between 1993 and 2009 in New Caledonian waters (eastern Coral Sea, southwestern Pacific). Two morphotypes, defined from pigmentation patterns, were observed: morphotype-B individuals possessed a distinctive, extensive pale-grey blaze that indents the darker-grey dorsal cape towards the basis of the dorsal fin while morphotype-A individuals lacked it. Morphotype-A bottlenose dolphins occurr...

  3. Echocardiographic evaluation of the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sklansky, Mark; Levine, Gregg; Havlis, Dielle; West, Nicole; Renner, Michael; Rimmerman, Curtis; Stone, Rae

    2006-12-01

    Safe and effective echocardiography would represent a valuable tool for marine mammal veterinarians and physiologists evaluating the dolphin heart. Unfortunately, conventional ultrasound technology (transthoracic echocardiography) has been limited by logistic, anatomic, and behavioral challenges. Five mature male Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) were trained for echocardiographic imaging (four for both transthoracic and transesophageal imaging, and one for only transthoracic imaging). It was noted that transesophageal image quality transiently improved when the dolphins spontaneously exhaled. Subsequently, dolphins were conditioned to hold their breath following forced exhalation, and imaging proceeded during such behavioral breath holds. Over 25 transthoracic and 100 transesophageal echocardiographic studies were performed, including both two-dimensional imaging and color flow mapping. Transthoracic imaging yielded poor-quality images of only small portions of the heart. In contrast, transesophageal imaging, which improved dramatically with behavioral breath holding following exhalation, yielded consistently high-quality images of the entire heart (mitral, tricuspid, aortic, and pulmonary valves, atrial and ventricular septa, left and right atria, left and right ventricles, and ascending aorta and main pulmonary artery). Color flow mapping demonstrated mild tricuspid regurgitation in all dolphins, and mild aortic regurgitation in one dolphin found to have a pedunculated mass arising from the sinutubular junction just above the aortic valve. There were no complications in nonsedated dolphins. The heart of the bottlenose dolphin can be safely, effectively, and reproducibly evaluated with the use of transesophageal echocardiography in conjunction with behavioral breath holding following forced exhalation. This approach, and the normative echocardiographic data generated from this work, lays the foundation for future echocardiographic studies of

  4. Fetal echocardiographic evaluation of the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sklansky, Mark; Renner, Michael; Clough, Patricia; Levine, Gregg; Campbell, Michelle; Stone, Rae; Schmitt, Todd; Chang, Ruey-Kang; Shannon-Rodriguez, Jayne

    2010-03-01

    In humans, fetal echocardiography represents the most important tool for the assessment of the cardiovascular well-being of the fetus. However, because of logistic, anatomic, and behavioral challenges, detailed fetal echocardiographic evaluation of marine mammals has not been previously described. Because the application of fetal echocardiography to cetaceans could have both clinical and academic importance, an approach to evaluating the fetal dolphin's cardiovascular status was developed with conventional, fetal echocardiographic techniques developed in humans. Eight singleton fetal bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) were evaluated, each between 6 and 11 mo gestation; six fetuses underwent two fetal echocardiographic evaluations each, four at 3-mo intervals, and two at 0.5-mo intervals. Evaluations were performed without sedation, using conventional, portable ultrasound systems. Multiple transducers, probes, and maternal dolphin positions were used to optimize image quality. Fetal echocardiography included two-dimensional imaging and color flow mapping of the heart and great arteries, as well as pulsed Doppler evaluation of the umbilical artery and vein. Thorough evaluations of the fetal dolphins' cardiovascular status were performed, with the greatest resolution between 8 and 9 mo gestation. With the use of published human fetal echocardiographic findings for comparison, fetal echocardiography demonstrated normal structure and function of the heart and great arteries, including the pulmonary veins, inferior vena cava, right and left atria, foramen ovale, tricuspid and mitral valves, right and left ventricles, ventricular septum, pulmonary and aortic valves, main pulmonary artery and ascending aorta, and ductus arteriosus. Pulsed Doppler techniques demonstrated normal umbilical arterial and venous waveforms, and color flow mapping demonstrated absence of significant valvar regurgitation. Fetal echocardiography, particularly between 8 and 9 mo gestation, can

  5. Epidermal growth in the bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops truncatus

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Epidermal growth in two mature female bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus, was investigated by following the movement of a cohort of tritiated thymidine-labeled epidermal cells for 59 days. The majority of the cells migrated in a cluster which was estimated to reach the skin surface in 73 days. The authors calculate that the outermost cell layer is sloughed 12 times per day. Turnover time and sloughing rate are estimated to be 1.7 times longer and 8.5 times faster than the respective values for epidermal cell kinetics in humans. This apparent inconsistency of slow transit time and rapid sloughing rate is reconciled by the convoluted structure of the stratum germinativum in the dolphin which results in a ratio of germinatival to superficial cells of 876:1. The stratum germinativum of dolphin epidermis appears to lack morphologically distinct, spatially segregated subpopulations of anchoring and stem cells. Dolphin epidermis has a large capacity for cell population, relatively long turnover time, and rapid sloughing rate. The adaptive advantages of these characteristics are discussed

  6. Epidermal growth in the bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops truncatus

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hicks, B.D.; St. Aubin, D.J.; Geraci, J.R.; Brown, W.R.

    1985-07-01

    Epidermal growth in two mature female bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus, was investigated by following the movement of a cohort of tritiated thymidine-labeled epidermal cells for 59 days. The majority of the cells migrated in a cluster which was estimated to reach the skin surface in 73 days. The authors calculate that the outermost cell layer is sloughed 12 times per day. Turnover time and sloughing rate are estimated to be 1.7 times longer and 8.5 times faster than the respective values for epidermal cell kinetics in humans. This apparent inconsistency of slow transit time and rapid sloughing rate is reconciled by the convoluted structure of the stratum germinativum in the dolphin which results in a ratio of germinatival to superficial cells of 876:1. The stratum germinativum of dolphin epidermis appears to lack morphologically distinct, spatially segregated subpopulations of anchoring and stem cells. Dolphin epidermis has a large capacity for cell population, relatively long turnover time, and rapid sloughing rate. The adaptive advantages of these characteristics are discussed.

  7. Pulmonary ultrasound findings in a bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Cynthia R; Solano, Mauricio; Lutmerding, Betsy A; Johnson, Shawn P; Meegan, Jennifer M; Le-Bert, Carolina R; Emory-Gomez, Forrest; Cassle, Stephen; Carlin, Kevin; Jensen, Eric D

    2012-11-19

    Lung disease is common among wild and managed populations of bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus. The purpose of the study was to apply standardized techniques to the ultrasound evaluation of dolphin lungs, and to identify normal and abnormal sonographic findings associated with pleuropulmonary diseases. During a 5 yr period (2005 to 2010), 498 non-cardiac thoracic ultrasound exams were performed on bottlenose dolphins at the Navy Marine Mammal Program in San Diego, California, USA. Exams were conducted as part of routine physical exams, diagnostic workups, and disease monitoring. In the majority of routine exams, no abnormal pleural or pulmonary findings were detected with ultrasound. Abnormal findings were typically detected during non-routine exams to identify and track disease progression or resolution; therefore, abnormal results are overrepresented in the study. In order of decreasing prevalence, abnormal sonographic findings included evidence of alveolar-interstitial syndrome, pleural effusion, pulmonary masses, and pulmonary consolidation. Of these findings, alveolar-interstitial syndrome was generally nonspecific as it represented several possible disease states. Pairing ultrasound findings with clinical signs was critical to determine relevance. Pleural effusion, pulmonary masses, and pulmonary consolidation were relatively straightforward to diagnose and interpret. Further diagnostics were performed to obtain definitive diagnoses when appropriate, specifically ultrasound-guided thoracocentesis, fine needle aspirates, and lung biopsies, as well as radiographs and computed tomography (CT) exams. Occasionally, post mortem gross necropsy and histopathology data were available to provide confirmation of diagnoses. Thoracic ultrasound was determined to be a valuable diagnostic tool for detecting pleural and pulmonary diseases in dolphins. PMID:23324421

  8. Ecology of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in the seaside resort of Panama City, Florida

    OpenAIRE

    Bouveroux, Thibaut

    2010-01-01

    Between 2004 and 2007, field surveys were conducted to study bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in the seaside resort of Panama City, Northwest Florida. Using boat-based photo-identification surveys, mark-recapture surveys were performed to estimate the abundance of bottlenose dolphins. According to months, the estimate population size varied between 57 to 178 individuals, with the lowest abundance occurring during the spring. A total of 263 different dolphins were photo-identified. The...

  9. Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) habitat preference in a heterogeneous, urban, coastal environment

    OpenAIRE

    Cribb, Nardi; Miller, Cara; Seuront, Laurent

    2013-01-01

    Background Limited information is available regarding the habitat preference of the Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) in South Australian estuarine environments. The need to overcome this paucity of information is crucial for management and conservation initiatives. This preliminary study investigates the space-time patterns of habitat preference by the Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin in the Port Adelaide River-Barker Inlet estuary, a South Australian, urbanised, coastal envi...

  10. The Ecological Conditions That Favor Tool Use and Innovation in Wild Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops sp.)

    OpenAIRE

    Eric M. Patterson; Janet Mann

    2011-01-01

    Dolphins are well known for their exquisite echolocation abilities, which enable them to detect and discriminate prey species and even locate buried prey. While these skills are widely used during foraging, some dolphins use tools to locate and extract prey. In the only known case of tool use in free-ranging cetaceans, a subset of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.) in Shark Bay, Western Australia habitually employs marine basket sponge tools to locate and ferret prey from the seafloor. While ...

  11. Blindfolded Imitation in a Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus)

    OpenAIRE

    Jaakkola, Kelly; Guarino, Emily; Rodriguez, Mandy

    2010-01-01

    This study investigated the ability of a bottlenose dolphin to adapt a previously learned "do-as-I-do"procedure to copy behaviors of another dolphin while blindfolded (i.e., wearing eyecups). In Experiment 1, the dolphin was able to copy both vocal and motor behaviors, whether blindfolded or sighted. Hydrophone recordings showed that he echolocated during many of the motor behaviors while blindfolded. In Experiment 2, blindfolded human trainers were able to identify the same model behaviors o...

  12. Directionality of Sexual Activities During Mixed-Species Encounters between Atlantic Spotted Dolphins (Stenella frontalis) and Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus)

    OpenAIRE

    Herzing, Denise L.; Elliser, Cindy R.

    2013-01-01

    In the Bahamas, interspecific groups of Atlantic spotted dolphins, Stenella frontalis, and bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus, have been observed underwater since 1985 on Little Bahama Bank. Mixed-species groups engage in associative behaviors and aggression on a regular basis. Because of their complex cognitive behaviors and large brain encephalization, dolphins are likely capable of complex social interactions, even between species.Between 1993-2003, 177 Mixed-Species Encounters (MSE) ...

  13. Ecological characteristics contribute to sponge distribution and tool use in bottlenose dolphins Tursiops sp.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tyne, Julian A.; Loneragan, Neil R.; Kopps, Anna M.; Allen, Simon J.; Kruetzen, Michael; Bejder, Lars

    2012-01-01

    In Shark Bay, Western Australia, bottlenose dolphins Tursiops sp. carry conical sponges Echinodictyum mesenterinum on their rostra in the only documented cetacean foraging behaviour using a tool ('sponging'). In this study, we examined the influence of various ecological factors on live sponge distr

  14. Enterolith with a stingray spine nidus in an Atlantic bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus)

    OpenAIRE

    Burdett, Leslie G.; Carl A. Osborne

    2010-01-01

    In March 2006, a dead, male bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) was found in the salt marsh in Charleston, South Carolina, United States. During necropsy, an enterolith was found completely obstructing the intestinal lumen. Further examination of the enterolith revealed a stingray spine nidus. Most terrestrial enteroliths are composed primarily of struvite (magnesium ammonium phosphate); however, the majority of the enterolith discovered in the stranded dolphin was composed of calcium pho...

  15. Modified Endoscopic Removal of Foreign Objects from the Forestomach of a Common Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kyung-Yeon Eo, Yong-Gu Yeo and Oh-Deog Kwon*

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available We report on the removal of foreign objects from the forestomach of a 200 kg adult male common bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus in the Seoul zoo using a modified stainless steel hook and flexible wire snare attached to a gastrointestinal fiberoptic endoscope. The foreign bodies included a 10 × 3.5 cm plastic tube, 4 × 2.0 cm stainless steel pipe, brush, and concrete debris. Our technique using a stainless steel wire hook and snare attached to a gastroscope can be used to remove foreign objects from the forestomach of common bottlenose dolphins.

  16. Pathogen surveillance in wild bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaing, Crystal; Thissen, James B; Gardner, Shea; McLoughlin, Kevin; Slezak, Tom; Bossart, Gregory D; Fair, Patricia A

    2015-10-16

    The number and prevalence of diseases is rapidly increasing in the marine ecosystem. Although there is an increase in the number of marine diseases observed world-wide, current understanding of the pathogens associated with marine mammals is limited. An important need exists to develop and apply platforms for rapid detection and characterization of pathogenic agents to assess, prevent and respond to disease outbreaks. In this study, a broad-spectrum molecular detection technology capable of detecting all sequenced microbial organisms, the Lawrence Livermore Microbial Detection Array, was used to assess the microbial agents that could be associated with wild Atlantic dolphins. Blowhole, gastric, and fecal samples from 8 bottlenose dolphins were collected in Charleston, SC, as part of the dolphin assessment effort. The array detected various microbial agents from the dolphin samples. Clostridium perfringens was most prevalent in the samples surveyed using the microarray. This pathogen was also detected using microbiological culture techniques. Additionally, Campylobacter sp., Staphylococcus sp., Erwinia amylovora, Helicobacter pylori, and Frankia sp. were also detected in more than one dolphin using the microarray, but not in culture. This study provides the first survey of pathogens associated with 3 tissue types in dolphins using a broad-spectrum microbial detection microarray and expands insight on the microbial community profile in dolphins. PMID:26480911

  17. Ecological characteristics contribute to sponge distribution and tool use in bottlenose dolphins Tursiops sp.

    OpenAIRE

    Tyne, J A; Loneragan, N R; Kopps, A M; Allen, S.J.; Krützen, M; Bejder, L

    2012-01-01

    In Shark Bay, Western Australia, bottlenose dolphins Tursiops sp. carry conical sponges Echinodictyum mesenterinum on their rostra in the only documented cetacean foraging behaviour using a tool (‘sponging’). In this study, we examined the influence of various ecological factors on live sponge distribution and the occurrence of sponging in parts of the western gulf of Shark Bay. We assessed sponge distribution and seagrass cover along 12 transects of approximately 11 km length, by recording s...

  18. Spontaneous ejaculation in a wild Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morisaka, Tadamichi; Sakai, Mai; Kogi, Kazunobu; Nakasuji, Akane; Sakakibara, Kasumi; Kasanuki, Yuria; Yoshioka, Motoi

    2013-01-01

    Spontaneous ejaculation, which is defined as the release of seminal fluids without apparent sexual stimulation, has been documented in boreoeutherian mammals. Here we report spontaneous ejaculation in a wild Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus), and present a video of this rare behavior. This is the first report of spontaneous ejaculation by an aquatic mammal, and the first video of this behavior in animals to be published in a scientific journal. PMID:24015280

  19. Spontaneous ejaculation in a wild Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tadamichi Morisaka

    Full Text Available Spontaneous ejaculation, which is defined as the release of seminal fluids without apparent sexual stimulation, has been documented in boreoeutherian mammals. Here we report spontaneous ejaculation in a wild Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus, and present a video of this rare behavior. This is the first report of spontaneous ejaculation by an aquatic mammal, and the first video of this behavior in animals to be published in a scientific journal.

  20. Genetic characterisation and social structure of the East Scotland population of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus)

    OpenAIRE

    Islas, Valentina

    2010-01-01

    The Eastern Scottish population of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) is the northernmost population of this species. The resident core of this population consists of 120 to 150 different individuals. This small size and its geographical isolation from other populations raises questions about its viability and whether the population has behavioural patterns that differ from those common to other populations of the same species. Microsatellite genetic diversity was low ...

  1. Spontaneous Ejaculation in a Wild Indo-Pacific Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops aduncus)

    OpenAIRE

    Tadamichi Morisaka; Mai Sakai; Kazunobu Kogi; Akane Nakasuji; Kasumi Sakakibara; Yuria Kasanuki; Motoi Yoshioka

    2013-01-01

    Spontaneous ejaculation, which is defined as the release of seminal fluids without apparent sexual stimulation, has been documented in boreoeutherian mammals. Here we report spontaneous ejaculation in a wild Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus), and present a video of this rare behavior. This is the first report of spontaneous ejaculation by an aquatic mammal, and the first video of this behavior in animals to be published in a scientific journal.

  2. Effects of commercial fishing regulations on stranding rates of bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    OpenAIRE

    Byrd, Barbie L.; Hohn, Aleta H.; Munden, Fentress H.; Lovewell, Gretchen N.; Lo Piccolo, Rachel E.

    2008-01-01

    Fisheries management actions taken to protect one species can have unintended, and sometimes positive, consequences on other species. For example, regulatory measures to reduce fishing effort in the winter gillnet fishery for spiny dogfish (Squalus acanthias) off North Carolina (NC) also led to decreases in the number of bycaught bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). This study found that a marked decrease in fishing effort for spiny dogfish in NC also corresponded with a marked...

  3. AN IDENTIFICATION STUDY ON BOTTLENOSE DOLPHINS (TURSIOPS TRUNCATUS) IN NORTHEAST PATAGONIA, ARGENTINA

    OpenAIRE

    Vermeulen, Els; Cammareri, Alejandro; Failla, Mauricio; Holsbeek, Ludo

    2008-01-01

    In Argentina, bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) sightings decreased notably since the late 80s in regions where it used to be frequent to observe them. Nowadays, Northeast Patagonia is one of the few regions where they still can be seen frequently, although local increasing human activities result in increasing need for information. In general, photo-identification has been established as a helpful tool in cetacean research. However, only few studies have applied this method to bottlen...

  4. The Gross Morphology and Histochemistry of Respiratory Muscles in Bottlenose Dolphins, Tursiops truncatus

    OpenAIRE

    Cotten, Pamela B.; Piscitelli, Marina A.; McLellan, William A.; Rommel, Sentiel A.; Dearolf, Jennifer L.; Pabst, D. Ann

    2008-01-01

    Most mammals possess stamina because their locomotor and respiratory (i.e., ventilatory) systems are mechanically coupled. These systems are decoupled, however, in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) as they swim on a breath-hold. Locomotion and ventilation are coupled only during their brief surfacing event, when they respire explosively (up to 90% of total lung volume in approximately 0.3s) (Ridgway et al., 1969). The predominantly slow-twitch fiber profile of their diaphragm (Dearolf,...

  5. The claustrum of the bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus (Montagu 1821

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruno eCozzi

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The mammalian claustrum is involved in processing sensory information from the environment. The claustrum is reciprocally connected to the visual cortex and these projections, at least in carnivores, display a clear retinotopic distribution. The visual cortex of dolphins occupies a position strikingly different from that of land mammals. Whether the reshaping of the functional areas of the cortex of cetaceans involves also modifications of the claustral projections remains hitherto unanswered.The present topographic and immunohistochemical study is based on the brains of 8 bottlenose dolphins and a wide array of antisera against: calcium-binding proteins (CBPs parvalbumin (PV, calretinin (CR, and calbindin (CB; somatostatin (SOM; neuropeptide Y (NPY; and the potential claustral marker Gng2.Our observations confirmed the general topography of the mammalian claustrum also in the bottlenose dolphin, although a the reduction of the piriform lobe modifies the ventral relationships of the claustrum with the cortex, and b the rotation of the telencephalon along the transverse axis, accompanied by the reduction of the antero-posterior length of the brain, apparently moves the claustrum more rostrally. We observed a strong presence of CR-immunoreactive (-ir neurons and fibers, a diffuse but weak expression of CB-ir elements and virtually no PV immunostaining. This latter finding agrees with studies that report that PV-ir elements are rare in the visual cortex of the same species. NPY- and somatostatin-containing neurons were evident, while the potential claustral markers Gng2 was not identified in the sections, but no explanation for its absence is currently available.Although no data are available on the projections to and from the claustrum in cetaceans, our results suggest that its neurochemical organization is compatible with the presence of noteworthy cortical inputs and outputs and a persistent role in the general processing of the relative

  6. Lateralization of visuospatial processing in the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kilian, A; von Fersen, L; Güntürkün, O

    2000-12-01

    Two adult female bottlenose dolphins were tested for cerebral asymmetries in the visuospatial domain. The animals learned under binocular conditions a three-choice spatial discrimination task with three hoops positioned along a line in the middle of the tank. During a correct trial the dolphins had to swim from a starting position at the tanks wall through one of the hoops, come back to the starting position, choose another hoop, swim back to start and finally swim through the third hoop. For such a trial to be correct, the animals had to swim through all three hoops in any sequence without omitting or re-using one of them. After reaching criterion binocularly, monocular trials (one eye covered with an adherent suction cup) were introduced where the dolphins carried out the same task alternatingly under left or right eye seeing conditions. For both animals, the right eye performance was clearly superior to that of the left eye. Binocular and right eye performances were similar. As a result of the complete decussation at the optic nerve, this right eye superiority suggests a left-hemispheric dominance for the processing of visuospatial information. This is a remarkable deviation from the usual right hemisphere advantage for these kind of tasks found in different species of mammals and birds. PMID:11080552

  7. Biosonar adjustments to target range of echolocating bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.) in the wild

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Frants Havmand; Bejder, Lars; Wahlberg, Magnus;

    2009-01-01

    intervals, and source levels of wild bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.) by recording regular (non-buzz) echolocation clicks with a linear hydrophone array. Dolphins clicked faster with decreasing distance to the array, reflecting a decreasing delay between the outgoing echolocation click and the returning...

  8. Two Cases of Bacterial Pneumonia in Bottle-nosed Dolphins (Tursiops Gillii) at the Seoul Zoo, Korea

    OpenAIRE

    Kyung-Yeon Eo and Oh-Deog Kwon1*

    2011-01-01

    Two bacterial pneumonia cases of bottle-nosed dolphins (Tursiops gillii) were found in Seoul Zoo. Firstly, severe fibrous pleuropneumonia was revealed in a 14-year-old male bottle-nosed dolphin on its necropsy. The clinical signs included anorexia, listing posture, and vertical submerging after the initial signs of low activity and avoiding trainers. White blood cell count increased up to 31.80 × 103/µl. Despite aggressive antibiotics therapy of intramuscular injection and nebulization it die...

  9. Comparison of nephrolithiasis prevalence in two bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus populations

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    CynthiaRoweSmith

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available In humans, ammonium urate nephrolithiasis is rare in the Western hemisphere and more common in Japan and developing countries. Among a variety of risk factors, insulin resistance has been associated with urate nephrolithiasis in people. Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus are susceptible to ammonium urate nephrolithiasis, and it is believed that some populations are more likely to develop nephrolithiasis compared to others. In an effort to better understand population-based risk factors for ammonium urate nephrolithiasis in dolphins and their comparative value to humans, sonographic evaluation was performed on dolphins from a managed collection in San Diego Bay, California (n=40 and dolphins from a free-ranging, nearshore population in Sarasota Bay, Florida (n=39 to look for evidence of nephrolithiasis. While 14 (35% of San Diego Bay dolphins evaluated for the study had sonographic evidence of nephrolithiasis, none of the Sarasota Bay dolphins had evidence of disease. Presence or absence of stones was confirmed by computed tomography in a subset of the San Diego collection (n=10; 4 dolphins with stones, 6 without stones. Age was identified as a risk factor, as dolphins with stones in the San Diego collection were significantly older than dolphins without stones (25.4 vs. 19.1 yrs, respectively; p=0.04. Additionally, San Diego dolphins included in the study were significantly older than Sarasota Bay dolphins (21.3 vs. 13.8 yrs, respectively; p=0.008. In addition to the previously reported risk factors of hypocitraturia and hyperinsulinemia in bottlenose dolphins, other potential factors include geographic location, managed versus free-ranging status, prey species, and feeding schedules.

  10. Importance of spontaneous micronucleated erythrocytes in bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) to marine toxicology studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zamora-Perez, Ana; Camacho-Magaña, Claudia; Gómez-Meda, Belinda; Ramos-Ibarra, María; Batista-González, Cecilia; Zúñiga-González, G

    2006-12-01

    The objective of the work was to characterize the presence of spontaneous micronucleated erythrocytes (MNES) from peripheral blood of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) to evaluate the possibility to use this species as potential bioindicator of genotoxic compounds. Forty-eight blood samples from 12 bottlenose dolphins were obtain from three Mexican dolphinariums, and from 10 dolphins was possible to obtain more than one sample at different sampling times. Smears were processed and observed with an epifluorescence microscope. The average of MNES and polychromatic erythrocytes (PCE) from the 48 samples was 24.3 +/- 6.1 MNES/10,000 total erythrocytes (TE), and 9.1 +/- 5.5 PCE/1,000 TE. MNES and PCE number did not show differences between gender and age. No variations in the MNES values of the bottlenose dolphins that were sampled more than one occasion were found. Comparisons among dolphinariums revealed differences in MNES frequency, with the highest significant frequency observed in dolphins from dolphinarium "A" (26.0 +/- 5.9 MNES/10,000 TE) than dolphinarium "B" (19.5 +/- 3.1 MNES/10,000 TE) (p marine mammal model to detect DNA damage by means of micronuclei test in peripheral blood erythrocytes to evaluate genotoxicity and cytotoxicity expositions. PMID:17278706

  11. Genetic isolation between coastal and fishery-impacted, offshore bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops spp.) populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Simon J; Bryant, Kate A; Kraus, Robert H S; Loneragan, Neil R; Kopps, Anna M; Brown, Alexander M; Gerber, Livia; Krützen, Michael

    2016-06-01

    The identification of species and population boundaries is important in both evolutionary and conservation biology. In recent years, new population genetic and computational methods for estimating population parameters and testing hypotheses in a quantitative manner have emerged. Using a Bayesian framework and a quantitative model-testing approach, we evaluated the species status and genetic connectedness of bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops spp.) populations off remote northwestern Australia, with a focus on pelagic 'offshore' dolphins subject to incidental capture in a trawl fishery. We analysed 71 dolphin samples from three sites beyond the 50 m depth contour (the inshore boundary of the fishery) and up to 170 km offshore, including incidentally caught and free-ranging individuals associating with trawl vessels, and 273 dolphins sampled at 12 coastal sites inshore of the 50 m depth contour and within 10 km of the coast. Results from 19 nuclear microsatellite markers showed significant population structure between dolphins from within the fishery and coastal sites, but also among dolphins from coastal sites, identifying three coastal populations. Moreover, we found no current or historic gene flow into the offshore population in the region of the fishery, indicating a complete lack of recruitment from coastal sites. Mitochondrial DNA corroborated our findings of genetic isolation between dolphins from the offshore population and coastal sites. Most offshore individuals formed a monophyletic clade with common bottlenose dolphins (T. truncatus), while all 273 individuals sampled coastally formed a well-supported clade of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (T. aduncus). By including a quantitative modelling approach, our study explicitly took evolutionary processes into account for informing the conservation and management of protected species. As such, it may serve as a template for other, similarly inaccessible study populations. PMID:27015516

  12. The ecological conditions that favor tool use and innovation in wild bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patterson, Eric M; Mann, Janet

    2011-01-01

    Dolphins are well known for their exquisite echolocation abilities, which enable them to detect and discriminate prey species and even locate buried prey. While these skills are widely used during foraging, some dolphins use tools to locate and extract prey. In the only known case of tool use in free-ranging cetaceans, a subset of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.) in Shark Bay, Western Australia habitually employs marine basket sponge tools to locate and ferret prey from the seafloor. While it is clear that sponges protect dolphins' rostra while searching for prey, it is still not known why dolphins probe the substrate at all instead of merely echolocating for buried prey as documented at other sites. By 'sponge foraging' ourselves, we show that these dolphins target prey that both lack swimbladders and burrow in a rubble-littered substrate. Delphinid echolocation and vision are critical for hunting but less effective on such prey. Consequently, if dolphins are to access this burrowing, swimbladderless prey, they must probe the seafloor and in turn benefit from using protective sponges. We suggest that these tools have allowed sponge foraging dolphins to exploit an empty niche inaccessible to their non-tool-using counterparts. Our study identifies the underlying ecological basis of dolphin tool use and strengthens our understanding of the conditions that favor tool use and innovation in the wild. PMID:21799801

  13. The ecological conditions that favor tool use and innovation in wild bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp..

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric M Patterson

    Full Text Available Dolphins are well known for their exquisite echolocation abilities, which enable them to detect and discriminate prey species and even locate buried prey. While these skills are widely used during foraging, some dolphins use tools to locate and extract prey. In the only known case of tool use in free-ranging cetaceans, a subset of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp. in Shark Bay, Western Australia habitually employs marine basket sponge tools to locate and ferret prey from the seafloor. While it is clear that sponges protect dolphins' rostra while searching for prey, it is still not known why dolphins probe the substrate at all instead of merely echolocating for buried prey as documented at other sites. By 'sponge foraging' ourselves, we show that these dolphins target prey that both lack swimbladders and burrow in a rubble-littered substrate. Delphinid echolocation and vision are critical for hunting but less effective on such prey. Consequently, if dolphins are to access this burrowing, swimbladderless prey, they must probe the seafloor and in turn benefit from using protective sponges. We suggest that these tools have allowed sponge foraging dolphins to exploit an empty niche inaccessible to their non-tool-using counterparts. Our study identifies the underlying ecological basis of dolphin tool use and strengthens our understanding of the conditions that favor tool use and innovation in the wild.

  14. Ecological variables influencing trace element concentrations in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus, Montagu 1821) stranded in continental Portugal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monteiro, Sílvia S; Torres, Jordi; Ferreira, Marisa; Marçalo, Ana; Nicolau, Lídia; Vingada, José V; Eira, Catarina

    2016-02-15

    Both the conservation status of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) (Habitats Directive 92/43/CEE, Annex II) and the Marine Strategy Framework Directive demand for data on their ecology and anthropogenic threats. To evaluate the bottlenose dolphin's toxicological status in continental Portugal, several trace elements (As, Cd, Cu, Hg, Mn, Ni, Pb, Se, Zn) were determined in 25 stranded individuals. The potential effect of sex, body length and stranding location on trace element concentrations was analysed. In the present study, bottlenose dolphins presented high mercury levels, only exceeded by animals from the Mediterranean and Adriatic seas. Only essential elements were influenced by dolphin sex, whereas Cd, Hg and Pb bioaccumulated in larger dolphins, and hepatic Hg and Cd concentrations were higher in the northwest coast of continental Portugal. The location effect may relate to variations in bottlenose diet and trace element availability, according to the proximity to anthropogenic sources in the Atlantic Iberian coast. PMID:26706756

  15. Whistle repertoire of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in the Mississippi Sound

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernandez, Erica N.; Kuczaj, Stan; Solangi, Moby

    2005-09-01

    The whistle repertoire of wild bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in the Mississippi Sound, part of the northern Gulf of Mexico, was investigated. There is a large population of dolphins in this area, and many dolphins that are now housed in zoos and aquariums were captured in the Mississippi Sound. This paper reports the types of whistles that are predominant in this area, and how these whistles are used in the context of concurrent surface behavior. Over the course of 1 year (April 2004-March 2005), dolphin whistles were recorded as part of an ongoing study of the effects of human activity on wild bottlenose dolphins. The surface behavior of the focal group was categorized at 1-min intervals as follows: mill, travel, mill/travel, feed, social, with boat, or with shrimp boat. Whistles were then categorized as one of the following: upsweep, downsweep, convex, concave, sine, or constant frequency. Preliminary analysis of the data suggests that both the rate of whistling and the types of whistles produced vary as a function of dolphin behavior. Further analysis of the data will reveal if different types of whistles are associated with specific surface behavior categories. [Research supported by Department of Commerce.

  16. A division of labour with role specialization in group-hunting bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) off Cedar Key, Florida

    OpenAIRE

    Gazda, Stefanie K.; Richard C Connor; Edgar, Robert K.; Cox, Frank

    2005-01-01

    Individual role specialization during group hunting is extremely rare in mammals. Observations on two groups of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in Cedar Key, Florida revealed distinctive behavioural roles during group feeding. In each group, one individual was consistently the ‘driver’, herding the fishes in a circle toward the remaining ‘barrier’ dolphins. Aerial fish-capture rates differed between groups, as well as between the driver and barrier dolphins, in one group but not in t...

  17. Genomewide investigation of adaptation to harmful algal blooms in common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cammen, Kristina M; Schultz, Thomas F; Rosel, Patricia E; Wells, Randall S; Read, Andrew J

    2015-09-01

    Harmful algal blooms (HABs), which can be lethal in marine species and cause illness in humans, are increasing worldwide. In the Gulf of Mexico, HABs of Karenia brevis produce neurotoxic brevetoxins that cause large-scale marine mortality events. The long history of such blooms, combined with the potentially severe effects of exposure, may have produced a strong selective pressure for evolved resistance. Advances in next-generation sequencing, in particular genotyping-by-sequencing, greatly enable the genomic study of such adaptation in natural populations. We used restriction site-associated DNA (RAD) sequencing to investigate brevetoxicosis resistance in common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). To improve our understanding of the epidemiology and aetiology of brevetoxicosis and the potential for evolved resistance in an upper trophic level predator, we sequenced pools of genomic DNA from dolphins sampled from both coastal and estuarine populations in Florida and during multiple HAB-associated mortality events. We sequenced 129 594 RAD loci and analysed 7431 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). The allele frequencies of many of these polymorphic loci differed significantly between live and dead dolphins. Some loci associated with survival showed patterns suggesting a common genetic-based mechanism of resistance to brevetoxins in bottlenose dolphins along the Gulf coast of Florida, but others suggested regionally specific mechanisms of resistance or reflected differences among HABs. We identified candidate genes that may be the evolutionary target for brevetoxin resistance by searching the dolphin genome for genes adjacent to survival-associated SNPs. PMID:26290192

  18. Histologic findings in free-ranging Sarasota Bay bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) skin: mercury, selenium, and seasonal factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Debra L; Woshner, Victoria; Styer, Eloise L; Ferguson, Sylvia; Knott, Katrina K; Gray, Matthew J; Wells, Randall S; O'Hara, Todd M

    2011-10-01

    Full-thickness epidermal biopsy samples were collected from free-ranging common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in Sarasota Bay, Florida, USA. Season (summer or winter) of collection, mercury (Hg) concentration, and selenium (Se) concentration were compared to histologic parameters. Epidermal Hg concentration was positively related to age (Pwinter (Pdolphin health need further investigation. PMID:22102676

  19. Occurrence of triclosan in plasma of wild Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) and in their environment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fair, Patricia A., E-mail: pat.fair@noaa.go [National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Ocean Services, Center for Coastal Environmental Health and Biomolecular Research, 219 Fort Johnson Road, Charleston, SC 29412-9110 (United States); Lee, H.-B. [Aquatic Ecosystem Protection Research Division, Environment Canada, 867 Lakeshore Road, Burlington, ON L7R 4A6 (Canada); Adams, Jeff [National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Ocean Services, Center for Coastal Environmental Health and Biomolecular Research, 219 Fort Johnson Road, Charleston, SC 29412-9110 (United States); Darling, Colin; Pacepavicius, Grazina; Alaee, Mehran [Aquatic Ecosystem Protection Research Division, Environment Canada, 867 Lakeshore Road, Burlington, ON L7R 4A6 (Canada); Bossart, Gregory D. [Center for Coastal Research, Marine Mammal Research and Conservation Program, Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute at Florida Atlantic University, 5600 U.S. 1 North, Ft. Pierce, FL 34946 (United States); Henry, Natasha [National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Ocean Services, Center for Coastal Environmental Health and Biomolecular Research, 219 Fort Johnson Road, Charleston, SC 29412-9110 (United States); Muir, Derek [Aquatic Ecosystem Protection Research Division, Environment Canada, 867 Lakeshore Road, Burlington, ON L7R 4A6 (Canada)

    2009-08-15

    The presence of triclosan, a widely-used antibacterial chemical, is currently unknown in higher trophic-level species such as marine mammals. Blood plasma collected from wild bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in Charleston, SC (CHS) (n = 13) and Indian River Lagoon, FL (IRL) (n = 13) in 2005 was analyzed for triclosan. Plasma concentrations in CHS dolphins ranged from 0.12 to 0.27 ng/g wet weight (mean 0.18 ng/g), with 31% of the sampled individuals having detectable triclosan. The mean IRL dolphin plasma concentrations were 0.072 ng/g wet weight (range 0.025-0.11 ng/g); 23% of the samples having detectable triclosan. In the CHS area, triclosan effluent values from two WWTP were both 190 ng/L and primary influents were 2800 ng/L and 3400 ng/L. Triclosan values in CHS estuarine surface water samples averaged 7.5 ng/L (n = 18) ranging from 4.9 to 14 ng/L. This is the first study to report bioaccumulation of anthropogenic triclosan in a marine mammal highlighting the need for further monitoring and assessment. - Triclosan in bottlenose dolphin plasma and their environment.

  20. Occurrence of triclosan in plasma of wild Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) and in their environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The presence of triclosan, a widely-used antibacterial chemical, is currently unknown in higher trophic-level species such as marine mammals. Blood plasma collected from wild bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in Charleston, SC (CHS) (n = 13) and Indian River Lagoon, FL (IRL) (n = 13) in 2005 was analyzed for triclosan. Plasma concentrations in CHS dolphins ranged from 0.12 to 0.27 ng/g wet weight (mean 0.18 ng/g), with 31% of the sampled individuals having detectable triclosan. The mean IRL dolphin plasma concentrations were 0.072 ng/g wet weight (range 0.025-0.11 ng/g); 23% of the samples having detectable triclosan. In the CHS area, triclosan effluent values from two WWTP were both 190 ng/L and primary influents were 2800 ng/L and 3400 ng/L. Triclosan values in CHS estuarine surface water samples averaged 7.5 ng/L (n = 18) ranging from 4.9 to 14 ng/L. This is the first study to report bioaccumulation of anthropogenic triclosan in a marine mammal highlighting the need for further monitoring and assessment. - Triclosan in bottlenose dolphin plasma and their environment.

  1. Spatial distribution of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) inferred from stable isotopes and priority organic pollutants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Differences in priority organic pollutants (POPs), analyzed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, and stable isotope ratios (δ13C, δ34S, and δ15N; analyzed by isotope ratio-mass spectrometry), divide 77 bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the Florida Gulf Coast into three distinct groups. POP levels reflect human population and historical contamination along the coast. In the least disturbed site, concentrations of ΣPOP in male dolphins were 18,000 ng g−1 ± 6000 (95% confidence interval here and throughout); in the intermediate bay, males had ΣPOP concentrations of 19,000 ng g−1 ± 10,000. St Andrews Bay was home to dolphins with the highest ΣPOP concentrations: 44,000 ng g−1 ± 10,300. δ34S and δ15N, differed significantly between St. George Sound dolphins and those frequenting each of the other two bays, but not between St. Andrews and St. Joseph Bays. ΣPOP concentrations were statistically higher in dolphins frequenting St. Andrews Bay, but were not significantly different between dolphins occupying St. Joseph Bay and St. George Sound. Thus, using either POP or isotope values alone, we would only be able to identify two dolphin groups, but when POP and isotope data are viewed cumulatively, the results clearly define three distinct communities occupying this region. - Highlights: ► We compare isotopes and POP levels in dolphins occupying three embayments. ► POP levels varied significantly among two embayments separated by < 50 km. ► Differentiation correlated with historical contamination from a SuperFund site. ► Cumulatively, isotopes and POP levels indicate 3 distinct dolphin communities. ► This data provides the first assessment of dolphin POP contamination in the region.

  2. Spatial distribution of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) inferred from stable isotopes and priority organic pollutants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wilson, Rachel Marie, E-mail: ryounge@ocean.fsu.edu [Department of EOAS-Oceanography, Florida State University, 117 North Woodward Avenue, Tallahassee, Florida, 32306 (United States); Kucklick, John R. [National Institute of Standards and Technology, Hollings Marine Laboratory, Charleston, 331 Fort Johnson Road, Charleston, South Carolina 29412 (United States); Balmer, Brian C.; Wells, Randall S. [Chicago Zoological Society c/o Mote Marine Laboratory, 1600 Ken Thompson Parkway Sarasota, FL, 34236 (United States); Chanton, Jeffrey P. [Department of EOAS-Oceanography, Florida State University, 117 North Woodward Avenue, Tallahassee, Florida, 32306 (United States); Nowacek, Douglas P. [Nicholas School of the Environment and Pratt School of Engineering, Duke University - Marine Laboratory, 135 Duke Marine Lab Rd., Beaufort, NC 28516 (United States)

    2012-05-15

    Differences in priority organic pollutants (POPs), analyzed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, and stable isotope ratios ({delta}{sup 13}C, {delta}{sup 34}S, and {delta}{sup 15}N; analyzed by isotope ratio-mass spectrometry), divide 77 bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the Florida Gulf Coast into three distinct groups. POP levels reflect human population and historical contamination along the coast. In the least disturbed site, concentrations of {Sigma}POP in male dolphins were 18,000 ng g{sup -1} {+-} 6000 (95% confidence interval here and throughout); in the intermediate bay, males had {Sigma}POP concentrations of 19,000 ng g{sup -1} {+-} 10,000. St Andrews Bay was home to dolphins with the highest {Sigma}POP concentrations: 44,000 ng g{sup -1} {+-} 10,300. {delta}{sup 34}S and {delta}{sup 15}N, differed significantly between St. George Sound dolphins and those frequenting each of the other two bays, but not between St. Andrews and St. Joseph Bays. {Sigma}POP concentrations were statistically higher in dolphins frequenting St. Andrews Bay, but were not significantly different between dolphins occupying St. Joseph Bay and St. George Sound. Thus, using either POP or isotope values alone, we would only be able to identify two dolphin groups, but when POP and isotope data are viewed cumulatively, the results clearly define three distinct communities occupying this region. - Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer We compare isotopes and POP levels in dolphins occupying three embayments. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer POP levels varied significantly among two embayments separated by < 50 km. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Differentiation correlated with historical contamination from a SuperFund site. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Cumulatively, isotopes and POP levels indicate 3 distinct dolphin communities. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer This data provides the first assessment of dolphin POP contamination in the region.

  3. Blood-based indicators of insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    StephanieVenn-Watson

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Similar to people with metabolic syndrome, bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus can have a sustained postprandial hyperglycemia and hyperinsulinemia, dyslipidemia, and fatty liver disease. A panel of potential postprandial blood-based indicators of insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome were compared among 34 managed collection dolphins in San Diego Bay, California (Group A and 16 wild, free-ranging dolphins in Sarasota Bay, Florida (Group B. Compared to Group B, Group A had higher insulin (2.1 ± 2.5 and 13 ± 13 µIU/ml, glucose (87 ± 19 and 108 ± 12 mg/dl and triglycerides (75 ± 28 and 128 ± 45 mg/dl as well as higher cholesterol (total, high density lipoprotein cholesterol, and very low density lipoprotein cholesterol, iron, transferrin saturation, gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase (GGT, alanine transaminase, and uric acid. Group A had higher percent unmodified adiponectin. While Group A dolphins were older, the same blood-based differences remained when controlling for age. There were no differences in body mass index (BMI between the groups, and comparisons between Group B and Group A dolphins have consistently demonstrated lower stress hormones levels in Group A. Group A dolphins with high insulin (greater than 14 µIU/ml had higher glucose, iron, GGT, and BMI compared to Group A dolphins with lower insulin. These findings support that some dolphin groups may be more susceptible to insulin resistance compared to others, and primary risk factors are not likely age, BMI, or stress. Lower high-molecular weight adiponectin has been identified as an independent risk factor for type 2 diabetes in humans and may be a target for preventing insulin resistance in dolphins. Future investigations with these two dolphin populations, including dietary and feeding differences, may provide valuable insight for preventing and treating insulin resistance in humans.

  4. Transcriptomic analysis of bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) skin biopsies to assess the effects of emerging contaminants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lunardi, Denise; Abelli, Luigi; Panti, Cristina; Marsili, Letizia; Fossi, Maria Cristina; Mancia, Annalaura

    2016-03-01

    Chemicals discovered in water at levels that may be significantly different than expected are referred to as contaminants of emerging concern (CECs) because the risk to environmental health posed by their occurrence/frequency is still unknown. The worldwide distributed compounds perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and bisphenol A (BPA) may fall into this category due to effects on endocrine receptors. We applied an ex vivo assay using small slices of bioptic skin from the bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops truncatus, cultured and treated for 24 h with different PFOA or BPA concentrations to analyze global gene expression. RNA was labeled and hybridized to a species-specific oligomicroarray. The skin transcriptome held information on the contaminant exposure, potentially predictive about long-term effects on health, being the genes affected involved in immunity modulation, response to stress, lipid homeostasis, and development. The transcriptomic signature of dolphin skin could be therefore relevant as classifier for a specific contaminant. PMID:26794494

  5. Habitat use of a population of bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus gephyreus, analyzed by means of Kernel Density Estimation (KDE) method

    OpenAIRE

    Cransveld, Alice; Denoël, Mathieu; Das, Krishna; Vermeulen, Els

    2014-01-01

    The San Antonio Bay (SAB), in Patagonia, Argentina, harbors a resident population of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus gephyreus). It seems a privileged area to give birth and nurse calves. In the context of declining populations worldwide and more particularly in South America, preserving the SAB population takes a considerable significance. Yet the SAB is facing human population growth and touristic development, which represent potential threats for the dolphin population, especially ...

  6. Mucocutaneous lesions in free-ranging Atlantic bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus from the southeastern USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bossart, Gregory D; Schaefer, Adam M; McCulloch, Stephen; Goldstein, Juli; Fair, Patricia A; Reif, John S

    2015-08-20

    Mucocutaneous lesions were biopsied from free-ranging Atlantic bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus inhabiting the Indian River Lagoon (IRL), Florida, and estuarine waters of Charleston (CHS), South Carolina, USA, between 2003 and 2013. A total of 78 incisional biopsies from 58 dolphins (n=43 IRL, n=15 CHS) were examined. Thirteen dolphins had 2 lesions biopsied at the same examination, and 6 dolphins were re-examined and re-biopsied at time intervals varying from 1 to 8 yr. Biopsy sites included the skin (n=47), tongue (n=2), and genital mucosa (n=29). Pathologic diagnoses were: orogenital sessile papilloma (39.7%), cutaneous lobomycosis (16.7%), tattoo skin disease (TSD; 15.4%), nonspecific chronic to chronic-active dermatitis (15.4%), and epidermal hyperplasia (12.8%). Pathologic diagnoses from dolphins with 2 lesions were predominately orogenital sessile papillomas (n=9) with nonspecific chronic to chronic-active dermatitis (n=4), TSD (n=3), lobomycosis (n=1), and epidermal hyperplasia (n=1). Persistent pathologic diagnoses from the same dolphins re-examined and re-biopsied at different times included genital sessile papillomas (n=3), lobomycosis (n=2), and nonspecific dermatitis (n=2). This is the first study documenting the various types, combined prevalence, and progression of mucocutaneous lesions in dolphins from the southeastern USA. The data support other published findings describing the health patterns in dolphins from these geographic regions. Potential health impacts related to the observed suite of lesions are important for the IRL and CHS dolphin populations, since previous studies have indicated that both populations are affected by complex infectious diseases often associated with immunologic disturbances and anthropogenic contaminants. PMID:26290502

  7. Bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) papillomaviruses: vaccine antigen candidates and screening test development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rehtanz, Manuela; Bossart, Gregory D; Doescher, Bethany; Rector, Annabel; Van Ranst, Marc; Fair, Patricia A; Jenson, Alfred B; Ghim, Shin-Je

    2009-01-01

    Papillomaviruses (PVs) have been shown as being the etiologic agents of various benign and malignant tumours in many vertebrate species. In dolphins and porpoises, a high prevalence of orogenital tumours has recently been documented with at least four distinct novel species-specific PV types detected in such lesions. Therefore, we generated the immunological reagents to establish a serological screening test to determine the prevalence of PV infection in Atlantic bottlenose dolphins [(Tursiops truncatus (Tt)]. Using the baculovirus expression system, virus-like particles (VLPs) derived from the L1 proteins of two TtPV types, TtPV1 and TtPV2, were generated. Polyclonal antibodies against TtPV VLPs were produced in rabbits and their specificity for the VLPs was confirmed. Electron microscopy and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) studies revealed that the generated VLPs self-assembled into particles presenting conformational immunodominant epitopes. As such, these particles are potential antigen candidates for a TtPV vaccine. Subsequently, the VLPs served as antigens in initial ELISA tests using sera from six bottlenose dolphins to investigate PV antibody presence. Three of these sera were derived from dolphins with genital tumour history and showed positive PV ELISA reactivity, while the remaining sera from lesion-free dolphins were PV antibody-negative. The results suggest that the developed screening test may serve as a potential tool for determining PV prevalence and thus for observing transmission rates in dolphin populations as the significance of PV infection in cetaceans starts to unfold. PMID:18676105

  8. Visual lateralization in the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus): evidence for a population asymmetry?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yaman, Sevgi; von Fersen, Lorenzo; Dehnhardt, Guido; Güntürkün, Onur

    2003-06-16

    A previous behavioural study with a single bottlenose dolphin had reported a right eye superiority in visual discrimination tasks, indicating a left hemisphere dominance for visual object processing. The presence of a functional asymmetry demonstrated with one individual shows that this function can be lateralized in this single animal, but cannot reveal if this represents a population asymmetry. Therefore, we conducted a series of visual discrimination experiments with three individuals of Tursiops truncatus under monocular conditions. The tested animals had to distinguish between simultaneously presented stimulus pairs of different patterns, whereby one stimulus was always defined to be correct. Additionally, the animals were observed for their free eye use during training and introduction of new items. The present data set revealed a right eye advantage (left hemisphere dominance) for all tested animals and a predominance of right eye use during daily activities. These results make it possible that bottlenose dolphins are lateralized for visual pattern discrimination at the level of a population asymmetry. Against the background of similar data in other vertebrates, a left hemisphere dominance for pattern discrimination points to the possibility that dolphins exploit local visual details instead of global configurational features to recognize and memorize visual stimuli. PMID:12798271

  9. Altrenogest and progesterone therapy during pregnancy in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) with progesterone insufficiency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robeck, Todd R; Gill, Claudia; Doescher, Bethany M; Sweeney, Jay; De Laender, Piet; Van Elk, Cornelis E; O'Brien, Justine K

    2012-06-01

    Progesterone production is essential for growth and development of the conceptus during pregnancy. Abnormal development of the corpus luteum (CL) after conception can result in early embryonic loss or fetal abortion. Routine monitoring of bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) pregnancy after artificial insemination or natural conception with ultrasonography and serum progesterone determination has allowed for the establishment of expected fetal growth rates and hormone concentrations. Using these monitoring techniques, we revealed four pregnant dolphins (12-24 yr old) with abnormally low progesterone production indicative of luteal insufficiency. Once diagnosed, animals were placed on altrenogest (0.044-0.088 mg/kg once daily) alone or with oral progesterone (50-200 mg twice daily). Doses of hormone were increased or decreased in each animal based on how fetal skull biparietal and thoracic growth rates compared with published normal values. Hormones were withdrawn starting from day 358 of gestation in animals 1 and 2, with labor occurring 6 and 7 days after withdrawal and at 376 and 373 days of gestation, respectively. Both deliveries were dystocic, with each calf requiring manual extraction and fetotomy for calf 1. The fetuses in animals 3 and 4 died at 348 and 390 days of gestation, respectively. Induction of labor was attempted in both animals, after fetal death, by using a combination of rapid progesterone withdrawal and steroid and prostaglandin F2alpha administration. The calf of animal 4 had to be removed with manual cervical dilation and fetotomy All adult females survived the procedures. These data provide the first in vivo evidence that the CL is the primary source of progesterone throughout pregnancy in the bottlenose dolphin. Until further characterization of hormones required during pregnancy and at parturition has been accomplished, the exogenous progestagen supplementation protocol described here cannot be recommended for treatment of progesterone

  10. Adrenal Hormones in Common Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus: Influential Factors and Reference Intervals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leslie B Hart

    Full Text Available Inshore common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus are exposed to a broad spectrum of natural and anthropogenic stressors. In response to these stressors, the mammalian adrenal gland releases hormones such as cortisol and aldosterone to maintain physiological and biochemical homeostasis. Consequently, adrenal gland dysfunction results in disruption of hormone secretion and an inappropriate stress response. Our objective herein was to develop diagnostic reference intervals (RIs for adrenal hormones commonly associated with the stress response (i.e., cortisol, aldosterone that account for the influence of intrinsic (e.g., age, sex and extrinsic (e.g., time factors. Ultimately, these reference intervals will be used to gauge an individual's response to chase-capture stress and could indicate adrenal abnormalities. Linear mixed models (LMMs were used to evaluate demographic and sampling factors contributing to differences in serum cortisol and aldosterone concentrations among bottlenose dolphins sampled in Sarasota Bay, Florida, USA (2000-2012. Serum cortisol concentrations were significantly associated with elapsed time from initial stimulation to sample collection (p<0.05, and RIs were constructed using nonparametric methods based on elapsed sampling time for dolphins sampled in less than 30 minutes following net deployment (95% RI: 0.91-4.21 µg/dL and following biological sampling aboard a research vessel (95% RI: 2.32-6.68 µg/dL. To examine the applicability of the pre-sampling cortisol RI across multiple estuarine stocks, data from three additional southeast U.S. sites were compared, revealing that all of the dolphins sampled from the other sites (N = 34 had cortisol concentrations within the 95th percentile RI. Significant associations between serum concentrations of aldosterone and variables reported in previous studies (i.e., age, elapsed sampling time were not observed in the current project (p<0.05. Also, approximately 16% of

  11. Adrenal Hormones in Common Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus): Influential Factors and Reference Intervals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hart, Leslie B; Wells, Randall S; Kellar, Nick; Balmer, Brian C; Hohn, Aleta A; Lamb, Stephen V; Rowles, Teri; Zolman, Eric S; Schwacke, Lori H

    2015-01-01

    Inshore common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) are exposed to a broad spectrum of natural and anthropogenic stressors. In response to these stressors, the mammalian adrenal gland releases hormones such as cortisol and aldosterone to maintain physiological and biochemical homeostasis. Consequently, adrenal gland dysfunction results in disruption of hormone secretion and an inappropriate stress response. Our objective herein was to develop diagnostic reference intervals (RIs) for adrenal hormones commonly associated with the stress response (i.e., cortisol, aldosterone) that account for the influence of intrinsic (e.g., age, sex) and extrinsic (e.g., time) factors. Ultimately, these reference intervals will be used to gauge an individual's response to chase-capture stress and could indicate adrenal abnormalities. Linear mixed models (LMMs) were used to evaluate demographic and sampling factors contributing to differences in serum cortisol and aldosterone concentrations among bottlenose dolphins sampled in Sarasota Bay, Florida, USA (2000-2012). Serum cortisol concentrations were significantly associated with elapsed time from initial stimulation to sample collection (p<0.05), and RIs were constructed using nonparametric methods based on elapsed sampling time for dolphins sampled in less than 30 minutes following net deployment (95% RI: 0.91-4.21 µg/dL) and following biological sampling aboard a research vessel (95% RI: 2.32-6.68 µg/dL). To examine the applicability of the pre-sampling cortisol RI across multiple estuarine stocks, data from three additional southeast U.S. sites were compared, revealing that all of the dolphins sampled from the other sites (N = 34) had cortisol concentrations within the 95th percentile RI. Significant associations between serum concentrations of aldosterone and variables reported in previous studies (i.e., age, elapsed sampling time) were not observed in the current project (p<0.05). Also, approximately 16% of Sarasota Bay

  12. Establishment of epidermal cell lines derived from the skin of the Atlantic bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Jin; Kindy, Mark S; Ellis, Blake C; Baatz, John E; Peden-Adams, Margie; Ellingham, Tara J; Wolff, Daynna J; Fair, Patricia A; Gattoni-Celli, Sebastiano

    2005-12-01

    The Atlantic bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), a marine mammal found off the Atlantic coast, has become the focus of considerable attention because of an increasing number of mortality events witnessed in this species over the last several years along the southeastern United States. Assessment of the impact of environmental stressors on bottlenose dolphins (BND) has been difficult because of the protected status of these marine mammals. The studies presented herein focused on establishing epidermal cell cultures and cell lines as tools for the in vitro evaluation of environmental stressors on BND skin. Epidermal cell cultures were established from skin samples obtained from Atlantic BND and subjected to karyotype analysis. These cultures were further characterized using immunohistochemical methods demonstrating expression of cytokeratins. By two-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (2D-PAGE), we observed that the proteomic profile of BND skin tissue samples shared distinct similarities with that of skin-derived cultures. Epidermal cell cultures were transfected with a plasmid encoding the SV40 small t- and large T-antigens, as well as the neomycin-resistance gene. Five neomycin-resistant clones were isolated and expanded, and all of them proliferated at a faster rate than nontransfected BND epidermal cultures, which exhibited signs of senescence. Cell lysates prepared from two transfected clones were shown to express, by Western blot analysis, both SV40 tumor antigens. These experimental results are consistent with the concept that transfected clones expressing SV40 tumor antigens represent immortalized BND cell lines. Epidermal cell lines derived from Tursiops truncatus will provide a unique tool for studying key features of the interaction occurring between dolphins and the environment in which they live at their most crucial interface: the skin. PMID:16281302

  13. Estimates of DNA strand breakage in bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus)

    OpenAIRE

    Blanco, M.; Cruz, D.; Carro, S.; López, R.; Díaz, A.; Santiago, L; Guevara, C.; Sánchez, L.; Cuetara, E.B.; López, N.

    2009-01-01

    The analysis of DNA damage by mean of Comet or single cell gel electrophoresis (SCGE) assay has been commonly used to assess genotoxic impact in aquatic animals being able to detect exposure to low concentrations of contaminants in a wide range of species. The aims of this work were 1) to evaluate the usefulness of the Comet to detect DNA strand breakage in dolphin leukocytes, 2) to use the DNA diffusion assay to determine the amount of DNA strand breakage associated with apoptosi...

  14. Seasonal patterns of heat loss in wild bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meagher, Erin M; McLellan, William A; Westgate, Andrew J; Wells, Randall S; Blum, James E; Pabst, D Ann

    2008-05-01

    This study investigated patterns of heat loss in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) resident to Sarasota Bay, FL, USA, where water temperatures vary seasonally from 11 to 33 degrees C. Simultaneous measurements of heat flux (HF) and skin surface temperature were collected at the body wall and appendages of dolphins during health-monitoring events in summer (June 2002-2004) and winter (February 2003-2005). Integument thickness was measured and whole body conductance (W/m(2) degrees C) was estimated using HF and colonic temperature measurements. Across seasons, HF values were similar at the appendages, but their distribution differed significantly at the flipper and fluke. In summer, these appendages displayed uniformly high values, while in winter they most frequently displayed very low HF values with a few high HF values. In winter, blubber thickness was significantly greater and estimated conductance significantly lower, than in summer. These results suggest that dolphins attempt to conserve heat in winter. In winter, though, HF values across the body wall were similar to (flank) or greater than (caudal keel) summer values. It is likely that higher winter HF values are due to the steep temperature gradient between the body core and colder winter water, which may limit the dolphin's ability to decrease heat loss across the body wall. PMID:18183404

  15. Organohalogen compounds in blubber of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) and spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris) from Zanzibar, Tanzania

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mwevura, Haji, E-mail: mwevura@yahoo.co [Department of Chemistry, University of Dar es Salaam, Dar es Salaam (Tanzania, United Republic of); Amir, Omar A., E-mail: omar.amir@zoologi.su.s [Institute of Marine Sciences, University of Dar es Salaam, P O Box 668, Zanzibar (Tanzania, United Republic of); Department of Zoology, Stockholm University, SE-106 91 Stockholm (Sweden); Kishimba, Michael, E-mail: kishimba@chem.udsm.ac.t [Department of Chemistry, University of Dar es Salaam, Dar es Salaam (Tanzania, United Republic of); Berggren, Per, E-mail: per.berggren@zoologi.su.s [Department of Zoology, Stockholm University, SE-106 91 Stockholm (Sweden); School of Marine Science and Technology, University of Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 7RU (United Kingdom); Kylin, Henrik, E-mail: henrik.kylin@vatten.slu.s [Department of Aquatic Sciences and Assessment, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, P O Box 7050, SE-750 07 Uppsala (Sweden); Norwegian Institute of Air Research, Polar Environmental Centre, NO-9296 Tromso (Norway)

    2010-06-15

    Blubber samples of Indo-Pacific bottlenose (Tursiops aduncus) and spinner (Stenella longirostris) dolphins from Zanzibar, East Africa, were analyzed for a wide range of organohalogen compounds. Methoxylated polybrominated diphenyl ethers (MeO-BDEs), presumably biogenic, were found at higher concentrations than anthropogenic organochlorine pesticides (OCPs). Only traces of industrial pollutants, such as polychlorinated biphenyls, were detected. The OCP levels found off Zanzibar were lower than those reported from other regions while MeO-BDE levels were higher. The relative composition of the OCPs indicated recent use of lindane (gamma-hexachlorocyclohexane) and aged residues of DDT and technical HCH. Placental transfer was estimated to 2.5% and 0.5% of the total burden of OCPs and MeO-BDEs, respectively. Overall transfer from mother to calf in Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins was estimated to 72% and 85% for the OCPs and MeO-BDEs burdens, respectively. Health effects of MeO-BDEs are not known, but structural similarities with well-known environmental toxins are cause for concern. - Biogenic brominated organic compounds were found at higher concentrations than anthropogenic organochlorine pesticides in dolphins off Zanzibar.

  16. Organohalogen compounds in blubber of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) and spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris) from Zanzibar, Tanzania

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Blubber samples of Indo-Pacific bottlenose (Tursiops aduncus) and spinner (Stenella longirostris) dolphins from Zanzibar, East Africa, were analyzed for a wide range of organohalogen compounds. Methoxylated polybrominated diphenyl ethers (MeO-BDEs), presumably biogenic, were found at higher concentrations than anthropogenic organochlorine pesticides (OCPs). Only traces of industrial pollutants, such as polychlorinated biphenyls, were detected. The OCP levels found off Zanzibar were lower than those reported from other regions while MeO-BDE levels were higher. The relative composition of the OCPs indicated recent use of lindane (γ-hexachlorocyclohexane) and aged residues of DDT and technical HCH. Placental transfer was estimated to 2.5% and 0.5% of the total burden of OCPs and MeO-BDEs, respectively. Overall transfer from mother to calf in Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins was estimated to 72% and 85% for the OCPs and MeO-BDEs burdens, respectively. Health effects of MeO-BDEs are not known, but structural similarities with well-known environmental toxins are cause for concern. - Biogenic brominated organic compounds were found at higher concentrations than anthropogenic organochlorine pesticides in dolphins off Zanzibar.

  17. Predicted bioaccumulation of PCBs and toxaphene in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus): the contribution of contaminated prey

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Maruya, K.; Smalling, K. [Skidaway Inst. of Oceanography, Savannah, GA (United States); Pulster, E. [Savannah State Univ., Savannah, GA (United States)

    2004-09-15

    Residues of two organochlorines (OCs) -- Aroclor 1268 (a highly chlorinated PCB formulation) and toxaphene (a DDT-replacement pesticide) -- are major persistent contaminants in St. Simons Sound near Brunswick, Georgia, USA. Although studies have recently documented OC levels in Brunswick area fish that are routinely consumed by humans, little is known about organochlorine body burdens in resident marine mammals. Sub-populations of the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), an abundant odontocete of the coastal mid-south Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico regions, have recently been shown to exhibit a limited home range and site fidelity in a northern Florida estuary, underscoring the need to assess the impact of OCs in individuals exposed via their natural prey (i.e. contaminated fish).

  18. Comparative analysis of three brevetoxin-associated bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus mortality events in the Florida Panhandle region (USA.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael J Twiner

    Full Text Available In the Florida Panhandle region, bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus have been highly susceptible to large-scale unusual mortality events (UMEs that may have been the result of exposure to blooms of the dinoflagellate Karenia brevis and its neurotoxin, brevetoxin (PbTx. Between 1999 and 2006, three bottlenose dolphin UMEs occurred in the Florida Panhandle region. The primary objective of this study was to determine if these mortality events were due to brevetoxicosis. Analysis of over 850 samples from 105 bottlenose dolphins and associated prey items were analyzed for algal toxins and have provided details on tissue distribution, pathways of trophic transfer, and spatial-temporal trends for each mortality event. In 1999/2000, 152 dolphins died following extensive K. brevis blooms and brevetoxin was detected in 52% of animals tested at concentrations up to 500 ng/g. In 2004, 105 bottlenose dolphins died in the absence of an identifiable K. brevis bloom; however, 100% of the tested animals were positive for brevetoxin at concentrations up to 29,126 ng/mL. Dolphin stomach contents frequently consisted of brevetoxin-contaminated menhaden. In addition, another potentially toxigenic algal species, Pseudo-nitzschia, was present and low levels of the neurotoxin domoic acid (DA were detected in nearly all tested animals (89%. In 2005/2006, 90 bottlenose dolphins died that were initially coincident with high densities of K. brevis. Most (93% of the tested animals were positive for brevetoxin at concentrations up to 2,724 ng/mL. No DA was detected in these animals despite the presence of an intense DA-producing Pseudo-nitzschia bloom. In contrast to the absence or very low levels of brevetoxins measured in live dolphins, and those stranding in the absence of a K. brevis bloom, these data, taken together with the absence of any other obvious pathology, provide strong evidence that brevetoxin was the causative agent involved in these bottlenose dolphin

  19. Definite records of Sperm Whale Physeter catodon (Linnaeus, Spinner Dolphin Stenella longirostris (Gray and Bottlenose Dolphin Tursiops truncatus (Montagu (Mammalia: Cetartiodactyla in the Arabian Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Pande

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Definite records of five Sperm Whales Physeter catodon (Liinaeus, 58 Spinner Dolphins Stenella longirostris (Gray and 12 Bottlenose Dolphins Tursiops truncatus (Montagu in the Arabian Sea, encountered during Ela Foundation’s Pelagic Birds Survey and ornithological expedition to Lakshadweep Archipelago from 12 to 16 March 2006, are presented along with notes on behaviour, key identification features, four photographs and the conservation status of each species.

  20. Residence patterns and site fidelity in bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus (Montagu (Cetacea, Delphinidae off Southern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paulo C Simões-Lopes

    1999-01-01

    Full Text Available Residence patterns, habitat use, range, and some population estimate of the coastal bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops truncatus (Montagu, 1821, were documented in two coastal sites in southern Brazil: Laguna (Santa Catarina (28º30'S; 48º55'W, and Imbe/Tramandai (Rio Grande do Sul (29º58'S; 50º07'W. Regular observations were carried out at the Laguna system for 27 months (August 1989 to December 1991. The dolphins were photo-identified using natural permanent marks. Over 4,500 photograps were taken from shore grounds 6 to 14 meters away. Up to 51 dolphins have used the estuaries of Laguna's canal and Imarui-Santo Antonio's lagoon system in 1991. A stable group of nine animals has inhabited the Imbe/Tramandai area for over 13 years. Both sites were considered distinctive geographical communities, with 5.7% interchange within their individuals. In Laguna 88.5% of the individuals were resident and the rest were nonresident. Four cases of movement along the coastline were followed and females were more resident than males.

  1. On the role of periodic structures in the lower jaw of the atlantic bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dible, S A; Flint, J A; Lepper, P A [Electronic and Electrical Engineering, Loughborough University, Loughborough, LE11 3TU (United Kingdom)], E-mail: james.flint@ieee.org

    2009-03-01

    This paper proposes the application of band-gap theory to hearing in the atlantic bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus). Using the transmission line modelling (TLM) technique and published computed tomography (CT) data of an atlantic bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), a series of sound propagation experiments have been carried out. It is shown that the teeth in the lower jaw can be viewed as a periodic array of scattering elements which result in the formation of an acoustic stop band (or band gap) that is angular dependent. It is shown through simple and complex geometry simulations that performance enhancements such as improved gain and isolation between the two receive paths can be achieved. This mechanism has the potential to be exploited in direction-finding sonar.

  2. On the role of periodic structures in the lower jaw of the atlantic bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This paper proposes the application of band-gap theory to hearing in the atlantic bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus). Using the transmission line modelling (TLM) technique and published computed tomography (CT) data of an atlantic bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), a series of sound propagation experiments have been carried out. It is shown that the teeth in the lower jaw can be viewed as a periodic array of scattering elements which result in the formation of an acoustic stop band (or band gap) that is angular dependent. It is shown through simple and complex geometry simulations that performance enhancements such as improved gain and isolation between the two receive paths can be achieved. This mechanism has the potential to be exploited in direction-finding sonar

  3. Use of the Robust Design to Estimate Seasonal Abundance and Demographic Parameters of a Coastal Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) Population

    OpenAIRE

    Smith, Holly C.; Ken Pollock; Kelly Waples; Stuart Bradley; Lars Bejder

    2013-01-01

    As delphinid populations become increasingly exposed to human activities we rely on our capacity to produce accurate abundance estimates upon which to base management decisions. This study applied mark-recapture methods following the Robust Design to estimate abundance, demographic parameters, and temporary emigration rates of an Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) population off Bunbury, Western Australia. Boat-based photo-identification surveys were conducted year-round over ...

  4. Brucella sp. vertebral osteomyelitis with intercurrent fatal Staphylococcus aureus toxigenic enteritis in a bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus)

    OpenAIRE

    Goertz, Caroline E. C.; Frasca, Salvatore; Bohach, Gregory A.; Cowan, Daniel F.; Buck, John D.; French, Richard A.; De Guise, Sylvain; Maratea, Jennifer; Hinckley, Lynn; Ewalt, Darla; Patrick M Schlievert; Karst, Sheila M.; Deobald, Claudia F.; St. Aubin, David J.; Dunn, J. Lawrence

    2011-01-01

    A previously beach-stranded, juvenile, male, bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) was diagnosed with vertebral osteomyelitis of unknown etiology. Antemortem serological testing suggested past or current Brucella sp. infection; however, this could not be confirmed prior to death despite multiple isolation attempts from aspirates, blood, and biopsies. Systemic antibiotics were administered for over a year to control the suspected infection; however, the animal succumbed peracutely to a highl...

  5. Were Multiple Stressors a ‘Perfect Storm’ for Northern Gulf of Mexico Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in 2011?

    OpenAIRE

    Carmichael, Ruth H.; Graham, William M.; Aven, Allen; Worthy, Graham; Howden, Stephan

    2012-01-01

    An unusual number of near term and neonatal bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) mortalities occurred in the northern Gulf of Mexico (nGOM) in 2011, during the first calving season after two well documented environmental perturbations; sustained cold weather in 2010 and the Deepwater Horizon oil spill (DWHOS). Preceding the stranding event, large volumes of cold freshwater entered the nGOM due to unusually large snowmelt on the adjacent watershed, providing a third potential stressor. We c...

  6. Acoustic behaviour, ecology and social structure of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus, Montagu 1821) in the North Atlantic

    OpenAIRE

    Englund, Anneli

    2014-01-01

    Communication is important for social and other behavioural interactions in most marine mammal species. The bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus, Montagu, 1821) is a highly social species that use whistles as communication calls to express identity and to initiate and maintain contact between socially interactive individuals. In this thesis, the degree of variability in whistle behaviour and whistle characteristics was examined between different habitats on a range of spatial scales. The wh...

  7. Treatment of ureteral calculus obstruction with laser lithotripsy in an Atlantic bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmitt, Todd L; Sur, Roger L

    2012-03-01

    An adult female bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) presented with acute anorexia secondary to progressive azotemia (blood urea nitrogen = 213 mg/dl, creatinine [Cr] = 9.5 mg/dl) and electrolyte abnormalities (K = 7.4 mEq/L). It was later diagnosed with postrenal obstruction secondary to bilaterally obstructing ureteral calculi seen on ultrasound. Treatment of the obstruction required two endoscopic procedures, cystoscopy for ureteral stent placement and ureteroscopy to perform intracorporeal lithotripsy on the obstructing calculi. Before the first procedure, the dolphin's azotemia was stabilized with aggressive fluid therapy, peritoneal dialysis, and treatment for acidosis. Diuresis subsequent to the fluid therapy enabled passage of the right obstructing urolith. For both endoscopic procedures, the dolphin was placed in left lateral recumbency due to the peritoneal dialysis catheter in the right retroperitoneal region. For the first procedure, a 12-French (Fr) flexible cystoscope was inserted retrograde into the bladder via the urethra, whereupon a calculus was seen obstructing the left ureteral orifice. A 4.8-Fr, 26-cm double-pigtail ureteral stent was placed up the left ureter to relieve the postrenal obstruction. Inadvertent proximal migration of the left ureteral stent occurred during the procedure. However, renal parameters (serum Cr = 5.8, K = 5.4) improved significantly by the next day. For the second procedure, 28 hr later, ureteroscopy was performed to treat the calculus and replace the existing stent with a longer stent. The left ureteral calculus was pulverized into tiny fragments by using a holmium:yttrium-aluminum-garnet laser inserted through a 6.9-Fr semirigid ureteroscope. The migrated stent was visualized in the distal left ureter and replaced with a 90-cm single-pigtail ureteral stent that was sutured exterior to the urogenital slit and removed 3 days later. Renal function normalized over the next several days, and the dolphin recovered over

  8. Variation in Female Reproductive Tract Morphology of the Common Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orbach, Dara N; Marshall, Christopher D; Würsig, Bernd; Mesnick, Sarah L

    2016-04-01

    Cetaceans exhibit vaginal folds, unusual protrusions of the vaginal wall into the vaginal lumen. Inconsistent terminology and a lack of anatomical landmarks in the literature have hindered comparative studies of the form and function of vaginal folds. Our objectives are to: (1) develop a standardized measurement protocol for the reproductive tracts of female cetaceans, (2) assess variation in morphometrics within the common bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), and (3) determine if vaginal muscle is skeletal, and therefore of somatic origin in this species. We selected 15 measurements to characterize female reproductive tracts and evaluated variability using fresh or frozen-thawed specimens from southeastern USA representing a range of sexual maturity states and reproductive states (n = 18 specimens). Presence of skeletal muscle and variation in the density of muscle banding were assessed using 90 histological samples (n = 5 specimens). Analyses of the gross morphological data revealed that the dolphins generally had one large vaginal fold that bisected the vaginal lumen. Vaginal morphology was similar for sexually mature and immature specimens and across reproductive states. The histological data revealed that the vaginal musculature consisted of smooth muscle, consistent with other mammals, leading us to conclude that vaginal contractions are likely under autonomic rather than somatic control. No differences were found in the density of smooth muscle banding among vaginal regions or sexual maturity states. Our systematic protocol lays the foundation for evaluating the function (e.g., sexual selection, natural selection) and evolution of vaginal folds. PMID:26788790

  9. Modified variance ratio for objective detection of transient evoked potentials in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finneran, James J

    2008-12-01

    Evoked potential studies have often relied on one or more human observers to visually assess the averaged waveforms and decide if a response is present. Although simple and easy to implement, response detection strategies based on human observers are inherently subjective and depend on the observers' experience and biases. To avoid these shortcomings, some recent marine animal studies utilizing auditory steady-state responses have applied frequency-domain, statistically based objective detection methods; however, statistically based objective methods have not yet been applied to marine animal tests involving transient evoked responses, which are normally analyzed in the time domain. The present study applied a modified version of the variance ratio F(SP) to determine the presence or absence of evoked responses in two bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) stimulated with tone pips. The appropriate degrees of freedom for the statistical tests were empirically determined in four dolphins. The modified variance ratio was found to be a useful tool and to provide an objective statistical approach for the detection of transient evoked potentials. PMID:19206829

  10. Selection of suitable reference genes for normalization of quantitative RT-PCR in peripheral blood samples of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus)

    OpenAIRE

    I-Hua Chen; Lien-Siang Chou; Shih-Jen Chou; Jiann-Hsiung Wang; Jeffrey Stott; Myra Blanchard; I-Fan Jen; Wei-Cheng Yang

    2015-01-01

    Quantitative RT-PCR is often used as a research tool directed at gene transcription. Selection of optimal housekeeping genes (HKGs) as reference genes is critical to establishing sensitive and reproducible qRT-PCR-based assays. The current study was designed to identify the appropriate reference genes in blood leukocytes of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) for gene transcription research. Seventy-five blood samples collected from 7 bottlenose dolphins were used to analyze 15 candidate...

  11. Lack of variation in voltage-gated sodium channels of common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) exposed to neurotoxic algal blooms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cammen, Kristina M; Rosel, Patricia E; Wells, Randall S; Read, Andrew J

    2014-12-01

    In coastal marine ecosystems, neurotoxins produced by harmful algal blooms (HABs) often result in large-scale mortality events of many marine species. Historical and frequent exposure to HABs therefore may provide a strong selective pressure for adaptations that result in toxin resistance. Neurotoxin resistance has independently evolved in a variety of terrestrial and marine species via mutations in genes encoding the toxin binding sites within the voltage-gated sodium channel gene complex. Accordingly, we tested the hypothesis that genetic variation in the putative binding site of brevetoxins in common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) explains differences among individuals or populations in resistance to harmful Karenia brevis blooms in the Gulf of Mexico. We found very little variation in the sodium channel exons encoding the putative brevetoxin binding site among bottlenose dolphins from central-west Florida and the Florida Panhandle. Our study included samples from several bottlenose dolphin mortality events associated with HABs, but we found no association between genetic variation and survival. We observed a significant effect of geographic region on genetic variation for some sodium channel isoforms, but this can be primarily explained by rare private alleles and is more likely a reflection of regional genetic differentiation than the cause of different levels of HAB resistance between regions. In contrast to many other previously studied neurotoxin-resistant species, we conclude that bottlenose dolphins have not evolved resistance to HABs via mutations in genes encoding the brevetoxin binding site on the voltage-gated sodium channels. PMID:25456229

  12. Laryngeal snaring by ingested fishing net in a common bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) off the Israeli shoreline.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levy, Alon M; Brenner, Ori; Scheinin, Aviad; Morick, Dan; Ratner, Eliana; Goffman, Oz; Kerem, Dan

    2009-07-01

    We report an unusual snaring of the larynx in an adult, female common bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus). The dolphin was observed swimming and diving in Haifa Port, Israel, but was found dead the next day, 60 km south, on the coast. Postmortem examination revealed stranded-cordage, nylon filaments wrapped around the larynx, cutting through the soft tissue, and extending down into the forestomach, where a large mass of netting was found. The cachectic state of the dolphin and the subacute to chronic, hyper-plastic response of soft tissue surrounding the filaments lodged around the larynx, suggest a prolonged period of starvation, which led to the final weakness and wasting of the dolphin. PMID:19617497

  13. Echolocation parameters of Australian humpback dolphins (Sousa sahulensis) and Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) in the wild.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Freitas, Mafalda; Jensen, Frants H; Tyne, Julian; Bejder, Lars; Madsen, Peter T

    2015-06-01

    Echolocation is a key sensory modality for toothed whale orientation, navigation, and foraging. However, a more comparative understanding of the biosonar properties of toothed whales is necessary to understand behavioral and evolutionary adaptions. To address this, two free-ranging sympatric delphinid species, Australian humpback dolphins (Sousa sahulensis) and Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus), were studied. Biosonar clicks from both species were recorded within the same stretch of coastal habitat in Exmouth Gulf, Western Australia, using a vertical seven element hydrophone array. S. sahulensis used biosonar clicks with a mean source level of 199 ± 3 dB re 1 μPa peak-peak (pp), mean centroid frequency of 106 ± 11 kHz, and emitted at interclick intervals (ICIs) of 79 ± 33 ms. These parameters were similar to click parameters of sympatric T. aduncus, characterized by mean source levels of 204 ± 4 dB re 1 μPa pp, centroid frequency of 112 ± 9 kHz, and ICIs of 73 ± 29 ms. These properties are comparable to those of other similar sized delphinids and suggest that biosonar parameters are independent of sympatric delphinids and possibly driven by body size. The dynamic biosonar behavior of these delphinids may have, consequently, allowed for adaptations to local environments through high levels of control over sonar beam properties. PMID:26093395

  14. Morphology of the complex laryngeal gland in the Atlantic bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops truncatus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, T L; Turnbull, B S; Cowan, D F

    1999-01-01

    A complex lymphoepithelial gland is a constant feature in the larynx of Atlantic bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus, based on study of 56 animals. Larynges were removed from fresh, non-decomposed beach-stranded animals for gross examination and histological sampling. A large lymphoepithelial gland occurs in the rostro-ventral mucosa of the larynx, overlying the cricoid cartilage. It presents as a well-defined, elevated, and heavily trabeculated area. Histological examination reveals a pseudostratified columnar epithelium which branches into the underlying submucosa. The epithelial-lined folds and crypts thus formed are surrounded by aggregations of lymphocytes, which infiltrate this epithelium. Mucous glands are often associated with these lymphoid aggregations. The histological appearance of the laryngeal gland is remarkably similar to the palatine, or dorsal oropharyngeal tonsils, of T. truncatus. It may be analogous to the nasopharyngeal adenoid of terrestrial animals. Age-related involution of the laryngeal gland is not as obvious with increasing animal age (or length) as it is in other mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue. The distribution of this gland among cetaceans is not yet known. We have observed it in individuals of every species we have studied, including Lagenodelphis hosei, Stenella coeruleoalba, Stenella attenuata, Globicephala macrorhynchus, Steno bredanensis, Physeter catodon, Pseudorca crassidens, Mesoplodon europaeus, and Kogia breviceps. PMID:9892423

  15. Morphology of the lymphoid organs of the bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops truncatus

    Science.gov (United States)

    COWAN, DANIEL F.; SMITH, TOBY L.

    1999-01-01

    The anatomy of the lymphoid organs was studied during the course of detailed dissections of 50 beach-stranded bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus. Constant lymph nodes occur in 4 groups, based on their location and structure. These groups are somatic, including nodes of the cervical region and pelvic recess; lung-associated, included marginal, diaphragmatic and hilar nodes; visceral, including the mesenteric, pancreatic, pericolic and porta hepatis nodes; and aortic arch nodes. Lymphatic drainage of the lung is primarily to the marginal and diaphragmatic nodes. The mesenteric node mass is well-endowed with capsular and trabecular smooth muscle, and a network of muscle fascicles within the organ implies an important contractile function in the circulation of lymph. In addition to constant nodes, occasionally nodes are found in relation to the thoracic aorta, the kidney, and under the scapula. Gut-associated structures include dorsal and ventral oropharyngeal tonsils, mucosal aggregates in the straight segment of the intestine (colon) and anal tonsils; this gut-associated lymphoid tissue tends to involute with age, being greatly reduced by puberty. Formed lymphoid organs include the thymus and the spleen, the latter being relatively small in relation to body size. None of these structures is unique among cetaceans, but the anal tonsils are particularly well developed in T. truncatus. The lymphoid aggregates in the colon resemble the arrangement in the vermiform appendix, which is lacking in most cetaceans, and may have functions analogous to that organ. PMID:10445819

  16. Interrelationships between intranarial pressure and biosonar clicks in the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elsberry, Wesley R.; Cranford, Ted W.; Ridgway, Sam H.; Carder, Donald A.; Vanbonn, William G.; Blackwood, Diane J.; Carr, Jennifer A.; Evans, William E.

    2002-05-01

    Three Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) were given a target recognition biosonar task. During their performance of the task, both acoustic data in the far field and pressure within the bony nasal passages were digitally recorded (Elsberry et al., 1999). Analysis of over 15000 biosonar clicks provided new insights into odontocete biosonar sound production and is consistent with acoustic and pressure data taken from white whales (Delphinapterus leucas) during biosonar (Ridgway and Carder, 1988). Our work provides the first evidence for a minimum intranarial pressure during biosonar click production for any odontocete (11.8+/-0.5 kPascals over basal pressure). All three subjects exhibited nearly the same minimum tranarial pressure difference during biosonar click production. Clicks produced at or near this minimum intranarial pressure exhibited a wide range of acoustic power values. The acoustic power of a biosonar click was not highly correlated with intranarial pressure (R2=0.116). The radiated acoustic energy in biosonar clicks ranged from 1 to 1370 microJoules. Estimates of mechanical work during pressurization events were produced using a piston/cylinder model and intranarial volume data from prepared specimens and computed tomography scans. Mechanical work during pressurization events ranged from 2.74 to 23.0 Joules, with an average of 10.3 Joules.

  17. Frequency analysis of electroencephalogram recorded from a bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) with a novel method during transportation by truck

    OpenAIRE

    Hashio, Fuyuko; Tamura, Shinichi; Okada, Yasunori; Morimoto, Shigeru; Ohta, Mitsuaki; Uchida, Naoyuki

    2010-01-01

    In order to obtain information regarding the correlation between an electroencephalogram (EEG) and the state of a dolphin, we developed a noninvasive recording method of EEG of a bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) and an extraction method of true-EEG (EEG) from recorded-EEG (R-EEG) based on a human EEG recording method, and then carried out frequency analysis during transportation by truck. The frequency detected in the EEG of dolphin during apparent awakening was divided conveniently in...

  18. Detection of Brucella spp. in bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus by a real-time PCR using blowhole swabs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Qingzhong; Conway, Jessica; Phillips, Kristen M; Stolen, Megan; Durden, Wendy N; Fauquier, Deborah; McFee, Wayne E; Schwacke, Lori

    2016-08-01

    Blowhole swabs are a simple and non-invasive method for collecting samples from cetaceans and can be used for screening large numbers of animals in the field. This study reports a real-time PCR assay for the detection of Brucella spp. using blowhole swab samples from bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus stranded in the coastal region of Virginia, South Carolina and northern Florida, USA, between 2013 and 2015. We used real-time PCR results on lung samples from the same dolphins in order to estimate the relative sensitivity and specificity of real-time PCR of blowhole swabs. Brucella DNA was detected in lung tissue of 22% (18/81) and in blowhole swabs of 21% (17/81) of the sampled dolphins. The relative sensitivity and specificity of real-time PCR on blowhole swabs as compared to the real-time PCR on lung samples was 94% (17/18) and 100% (63/63), respectively. These results indicate that real-time PCR on blowhole swabs may be used as a non-invasive test for rapid detection of Brucella spp. in the respiratory tract of dolphins. To our knowledge, this is the first report on the use of blowhole swabs for detection of bacterial pathogens by real-time PCR in bottlenose dolphins. PMID:27503920

  19. Two Cases of Bacterial Pneumonia in Bottle-nosed Dolphins (Tursiops Gillii at the Seoul Zoo, Korea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kyung-Yeon Eo and Oh-Deog Kwon

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Two bacterial pneumonia cases of bottle-nosed dolphins (Tursiops gillii were found in Seoul Zoo. Firstly, severe fibrous pleuropneumonia was revealed in a 14-year-old male bottle-nosed dolphin on its necropsy. The clinical signs included anorexia, listing posture, and vertical submerging after the initial signs of low activity and avoiding trainers. White blood cell count increased up to 31.80 × 103/µl. Despite aggressive antibiotics therapy of intramuscular injection and nebulization it died two months later. At early time of illness Staphylococcus aureus and Proteus mirabilis were isolated. Lately Pseudomonas aeruginosa was isolated from the exhaled air culture and direct sample of lung parenchyma on necropsy. Secondly, a 6-year-old male bottle-nosed dolphin with anorexia and tendency to avoid trainers was completely recovered after prompt treatment with antibiotics and NSAIDs for six days prior to diagnosis. The diagnosis was based on history, clinical signs, blood cell count, and mucous culture from blowhole. The count of white blood cell dramatically decreased from 25.36 × 103/µl to 7.28 × 103/ µl after four days of antibiotics therapy. Staphylococcus aureus was isolated from the culture.

  20. Lobomycosis in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the Indian River Lagoon, Florida: estimation of prevalence, temporal trends, and spatial distribution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murdoch, M Elizabeth; Reif, John S; Mazzoil, Marilyn; McCulloch, Stephen D; Fair, Patricia A; Bossart, Gregory D

    2008-09-01

    Lobomycosis (lacaziosis) is a chronic fungal disease of the skin that affects only dolphins and humans. Previous studies have shown a high prevalence of lobomycosis in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the Indian River Lagoon, Florida (IRL). We studied the occurrence and distribution of lobomycosis in the IRL using photo-identification survey data collected between 1996 and 2006. Our objectives were to (1) determine the sensitivity and specificity of photo-identification for diagnosis of lobomycosis in free-ranging dolphins; (2) determine the spatial distribution of lobomycosis in the IRL; and (3) assess temporal patterns of occurrence. Photographs from 704 distinctly marked dolphins were reviewed for skin lesions compatible with lobomycosis. The presumptive diagnosis was validated by comparing the results of photographic analysis with physical examination and histologic examination of lesion biopsies in 102 dolphins captured and released during a health assessment and 3 stranded dolphins. Twelve of 16 confirmed cases were identified previously by photography, a sensitivity of 75%. Among 89 dolphins without disease, all 89 were considered negative, a specificity of 100%. The prevalence of lobomycosis estimated from photographic data was 6.8% (48/704). Spatial distribution was determined by dividing the IRL into six segments based on hydrodynamics and geographic features. The prevalence ranged from tool to monitor the course of individual and population health for this enigmatic disease. PMID:18712442

  1. The acoustic repertoire of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the southern Gulf of Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bazua-Duran, Carmen

    2005-04-01

    Bottlenose dolphins live in a variety of habitats of the world's oceans using their acoustic repertoire to communicate and inspect their environment. This work investigates the acoustic repertoire of bottlenose dolphins that inhabit a coastal lagoon of the southern Gulf of Mexico, the Laguna de Terminos and how it may relate to the dolphins' general behavioral state and herd size, and to the general characteristics of the habitat, such as visibility, depth, and sea state. Preliminary results show that bottlenose dolphins produce by far more clicks than whistles in all behavioral states (feeding, resting, social, and travel) and herd sizes, which may correlate with the decreased visibility and shallow depth of the Laguna de Terminos. Additionally, silence was found during all behavioral states, but very seldom in herds of large size. These preliminary results suggest that bottlenose dolphins are choosing when and where to produce their phonations. Therefore, more detailed studies are needed to understand how these animals are using their acoustic sense to communicate and inspect their environment. [Work supported by CONACyT-Gobierno Edo. de Campeche and PAPIIT, UNAM.

  2. Perfluoroalkyl compounds in relation to life-history and reproductive parameters in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from Sarasota Bay, Florida, USA

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Houde, M.; Balmer, B.C.; Brandsma, S.H.; Wells, R.S.; Rowles, T.K.; Solomon, K.R.; Muir, D.C.G.

    2006-01-01

    Perfluoroalkyl compounds (PFCs) were determined in plasma, milk, and urine of free-ranging bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from Sarasota Bay (FL, USA) during three winter and two summer capture-and-release programs (2002¿ 2005). Plasma and urine samples were extracted using an ion-pairing m

  3. Cultural transmission of tool use by Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.) provides access to a novel foraging niche.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krützen, Michael; Kreicker, Sina; MacLeod, Colin D; Learmonth, Jennifer; Kopps, Anna M; Walsham, Pamela; Allen, Simon J

    2014-06-01

    Culturally transmitted tool use has important ecological and evolutionary consequences and has been proposed as a significant driver of human evolution. Such evidence is still scarce in other animals. In cetaceans, tool use has been inferred using indirect evidence in one population of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.), where particular dolphins ('spongers') use marine sponges during foraging. To date, evidence of whether this foraging tactic actually provides access to novel food items is lacking. We used fatty acid (FA) signature analysis to identify dietary differences between spongers and non-spongers, analysing data from 11 spongers and 27 non-spongers from two different study sites. Both univariate and multivariate analyses revealed significant differences in FA profiles between spongers and non-spongers between and within study sites. Moreover, FA profiles differed significantly between spongers and non-spongers foraging within the same deep channel habitat, whereas the profiles of non-spongers from deep channel and shallow habitats at this site could not be distinguished. Our results indicate that sponge use by bottlenose dolphins is linked to significant differences in diet. It appears that cultural transmission of tool use in dolphins, as in humans, allows the exploitation of an otherwise unused niche. PMID:24759862

  4. Epidemiology of lobomycosis-like disease in bottlenose dolphins Tursiops spp. from South America and southern Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Bressem, Marie-Françoise; Simões-Lopes, Paulo C; Félix, Fernando; Kiszka, Jeremy J; Daura-Jorge, Fabio G; Avila, Isabel C; Secchi, Eduardo R; Flach, Leonardo; Fruet, Pedro F; du Toit, Kate; Ott, Paulo H; Elwen, Simon; Di Giacomo, Amanda B; Wagner, Jeanne; Banks, Aaron; Van Waerebeek, Koen

    2015-11-17

    We report on the epidemiology of lobomycosis-like disease (LLD), a cutaneous disorder evoking lobomycosis, in 658 common bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus from South America and 94 Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins T. aduncus from southern Africa. Photographs and stranding records of 387 inshore residents, 60 inshore non-residents and 305 specimens of undetermined origin (inshore and offshore) were examined for the presence of LLD lesions from 2004 to 2015. Seventeen residents, 3 non-residents and 1 inshore dolphin of unknown residence status were positive. LLD lesions appeared as single or multiple, light grey to whitish nodules and plaques that may ulcerate and increase in size over time. Among resident dolphins, prevalence varied significantly among 4 communities, being low in Posorja (2.35%, n = 85), Ecuador, and high in Salinas, Ecuador (16.7%, n = 18), and Laguna, Brazil (14.3%, n = 42). LLD prevalence increased in 36 T. truncatus from Laguna from 5.6% in 2007-2009 to 13.9% in 2013-2014, albeit not significantly. The disease has persisted for years in dolphins from Mayotte, Laguna, Salinas, the Sanquianga National Park and Bahía Málaga (Colombia) but vanished from the Tramandaí Estuary and the Mampituba River (Brazil). The geographical range of LLD has expanded in Brazil, South Africa and Ecuador, in areas that have been regularly surveyed for 10 to 35 yr. Two of the 21 LLD-affected dolphins were found dead with extensive lesions in southern Brazil, and 2 others disappeared, and presumably died, in Ecuador. These observations stress the need for targeted epidemiological, histological and molecular studies of LLD in dolphins, especially in the Southern Hemisphere. PMID:26575156

  5. Abundance of bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus (Cetacea: Delphinidae, inhabiting the Patos Lagoon estuary, southern Brazil: implications for conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pedro F Fruet

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available A new mark-recapture abundance estimate and a photographic census were carried out to investigate the possible decline in the abundance of the bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus (Montagu, 1821, in the Patos Lagoon estuary due to the high levels of bycatch mortality which occurred between 2002 and 2006 in oceanic coastal areas close to the estuary. Fourteen systematic boat surveys were conducted between August and early December 2005 to photo-identify the bottlenose dolphins. The estimated number of animals, with long-lasting marks, in the population obtained from Chapman's and Mth models were 51 (95% CI = 49-53 and 52 (95% CI = 51-60, respectively. Taking into account the proportion of dolphins with long-lasting marks in the population, the total estimated population size ranged between 84 (95% CI = 76-93 and 86 (95% CI = 78-95 individuals, respectively, which was very similar to the 84 individuals revealed by the population census. Our results did not differ from the abundance estimate carried out in 1998, prior to the high fishing-related mortality event, suggesting that the population is stable. Plausible argument to explain the stability of the population is that some carcasses found on the oceanic coastal beaches near Patos Lagoon estuary come from animals that do not belong to the estuary community. Future studies should investigate fine-scale habitat partition between estuarine and adjacent coastal dolphins. If the existence of different communities living in close proximity (estuarine and coastal areas near to the estuary is confirmed, a new abundance estimate is needed to access the conservation status of bottlenose dolphins in this region.

  6. Auditory Effects of Multiple Impulses from a Seismic Air Gun on Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlundt, Carolyn E; Finneran, James J; Branstetter, Brian K; Trickey, Jennifer S; Bowman, Victoria; Jenkins, Keith

    2016-01-01

    Auditory thresholds were measured in three bottlenose dolphins before and after exposure to ten impulses from a seismic air gun. Thresholds were measured using behavioral and electrophysiological methods to determine the amount of temporary threshold shift induced. The results suggest that the potential for seismic surveys using air guns to cause auditory effects on dolphins may be lower than previously predicted; however, two of the three dolphins exhibited "anticipatory" behavioral changes at the highest exposure condition that suggested they were attempting to mitigate the effects of the exposures. PMID:26611059

  7. Mercury concentrations in Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) inhabiting the Indian River Lagoon, Florida: Patterns of spatial and temporal distribution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaefer, Adam M; Titcomb, Elizabeth Murdoch; Fair, Patricia A; Stavros, Hui-Chen W; Mazzoil, Marilyn; Bossart, Gregory D; Reif, John S

    2015-08-15

    Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) inhabiting the Indian River Lagoon, FL (IRL) have tissue mercury concentrations among the highest reported worldwide. Analysis of total mercury (THg) concentrations in blood collected between 2003 and 2012 showed a significant linear decrease over time (p=0.04). Significant differences in the spatial distribution of THg in resident IRL dolphins were also observed with a general gradient in concentration from north to south. Evaluation of local biogeochemistry and accumulation of mercury in prey species is needed to better understand factors influencing the distribution of Hg in the apex predator. Analyses of temporal and spatial patterns of exposure to THg in this sentinel species may have implications for both ecosystem and public health in the region. PMID:26119626

  8. A novel mammalian social structure in Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.): complex male alliances in an open social network

    OpenAIRE

    Randić, Srđan; Richard C Connor; Sherwin, William B; Krützen, Michael

    2012-01-01

    Terrestrial mammals with differentiated social relationships live in ‘semi-closed groups’ that occasionally accept new members emigrating from other groups. Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.) in Shark Bay, Western Australia, exhibit a fission–fusion grouping pattern with strongly differentiated relationships, including nested male alliances. Previous studies failed to detect a group membership ‘boundary’, suggesting that the dolphins live in an open social network. However, two alternative hy...

  9. Ratiometric Measurements of Adiponectin by Mass Spectrometry in Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) with Iron Overload Reveal an Association with Insulin Resistance and Glucagon

    OpenAIRE

    Neely, Benjamin A.; Kevin P Carlin; Arthur, John M.; McFee, Wayne E.; Janech, Michael G.

    2013-01-01

    High molecular weight (HMW) adiponectin levels are reduced in humans with type 2 diabetes and insulin resistance. Similar to humans with insulin resistance, managed bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) diagnosed with hemochromatosis (iron overload) have higher levels of 2 h post-prandial plasma insulin than healthy controls. A parallel reaction monitoring assay for dolphin serum adiponectin was developed based on tryptic peptides identified by mass spectrometry. Using identified post-tran...

  10. Helicobacter spp. from captive bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops spp.) and polar bears (Ursus maritimus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oxley, Andrew P A; Argo, Jeffrey A; McKay, David B

    2005-11-01

    The gastric fluid of six bottlenose dolphins and the faeces of four polar bears from the same oceanarium were examined for the presence of Helicobacter. As detected by PCR, all dolphins and 8/12 samples collected from polar bears were positive for Helicobacter. Novel sequence types were identified in samples collected from these animals of which several were unique to either the dolphins or the polar bears. At least one sequence type was, however, detected in both animal taxa. In addition, a sequence type from a dolphin shared a 98.2-100% identity to sequences from other Helicobacter species from harp seals, sea otters and sea lions. This study reports on the occurrence of novel Helicobacter sequence types in polar bears and dolphins and demonstrates the broad-host range of some species within these animals. PMID:16266854

  11. [Distribution and environmental conditions related to the behavior in the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) and the spotted dolphin (Stenella attenuata) (Cetacea: Delphinidae) in Golfo Dulce, Costa Rica].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cubero-Pardo, Priscilla

    2007-06-01

    Habitat characteristics influencing behavior in animal species vary locally. The influence that a particular environmental characteristic can have on a species depends not only on other variables, but on morphological, physiological and social conditions of that species. In this study, developed from June 1996 to July 1997, I studied whether specific behaviors are related to particular distribution areas and environmental factors in the bottlenose (Tursiops truncatus) and the spotted dolphin (Stenella attenuata). The study area was covered along oblicuous linear transects, and the behavior of single groups was observed from 15 min to 5 h. Environmental factors such as depth, temperature, salinity and distance from shore, among others, were considered. For the bottlenose dolphin, foraging/feeding activities showed exclusive coincidence with river mouths, coral reef and mangrove areas, while social and milling activities where seen close to feeding areas. Traveling occurred along different points parallel to the coast, with a low percentage of cases across the gulf (16.56 %), suggesting that the bottlenose rarely crosses from one side to the other. In the spotted dolphin, several behaviors were observed simultaneously in the schools and it was not possible to associate areas with particular behaviors. The lack of significant relationships among activities and particular environmental variables (ANOVA tests) is attributed to three aspects: (a) transitions among activities generally occurred into a low variable area, (b) dolphins often traveled along large areas without changing activities and (c) environmental conditions in Golfo Dulce are homogeneous. In the two species the highest average in the number of individuals per group corresponded to the category of active socializing, followed by traveling, passive socializing and feeding. In the case of the bottlenose dolphin, the smallest group size was associated with feeding activities (ANOVA, F= 2.624, p=0.037, n=156

  12. Can bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) cooperate when solving a novel task?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuczaj, Stan A; Winship, Kelley A; Eskelinen, Holli C

    2015-03-01

    Cooperative behavior has been observed in cetacean species in a variety of situations, including foraging, mate acquisition, play, and epimeletic behavior. However, it has proven difficult to demonstrate cooperative behavior among dolphins in more controlled settings. Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in this study were exposed to a task that could most easily be solved if dolphins cooperated. Six dolphins were provided opportunities to solve the task and had to learn to do so without human intervention or training. Two adult males consistently and spontaneously jointly interacted in order to most efficiently open a container that contained fish by pulling on ropes at the ends of the container. Their interaction was viewed as cooperative because each dolphin pulled on their respective ropes in the opposite direction, which resulted in one end of the container opening. The dolphins did not show aggression toward one another while solving the task, and both dolphins consumed the food after the container was opened. They also engaged in synchronous non-aggressive behaviors with the container after the food had been consumed. It is possible that some of the remaining four dolphins would have cooperated, but the two successful dolphins were dominant males and their interest in the apparatus appeared to preclude other animals from participating. PMID:25409921

  13. Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in blubber of common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) along the northern Gulf of Mexico coast, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balmer, Brian C; Ylitalo, Gina M; McGeorge, Lauren E; Baugh, Keri A; Boyd, Daryle; Mullin, Keith D; Rosel, Patricia E; Sinclair, Carrie; Wells, Randall S; Zolman, Eric S; Schwacke, Lori H

    2015-09-15

    A number of studies were initiated in response to the Deepwater Horizon (DWH) oil spill to understand potential injuries to bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) that inhabit the northern Gulf of Mexico (NGoM) estuarine waters. As part of these studies, remote biopsy skin and blubber samples were collected from dolphins at six field sites that received varying degrees of oiling: Barataria Bay (BB), Chandeleur Sound West (CSW), Chandeleur Sound East (CSE), Mississippi Sound South (MSS), Mississippi Sound North (MSN), and St. Joseph Bay (SJ). Blubber samples from 108 male dolphins were analyzed for persistent organic pollutant (POP) concentrations, as high levels of POPs have been previously reported in other southeastern U.S. dolphins and the potential contribution of these compounds to adverse health effects in NGoM dolphins must be considered. Dolphin blubber levels of summed POPs (ΣPOPs) did not differ significantly across sites (F-test, P=0.9119) [μg/g lipid; geometric mean and 95% CI]; CSW [65.9 (51.4-84.6)], SJ [74.1 (53.0-104)], MSN [74.3 (58.7-93.9)], BB [75.3 (56.4-101)], CSE [80.5 (57.8-112)], and MSS [82.5 (65.9-103)]. Overall, POP concentrations were in the lower half of the range compared to previously reported concentrations from other southeastern U.S. sites. Increased dolphin mortalities have been ongoing in the NGoM and have been suggested to be linked with the DWH oil spill. In addition, lung disease, impaired adrenal function, and serum biochemical abnormalities have been reported in dolphins from BB, an area that was heavily oiled. The results of this study suggest that POPs are likely not a primary contributor to the poor health conditions and increased mortality observed in some populations of NGoM dolphins following the DWH oil spill. PMID:25965044

  14. Influence of season on the hematological and serum biochemical values of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) housed in a controlled environment in northern Italy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macchi, Elisabetta; Pezzoli, Lorenzo; Ponzio, Patrizia

    2011-09-01

    Season appears to influence the physiology of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). From 2000 to 2005, blood parameters of three captive bottlenose dolphins housed in northern Italy were examined to determine if seasonal variation was present. Seasonal variation was observed in the male dolphins, with both males exhibiting aminotransferase levels that were higher in autumn and lower in winter. Mean serum creatinine levels were higher during summer and lower during autumn in the adult male, and mean lactate dehydrogenase higher during summer and lower during spring in the juvenile male. Both males exhibited red blood cell counts and hemoglobin levels that were higher during autumn and lower during summer. This study contributes to the knowledge of baseline hematologic and biochemical values based on seasonality in bottlenose dolphins. PMID:22950322

  15. Were multiple stressors a 'perfect storm' for northern Gulf of Mexico bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus in 2011?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruth H Carmichael

    Full Text Available An unusual number of near term and neonatal bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus mortalities occurred in the northern Gulf of Mexico (nGOM in 2011, during the first calving season after two well documented environmental perturbations; sustained cold weather in 2010 and the Deepwater Horizon oil spill (DWHOS. Preceding the stranding event, large volumes of cold freshwater entered the nGOM due to unusually large snowmelt on the adjacent watershed, providing a third potential stressor. We consider the possibility that this extreme cold and freshwater event contributed to the pattern of perinatal dolphin strandings along the nGOM coast. During the 4-month period starting January 2011, 186 bottlenose dolphins, including 46% perinatal calves (nearly double the percentage for the same time period from 2003-2010 washed ashore from Louisiana to western Florida. Comparison of the frequency distribution of strandings to flow rates and water temperature at a monitoring buoy outside Mobile Bay, Alabama (the 4(th largest freshwater drainage in the U.S. and along the nGOM coast showed that dolphin strandings peaked in Julian weeks 5, 8, and 12 (February and March, following water temperature minima by 2-3 weeks. If dolphin condition was already poor due to depleted food resources, bacterial infection, or other factors, it is plausible that the spring freshet contributed to the timing and location of the unique stranding event in early 2011. These data provide strong observational evidence to assess links between the timing of the DWHOS, other local environmental stressors, and mortality of a top local predator. Targeted analyses of tissues from stranded dolphins will be essential to define a cause of death, and our findings highlight the importance of considering environmental data along with biological samples to interpret stranding patterns during and after an unusual mortality event.

  16. Were multiple stressors a 'perfect storm' for northern Gulf of Mexico bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in 2011?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carmichael, Ruth H; Graham, William M; Aven, Allen; Worthy, Graham; Howden, Stephan

    2012-01-01

    An unusual number of near term and neonatal bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) mortalities occurred in the northern Gulf of Mexico (nGOM) in 2011, during the first calving season after two well documented environmental perturbations; sustained cold weather in 2010 and the Deepwater Horizon oil spill (DWHOS). Preceding the stranding event, large volumes of cold freshwater entered the nGOM due to unusually large snowmelt on the adjacent watershed, providing a third potential stressor. We consider the possibility that this extreme cold and freshwater event contributed to the pattern of perinatal dolphin strandings along the nGOM coast. During the 4-month period starting January 2011, 186 bottlenose dolphins, including 46% perinatal calves (nearly double the percentage for the same time period from 2003-2010) washed ashore from Louisiana to western Florida. Comparison of the frequency distribution of strandings to flow rates and water temperature at a monitoring buoy outside Mobile Bay, Alabama (the 4(th) largest freshwater drainage in the U.S.) and along the nGOM coast showed that dolphin strandings peaked in Julian weeks 5, 8, and 12 (February and March), following water temperature minima by 2-3 weeks. If dolphin condition was already poor due to depleted food resources, bacterial infection, or other factors, it is plausible that the spring freshet contributed to the timing and location of the unique stranding event in early 2011. These data provide strong observational evidence to assess links between the timing of the DWHOS, other local environmental stressors, and mortality of a top local predator. Targeted analyses of tissues from stranded dolphins will be essential to define a cause of death, and our findings highlight the importance of considering environmental data along with biological samples to interpret stranding patterns during and after an unusual mortality event. PMID:22815950

  17. Machine learning approaches to investigate the impact of PCBs on the transcriptome of the common bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mancia, Annalaura; Ryan, James C; Van Dolah, Frances M; Kucklick, John R; Rowles, Teresa K; Wells, Randall S; Rosel, Patricia E; Hohn, Aleta A; Schwacke, Lori H

    2014-09-01

    As top-level predators, common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) are particularly sensitive to chemical and biological contaminants that accumulate and biomagnify in the marine food chain. This work investigates the potential use of microarray technology and gene expression profile analysis to screen common bottlenose dolphins for exposure to environmental contaminants through the immunological and/or endocrine perturbations associated with these agents. A dolphin microarray representing 24,418 unigene sequences was used to analyze blood samples collected from 47 dolphins during capture-release health assessments from five different US coastal locations (Beaufort, NC, Sarasota Bay, FL, Saint Joseph Bay, FL, Sapelo Island, GA and Brunswick, GA). Organohalogen contaminants including pesticides, polychlorinated biphenyl congeners (PCBs) and polybrominated diphenyl ether congeners were determined in blubber biopsy samples from the same animals. A subset of samples (n = 10, males; n = 8, females) with the highest and the lowest measured values of PCBs in their blubber was used as strata to determine the differential gene expression of the exposure extremes through machine learning classification algorithms. A set of genes associated primarily with nuclear and DNA stability, cell division and apoptosis regulation, intra- and extra-cellular traffic, and immune response activation was selected by the algorithm for identifying the two exposure extremes. In order to test the hypothesis that these gene expression patterns reflect PCB exposure, we next investigated the blood transcriptomes of the remaining dolphin samples using machine-learning approaches, including K-nn and Support Vector Machines classifiers. Using the derived gene sets, the algorithms worked very well (100% success rate) at classifying dolphins according to the contaminant load accumulated in their blubber. These results suggest that gene expression profile analysis may provide a valuable means

  18. A PHOTO-IDENTIFICATION CATALOGUE OF BOTTLENOSE DOLPHIN (TURSIOPS TRUNCATUS) IN THE CANARY ISLANDS, SPAIN: A BASELINE INFORMATION FOR ITS CONSERVATION

    OpenAIRE

    Verme, Valeria; Iannacone, José

    2011-01-01

    A catalog of photo-identification of bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) was made on the island Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain, between 2005 and 2006. A total of 391 sightings was made. Sightings took place on 95 days in 2005 and on 66 days in 2006, with a total of 70.1 h of interaction with dolphins. 129 individual adult dolphins were identified between 2005 and 2006. The frequency of re-sightings was not very high, with the most common being a dolphin resighted between 2...

  19. Cognitive enrichment for bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus): evaluation of a novel underwater maze device.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Fay E; Davies, Samuel L; Madigan, Andrew W; Warner, Abby J; Kuczaj, Stan A

    2013-01-01

    Cognitive enrichment is gaining popularity as a tool to enhance captive animal well-being, but research on captive cetaceans is lacking. Dolphin cognition has been studied intensively since the 1950s, and several hundred bottlenose dolphins are housed in major zoos and aquaria worldwide, but most dolphin enrichment consists of simple floating objects. The aim of this study was to investigate whether a novel, underwater maze device (UMD) was cognitively enriching for one group of male and one group of female dolphins at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom, CA. The dolphin's task was to navigate a rubber ball through a maze of pipes, towards an exit pipe. We also tested a modification where an edible gelatine ball fell into the pool once the UMD was solved. The UMD was provided to each group between 8 and 11 times over a 4-week period. Male dolphins used the UMD without prior training, whereas females did not use the UMD at all. Two male dolphins solved the UMD 17 times, using a variety of problem-solving strategies. The UMD had no significant effect on circular (repetitive) swimming patterns, but males spent significantly more time underwater when the UMD was present. Males used the UMD significantly more when it contained the rubber ball, but the gelatine ball stimulated social play. The UMD is a safe and practical device for captive dolphins. It now requires further testing on other dolphins, particularly females, to in order to examine whether the sex differences we observed are a general phenomenon. PMID:24018985

  20. Measuring fecal progestogens as a tool to monitor reproductive activity in captive female bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biancani, B; Da Dalt, L; Lacave, G; Romagnoli, S; Gabai, G

    2009-12-01

    The objective was to develop and test radioimmunoassays (RIAs) to measure fecal progestogens (P) and estrogens (E) to monitor ovarian activity in the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus). Fecal samples were collected at least once a week for 20 mo from three peripubertal female bottlenose dolphins. Blood samples were collected at least once a month to compare serum and fecal steroid concentrations. Moreover, random fecal samples from three pregnant females, one lactating female, and one sexually mature female receiving oral altrenogest treatment were also collected. Fecal samples were collected behaviorally with a probe to avoid water contamination and extracted with petroleum ether (for P analysis) or diethyl ether (for E analysis). When possible, vaginal cytology and ovarian ultrasonography were used to monitor the estrous cycle. The RIA for fecal P had good reproducibility and negligible matrix effect. In addition, when fecal samples (N=25) were extracted with ethanol, the results with the two methods of extraction were highly correlated (r=0.923). Therefore, extraction of fecal samples with petroleum ether represented a valid alternative to other, more time-consuming methods of determining fecal P concentrations. In the absence of luteal activity, fecal P concentrations were consistently dolphin, as in other mammalian species. Additional HPLC-MS studies should be performed to identify predominant P metabolites to be used as fecal indicators of luteal activity in this species. PMID:19783290

  1. Visual lateralization of pattern discrimination in the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Fersen, L; Schall, U; Güntürkün, O

    2000-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate whether bottlenose dolphins have cerebral asymmetries of visual processing. The monocular performance of the adult dolphin Goliath was tested using a large number of simultaneous multiple pattern discrimination tasks. The experiments revealed a clear right eye advantage in the acquisition and the retention of pattern discriminations as well as asymmetries in the interhemispheric transfer of visual information. As a result of a complete decussation at the optic nerve, this right eye superiority is probably related to a left hemisphere dominance in visual processing. PMID:10628742

  2. Adipose-Derived Stem Cell Collection and Characterization in Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus)

    OpenAIRE

    Johnson, Shawn P.; Catania, Jeffrey M.; Harman, Robert J.; Jensen, Eric D.

    2012-01-01

    To assess the regenerative properties and potential therapeutic value of adipose-derived stem cells (ASCs) in the bottlenose dolphin, there is a need to determine whether an adequate adipose depot exists, in addition to the development of a standardized technique for minimally invasive adipose collection. In this study, an ultrasound-guided liposuction technique for adipose collection was assessed for its safety and efficacy. The ultrasound was utilized to identify and measure the postnuchal ...

  3. Food-related bray calls in wild bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    OpenAIRE

    Janik, V. M.

    2000-01-01

    Because cetaceans are difficult to study in the wild, little is known about how they use their sounds in their natural environment. Only the recent development of passive acoustic localization systems has enabled observations of the communication behaviour of individuals for correlation with their surface behaviour. Using such a system, I show that bottlenose dolphins in the Moray Firth, Scotland, produce low-frequency bray calls which are clearly correlated with feeding on salmonids. The pro...

  4. The seasonal fluctuation of plasma amino acids in aquarium-maintained bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miyaji, Kazuki; Ohta, Mitsuaki; Nagao, Kenji; Ohtani, Nobuyo; Bannai, Makoto

    2012-07-01

    Although there has been extensive research on plasma amino acid profiles of mammals, there is currently a lack of information on seasonal differences in the concentrations of plasma amino acids specifically in cetaceans. The present study examined the response of the plasma amino acids to seasonal changes in the culture environment after controlling for the effect of sex and age. Significant seasonal changes in plasma carnosine (P=0.012), cystine (P=0.0014), isoleucine (P=0.0042), methionine (P=0.002), ornithine (P=0.0096), and taurine (P=0.032) were observed. These amino acids were mainly related to capacity for exercise, ammonia detoxification, thermoregulation, and osmoregulation. We proposed that optimizing plasma amino acids levels by supplementation of amino acids should be of considerable benefit for aquarium-maintained bottlenose dolphins. This study constitutes a first step towards improving our understanding of the metabolism of aquarium-maintained bottlenose dolphins. We also revealed that the ratio of tryptophan to large neutral amino acids significantly declined (P=0.0076), suggesting reduction in serotonin synthesis in winter and autumn. Although further studies are needed, this finding implied that bottlenose dolphins could produce behavioral changes seasonally by the alteration of serotonin activity. To better understand the metabolic machinery for amino acids that facilitate the adaptation of marine mammals to their environments, it is essential to continue monitoring of and further investigations into relationships between plasma amino acids and specific environmental factors. PMID:22333514

  5. A method to enable a bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) to echolocate while out of water.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finneran, James J; Houser, Dorian S; Moore, Patrick W; Branstetter, Brian K; Trickey, Jennifer S; Ridgway, Sam H

    2010-09-01

    The study of site-specific brain activity associated with dolphin echolocation has been hampered by the difficulties inherent in administering radiolabels and performing medical imaging while a dolphin echolocates in an aquatic environment. To overcome these limitations, a system has been developed to allow a bottlenose dolphin to echolocate while out of the water. The system relies on a "phantom echo generator" (PEG) consisting of a Texas Instruments C6713 digital signal processor with an analog input/output daughtercard. Echolocation clicks produced by the dolphin are detected with a hydrophone embedded in a suction cup on the melon, then digitized within the PEG. Clicks exceeding a user-defined threshold are convolved with a target impulse response, delayed, and scaled before being converted to analog and transmitted through a sound projector embedded in a suction cup attached to the dolphin's lower jaw. Dolphin in-air echolocation behavior, inter-click intervals, and overall performance were analogous to those observed during comparable underwater testing with physical targets, demonstrating that the dolphin was indeed performing an echolocation task while out of water. PMID:20815483

  6. Composition of the milks of the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops trucatus) and the Florida manatee (Trichechus manatus latirostris).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pervaiz, S; Brew, K

    1986-01-01

    Milk samples from four individual bottlenose (Tursiops truncatus) and two Florida manatees (Trichechus manatus latirostris) of known lactation stages were analyzed for protein, carbohydrate and lipid composition, as well as for activity levels of alpha-lactalbumin, the regulatory protein of lactose synthase. The milk from both species had relatively high protein and lipid levels, as reported previously for other marine mammals. The major proportion of the lipid was in the form of triglycerides. Dolphin milk contained an average of 2.2% neutral sugars, which was essentially all in the form of lactose, as determined by several criteria. Manatee milk samples contained 0.6% of neutral sugars, and a larger proportion (about 2%) of amino sugars. Lactose was not detected by enzymatic assay or paper chromatography, but HPLC analysis indicated the presence of low levels of lactose together with two components that were tentatively identified as oligosaccharides. alpha-Lactalbumin activity, determined by assay with bovine galactosyltransferase, was found in both dolphin and manatee milk. The level in dolphin milk was comparable with that found in bovine and other milk, but the level in the manatee was less than 10% of that in the dolphin. PMID:2873935

  7. Lateralized visual behavior in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) performing audio-visual tasks: the right visual field advantage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delfour, F; Marten, K

    2006-01-10

    Analyzing cerebral asymmetries in various species helps in understanding brain organization. The left and right sides of the brain (lateralization) are involved in different cognitive and sensory functions. This study focuses on dolphin visual lateralization as expressed by spontaneous eye preference when performing a complex cognitive task; we examine lateralization when processing different visual stimuli displayed on an underwater touch-screen (two-dimensional figures, three-dimensional figures and dolphin/human video sequences). Three female bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) were submitted to a 2-, 3- or 4-, choice visual/auditory discrimination problem, without any food reward: the subjects had to correctly match visual and acoustic stimuli together. In order to visualize and to touch the underwater target, the dolphins had to come close to the touch-screen and to position themselves using monocular vision (left or right eye) and/or binocular naso-ventral vision. The results showed an ability to associate simple visual forms and auditory information using an underwater touch-screen. Moreover, the subjects showed a spontaneous tendency to use monocular vision. Contrary to previous findings, our results did not clearly demonstrate right eye preference in spontaneous choice. However, the individuals' scores of correct answers were correlated with right eye vision, demonstrating the advantage of this visual field in visual information processing and suggesting a left hemispheric dominance. We also demonstrated that the nature of the presented visual stimulus does not seem to have any influence on the animals' monocular vision choice. PMID:16246503

  8. Histomorphology of the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) pancreas and association of increasing islet β-cell size with chronic hypercholesterolemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colegrove, Kathleen M; Venn-Watson, Stephanie

    2015-04-01

    Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) can develop metabolic states mimicking prediabetes, including hyperinsulinemia, hyperlipidemia, elevated glucose, and fatty liver disease. Little is known, however, about dolphin pancreatic histomorphology. Distribution and area of islets, α, β, and δ cells were evaluated in pancreatic tissue from 22 dolphins (mean age 25.7years, range 0-51). Associations of these measurements were evaluated by sex, age, percent high glucose and lipids during the last year of life, and presence or absence of fatty liver disease and islet cell vacuolation. The most common pancreatic lesions identified were exocrine pancreas fibrosis (63.6%) and mild islet cell vacuolation (47.4%); there was no evidence of insulitis or amyloid deposition, changes commonly associated with type 2 diabetes. Dolphin islet architecture appears to be most similar to the pig, where α and β cells are localized to the central or periphery of the islet, respectively, or are well dispersed throughout the islet. Unlike pigs, large islets (greater than 10,000μm(2)) were common in dolphins, similar to that found in humans. A positive linear association was identified between dolphin age and islet area average, supporting a compensatory response similar to other species. The strongest finding in this study was a positive linear association between islet size, specifically β-cells, and percent blood samples with high cholesterol (greater than 280mg/dl, R(2)=0.57). This study is the most comprehensive assessment of the dolphin pancreas to date and may help direct future studies, including associations between chronic hypercholesterolemia and β-cell size. PMID:25745813

  9. Evidence of melatonin secretion in cetaceans: plasma concentration and extrapineal HIOMT-like presence in the bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panin, Mattìa; Gabai, Gianfranco; Ballarin, Cristina; Peruffo, Antonella; Cozzi, Bruno

    2012-06-01

    The pineal gland is generally believed to be absent in cetaceans, although few and subsequently unconfirmed reports described the organ in some species. The recent description of a complete and photographed pineal body in a bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) prompted us to examine a series of 29 brains of the same species, but no gland was found. We then decided to investigate if the main product of the gland, melatonin, was nevertheless produced and present in the plasma of this species. We collected plasma and serum samples from a series of captive bottlenose dolphins for a period of 7 months spanning from winter to summer and we determined the indoleamine concentration by radio-immunoassay (RIA). The results demonstrated for the first time a quantitative assessment of melatonin production in the blood of a cetacean. Melatonin levels were comparable to those of terrestrial mammals (5.15-27.74 pg/ml daylight concentration), with indications of both seasonal and daily variation although the presence of a circadian rhythm remains uncertain. Immunohistochemical analyses using as a marker hydroxyindole-O-methyl-transferase (HIOMT, the key enzyme involved in the biosynthesis of the hormone), suggested extrapineal melatonin production by the retina, the Harderian gland and the gut. The enzyme was unequivocally localized in all the three tissues, and, specifically, ganglion cells in the retina showed a very strong HIOMT-immunoreactivity. Our results suggest that further research might reveal unexplored aspects of melatonin production in cetaceans and deserves special attention and further efforts. PMID:22554922

  10. Anisakis spp. induced granulomatous dermatitis in a harbour porpoise Phocoena phocoena and a bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Beurden, Steven J; IJsseldijk, Lonneke L; Cremers, Herman J W M; Gröne, Andrea; Verheije, M Hélène; Begeman, Lineke

    2015-01-15

    Cetaceans are well known definitive hosts of parasitic nematodes of the genus Anisakis (Nematoda: Anisakidae). Anisakid nematodes are also a health hazard for humans, potentially causing gastrointestinal infections or allergic reactions following the consumption of infected fish. In marine mammals, the nematodes develop from third-stage larvae to adults in the stomachs. In the first (or fore-) stomach, these parasites are typically associated with mucosal ulceration; parasites have not been identified in other organs. Two small cetaceans, a bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus and a harbour porpoise Phocoena phocoena, presented marked gastric A. simplex infection, as well as chronic granulomatous and ulcerative dermatitis with intralesional nematodes, bordered by epithelial hyperplasia. Nematodes in the skin of the bottlenose dolphin were morphologically similar to Anisakis spp. Morphology of the parasitic remnants in the skin lesion of the harbour porpoise was indistinct, but molecular identification confirmed the presence of A. simplex. This is the first report of Anisakis spp. infection in the skin of marine mammals. PMID:25590777

  11. Which person is my trainer? Spontaneous visual discrimination of human individuals by bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomonaga, Masaki; Uwano, Yuka; Ogura, Sato; Chin, Hyangsun; Dozaki, Masahiro; Saito, Toyoshi

    2015-01-01

    Bottlenose dolphins are known to use signature whistles to identify conspecifics auditorily. However, the way in which they recognize individuals visually is less well known. We investigated their visual recognition of familiar human individuals under the spontaneous discrimination task. In each trial, the main trainer appeared from behind a panel. In test trials, two persons (one was the main trainer) appeared from the left and right sides of the panel and moved along the poolside in opposite directions. Three of the four dolphins spontaneously followed their main trainers significantly above the level of chance. Subsequent tests, however, revealed that when the two persons wore identical clothing, the following response deteriorated. This suggests that dolphins can spontaneously discriminate human individuals using visual cues, but they do not utilize facial cues, but body area for this discrimination. PMID:26191479

  12. Seasonal Variation in Abundance and Time-Budget of Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in Bahía San Antonio, Patagonia, Argentina

    OpenAIRE

    Vermeulen, Els; Cammareri, Alejandro; Holsbeek, Ludo; Das, Krishna

    2012-01-01

    The abundance and time-budget of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) was assessed in Bahía San Antonio, Patagonia (Argentina) in the years 2009 and 2010. A total of 366.4 boat-based survey hours resulted in 64 contact hours with a total of 88 dolphin groups. Mark-recapture abundance estimations, based on 63 identified dolphins, resulted in a corrected maximum estimate of 97 and 83 individuals during winter, and a minimum of 34 and 38 individuals during autumn of 2009 and 2010 respectivel...

  13. Eosinophilia and biotoxin exposure in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from a coastal area impacted by repeated mortality events

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schwacke, Lori H., E-mail: Lori.Schwacke@noaa.gov [National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Ocean Service, Center for Human Health Risks, 331 Fort Johnson Road, Charleston, SC 29412 (United States); Twiner, Michael J. [National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Ocean Service, Center for Coastal Environmental Health and Biomolecular Research, 219 Fort Johnson Road, Charleston, SC 29412 (United States); De Guise, Sylvain [University of Connecticut, Department of Pathobiology and Veterinary Science, 61 North Eagleville Road, U-89, Storrs, CT 06269 (United States); Balmer, Brian C.; Wells, Randall S. [Chicago Zoological Society, c/o Mote Marine Laboratory, 1600 Ken Thompson Parkway, Sarasota, FL 34236 (United States); Townsend, Forrest I. [Bayside Hospital for Animals, 251 N.E. Racetrack Road, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32547 (United States); Rotstein, David C. [National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Marine Fisheries Service, Office of Protected Resources, Marine Mammal Health and Stranding Response Program, 1315 East West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910 (United States); Varela, Rene A. [Ocean Embassy Inc, 6433 Pinecastle Blvd, Ste 2, Orlando, FL 32809 (United States); Hansen, Larry J. [National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Marine Fisheries Service Southeast Fisheries Science Center,101 Pivers Island Road, Beaufort, NC 28516 (United States); Zolman, Eric S. [National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Ocean Service, Center for Coastal Environmental Health and Biomolecular Research, 219 Fort Johnson Road, Charleston, SC 29412 (United States); Spradlin, Trevor R. [National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Marine Fisheries Service, Office of Protected Resources, Marine Mammal Health and Stranding Response Program, 1315 East West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910 (United States); and others

    2010-08-15

    Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) inhabiting coastal waters in the northern Gulf of Mexico have been impacted by recurrent unusual mortality events over the past few decades. Several of these mortality events along the Florida panhandle have been tentatively attributed to poisoning from brevetoxin produced by the dinoflagellate Karenia brevis. While dolphins in other regions of the Florida coast are often exposed to K. brevis blooms, large-scale dolphin mortality events are relatively rare and the frequency and magnitude of die-offs along the Panhandle raise concern for the apparent vulnerability of dolphins in this region. We report results from dolphin health assessments conducted near St. Joseph Bay, Florida, an area impacted by 3 unusual die-offs within a 7-year time span. An eosinophilia syndrome, manifested as an elevated blood eosinophil count without obvious cause, was observed in 23% of sampled dolphins. Elevated eosinophil counts were associated with decreased T-lymphocyte proliferation and increased neutrophil phagocytosis. In addition, indication of chronic low-level exposure to another algal toxin, domoic acid produced by the diatom Pseudo-nitzschia spp., was determined. Previous studies of other marine mammal populations exposed recurrently to Pseudo-nitzschia blooms have suggested a possible link between the eosinophilia and domoic acid exposure. While the chronic eosinophilia syndrome could over the long-term produce organ damage and alter immunological status and thereby increase vulnerability to other challenges, the significance of the high prevalence of the syndrome to the observed mortality events in the St. Joseph Bay area is unclear. Nonetheless, the unusual immunological findings and concurrent evidence of domoic acid exposure in this sentinel marine species suggest a need for further investigation to elucidate potential links between chronic, low-level exposure to algal toxins and immune health.

  14. Eosinophilia and biotoxin exposure in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from a coastal area impacted by repeated mortality events

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) inhabiting coastal waters in the northern Gulf of Mexico have been impacted by recurrent unusual mortality events over the past few decades. Several of these mortality events along the Florida panhandle have been tentatively attributed to poisoning from brevetoxin produced by the dinoflagellate Karenia brevis. While dolphins in other regions of the Florida coast are often exposed to K. brevis blooms, large-scale dolphin mortality events are relatively rare and the frequency and magnitude of die-offs along the Panhandle raise concern for the apparent vulnerability of dolphins in this region. We report results from dolphin health assessments conducted near St. Joseph Bay, Florida, an area impacted by 3 unusual die-offs within a 7-year time span. An eosinophilia syndrome, manifested as an elevated blood eosinophil count without obvious cause, was observed in 23% of sampled dolphins. Elevated eosinophil counts were associated with decreased T-lymphocyte proliferation and increased neutrophil phagocytosis. In addition, indication of chronic low-level exposure to another algal toxin, domoic acid produced by the diatom Pseudo-nitzschia spp., was determined. Previous studies of other marine mammal populations exposed recurrently to Pseudo-nitzschia blooms have suggested a possible link between the eosinophilia and domoic acid exposure. While the chronic eosinophilia syndrome could over the long-term produce organ damage and alter immunological status and thereby increase vulnerability to other challenges, the significance of the high prevalence of the syndrome to the observed mortality events in the St. Joseph Bay area is unclear. Nonetheless, the unusual immunological findings and concurrent evidence of domoic acid exposure in this sentinel marine species suggest a need for further investigation to elucidate potential links between chronic, low-level exposure to algal toxins and immune health.

  15. Food-related bray calls in wild bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janik, V M

    2000-05-01

    Because cetaceans are difficult to study in the wild, little is known about how they use their sounds in their natural environment. Only the recent development of passive acoustic localization systems has enabled observations of the communication behaviour of individuals for correlation with their surface behaviour. Using such a system, I show that bottlenose dolphins in the Moray Firth, Scotland, produce low-frequency bray calls which are clearly correlated with feeding on salmonids. The production of these calls is followed by fast approaches by conspecifics in the area. In animals which use sound as a foraging tool, it is difficult to distinguish between food calls which have evolved because of their role in attracting conspecifics, and food manipulation or searching calls which may attract conspecifics as a by-product. However, the low-frequency structure of the bottlenose dolphin bray suggests that it evolved because of a role in manipulating prey rather than in attracting conspecifics. This conclusion suggests that dolphins exploit the perceptual systems of their prey to facilitate capture. PMID:10853736

  16. Maternal signature whistle use aids mother-calf reunions in a bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops truncatus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Stephanie L; Guarino, Emily; Keaton, Loriel; Erb, Linda; Jaakkola, Kelly

    2016-05-01

    Individual vocal signatures play an important role in parent-offspring recognition in many animals. One species that uses signature calls to accurately facilitate individual recognition is the bottlenose dolphin. Female dolphins and their calves will use their highly individualised signature whistles to identify and maintain contact with one another. Previous studies have shown high signature whistle rates of both mothers and calves during forced separations. In more natural settings, it appears that the calf vocalises more frequently to initiate reunions with its mother. However, little is known about the mechanisms a female dolphin may employ when there is strong motivation for her to reunite with her calf. In this study, we conducted a series of experimental trials in which we asked a female dolphin to retrieve either her wandering calf or a series of inanimate objects (control). Our results show that she used her vocal signature to actively recruit her calf, and produced no such signal when asked to retrieve the objects. This is the first study to clearly manipulate a dolphin's motivation to retrieve her calf with experimental controls. The results highlight that signature whistles are not only used in broadcasting individual identity, but that maternal signature whistle use is important in facilitating mother-calf reunions. PMID:26992371

  17. Bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) strandings in South Carolina, 1992-1996

    OpenAIRE

    McFee, Wayne E.; Hopkins-Murphy, Sally R.

    2002-01-01

    From 1992 to 1996, 153 bottlenose dolphin stranded in South Carolina, accounting for 73% of all marine mammal strandings during this period. The objectives of our study were to evaluate data from these strandings to deter-mine 1) annual trends in strandings, 2) seasonal and spatial distribution trends, 3) life history parameters such as sex ratio and age classes, 3) seasonal trends in reproduction, and 4) the extent to which humans have played a role in causing these strandings (human inter-a...

  18. The importance of delineating networks by activity type in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in Cedar Key, Florida.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gazda, Stefanie; Iyer, Swami; Killingback, Timothy; Connor, Richard; Brault, Solange

    2015-03-01

    Network analysis has proved to be a valuable tool for studying the behavioural patterns of complex social animals. Often such studies either do not distinguish between different behavioural states of the organisms or simply focus attention on a single behavioural state to the exclusion of all others. In either of these approaches it is impossible to ascertain how the behavioural patterns of individuals depend on the type of activity they are engaged in. Here we report on a network-based analysis of the behavioural associations in a population of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in Cedar Key, Florida. We consider three distinct behavioural states-socializing, travelling and foraging-and analyse the association networks corresponding to each activity. Moreover, in constructing the different activity networks we do not simply record a spatial association between two individuals as being either present or absent, but rather quantify the degree of any association, thus allowing us to construct weighted networks describing each activity. The results of these weighted activity networks indicate that networks can reveal detailed patterns of bottlenose dolphins at the population level; dolphins socialize in large groups with preferential associations; travel in small groups with preferential associates; and spread out to forage in very small, weakly connected groups. There is some overlap in the socialize and travel networks but little overlap between the forage and other networks. This indicates that the social bonds maintained in other activities are less important as they forage on dispersed, solitary prey. The overall network, not sorted by activity, does not accurately represent any of these patterns. PMID:26064611

  19. Gastrointestinal parasites of free-living Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) in the Northern Red Sea, Egypt.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleinertz, S; Hermosilla, C; Ziltener, A; Kreicker, S; Hirzmann, J; Abdel-Ghaffar, F; Taubert, A

    2014-04-01

    The present study represents the first report on the gastrointestinal parasite fauna infecting the free-living and alive Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) inhabiting waters of the Red Sea at Hurghada, Egypt. A total of 94 individual faecal samples of the examined bottlenose dolphins were collected during several diving expeditions within their natural habitats. Using classical parasitological techniques, such as sodium acetate acetic acid formalin method, carbol fuchsin-stained faecal smears, coproantigen ELISA, PCR and macroscopical analyses, the study revealed infections with 21 different parasite species belonging to protozoans and metazoans with some of them bearing zoonotic and/or pathogenic potential. Four identified parasite species are potential zoonotic species (Giardia spp., Cryptosporidium spp., Diphyllobothrium spp., Ascaridida indet.); three of them are known to have high pathogenic potential for the examined dolphin species (Nasitrema attenuata, Zalophotrema spp. and Pholeter gastrophilus) and some appear to be directly associated with stranding events. In detail, the study indicates stages of ten protozoan species (Giardia spp., Sarcocystis spp., Isospora (like) spp., Cystoisospora (like) spp., Ciliata indet. I and II, Holotricha indet., Dinoflagellata indet., Hexamita (like) spp., Cryptosporidium spp.), seven trematode species (N. attenuata, Nasitrema spp. I and II, Zalophotrema curilensis, Zalophotrema spp., Pholeter gastrophilus, Trematoda indet.), one cestode species (Diphyllobothrium spp.), two nematode species (Ascaridida indet, Capillaria spp.) and one crustacean parasite (Cymothoidae indet.). Additionally, we molecularly identified adult worms of Anisakis typica in individual dolphin vomitus samples by molecular analyses. A. typica is a common parasite of various dolphin species of warmer temperate and tropical waters and has not been attributed as food-borne parasitic zoonoses so far. Overall, these parasitological findings

  20. Fractal scaling in bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) echolocation: A case study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perisho, Shaun T.; Kelty-Stephen, Damian G.; Hajnal, Alen; Houser, Dorian; Kuczaj, Stan A., II

    2016-02-01

    Fractal scaling patterns, which entail a power-law relationship between magnitude of fluctuations in a variable and the scale at which the variable is measured, have been found in many aspects of human behavior. These findings have led to advances in behavioral models (e.g. providing empirical support for cascade-driven theories of cognition) and have had practical medical applications (e.g. providing new methods for early diagnosis of medical conditions). In the present paper, fractal analysis is used to investigate whether similar fractal scaling patterns exist in inter-click interval and peak-peak amplitude measurements of bottlenose dolphin click trains. Several echolocation recordings taken from two male bottlenose dolphins were analyzed using Detrended Fluctuation Analysis and Higuchi's (1988) method for determination of fractal dimension. Both animals were found to exhibit fractal scaling patterns near what is consistent with persistent long range correlations. These findings suggest that recent advances in human cognition and medicine may have important parallel applications to echolocation as well.

  1. Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus as A Sentinel for Exposure to Mercury in Humans: Closing the Loop

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John S. Reif

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Mercury (Hg is a ubiquitous global contaminant with important public health implications. Mercury is released from a variety of anthropogenic, industrial processes, enters the earth's atmosphere and is re-deposited onto the earth’s surface in rainfall. Much of this Hg enters the oceans which cover the majority of the earth’s surface. In the marine environment, inorganic Hg is converted to the most toxic form of the element, methylmercury, and biomagnified through the trophic levels of the food web. The bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus is the apex predator in many estuarine and coastal ecosystems. Due to their long life span and trophic position, bottlenose dolphins bioaccumulate high concentrations of contaminants including Hg, thus making them an important sentinel species for ecosystem and public health. Bottlenose dolphins in Florida bioaccumulate high concentrations of Hg in their blood, skin and internal organs. The concentrations of Hg in blood and skin of bottlenose dolphins of the Indian River Lagoon, FL (IRL are among the highest reported world-wide. In previous studies, we demonstrated associations between concentrations of total Hg in the blood and skin of IRL dolphins and markers of endocrine, renal, hepatic, hematologic and immune system dysfunction. The predominant manifestation of exposure to mercury in humans is neurotoxicity. During the 1950s and 1960s, residents of Minamata bay, Japan were exposed to high concentrations of methyl mercury as the result of ingestion of fish and shellfish that had become contaminated in this infamous environmental disaster. Affected adults had severe motor and sensory abnormalities often leading to death. Methyl mercury crosses the placenta during pregnancy. Children exposed in utero were born with multiple congenital anomalies and also suffered from neurologic disorders. Significantly, local cats that consumed Hg contaminated fish developed severe signs of neurotoxicity which led to

  2. Evaluation of annual survival and mortality rates and longevity of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) at the United States Navy Marine Mammal Program from 2004 through 2013.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venn-Watson, Stephanie K; Jensen, Eric D; Smith, Cynthia R; Xitco, Mark; Ridgway, Sam H

    2015-04-15

    Objective-To evaluate annual survival and mortality rates and the longevity of a managed population of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). Design-Retrospective cohort study. Animals-103 bottlenose dolphins at the US Navy Marine Mammal Program (MMP). Procedures-Population age structures, annual survival and crude mortality rates, and median age at death for dolphins > 30 days old were determined from 2004 through 2013. Results-During 2004 through 2013, the annual survival rates for MMP dolphins ranged from 0.98 to 1.0, and the annual crude mortality rates ranged from 0% to 5%, with a mean of 2.7%. The median age at death was 30.1 years from 2004 through 2008 and increased to 32 years from 2009 through 2013. The maximum age for a dolphin in the study was 52 years. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance-Results indicated that the annual mortality rates were low and survival rates were high for dolphins in the MMP from 2004 through 2013 and that the median age at death for MMP dolphins during that time was over 10 years greater than that reported in free-ranging dolphins. These findings were likely attributable to the continually improving care and husbandry of managed dolphin populations. PMID:25835174

  3. Recognition of Frequency Modulated Whistle-Like Sounds by a Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) and Humans with Transformations in Amplitude, Duration and Frequency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Branstetter, Brian K; DeLong, Caroline M; Dziedzic, Brandon; Black, Amy; Bakhtiari, Kimberly

    2016-01-01

    Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) use the frequency contour of whistles produced by conspecifics for individual recognition. Here we tested a bottlenose dolphin's (Tursiops truncatus) ability to recognize frequency modulated whistle-like sounds using a three alternative matching-to-sample paradigm. The dolphin was first trained to select a specific object (object A) in response to a specific sound (sound A) for a total of three object-sound associations. The sounds were then transformed by amplitude, duration, or frequency transposition while still preserving the frequency contour of each sound. For comparison purposes, 30 human participants completed an identical task with the same sounds, objects, and training procedure. The dolphin's ability to correctly match objects to sounds was robust to changes in amplitude with only a minor decrement in performance for short durations. The dolphin failed to recognize sounds that were frequency transposed by plus or minus ½ octaves. Human participants demonstrated robust recognition with all acoustic transformations. The results indicate that this dolphin's acoustic recognition of whistle-like sounds was constrained by absolute pitch. Unlike human speech, which varies considerably in average frequency, signature whistles are relatively stable in frequency, which may have selected for a whistle recognition system invariant to frequency transposition. PMID:26863519

  4. Temporal δ13C records from bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) reflect variation in foraging location and global carbon cycling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossman, S. L.; Barros, N. B.; Ostrom, P. H.; Gandhi, H.; Wells, R. S.

    2010-12-01

    With four decades of data on a population of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) resident to Sarasota Bay (SB), The Sarasota Dolphin Research Program offers an unparalleled platform for ground-truthing stable isotope data and exploring bottlenose dolphin ecology in a natural setting. We explored carbon isotope value fidelity to habitat utilization by comparing δ13C data from whole teeth and muscle to the individual dolphin's proclivity towards foraging in seagrass beds based on observational data. We then examined variation in habitat use based on temporal isotope records. Whole tooth protein isotope values do not show a significant correlation with the observed percentage of foraging in seagrass habitat. In contrast, δ13C values from muscle showed a significant positive relationship with the observational data. Differences in the degree of tissue turn over may account for this distinction between tooth and muscle. Dolphin teeth consist of annually deposited layers that are inert once formed. Thus, the isotopic composition of protein in annuli reflect foraging at the time of deposition. In addition to incorporating variation associated with differences in foraging over the lifetime of the individual, whole tooth isotope values are confounded because a disproportionate amount of tooth protein derives from the first few years of life. Given the turnover time of muscle tissue, isotope values reflect diet over the past several months. From 1991 to 2008, muscle δ13C values showed a significant decline, -13.5‰ to -15.1‰.This time period encompasses a state wide net fishing ban (1995) however other factors such as a series of red tide harmful algal blooms, a decline in predators, increases in shallow water boat traffic and an increase in string ray abundance may also contribute to the temporal isotope trend. To examine changes in dolphin foraging habitat further back in time we analyzed the tip of crown of the tooth which records the isotopic signal from the

  5. Effect of cryopreservation on the sperm DNA fragmentation dynamics of the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez-Calabuig, M J; López-Fernández, C; Johnston, S D; Blyde, D; Cooper, J; Harrison, K; de la Fuente, J; Gosálvez, J

    2015-04-01

    Sperm DNA fragmentation is one of the major causes of infertility; the sperm chromatin dispersion test (SCDt) evaluates this parameter and offers the advantage of species-specific validated protocol and ease of use under field conditions. The main purpose of this study was to evaluate sperm DNA fragmentation dynamics in both fresh and post-thaw bottlenose dolphin sperm using the SCDt following different cryopreservation protocols to gain new information about the post-thaw differential sperm DNA longevity in this species. Fresh and cryopreserved semen samples from five bottlenose dolphins were examined for sperm DNA fragmentation dynamics using the SCDt (Halomax(®)). Sperm DNA fragmentation was assessed immediately at collection and following cryopreservation (T0) and then after 0.5, 1, 4, 8, 24, 48 and 72 h incubation at 37°C. Serially collected ejaculates from four dolphins were frozen using different cryopreservation protocols in a TES-TRIS-fructose buffer (TTF), an egg-yolk-free vegetable lipid LP1 buffer (LP1) and human sperm preservation medium (HSPM). Fresh ejaculated spermatozoa initially showed low levels of DNA fragmentation for up to 48 h. Lower Sperm DNA fragmentation (SDF) was found in the second fresh ejaculate compared to the first when more than one sample was collected on the same day (p < 0.05); this difference was not apparent in any other seminal characteristic. While there was no difference observed in SDF between fresh and frozen-thawed sperm using the different cryopreservation protocols immediately after thawing (T0), frozen-thawed spermatozoa incubated at 37°C showed an increase in the rate of SDF after 24 h. Sperm frozen in the LP1(℗) buffer had higher levels (p < 0.05) of DNA fragmentation after 24- and 48-h incubation than those frozen in TTF or HSPM. No correlation was found between any seminal characteristic and DNA fragmentation in either fresh and/or frozen-thawed samples. PMID:25604784

  6. Fine-scale analysis of synchronous breathing in wild Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakai, Mai; Morisaka, Tadamichi; Kogi, Kazunobu; Hishii, Toru; Kohshima, Shiro

    2010-01-01

    We quantitatively analysed synchronous breathing for dyads in Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins at Mikura Island, Tokyo, Japan. For most cases, we observed dyads swimming in the same direction (97%), in close proximity (i.e., less than 1.5m) and with their body axes parallel as they breathed synchronously. Moreover, the pairs engaged in identical behaviour before and after the synchronous breathing episodes. These results suggest that the dolphins synchronize their movements, and that synchronous breathing is a component of "pair-swimming", an affiliative social behaviour. Same sex pairs of the same age class frequently engaged in synchronous breathing for adults and subadults, as well as mother-calf and escort-calf pairs. The distance between individuals during synchronous breathing for mother-calf pairs was less than for other pairs. The distance observed between individuals for female pairs was less than for male pairs. The time differences between each exhale for each of the two dolphins involved in synchronous breathing episodes for female pairs were smaller than for male pairs, and time differences for adult pairs were smaller than subadult pairs. These results suggest that age and sex class influenced the characteristics of this behaviour. PMID:19850113

  7. Geographic specificity of Aroclor 1268 in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) frequenting the Turtle/Brunswick River Estuary, Georgia (USA)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Coastal marine resources are at risk from anthropogenic contaminants, including legacy persistent organic pollutants (POPs) with half-lives of decades or more. To determine if polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) signatures can be used to distinguish among local populations of inshore bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) along the southeastern U.S. coast, blubber from free-ranging and stranded animals were collected along the Georgia coast in 2004 and analyzed for PCB congeners using gas chromatography with electron capture and negative chemical ionization mass spectrometric detection (GC-ECD and GC-NCI-MS). Mean total PCB concentrations (77 ± 34 μg/g lipid) were more than 10 fold higher and congener distributions were highly enriched in Cl7-Cl10 homologs in free-ranging animals from the Turtle/Brunswick River estuary (TBRE) compared with strandings samples from Savannah area estuaries 90 km to the north. Using principal components analysis (PCA), the Aroclor 1268 signature associated with TBRE animals was distinct from that observed in Savannah area animals, and also from those in animals biopsied in other southeastern U.S estuaries. Moreover, PCB signatures in dolphin blubber closely resembled those in local preferred prey fish species, strengthening the hypothesis that inshore T. truncatus populations exhibit long-term fidelity to specific estuaries and making them excellent sentinels for assessing the impact of stressors on coastal ecosystem health

  8. Geographic specificity of Aroclor 1268 in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) frequenting the Turtle/Brunswick River Estuary, Georgia (USA)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pulster, Erin L. [Marine Sciences Department, Savannah State University, Savannah, Georgia, 31404 (United States); Skidaway Institute of Oceanography, 10 Ocean Science Circle, Savannah, Georgia, 31411 (United States)], E-mail: epulster@mote.org; Maruya, Keith A. [Skidaway Institute of Oceanography, 10 Ocean Science Circle, Savannah, Georgia, 31411 (United States)

    2008-04-15

    Coastal marine resources are at risk from anthropogenic contaminants, including legacy persistent organic pollutants (POPs) with half-lives of decades or more. To determine if polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) signatures can be used to distinguish among local populations of inshore bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) along the southeastern U.S. coast, blubber from free-ranging and stranded animals were collected along the Georgia coast in 2004 and analyzed for PCB congeners using gas chromatography with electron capture and negative chemical ionization mass spectrometric detection (GC-ECD and GC-NCI-MS). Mean total PCB concentrations (77 {+-} 34 {mu}g/g lipid) were more than 10 fold higher and congener distributions were highly enriched in Cl{sub 7}-Cl{sub 10} homologs in free-ranging animals from the Turtle/Brunswick River estuary (TBRE) compared with strandings samples from Savannah area estuaries 90 km to the north. Using principal components analysis (PCA), the Aroclor 1268 signature associated with TBRE animals was distinct from that observed in Savannah area animals, and also from those in animals biopsied in other southeastern U.S estuaries. Moreover, PCB signatures in dolphin blubber closely resembled those in local preferred prey fish species, strengthening the hypothesis that inshore T. truncatus populations exhibit long-term fidelity to specific estuaries and making them excellent sentinels for assessing the impact of stressors on coastal ecosystem health.

  9. A photo-identification catalogue of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in Northeast Patagonia, Argentina: A tool for the conservation of the species

    OpenAIRE

    Vermeulen, Els; Cammareri, Alejandro; Failla, Mauricio

    2008-01-01

    A photo-identification study of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) was performed in the northern Gulf of San Matías, Patagonia Argentina, during the period 2006-2008. In total, 199 surveys were conducted with an average observation effort of 4.2h (SD=1.5) per survey. These surveys resulted in a total observation effort of 824.7h of which 105.7h was spend with 158 dolphin groups. Over 12,500 pictures were analysed using the automatic identification systems FinEx and FinMatch ...

  10. Seasonal variation in the skin transcriptome of common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the northern Gulf of Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Dolah, Frances M; Neely, Marion G; McGeorge, Lauren E; Balmer, Brian C; Ylitalo, Gina M; Zolman, Eric S; Speakman, Todd; Sinclair, Carrie; Kellar, Nicholas M; Rosel, Patricia E; Mullin, Keith D; Schwacke, Lori H

    2015-01-01

    As long-lived predators that integrate exposures across multiple trophic levels, cetaceans are recognized as sentinels for the health of marine ecosystems. Their utility as sentinels requires the establishment of baseline health parameters. Because cetaceans are protected, measurements obtained with minimal disruption to free ranging animals are highly desirable. In this study we investigated the utility of skin gene expression profiling to monitor health and contaminant exposure in common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). Remote integument biopsies were collected in the northern Gulf of Mexico prior to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill (May 2010) and during summer and winter for two years following oil contamination (2010-2011). A bottlenose dolphin microarray was used to characterize the skin transcriptomes of 94 individuals from three populations: Barataria Bay, Louisiana, Chandeleur Sound, Louisiana, and Mississippi Sound, Mississippi/Alabama. Skin transcriptomes did not differ significantly between populations. In contrast, season had a profound effect on gene expression, with nearly one-third of all genes on the array differing in expression between winter and the warmer seasons (moderated T-test; ptwo-fold higher concentrations in summer compared to winter, due to a seasonal decrease in blubber thickness and loss of stored lipid. However, global gene expression did not correlate strongly with seasonally changing contaminant concentrations, most likely because the refractory, lipid-stored metabolites are not substrates for phase I or II xenobiotic detoxification pathways. Rather, processes related to cell proliferation, motility, and differentiation dominated the differences in expression in winter and the warmer seasons. More subtle differences were seen between spring and summer (1.5% of genes differentially expressed). However, two presumed oil-exposed animals from spring presented gene expression profiles more similar to the summer animals (presumed

  11. Seasonal variation in the skin transcriptome of common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus from the northern Gulf of Mexico.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frances M Van Dolah

    Full Text Available As long-lived predators that integrate exposures across multiple trophic levels, cetaceans are recognized as sentinels for the health of marine ecosystems. Their utility as sentinels requires the establishment of baseline health parameters. Because cetaceans are protected, measurements obtained with minimal disruption to free ranging animals are highly desirable. In this study we investigated the utility of skin gene expression profiling to monitor health and contaminant exposure in common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus. Remote integument biopsies were collected in the northern Gulf of Mexico prior to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill (May 2010 and during summer and winter for two years following oil contamination (2010-2011. A bottlenose dolphin microarray was used to characterize the skin transcriptomes of 94 individuals from three populations: Barataria Bay, Louisiana, Chandeleur Sound, Louisiana, and Mississippi Sound, Mississippi/Alabama. Skin transcriptomes did not differ significantly between populations. In contrast, season had a profound effect on gene expression, with nearly one-third of all genes on the array differing in expression between winter and the warmer seasons (moderated T-test; ptwo-fold higher concentrations in summer compared to winter, due to a seasonal decrease in blubber thickness and loss of stored lipid. However, global gene expression did not correlate strongly with seasonally changing contaminant concentrations, most likely because the refractory, lipid-stored metabolites are not substrates for phase I or II xenobiotic detoxification pathways. Rather, processes related to cell proliferation, motility, and differentiation dominated the differences in expression in winter and the warmer seasons. More subtle differences were seen between spring and summer (1.5% of genes differentially expressed. However, two presumed oil-exposed animals from spring presented gene expression profiles more similar to the summer

  12. Mercury and selenium status of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus): A study in stranded animals on the Canary Islands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Alvarez, Natalia; Fernández, Antonio; Boada, Luis D; Zumbado, Manuel; Zaccaroni, Annalisa; Arbelo, Manuel; Sierra, Eva; Almunia, Javier; Luzardo, Octavio P

    2015-12-01

    The mercury (Hg) level in the marine environment has tripled in recent decades, becoming a great concern because of its high toxic potential. This study reports Hg and selenium (Se) status, and the first Se/Hg molar ratio assessment in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) inhabiting the waters of the Canary Islands. Total Hg and Se concentrations were determined in the blubber and liver collected from 30 specimens stranded along the coasts of the archipelago from 1997 to 2013. The median values for total Hg in the blubber and liver were 80.83 and 223.77 μg g(-1) dry weight (dw), and the median levels for Se in both tissues were 7.29 and 68.63 μg g(-1) dw, respectively. Hg concentrations in the liver were lower than 100 μg g(-1) wet weight (ww), comparable to those obtained in bottlenose dolphins from the North Sea, the Western Atlantic Ocean and several locations in the Pacific Ocean. The Mediterranean Sea and South of Australia are the most contaminated areas for both elements in this cetacean species. In addition, it must be stressed that the levels of Hg and Se in the liver showed an increasing trend with the age of the animals. As expected, a strong positive correlation between Hg and Se was observed (rs=0.960). Surprisingly, both younger and older specimens had a Se/Hg molar ratio different from 1, suggesting that these individuals may be at greater toxicological risk for high concentrations of both elements or a deficiency of Se without a protective action against Hg toxicity. PMID:26232758

  13. The bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus foraging around a fish farm: Effects of prey abundance on dolphins’ behavior

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruno Díaz LÓPEZ

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available The extent to which prey abundance influences both bottlenose dolphin foraging behavior and group size in the presence of human activities has not previously been studied. The primary aim of this study was to identify and quantify how wild bottlenose dolphins respond, individually and as groups, to the relative abundance of prey around a fish farm. Detailed views of dolphins’ behavior were obtained by focal following individual animals whilst simultaneously collecting surface and underwater behavioral data. A total of 2150 dive intervals were analyzed, corresponding to 342 focal samples, lasting over 34 hours. Bottlenose dolphins remained submerged for a mean duration of 46.4 seconds and a maximum of 249 seconds. This study provides the first quantified data on bottlenose dolphin diving behavior in a marine fin-fish farm area. This study’s results indicate that within a fish farm area used intensively by bottlenose dolphins for feeding, dolphins did not modify dive duration. Additionally, underwater observations confirmed that dolphins find it easier to exploit a concentrated food source and it appears that hunting tactic and not group size plays an important role during feeding activities. Thus, bottlenose dolphins appear capable of modifying their hunting tactics according to the abundance of prey. When top predators display behavioral responses to activities not directed at them, the task of studying all possible effects of human activities can become even more challenging [Current Zoology 55(4: 243–248, 2009].

  14. Conditioned frequency-dependent hearing sensitivity reduction in the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nachtigall, Paul E; Supin, Alexander Ya

    2015-04-01

    The frequency specificity of conditioned dampening of hearing, when a loud sound is preceded by a warning sound, was investigated in a bottlenose dolphin. The loud sounds were 5 s tones of 16, 22.5 or 32 kHz, sound pressure level of 165 dB root mean square (RMS) re. 1 µPa. Hearing sensitivity was tested at the same three frequencies. Hearing sensitivity was measured using pip-train test stimuli and auditory evoked potential recording. The test sound stimuli served also as warning sounds. The durations of the warning sounds were varied randomly to avoid locking a conditioning effect to the timing immediately before the loud sound. Hearing thresholds before the loud sound increased, relative to the baseline, at test frequencies equal to or higher than the loud sound frequency. The highest threshold increase appeared at test frequencies of 0.5 octaves above the loud sound frequencies. PMID:25657210

  15. Come dine with me: food-associated social signalling in wild bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Stephanie L; Janik, Vincent M

    2015-07-01

    Food-related signalling is widespread in the animal kingdom with some food-associated vocalizations considered functionally referential. Food calls can, however, vary greatly in the type of information they convey. Thus, there are a multitude of purposes for which food calls are used, including social recruitment, caller spacing, the indication of type, quantity, quality, divisibility of food, the caller's hunger level and even as tools to manipulate prey behaviour. Yet little work has focused on the social aspect of food calling in animals. We investigated the association of social signals in wild bottlenose dolphins with foraging behaviour where context-specific food-associated calls are commonly produced. Our data showed that specific social signals were significantly correlated with food call production and these calls rarely occurred in the absence of food calls. We suggest that animals are sharing additional information on the food patch itself with their social affiliates. PMID:25688042

  16. Acoustic behavior associated with cooperative task success in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eskelinen, Holli C; Winship, Kelley A; Jones, Brittany L; Ames, Audra E M; Kuczaj, Stan A

    2016-07-01

    Although many species have proven capable of cooperating to achieve common goals, the role of communication in cooperation has received relatively little attention. Analysis of communication between partners is vital in determining whether actions are truly cooperative rather than serendipitous or learned via trial and error (Chalmeau and Gallo in Behav Process 35:101-111, 1996a. doi: 10.1016/0376-6357(95)00049-6 , Primates 37:39-47, 1996b. doi: 10.1007/BF02382918 ). Wild cetaceans often produce sounds during cooperative foraging, playing, and mating, but the role of these sounds in cooperative events is largely unknown. Here, we investigated acoustic communication between two male bottlenose dolphins while they cooperatively opened a container (Kuczaj et al. in Anim Cogn 18:543-550, 2015b. doi: 10.1007/s10071-014-0822-4 ). Analyses of whistles, burst pulses, and bi-phonations that occurred during four contexts (i.e., no container, no animals interacting with container, one animal interacting with container, and two animals interacting with container) revealed that overall sound production rate significantly increased during container interactions. Sound production rates were also significantly higher during cooperative successes than solo successes, suggesting that the coordination of efforts rather than the apparatus itself was responsible for the phonation increase. The most common sound type during cooperative successes was burst pulse signals, similar to past recordings of cooperative events in bottlenose dolphins (Bastian in Animal sonar systems. Laboratoire de Physiologie Acoustique, Jouy-en Josas, pp 803-873, 1967; Connor and Smolker 1996). PMID:27022973

  17. Genes or culture: are mitochondrial genes associated with tool use in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.)?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bacher, K; Allen, S; Lindholm, A K; Bejder, L; Krützen, M

    2010-09-01

    Some bottlenose dolphins use marine sponges as foraging tools ('sponging'), which appears to be socially transmitted from mothers mainly to their female offspring. Yet, explanations alternative to social transmission have been proposed. Firstly, the propensity to engage in sponging might be due to differences in diving ability caused by variation of mitochondrial genes coding for proteins of the respiratory chain. Secondly, the cultural technique of sponging may have selected for changes in these same genes (or other autosomal ones) among its possessors. We tested whether sponging can be predicted by mitochondrial coding genes and whether these genes are under selection. In 29 spongers and 54 non-spongers from two study sites, the non-coding haplotype at the HVRI locus was a significant predictor of sponging, whereas the coding mitochondrial genes were not. There was no evidence of selection in the investigated genes. Our study shows that mitochondrial gene variation is unlikely to be a viable alternative to cultural transmission as a primary driver of tool use in dolphins. PMID:20582623

  18. Equal latency contours for bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) and California sea lions (Zalophus californianus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulsow, Jason; Schlundt, Carolyn E; Brandt, Lacey; Finneran, James J

    2015-11-01

    Loudness perception by non-human animals is difficult to study directly. Previous research efforts have instead focused on estimating loudness perception using simple reaction time (RT) data. These data are used to generate equal latency contours that serve as a proxy for equal loudness contours. To aid the design of auditory weighting functions for marine mammals, equal latency contours were generated using RT data for two marine mammal species that are representative of broader functional hearing groups: the bottlenose dolphin (under water) and California sea lion (in air). In all cases, median RT decreased with increasing tone sound pressure level (SPL). The equal latency contours corresponding to near-threshold SPLs were similar to audiograms for both species. The sea lion contours showed some compression at frequencies below 1 kHz; however, a similar pattern was not apparent in the more variable data for dolphins. Equal latency contours for SPLs greater than approximately 40 dB above threshold diverged from predicted equal loudness contours, likely due to the asymptotic nature of RT at the highest tested SPLs. The results suggest that auditory threshold data, potentially augmented with compression at low frequencies, may provide a useful way forward when designing auditory weighting functions for marine mammals. PMID:26627745

  19. Male reproductive success increases with alliance size in Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiszniewski, Joanna; Corrigan, Shannon; Beheregaray, Luciano B; Möller, Luciana M

    2012-03-01

    1. Determining the extent of variation in male mating strategies and reproductive success is necessary to understand the fitness benefits of social and cooperative behaviour. 2. This study assesses the reproductive success of male Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins in a small embayment population where different behavioural strategies of males have previously been identified. Parentage for 44 sampled calves was examined using 23 microsatellite loci and one mitochondrial DNA marker. Our candidate parent pool of 70 males and 64 females contained individuals sampled from both the embayment and adjacent coastal populations. 3. A moderate level of polygyny was detected in our sample. We assigned paternity of 23 calves to 12 males at the strict 95% confidence level and an additional nine calves to two males at the 80% confidence level. The majority (92%) of successful males were identified as residents to the embayment, and 46% of offspring were located within the same social group or community as their father. 4. Our results suggest that the size of alliances was the best predictor of reproductive success for males in this population, while the strength of association among allied males, alliance stability and male ranging patterns had little influence. In line with predictions for male alliances formed between unrelated individuals, we found that reproductive skew within alliances was not large. 5. Together, our genetic and behavioural analyses demonstrate that alliance formation between male dolphins is a successful strategy to enhance reproductive output. PMID:21981240

  20. A PHOTO-IDENTIFICATION CATALOGUE OF BOTTLENOSE DOLPHIN (TURSIOPS TRUNCATUS IN THE CANARY ISLANDS, SPAIN: A BASELINE INFORMATION FOR ITS CONSERVATION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Verme, Valeria

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available A catalog of photo-identification of bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus was made on the island Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain, between 2005 and 2006. A total of 391 sightings was made. Sightings took place on 95 days in 2005 and on 66 days in 2006, with a total of 70.1 h of interaction with dolphins. 129 individual adult dolphins were identified between 2005 and 2006. The frequency of re-sightings was not very high, with the most common being a dolphin resighted between 2 and 9 times. The standard catalogue of photo-identification obtained seems to provide good baseline information and a tool for conservation of the species and for future projects with high potential for environmental education and ecotourism in the area.

  1. Western blot expression of 5-lipoxygenase in the brain from striped dolphins (stenella coeruleoalba) and bottlenose dolphins (tursiops truncatus) with or without encephalitis/meningo-encephalitis of infectious nature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Guardo, G; Falconi, A; Di Francesco, A; Mazzariol, S; Centelleghe, C; Casalone, C; Pautasso, A; Cocumelli, C; Eleni, C; Petrella, A; Di Francesco, C E; Sabatucci, A; Leonardi, L; Serroni, A; Marsili, L; Storelli, M M; Giacominelli-Stuffler, R

    2015-01-01

    Dolphin Morbillivirus (DMV), Toxoplasma gondii and Brucella ceti are pathogens of major concern for wild cetaceans. Although a more or less severe encephalitis/meningo-encephalitis may occur in striped dolphins (Stenella coeruleoalba) and bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) infected by the aforementioned agents, almost no information is available on the neuropathogenesis of brain lesions, including the neuronal and non-neuronal cells targeted during infection, along with the mechanisms underlying neurodegeneration. We analyzed 5-lipoxygenase (5-LOX) expression in the brain of 11 striped dolphins and 5 bottlenose dolphins, affected or not by encephalitic lesions of various degrees associated with DMV, T. gondii and B. ceti. All the 8 striped dolphins with encephalitis showed a more consistent 5-LOX expression than that observed in the 3 striped dolphins showing no morphologic evidence of brain lesions, with the most prominent band intensity being detected in a B. ceti-infected animal. Similar results were not obtained in T. gondii-infected vs T. gondii-uninfected bottlenose dolphins. Overall, the higher 5-LOX expression found in the brain of the 8 striped dolphins with infectious neuroinflammation is of interest, given that 5-LOX is a putative marker for neurodegeneration in human patients and in experimental animal models. Therefore, further investigation on this challenging issue is also needed in stranded cetaceans affected by central neuropathies. PMID:25864766

  2. Foraging habits in a generalist predator: sex and age influence habitat selection and resource use among bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sam Rossman; McCabe, Elizabeth Berens; Nelio B. Barros; Hasand Gandhi; Peggy H. Ostrom; Stricker, Craig A.; Randall S. Wells

    2015-01-01

    This study examines resource use (diet, habitat use, and trophic level) within and among demographic groups (males, females, and juveniles) of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). We analyzed the δ13C and δ15N values of 15 prey species constituting 84% of the species found in stomach contents. We used these data to establish a trophic enrichment factor (TEF) to inform dietary analysis using a Bayesian isotope mixing model. We document a TEF of 0‰ and 2.0‰ for δ13C and δ15N, respectively. The dietary results showed that all demographic groups relied heavily on low trophic level seagrass-associated prey. Bayesian standard ellipse areas (SEAb) were calculated to assess diversity in resource use. The SEAb of females was nearly four times larger than that of males indicating varied resource use, likely a consequence of small home ranges and habitat specialization. Juveniles possessed an intermediate SEAb, generally feeding at a lower trophic level compared to females, potentially an effect of natal philopatry and immature foraging skills. The small SEAb of males reflects a high degree of specialization on seagrass associated prey. Patterns in resource use by the demographic groups are likely linked to differences in the relative importance of social and ecological factors.

  3. Characterization of estrogens, testosterone, and cortisol in normal bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) pregnancy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steinman, Karen J; Robeck, Todd R; O'Brien, Justine K

    2016-01-15

    The goal of this study was to describe profiles of serum estrogens, testosterone and cortisol during normal pregnancy in bottlenose dolphins. Predominant estrogens in all categories of dolphin sera pools during estrus and pregnancy (EARLY: Days 0-120; MID: Days 121-240; LATE: Days 241 to parturition; Day 0=day of conception) were estrone/estrone conjugates (E1-C) and estriol (E3). Serum samples collected throughout 101 normal pregnancies were analyzed for E1-C, E3, testosterone (T) and cortisol (CORT). E1-C was higher (P<0.05) during LATE compared to EARLY and MID, and higher (P<0.05) in nulliparous than multiparous females. E1-C concentrations were also inversely associated with maternal age (P=0.05). E3 was higher (P<0.05) in EARLY than MID and LATE, and higher overall for nulliparous than multiparous females, but concentrations were similar among gestational stages when parity was excluded from analyses. Analysis by indexed month post-conception (IMPC) demonstrated that E1-C increased from IMPC 9 and peaked at IMPC 11. E3 was significantly elevated during IMPC 1, decreased until IMPC 6 and peaked at IMPC 11. T increased (P<0.05) at IMPC 3 and continued to increase throughout gestation (P<0.05). CORT was higher (P<0.05) during LATE compared to EARLY and MID (P<0.05), peaked during IMPC 12, and was not affected by parity. Hormone profiles were not influenced by fetal sex. PMID:26718081

  4. Perfluoroalkyl compounds in relation to life-history and reproductive parameters in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from Sarasota Bay, Florida, U.S.A.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Houde, Magali; Balmer, Brian C; Brandsma, Sicco; Wells, Randall S; Rowles, Teri K; Solomon, Keith R; Muir, Derek C G

    2006-09-01

    Perfluoroalkyl compounds (PFCs) were determined in plasma, milk, and urine of free-ranging bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from Sarasota Bay (FL, USA) during three winter and two summer capture-and-release programs (2002-2005). Plasma and urine samples were extracted using an ion-pairing method. Perfluoroalkyl compounds were extracted from milk samples using acetonitrile, and extracts were cleaned with graphitized nonporous carbon. All extracts were analyzed by high-performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. Mean seasonal sum of PFCs (sigma PFCs) detected in dolphin plasma ranged from 530 to 927 ng/g wet weight. No significant differences (p > 0.05) were found in concentrations between seasons, suggesting a constant exposure to PFCs. Overall, blubber thickness of dolphins did not correlate with PFC concentrations in plasma, suggesting an absence of PFC sequestration in blubber. Sexually immature calves (age, dolphins. Results from the present study showed that young and developing bottlenose dolphins are highly exposed to PFCs. These chemicals also were detected in urine (mean sigma PFCs, 26.6 +/- 79 ng/g wet wt), indicating that the urinary system is an important pathway of PFC depuration in dolphins. PMID:16986796

  5. Hearing Mechanisms and Noise Metrics Related to Auditory Masking in Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Branstetter, Brian K; Bakhtiari, Kimberly L; Trickey, Jennifer S; Finneran, James J

    2016-01-01

    Odontocete cetaceans are acoustic specialists that depend on sound to hunt, forage, navigate, detect predators, and communicate. Auditory masking from natural and anthropogenic sound sources may adversely affect these fitness-related capabilities. The ability to detect a tone in a broad range of natural, anthropogenic, and synthesized noise was tested with bottlenose dolphins using a psychophysical, band-widening procedure. Diverging masking patterns were found for noise bandwidths greater than the width of an auditory filter. Despite different noise types having equal-pressure spectral-density levels (95 dB re 1 μPa(2)/Hz), masked detection threshold differences were as large as 22 dB. Consecutive experiments indicated that noise types with increased levels of amplitude modulation resulted in comodulation masking release due to within-channel and across-channel auditory mechanisms. The degree to which noise types were comodulated (comodulation index) was assessed by calculating the magnitude-squared coherence between the temporal envelope from an auditory filter centered on the signal and temporal envelopes from flanking filters. Statistical models indicate that masked thresholds in a variety of noise types, at a variety of levels, can be explained with metrics related to the comodulation index in addition to the pressure spectral-density level of noise. This study suggests that predicting auditory masking from ocean noise sources depends on both spectral and temporal properties of the noise. PMID:26610950

  6. Expectancy and conditioned hearing levels in the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nachtigall, Paul E; Supin, Alexander Ya; Smith, Adam B; Pacini, Aude F

    2016-03-01

    The hearing sensitivity of a bottlenose dolphin for a warning sound, when the exact time of the arrival of a loud sound could or could not be predicted, was measured. Sensitivity was measured when the time of onset of the loud sound was randomly varied (random-variation sessions) and when the time of onset of the loud sound and the pattern of stimulus levels was constant (fixed-stimulus sessions). The loud sound was kept the same in both of the series. The mean duration and mean range of the levels of the test/warning signal were also kept equal across experimental sessions. Hearing sensitivity was measured using the auditory evoked potential method with rhythmic trains of short pips as test stimuli. With randomly varied warning sounds, thresholds before the loud sound were on average 10.6 dB higher than the baseline thresholds. With fixed warning signals, thresholds were on average 4.4 dB higher than the baseline thresholds. Considering that the loud sounds were identical, the difference between the random-variation and the fixed-stimulus sessions cannot be explained by a direct (unconditioned) influence of sound exposure. Therefore, the data provide reliable evidence for the conditioning nature of the hearing-dampening effect and also demonstrate that hearing sensitivity change also depends on when the animal can expect the loud sound to occur. PMID:26787478

  7. Post-conflict affiliation as conflict management in captive bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamamoto, Chisato; Morisaka, Tadamichi; Furuta, Keisuke; Ishibashi, Toshiaki; Yoshida, Akihiko; Taki, Michihiro; Mori, Yoshihisa; Amano, Masao

    2015-01-01

    Post-conflict affiliation between former opponents or between one of the former opponents and bystanders might have the function of conflict management, which reduces the costs associated with aggressions. One of the suggested functions of post-conflict affiliation is decreased renewed aggressions directed from aggressors to victims. However, the effect of post-conflict affiliation on renewed aggressions by victims has not been investigated. We examined whether post-conflict affiliations decreased the number of renewed aggressions initiated by winners or losers in captive bottlenose dolphins. Both winners and losers initiated renewed aggressions. However, these aggressions decreased after post-conflict affiliation between former opponents, initiated by bystanders to winners, initiated by losers to bystanders, and initiated by bystanders to losers. Post-conflict affiliation between former opponents is suggested to function as reconciliation. Post-conflict affiliation initiated by losers to bystanders is suggested to function as the protection of losers. Post-conflict affiliations initiated by bystanders to one of former opponents are suggested to function as both appeasement and protection of the opponent who affiliates with bystanders. PMID:26392064

  8. A Systematic Health Assessment of Indian Ocean Bottlenose (Tursiops aduncus) and Indo-Pacific Humpback (Sousa plumbea) Dolphins Incidentally Caught in Shark Nets off the KwaZulu-Natal Coast, South Africa

    OpenAIRE

    Emily P. Lane; de Wet, Morné; Thompson, Peter; Siebert, Ursula; Wohlsein, Peter; Plön, Stephanie

    2014-01-01

    Coastal dolphins are regarded as indicators of changes in coastal marine ecosystem health that could impact humans utilizing the marine environment for food or recreation. Necropsy and histology examinations were performed on 35 Indian Ocean bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) and five Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins (Sousa plumbea) incidentally caught in shark nets off the KwaZulu-Natal coast, South Africa, between 2010 and 2012. Parasitic lesions included pneumonia (85%), abdominal and th...

  9. Adrenal Gland and Lung Lesions in Gulf of Mexico Common Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus Found Dead following the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephanie Venn-Watson

    Full Text Available A northern Gulf of Mexico (GoM cetacean unusual mortality event (UME involving primarily bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus in Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama began in February 2010 and continued into 2014. Overlapping in time and space with this UME was the Deepwater Horizon (DWH oil spill, which was proposed as a contributing cause of adrenal disease, lung disease, and poor health in live dolphins examined during 2011 in Barataria Bay, Louisiana. To assess potential contributing factors and causes of deaths for stranded UME dolphins from June 2010 through December 2012, lung and adrenal gland tissues were histologically evaluated from 46 fresh dead non-perinatal carcasses that stranded in Louisiana (including 22 from Barataria Bay, Mississippi, and Alabama. UME dolphins were tested for evidence of biotoxicosis, morbillivirus infection, and brucellosis. Results were compared to up to 106 fresh dead stranded dolphins from outside the UME area or prior to the DWH spill. UME dolphins were more likely to have primary bacterial pneumonia (22% compared to 2% in non-UME dolphins, P = .003 and thin adrenal cortices (33% compared to 7% in non-UME dolphins, P = .003. In 70% of UME dolphins with primary bacterial pneumonia, the condition either caused or contributed significantly to death. Brucellosis and morbillivirus infections were detected in 7% and 11% of UME dolphins, respectively, and biotoxin levels were low or below the detection limit, indicating that these were not primary causes of the current UME. The rare, life-threatening, and chronic adrenal gland and lung diseases identified in stranded UME dolphins are consistent with exposure to petroleum compounds as seen in other mammals. Exposure of dolphins to elevated petroleum compounds present in coastal GoM waters during and after the DWH oil spill is proposed as a cause of adrenal and lung disease and as a contributor to increased dolphin deaths.

  10. Adrenal Gland and Lung Lesions in Gulf of Mexico Common Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) Found Dead following the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venn-Watson, Stephanie; Colegrove, Kathleen M; Litz, Jenny; Kinsel, Michael; Terio, Karen; Saliki, Jeremiah; Fire, Spencer; Carmichael, Ruth; Chevis, Connie; Hatchett, Wendy; Pitchford, Jonathan; Tumlin, Mandy; Field, Cara; Smith, Suzanne; Ewing, Ruth; Fauquier, Deborah; Lovewell, Gretchen; Whitehead, Heidi; Rotstein, David; McFee, Wayne; Fougeres, Erin; Rowles, Teri

    2015-01-01

    A northern Gulf of Mexico (GoM) cetacean unusual mortality event (UME) involving primarily bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama began in February 2010 and continued into 2014. Overlapping in time and space with this UME was the Deepwater Horizon (DWH) oil spill, which was proposed as a contributing cause of adrenal disease, lung disease, and poor health in live dolphins examined during 2011 in Barataria Bay, Louisiana. To assess potential contributing factors and causes of deaths for stranded UME dolphins from June 2010 through December 2012, lung and adrenal gland tissues were histologically evaluated from 46 fresh dead non-perinatal carcasses that stranded in Louisiana (including 22 from Barataria Bay), Mississippi, and Alabama. UME dolphins were tested for evidence of biotoxicosis, morbillivirus infection, and brucellosis. Results were compared to up to 106 fresh dead stranded dolphins from outside the UME area or prior to the DWH spill. UME dolphins were more likely to have primary bacterial pneumonia (22% compared to 2% in non-UME dolphins, P = .003) and thin adrenal cortices (33% compared to 7% in non-UME dolphins, P = .003). In 70% of UME dolphins with primary bacterial pneumonia, the condition either caused or contributed significantly to death. Brucellosis and morbillivirus infections were detected in 7% and 11% of UME dolphins, respectively, and biotoxin levels were low or below the detection limit, indicating that these were not primary causes of the current UME. The rare, life-threatening, and chronic adrenal gland and lung diseases identified in stranded UME dolphins are consistent with exposure to petroleum compounds as seen in other mammals. Exposure of dolphins to elevated petroleum compounds present in coastal GoM waters during and after the DWH oil spill is proposed as a cause of adrenal and lung disease and as a contributor to increased dolphin deaths. PMID:25992681

  11. Demographic clusters identified within the northern Gulf of Mexico common bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncates unusual mortality event: January 2010-June 2013.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephanie Venn-Watson

    Full Text Available A multi-year unusual mortality event (UME involving primarily common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncates was declared in the northern Gulf of Mexico (GoM with an initial start date of February 2010 and remains ongoing as of August 2014. To examine potential changing characteristics of the UME over time, we compared the number and demographics of dolphin strandings from January 2010 through June 2013 across the entire GoM as well as against baseline (1990-2009 GoM stranding patterns. Years 2010 and 2011 had the highest annual number of stranded dolphins since Louisiana's record began, and 2011 was one of the years with the highest strandings for both Mississippi and Alabama. Statewide, annual numbers of stranded dolphins were not elevated for GoM coasts of Florida or Texas during the UME period. Demographic, spatial, and temporal clusters identified within this UME included increased strandings in northern coastal Louisiana and Mississippi (March-May 2010; Barataria Bay, Louisiana (August 2010-December 2011; Mississippi and Alabama (2011, including a high prevalence and number of stranded perinates; and multiple GoM states during early 2013. While the causes of the GoM UME have not been determined, the location and magnitude of dolphin strandings during and the year following the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, including the Barataria Bay cluster from August 2010 to December 2011, overlap in time and space with locations that received heavy and prolonged oiling. There are, however, multiple known causes of previous GoM dolphin UMEs, including brevetoxicosis and dolphin morbillivirus. Additionally, increased dolphin strandings occurred in northern Louisiana and Mississippi before the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Identification of spatial, temporal, and demographic clusters within the UME suggest that this mortality event may involve different contributing factors varying by location, time, and bottlenose dolphin populations that will be

  12. Selection of suitable reference genes for normalization of quantitative RT-PCR in peripheral blood samples of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, I-Hua; Chou, Lien-Siang; Chou, Shih-Jen; Wang, Jiann-Hsiung; Stott, Jeffrey; Blanchard, Myra; Jen, I-Fan; Yang, Wei-Cheng

    2015-01-01

    Quantitative RT-PCR is often used as a research tool directed at gene transcription. Selection of optimal housekeeping genes (HKGs) as reference genes is critical to establishing sensitive and reproducible qRT-PCR-based assays. The current study was designed to identify the appropriate reference genes in blood leukocytes of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) for gene transcription research. Seventy-five blood samples collected from 7 bottlenose dolphins were used to analyze 15 candidate HKGs (ACTB, B2M, GAPDH, HPRT1, LDHB, PGK1, RPL4, RPL8, RPL18, RPS9, RPS18, TFRC, YWHAZ, LDHA, SDHA). HKG stability in qRT-PCR was determined using geNorm, NormFinder, BestKeeper and comparative delta Ct algorithms. Utilization of RefFinder, which combined all 4 algorithms, suggested that PGK1, HPRT1 and RPL4 were the most stable HKGs in bottlenose dolphin blood. Gene transcription perturbations in blood can serve as an indication of health status in cetaceans as it occurs prior to alterations in hematology and chemistry. This study identified HKGs that could be used in gene transcript studies, which may contribute to further mRNA relative quantification research in the peripheral blood leukocytes in captive cetaceans. PMID:26486099

  13. Successful amplification of mitochondrial DNA from dentin of the bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Isabel Weber

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Twenty-four teeth of Tursiops truncatus from the collection of the Marine Mammals Laboratory (FURG-RS were analysed for their potential as DNA source for population genetic and taxonomic studies. All teeth were submitted to decontamination, grinding and demineralisation processes. Dentin powder was weighed for DNA extraction, which was evaluated by the amplification of two mitochondrial genes through PCR using universal primers. Cytochrome-b gene was amplified successfully. PCR products showed concentrations of 3-12 ng/µl for dentin powder, which was positively correlated to the quantity of dentin powder used for DNA extraction. To rule out contamination a SSCP was carried out including positive controls, and samples of humans involved in the analysis. The SSCP patterns for T. truncatus differed from all others, showing also polymorphism for the region. It was concluded that dentin was a good source of mtDNA for genetic studies in dolphins.Vinte e quatro amostras de material dentário de Tursiops truncatus oriundas da coleção do Laboratório de Mamíferos Marinhos (FURG-RS foram avaliadas para determinar seu potencial como fonte de DNA para estudos genético-populacionais e sistemáticos. Todos os dentes foram submetidos a processos de desinfecção, trituração e desmineralização. A dentina obtida foi pesada previamente à extração de DNA, a qual foi avaliada através da amplificação de dois genes mitocondriais, através da técnica de PCR (Reação em Cadeia da Polimerase, utilizando oligonucleotídeos iniciadores universais. Obteve-se sucesso apenas na amplificação do gene Citocromo-b. Destes produtos obtiveram-se concentrações de 3-12 ng/µl para o material dentário, observando-se uma relação linear positiva com a quantidade em gramas utilizada na extração de DNA. Com o objetivo de eliminar a possibilidade de contaminação foi realizada uma análise SSCP (Polimorfismo Conformacional de Fita Simples incluindo os controles

  14. A novel mammalian social structure in Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.): complex male alliances in an open social network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Randić, Srđan; Connor, Richard C; Sherwin, William B; Krützen, Michael

    2012-08-01

    Terrestrial mammals with differentiated social relationships live in 'semi-closed groups' that occasionally accept new members emigrating from other groups. Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.) in Shark Bay, Western Australia, exhibit a fission-fusion grouping pattern with strongly differentiated relationships, including nested male alliances. Previous studies failed to detect a group membership 'boundary', suggesting that the dolphins live in an open social network. However, two alternative hypotheses have not been excluded. The community defence model posits that the dolphins live in a large semi-closed 'chimpanzee-like' community defended by males and predicts that a dominant alliance(s) will range over the entire community range. The mating season defence model predicts that alliances will defend mating-season territories or sets of females. Here, both models are tested and rejected: no alliances ranged over the entire community range and alliances showed extensive overlap in mating season ranges and consorted females. The Shark Bay dolphins, therefore, present a combination of traits that is unique among mammals: complex male alliances in an open social network. The open social network of dolphins is linked to their relatively low costs of locomotion. This reveals a surprising and previously unrecognized convergence between adaptations reducing travel costs and complex intergroup-alliance relationships in dolphins, elephants and humans. PMID:22456886

  15. Quantitative examination of the bottlenose dolphin cerebellum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanson, Alicia; Grisham, William; Sheh, Colleen; Annese, Jacopo; Ridgway, Sam

    2013-08-01

    Neuroanatomical research into the brain of the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) has revealed striking similarities with the human brain in terms of size and complexity. However, the dolphin brain also contains unique allometric relationships. When compared to the human brain, the dolphin cerebellum is noticeably larger. Upon closer examination, the lobule composition of the cerebellum is distinct between the two species. In this study, we used magnetic resonance imaging to analyze cerebellar anatomy in the bottlenose dolphin and measure the volume of the separate cerebellar lobules in the bottlenose dolphin and human. Lobule identification was assisted by three-dimensional modeling. We find that lobules VI, VIIb, VIII, and IX are the largest lobules of the bottlenose dolphin cerebellum, while the anterior lobe (I-V), crus I, crus II, and the flocculonodular lobe are smaller. Different lobule sizes may have functional implications. Auditory-associated lobules VIIb, VIII, IX are likely large in the bottlenose dolphin due to echolocation abilities. Our study provides quantitative information on cerebellar anatomy that substantiates previous reports based on gross observation and subjective analysis. This study is part of a continuing effort toward providing explicit descriptions of cetacean neuroanatomy to support the interpretation of behavioral studies on cetacean cognition. PMID:23775830

  16. Environmental factors governing the distribution of the bottlenose (Tursiops truncatus) and the spotted dolphin (Stenella attenuata) in Golfo Dulce, South Pacific, off Costa Rica Factores ambientales que gobiernan la distribución del delfín bufeo (Tursiops truncatus) y del delfín manchado (Stenella attenuata) en el Golfo Dulce, Pacífico sur de Costa Rica

    OpenAIRE

    Priscilla Cubero-Pardo

    2007-01-01

    This study, conducted from June 1996 to July 1997, was directed at determining the abiotic environmental factors governing the distribution of the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) and the pan-tropical spotted dolphin (Stenella attenuata) in Golfo Dulce. The spotted dolphin was associated with significantly deeper zones (t-test = -9.761; p < 0.001, n = 202) and with higher salinity (t-test = -3.538; p = 0.001; n = 202) than the bottlenose dolphin. The combination of environmental variab...

  17. Purine metabolism in response to hypoxic conditions associated with breath-hold diving and exercise in erythrocytes and plasma from bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    del Castillo Velasco-Martínez, Iris; Hernández-Camacho, Claudia J; Méndez-Rodríguez, Lía C; Zenteno-Savín, Tania

    2016-01-01

    In mammalian tissues under hypoxic conditions, ATP degradation results in accumulation of purine metabolites. During exercise, muscle energetic demand increases and oxygen consumption can exceed its supply. During breath-hold diving, oxygen supply is reduced and, although oxygen utilization is regulated by bradycardia (low heart rate) and peripheral vasoconstriction, tissues with low blood flow (ischemia) may become hypoxic. The goal of this study was to evaluate potential differences in the circulating levels of purine metabolism components between diving and exercise in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). Blood samples were taken from captive dolphins following a swimming routine (n=8) and after a 2min dive (n=8). Activity of enzymes involved in purine metabolism (hypoxanthine guanine phosphoribosyl transferase (HGPRT), inosine monophosphate deshydrogenase (IMPDH), xanthine oxidase (XO), purine nucleoside phosphorylase (PNP)), and purine metabolite (hypoxanthine (HX), xanthine (X), uric acid (UA), inosine monophosphate (IMP), inosine, nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD(+)), adenosine, adenosine monophosphate (AMP), adenosine diphosphate (ADP), ATP, guanosine diphosphate (GDP), guanosine triphosphate (GTP)) concentrations were quantified in erythrocyte and plasma samples. Enzymatic activity and purine metabolite concentrations involved in purine synthesis and degradation, were not significantly different between diving and exercise. Plasma adenosine concentration was higher after diving than exercise (p=0.03); this may be related to dive-induced ischemia. In erythrocytes, HGPRT activity was higher after diving than exercise (p=0.007), suggesting an increased capacity for purine recycling and ATP synthesis from IMP in ischemic tissues of bottlenose dolphins during diving. Purine recycling and physiological adaptations may maintain the ATP concentrations in bottlenose dolphins after diving and exercise. PMID:26506131

  18. Report of 2009 Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) Life History Workshop: expanding network capabilities

    OpenAIRE

    Lynott, Margaret; Stolen, Megan; McFee, Wayne; Durden, Wendy Noke; Powell, James; Mazza, Teresa; Barco, Susan

    2012-01-01

    The Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center Foundation’s Stranding Response Program (VAQS) was awarded a grant in 2008 to conduct life history analysis on over 10 years of Tursiops truncatus teeth and gonad samples from stranded animals in Virginia. A major part of this collaborative grant included a workshop involving life historians from Hubbs-Sea World Research Institute (HSWRI), NOS, Texas A & M University (TAMU), and University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW). The workshop was held...

  19. Heterologous murine and bovine IVF using bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) spermatozoa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez-Calabuig, M J; de la Fuente, J; Laguna-Barraza, R; Beltrán-Breña, P; Martínez-Nevado, E; Johnston, S D; Rizos, D; Gutiérrez-Adán, A; Pérez-Gutiérrez, J F

    2015-10-01

    Assisted reproductive technologies are of great importance for increasing the genetic diversity in captive animals. The use of bovine or murine oocytes in heterologous IVF provides advantages compared to homologous IVF in nondomestic animals, such as the accessibility to oocytes and the availability of well-developed in vitro maturation systems. The aim of this study was to determine the heterologous IVF parameters using cryopreserved dolphin spermatozoa and zona-intact bovine or murine oocytes and to examine the nuclear chromatin status of the dolphin spermatozoa. All the processes involved in the fertilization including embryo cleavage were observed by confocal microscopy and hybrid embryo formation was confirmed by polymerase chain reaction. Heterologous bovine IVF showed no polyspermy, lower percentages of pronuclear formation, and a lower cleavage rate compared to homologous IVF group (34.8% vs. 89.3%). Heterologous murine IVF showed a lower cleavage rate than homologous IVF (9.6% vs. 77.1%). With respect to dolphin sperm chromatin, it was more stable, i.e. more resistant to EDTA-SDS decondensation than the bovine sperm chromatin. This study revealed the stability of the dolphin sperm chromatin and the ability of the dolphin spermatozoa to penetrate zona-intact bovine and murine oocytes, leading to hybrid embryo formation. PMID:26149074

  20. Use of the robust design to estimate seasonal abundance and demographic parameters of a coastal bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus population.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Holly C Smith

    Full Text Available As delphinid populations become increasingly exposed to human activities we rely on our capacity to produce accurate abundance estimates upon which to base management decisions. This study applied mark-recapture methods following the Robust Design to estimate abundance, demographic parameters, and temporary emigration rates of an Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus population off Bunbury, Western Australia. Boat-based photo-identification surveys were conducted year-round over three consecutive years along pre-determined transect lines to create a consistent sampling effort throughout the study period and area. The best fitting capture-recapture model showed a population with a seasonal Markovian temporary emigration with time varying survival and capture probabilities. Abundance estimates were seasonally dependent with consistently lower numbers obtained during winter and higher during summer and autumn across the three-year study period. Specifically, abundance estimates for all adults and juveniles (combined varied from a low of 63 (95% CI 59 to 73 in winter of 2007 to a high of 139 (95% CI 134 to148 in autumn of 2009. Temporary emigration rates (γ' for animals absent in the previous period ranged from 0.34 to 0.97 (mean  =  0.54; ±SE 0.11 with a peak during spring. Temporary emigration rates for animals present during the previous period (γ'' were lower, ranging from 0.00 to 0.29, with a mean of 0.16 (± SE 0.04. This model yielded a mean apparent survival estimate for juveniles and adults (combined of 0.95 (± SE 0.02 and a capture probability from 0.07 to 0.51 with a mean of 0.30 (± SE 0.04. This study demonstrates the importance of incorporating temporary emigration to accurately estimate abundance of coastal delphinids. Temporary emigration rates were high in this study, despite the large area surveyed, indicating the challenges of sampling highly mobile animals which range over large spatial areas.

  1. Use of the robust design to estimate seasonal abundance and demographic parameters of a coastal bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Holly C; Pollock, Ken; Waples, Kelly; Bradley, Stuart; Bejder, Lars

    2013-01-01

    As delphinid populations become increasingly exposed to human activities we rely on our capacity to produce accurate abundance estimates upon which to base management decisions. This study applied mark-recapture methods following the Robust Design to estimate abundance, demographic parameters, and temporary emigration rates of an Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) population off Bunbury, Western Australia. Boat-based photo-identification surveys were conducted year-round over three consecutive years along pre-determined transect lines to create a consistent sampling effort throughout the study period and area. The best fitting capture-recapture model showed a population with a seasonal Markovian temporary emigration with time varying survival and capture probabilities. Abundance estimates were seasonally dependent with consistently lower numbers obtained during winter and higher during summer and autumn across the three-year study period. Specifically, abundance estimates for all adults and juveniles (combined) varied from a low of 63 (95% CI 59 to 73) in winter of 2007 to a high of 139 (95% CI 134 to148) in autumn of 2009. Temporary emigration rates (γ') for animals absent in the previous period ranged from 0.34 to 0.97 (mean  =  0.54; ±SE 0.11) with a peak during spring. Temporary emigration rates for animals present during the previous period (γ'') were lower, ranging from 0.00 to 0.29, with a mean of 0.16 (± SE 0.04). This model yielded a mean apparent survival estimate for juveniles and adults (combined) of 0.95 (± SE 0.02) and a capture probability from 0.07 to 0.51 with a mean of 0.30 (± SE 0.04). This study demonstrates the importance of incorporating temporary emigration to accurately estimate abundance of coastal delphinids. Temporary emigration rates were high in this study, despite the large area surveyed, indicating the challenges of sampling highly mobile animals which range over large spatial areas. PMID:24130781

  2. Anticipatory behavior in captive bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus): a preliminary study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jensen, Ann-Louise M; Delfour, Fabienne; Carter, Toby

    2013-01-01

    This study examined whether a group of captive dolphins displayed anticipatory behaviors before shows. In general, anticipation occurs when an event is being predicted. Anticipatory behavior is defined by Spruijt et al. as "responses elicited by rewarding stimuli that lead to and facilitate consummatory behavior (Spruijt et al., 2001, Appl Anim Behav Sci 72: 145-171)." Using behavioral recording techniques, the behaviors, breathing rates, space use, and activity levels of all dolphins was recorded both before and after shows. Analysis compared pre- and post-show data in addition to looking at gradual changes in behavior prior to show sessions. Significant changes were found in the behavior and space use prior to sessions with the dolphins decreasing their activity levels, spending more time at the surface and moving towards the starting point of a session before it took place. There was a significant increase in the vigilant behavior before sessions, indicating that the dolphins were becoming more alert towards their trainers and other activities around the pool. This result mirrors previous research with other captive species; as feeding time was approaching, the animals seemed to "wait" and look for the handlers. Any behavioral change that may be regarded as anticipatory behavior was not evidently abnormal or stereotypic in nature, and breathing rates remained stable indicating that the animals do not perceive the shows as stressful or as an aversive experience. Additionally, behavior and level of activity remained stable following the sessions. PMID:23633033

  3. Evaluation of two commercially available immunological kits for the diagnosis of Helicobacter spp. in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernal-Guadarrama, María José; Fernández-Gallardo, Nuhacet; Zamora-Padrón, Rafael; Pacheco, Víctor; Reyes-Batlle, María; Valladares, Basilio; Lorenzo-Morales, Jacob; Martínez-Carretero, Enrique

    2015-05-01

    Helicobacter pylori is considered to be responsible for the most common gastric infections in humans worldwide. In animals, other Helicobacter species are linked to gastritis with and without the presence of ulcers in their respective hosts. Moreover, gastric ulcers have been reported for decades in wild and captive dolphins. Clinical signs include lack of appetite, anorexia, abdominal tenderness, depression, and occasional unresponsiveness. In this study, serum and stool of nine bottlenose dolphins from Loro Parque collection Tenerife, Spain were examined for the presence of Helicobacter spp. The aim of our study was to evaluate the use of two commercially available kits for the detection of H. pylori in humans: a stool antigen immunoassay (Letitest H. pylori CARD) and a Western blot assay (EUROLINE-WB H. pylori) that were adapted to identify specific Helicobacter spp. antibodies in the tested Loro Parque bottlenose dolphin collection. The utility of these diagnostic kits for their application in dolphins is demonstrated, and their use in the future for the diagnosis of Helicobacter spp. in both wild and captive dolphins is proposed in this study. PMID:25578177

  4. Toward the identification, characterization and experimental culture of Lacazia loboi from Atlantic bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaefer, Adam M; Reif, John S; Guzmán, Esther A; Bossart, Gregory D; Ottuso, Patrick; Snyder, Joseph; Medalie, Neil; Rosato, Ralph; Han, Sushan; Fair, Patricia A; McCarthy, Peter J

    2016-08-01

    Lobomycosis (lacaziosis) is a chronic, granulomatous, fungal infection of the skin and subcutaneous tissues of humans and dolphins. To date, the causative agent, the yeast-like organism Lacazia loboi, has not been grown in the laboratory, and there have been no recent reports describing attempts to culture the organism. As a result, studies on the efficacy of therapeutics and potential environmental reservoirs have not been conducted. Therefore, the objective of the current study was to utilize both classical and novel microbiological methods in order to stimulate growth of Lacazia cells collected from dolphin lesions. This included the experimental inoculation of novel media, cell culture, and the use of artificial skin matrices. Although unsuccessful, the methods and results of this study provide important insight into new approaches that could be utilized in future investigations of this elusive organism. PMID:27118803

  5. Insights about the genetic diversity and population structure of an offshore group of common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in the Mid-Atlantic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castilho, C S; Pedone-Valdez, F; Bertuol, F; Fruet, P; Genoves, R C; Di Tullio, J C; Caon, G; Hoffmann, L S; Freitas, T R O

    2015-01-01

    Although the genus Tursiops has a worldwide distribution and is globally well-studied, some dolphin populations continue to face high risks of decline. Hence, it is necessary to assess the genetic diversity and structure of this genus to properly assess its conservation status and to implement appropriate management actions. In Brazil, genetic studies on this group remain rare, particularly for populations inhabiting offshore waters. Saint Peter and Saint Paul Archipelago (SPSPA) is a small group of islands located in the Mid- Atlantic Ridge, where recent studies of the Tursiops truncatus group indicate that individuals are resident throughout the year around the archipelago, exhibiting considerable site fidelity. A previous study with this group indicated that the individuals form an isolated population. To test this hypothesis, and describe the genetic diversity of SPSPA individuals, we assessed 12 microsatellite loci and a portion of the mitochondrial control region. Bayesian analysis revealed that SPSPA bottlenose dolphins form a unique population. In a phylogeographic perspective, we found that individuals from SPSPA shared mtDNA haplotypes with inshore and offshore individuals from North Atlantic, suggesting that they are not currently isolated from their conspecifics. Mirroring mtDNA findings, microsatellite analysis revealed that most of the pairs of individuals sampled seem to be unrelated (83.8%) and no indication of inbreeding, what would be expected if a small population such as SPSPA was reproductively isolated. PMID:25966105

  6. Coinfection by Ureaplasma spp., Photobacterium damselae and an Actinomyces-like microorganism in a bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) with pleuropneumonia stranded along the Adriatic coast of Italy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Francesco, Gabriella; Cammà, Cesare; Curini, Valentina; Mazzariol, Sandro; Proietto, Umberto; Di Francesco, Cristina Esmeralda; Ferri, Nicola; Di Provvido, Andrea; Di Guardo, Giovanni

    2016-04-01

    A case of pleuropneumonia is reported in an adult male bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) found stranded in 2014 along the Central Adriatic coast of Italy. A severe pyogranulomatous pneumonia and thoracic lymphadenopathy were present at necropsy. Numerous Splendore-Hoeppli bodies were found microscopically scattered throughout the lung. Histochemical evidence of Actinomyces-like organisms was obtained from the pulmonary parenchyma, with a strain of Photobacterium damselae subsp. piscicida and Ureaplasma spp. being also isolated from the same tissue. For the latter, a genome fragment of approximately 1400bp from the 16s rDNA was amplified and sequenced. BLAST analysis revealed 100% identity with an uncultured Ureaplasma spp. (JQ193826.1). PMID:27033917

  7. Influence of seasonal forcing on habitat use by bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus in the Northern Adriatic Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bearzi, Giovanni; Azzellino, Arianna; Politi, Elena; Costa, Marina; Bastianini, Mauro

    2008-12-01

    Bottlenose dolphins are the only cetaceans regularly observed in the northern Adriatic Sea, but they survive at low densities and are exposed to significant threats. This study investigates some of the factors that influence habitat use by the animals in a largely homogeneous environment by combining dolphin data with hydrological and physiographical variables sampled from oceanographic ships. Surveys were conducted year-round between 2003 and 2006, totalling 3,397 km of effort. Habitat modelling based on a binary stepwise logistic regression analysis predicted between 81% and 93% of the cells where animals were present. Seven environmental covariates were important predictors: oxygen saturation, water temperature, density anomaly, gradient of density anomaly, turbidity, distance from the nearest coast and bottom depth. The model selected consistent predictors in spring and summer. However, the relationship (inverse or direct) between each predictor and dolphin presence varied among seasons, and different predictors were selected in fall. This suggests that dolphin distribution changed depending on seasonal forcing. As the study area is relatively uniform in terms of bottom topography, habitat use by the animals seems to depend on complex interactions among hydrological variables, caused primarily by seasonal change and likely to determine shifts in prey distribution.

  8. Remarkably low genetic diversity and strong population structure in common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from coastal waters of the Southwestern Atlantic Ocean

    OpenAIRE

    Fruet, P.F.; Secchi, E.R.; Daura-Jorge, F.; Vermeulen, E.; Flores, P.A.C.; Simões-Lopes, P. C.; Genoves, R.C.; Laporta, P.; Di Tullio, J.; Freitas, T. R. O.; Dalla Rosa, L.; Valiati, V.H.; Beheregaray, L.; Möller, L M

    2014-01-01

    Knowledge about the ecology of bottlenose dolphins in the Southwestern Atlantic Ocean is scarce. Increased by-catch rates over the last decade in coastal waters of southern Brazil have raised concerns about the decline in abundance of local dolphin communities. Lack of relevant data, including information on population structure and connectivity, have hampered an assessment of the conservation status of bottlenose dolphin communities in this region. Here we combined analyses of 16 microsatell...

  9. Ratiometric measurements of adiponectin by mass spectrometry in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus with iron overload reveal an association with insulin resistance and glucagon

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin A Neely

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available High molecular weight (HMW adiponectin levels are reduced in humans with type 2 diabetes and insulin resistance. Similar to humans with insulin resistance, managed bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus diagnosed with hemochromatosis (iron overload have higher levels of 2 h post-prandial plasma insulin than healthy controls. A parallel reaction monitoring assay for dolphin serum adiponectin was developed based on tryptic peptides identified by mass spectrometry. Using identified post-translational modifications, a differential measurement was constructed. Total and unmodified adiponectin levels were measured in sera from dolphins with (n=4 and without (n=5 iron overload. This measurement yielded total adiponectin levels as well as site specific percent unmodified adiponectin that may inversely correlate with HMW adiponectin. Differences in insulin levels between iron overload cases and controls were observed 2 h post-prandial, but not during the fasting state. Thus, post-prandial as well as fasting serum adiponectin levels were measured to determine whether adiponectin and insulin would follow similar patterns. There was no difference in total adiponectin or percent unmodified adiponectin from case or control fasting animals. There was no difference in post-prandial total adiponectin levels between case and control dolphins (mean ± S.D. at 763 ± 298 and 727 ± 291 pmol/ml, respectively (p = 0.91; however, percent unmodified adiponectin was significantly higher in post-prandial cases compared controls (30.0 ± 6.3 versus 17.0 ± 6.6%, respectively; p = 0.016. Interestingly, both total and percent unmodified adiponectin were correlated with glucagon levels in controls (r = 0.999, p < 0.001, but not in cases, which is possibly a reflection of insulin resistance. Although total adiponectin levels were not significantly different, the elevated percent unmodified adiponectin follows a trend similar to HMW adiponectin reported for humans with

  10. Effect of organochlorine contaminants and individual biological traits on blubber retinoid concentrations in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tornero, Victoria; Borrell, Asuncion; Aguilar, Alex; Wells, Randall S; Forcada, Jaume; Rowles, Teri K; Reijnders, Peter J H

    2005-02-01

    Here we assessed retinoids as biomarkers of contaminant exposure by studying whether the sex, age, lipid content and organochlorine concentrations of bottlenose dolphins induced variation in retinoid status and its deposition in blubber. Blubber samples were collected from 47 individuals of known age and gender from Sarasota Bay in June 2000 and 2001. The sample included a representative cross-section of the resident dolphin community, with ages ranging from 2 to 50 years. Organochlorine levels showed the age- and sex-related variation commonly observed in other species, with concentrations increasing in youngsters of both sexes and in adult males, and decreasing in adult females after the onset of maturity. Blubber lipid content was low in the overall population and significantly decreased with age in adult males. Retinoid blubber concentrations were comparable to other odontocete species previously studied, and were strongly determined by lipid content. As a consequence of the latter, retinoid concentration was observed to decrease with age in adult males. This effect could not be statistically dissociated from the negative correlation observed between levels of organochlorines and retinoid blubber concentration. Consequently, we could not clarify whether high organochlorine loads in this population lowered retinoid concentrations or, conversely, whether depleted lipid reserves were indeed responsible for the high organochlorine concentrations and the low retinoid levels detected in blubber. With the current knowledge, both options should be considered and investigated, with initial focus on male dolphins. PMID:15690090

  11. Estimates of DNA strand breakage in bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) leukocytes measured with the Comet and DNA diffusion assays.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Díaz, Adriana; Carro, Sandra; Santiago, Livia; Estévez, Juan; Guevara, Celia; Blanco, Miriam; Sánchez, Laima; Sánchez, Liena; López, Nirka; Cruz, Danilo; López, Ronar; Cuetara, Elizabeth B; Fuentes, Jorge Luis

    2009-04-01

    The analysis of DNA damage by mean of Comet or single cell gel electrophoresis (SCGE) assay has been commonly used to assess genotoxic impact in aquatic animals being able to detect exposure to low concentrations of contaminants in a wide range of species. The aims of this work were 1) to evaluate the usefulness of the Comet to detect DNA strand breakage in dolphin leukocytes, 2) to use the DNA diffusion assay to determine the amount of DNA strand breakage associated with apoptosis or necrosis, and 3) to determine the proportion of DNA strand breakage that was unrelated to apoptosis and necrosis. Significant intra-individual variation was observed in all of the estimates of DNA damage. DNA strand breakage was overestimated because a considerable amount (~29%) of the DNA damage was derived from apoptosis and necrosis. The remaining DNA damage in dolphin leukocytes was caused by factors unrelated to apoptosis and necrosis. These results indicate that the DNA diffusion assay is a complementary tool that can be used together with the Comet assay to assess DNA damage in bottlenose dolphins. PMID:21637693

  12. Estimates of DNA strand breakage in bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus leukocytes measured with the Comet and DNA diffusion assays

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adriana Díaz

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available The analysis of DNA damage by mean of Comet or single cell gel electrophoresis (SCGE assay has been commonly used to assess genotoxic impact in aquatic animals being able to detect exposure to low concentrations of contaminants in a wide range of species. The aims of this work were 1 to evaluate the usefulness of the Comet to detect DNA strand breakage in dolphin leukocytes, 2 to use the DNA diffusion assay to determine the amount of DNA strand breakage associated with apoptosis or necrosis, and 3 to determine the proportion of DNA strand breakage that was unrelated to apoptosis and necrosis. Significant intra-individual variation was observed in all of the estimates of DNA damage. DNA strand breakage was overestimated because a considerable amount (~29% of the DNA damage was derived from apoptosis and necrosis. The remaining DNA damage in dolphin leukocytes was caused by factors unrelated to apoptosis and necrosis. These results indicate that the DNA diffusion assay is a complementary tool that can be used together with the Comet assay to assess DNA damage in bottlenose dolphins.

  13. Abundancia de dos poblaciones de toninas (Tursiops truncatus en el norte de Veracruz, México Abundance of two populations of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus in northern Veracruz, Mexico

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michelle P. Valdes-Arellanes

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available En México no se conoce el tamaño de las poblaciones de la tonina (Tursiops truncatus debido a su gran movilidad y al ocasional intercambio de individuos entre poblaciones. El objetivo de este estudio fue determinar la abundancia de toninas en la zona norte de Veracruz. De marzo de 2005 a diciembre de 2007 se realizaron 50 navegaciones con un esfuerzo total de 236.7 horas. Los resultados obtenidos de la foto-identificación de toninas, se emplearon en el modelo Jolly-Seber y se estimó con este modelo un total de N=302 ±113 organismos para toda el área de estudio. Para Tamiahua, se estimó una población de N=177 ± 10 delfines y para Tuxpan N=161 ± 68 delfines. Estos resultados sugieren que existe un mínimo intercambio de delfines entre zonas y por tanto, las poblaciones no están aisladas; sin embargo, los organismos tienen preferencia por ciertas áreas. La foto-recaptura de algunos individuos en la zona de Tamiahua confirma que la fidelidad al sitio se ha mantenido por 13 años. Es probable que esto se deba a que cada una de las zonas presenta estuarios con alta productividad que son ideales para refugio y crianza de las toninas.In Mexico, the population size of the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus is unknown, due to the fact that they are highly mobile, and occasionally there are exchanges of individuals between populations. The objective of this study was to determine the abundance of dolphins in the north of Veracruz. From March 2005 to December 2007 were 50 surveys with a total effort of 236.7 hours. The results of the photo-identification of dolphins were used in the Jolly-Seber model, and with this model we estimated a total of N = 302 ± 113 dolphins throughout the study area. For Tamiahua a population estimate of N = 177 ± 10 dolphins, and for Tuxpan N = 161 ± 68 dolphins. These results suggest that there is minimal exchange of dolphins between areas; therefore it is assumed that populations are not isolated but dolphins

  14. Diurnal and annual changes in serum cortisol concentrations in Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins Tursiops aduncus and killer whales Orcinus orca.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Miwa; Uchida, Senzo; Ueda, Keiichi; Tobayama, Teruo; Katsumata, Etsuko; Yoshioka, Motoi; Aida, Katsumi

    2003-07-01

    Until present, fundamental studies on cortisol secretory patterns have not been conducted in cetaceans. The objectives of this study were: (1) to examine diurnal changes in serum cortisol concentrations in Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins Tursiops aduncus and killer whales Orcinus orca, (2) to investigate annual cortisol changes in killer whales, and (3) to investigate the relationship between cortisol and sex steroids (testosterone and progesterone) concentrations in killer whales. Diurnal changes in serum cortisol concentrations were investigated at various intervals in the two species. In Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins, serum cortisol levels exhibited the same episodic fluctuations for 24 h as did diurnal terrestrial mammals: cortisol levels were lower at 18:00 h and higher in the early morning. In killer whales, cortisol concentrations continued to decrease until 18:00 h, after which they fluctuated, and then increased in the next morning. Annual changes in cortisol levels were investigated by collecting blood samples every two weeks from two male killer whales and a pregnant female one twice per day (during 09:00-10:00 and 16:00-17:00 h) throughout a one-year period. Regarding sera collected during 09:00-10:00 h from the female, cortisol concentrations showed cyclic changes having about 4-month intervals. In males, cortisol showed higher concentrations in winter and lower concentrations during the summer season. There was a negative correlation between cortisol and progesterone levels in the female and a negative correlation was also observed between cortisol and testosterone in male no. 2. In the female and male no. 1, cortisol levels during 09:00-10:00 h were significantly higher than those during 16:00-17:00 h, and their data are considered to support observations regarding diurnal changes in cortisol levels in the two cetacean species. PMID:12849966

  15. Analysis of diarrhetic shellfish poisoning toxins and pectenotoxin-2 in the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Zhihong; Broadwater, Margaret H; Ramsdell, John S

    2015-10-16

    Toxins produced by harmful algae are associated with detrimental health effects and mass mortalities of marine mammals. Liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) is generally used to confirm the presence of algal toxins in marine mammals. Sample preparation and LC-MS/MS methods for the determination of three diarrhetic shellfish poisoning (DSP) toxins (okadaic acid, OA; dinophysistoxin-1, DTX1; dinophysistoxin-2, DTX2) and pectenotoxin-2 (PTX2) in bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) urine and tissue samples were evaluated using spike-and-recovery tests. Sample clean-up with either reversed-phase silica or polymeric solid-phase extraction (SPE) reduced interference of sample matrices and improved toxin recoveries, with polymeric SPE showing higher sample loading capacity. LC separation on Xbridge C18 columns using acetonitrile/water gradient elutions with ammonia as the additive was chosen for its high detectivity and sensitivity in the MS detection of DSP toxins in negative ion mode. The retention times of OA, DTX1, and DTX2, separated as negative ions, increased with LC column temperature while the retention time of PTX2, separated as the neutral molecule, was weakly affected. At the same column temperature, retention times of OA, DTX1, and DTX2 gradually increased as the mobile phases aged while the retention time of PTX2 remained unchanged; higher column temperatures resulted in a greater increase in the retention time of each DSP toxin with mobile phase aging. Average recoveries of the 4 toxins in bottlenose dolphin samples ranged from 80% to 130% with relative standard deviations of less than 15% using the LC mobile phases prepared within one week at a column temperature of 30°C or 40°C. The preferred column temperature was 30°C, as the retention times of DSP toxins were less affected by mobile phase aging at this temperature. The limit of detection of each toxin analyzed in bottlenose dolphin samples was 2.8 ng/g or less in tissue

  16. Development and application of specific cytokine assays in tissue samples from a bottlenose dolphin with hyperinsulinemia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chronic inflammation has been associated with insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes in humans. Postmortem hepatic and splenic tissue from a 46-year old geriatric male bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) with insulin resistance (chronic hyperinsulinemia with hyperglycemia) , chronic = inflamma...

  17. Modelling the emergence and stability of a vertically transmitted cultural trait in bottlenose dolphins

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kopps, Anna M.; Sherwin, William B.

    2012-01-01

    An apparently vertically, socially transmitted foraging specialization ('sponging') in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.) is observed in two adjacent gulfs within Shark Bay, Western Australia, where sponging has possibly spread from independent innovations. We designed an individual-based model base

  18. Monitoring the habitat use of common Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus using passive acoustics in a Mediterranean marine protected area

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. LA MANNA

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available The Mediterranean Tursiops truncatus subpopulation has been classified as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List because of its decline. This species in coastal areas is exposed to a wide variety of threats: directed kills, bycatch, reduced prey availability caused by environmental degradation and overfishing, habitat degradation including disturbances from boat traffic and noise. Despite the increase in boat traffic in the Mediterranean Sea, the effect on T. truncatus’ habitat use has been studied in little detail and few data have been published. This study represents the first attempt to characterise spatial and temporal habitat use by T. truncatus and its relation to boat traffic in the Isole Pelagie Marine Protected Area (Italy on the basis of an originally developed passive acoustic monitoring system (PAM. The devices were deployed in 2 areas in the southern waters of Lampedusa, during 2 separate years (2006 and 2009, each time for 3 months (from July to September and in 6 time slots (3 diurnal and 3 nocturnal. Acoustic analysis showed that T. truncatus used the Southern coastal area of Lampedusa independently of the year, primarily during the early summer, a period coinciding with the peak of calving season. Dolphin occurrences appeared independent of boat traffic, with the exception of the smallest temporal scale (time slots: dolphin occurrences were more prevalent during the night when the level of boat traffic was lower. This study provides evidence on T. truncatus habitat use in the Mediterranean Sea and reveals that boat traffic could be one of the factors influencing it, thus stressing the need for further detailed investigation regarding this topic.

  19. Vascularization of air sinuses and fat bodies in the head of the Bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus: morphological implications on physiology

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    Alex eCostidis

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available AbstractCetaceans have long been considered capable of limiting diving-induced nitrogen absorption and subsequent decompression sickness through a series of behavioral, anatomical, and physiological adaptations. Recent studies however suggest that in some situations these adaptive mechanisms might be overcome, resulting in lethal and sublethal injuries. Perhaps most relevant to this discussion is the finding of intravascular gas and fat emboli in mass-stranded beaked whales. Although the source of the gas emboli has as yet to been ascertained, preliminary findings suggest nitrogen is the primary component. Since nitrogen gas embolus formation in divers is linked to nitrogen saturation, it seems premature to dismiss similar pathogenic mechanisms in breath-hold diving cetaceans. Due to the various anatomical adaptations in cetacean lungs, the pulmonary system is thought of as an unlikely site of significant nitrogen absorption. The accessory sinus system on the ventral head of odontocete cetaceans contains a sizeable volume of air that is exposed to the changing hydrostatic pressures during a dive, and is intimately associated with vasculature potentially capable of absorbing nitrogen through its walls. The source of the fat emboli has also remained elusive. Most mammalian fat deposits are considered poorly-vascularized and therefore unlikely sites of intravascular introduction of lipid, although cetacean blubber may not be as poorly vascularized as previously thought. We present new data on the vasculature of air sinuses and acoustic fat bodies in the head of bottlenose dolphins and compare it to published accounts. We show that the mandibular fat bodies and accessory sinus system are associated with extensive venous plexuses and suggest potential physiological and pathological implications.

  20. A systematic health assessment of indian ocean bottlenose (Tursiops aduncus and indo-pacific humpback (Sousa plumbea dolphins incidentally caught in shark nets off the KwaZulu-Natal Coast, South Africa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emily P Lane

    Full Text Available Coastal dolphins are regarded as indicators of changes in coastal marine ecosystem health that could impact humans utilizing the marine environment for food or recreation. Necropsy and histology examinations were performed on 35 Indian Ocean bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus and five Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins (Sousa plumbea incidentally caught in shark nets off the KwaZulu-Natal coast, South Africa, between 2010 and 2012. Parasitic lesions included pneumonia (85%, abdominal and thoracic serositis (75%, gastroenteritis (70%, hepatitis (62%, and endometritis (42%. Parasitic species identified were Halocercus sp. (lung, Crassicauda sp. (skeletal muscle and Xenobalanus globicipitis (skin. Additional findings included bronchiolar epithelial mineralisation (83%, splenic filamentous tags (45%, non-suppurative meningoencephalitis (39%, and myocardial fibrosis (26%. No immunohistochemically positive reaction was present in lesions suggestive of dolphin morbillivirus, Toxoplasma gondii and Brucella spp. The first confirmed cases of lobomycosis and sarcocystosis in South African dolphins were documented. Most lesions were mild, and all animals were considered to be in good nutritional condition, based on blubber thickness and muscle mass. Apparent temporal changes in parasitic disease prevalence may indicate a change in the host/parasite interface. This study provided valuable baseline information on conditions affecting coastal dolphin populations in South Africa and, to our knowledge, constitutes the first reported systematic health assessment in incidentally caught dolphins in the Southern Hemisphere. Further research on temporal disease trends as well as disease pathophysiology and anthropogenic factors affecting these populations is needed.

  1. Evidence for a Numerosity Category that is Based on Abstract Qualities of ‘Few’ versus ‘Many’ in the Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus)

    OpenAIRE

    OnurGüntürkün; SevgiYaman; AnnetteKilian

    2012-01-01

    A previous study (Kilian et al., 2003) had demonstrated that bottlenose dolphins can discriminate visual stimuli differing in numerosity. The aim of the present study was twofold: First, we sought to determine if dolphins are able to use a numerical category based on ‘few’ versus ‘many’ when discriminating stimuli according to the number of their constituent patterns. Second, we aimed to extend the previously demonstrated range of numbers, thereby testing the limits of the numerical abilities...

  2. In vitro exposure of DE-71, a penta-PBDE mixture, on immune endpoints in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) and B6C3F1 mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wirth, Jena R; Peden-Adams, Margie M; White, Natasha D; Bossart, Gregory D; Fair, Patricia A

    2015-02-01

    Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) are an emerging contaminant of concern with low level exposures demonstrating toxicity in laboratory animals and wildlife, although immunotoxicity studies have been limited. Bottlenose dolphin peripheral blood leukocytes (PBLs) and mouse splenocytes were exposed to environmentally relevant DE-71 (a penta-PBDE mixture) concentrations (0-50 µg ml(-1) ) in vitro. Natural killer (NK) cell activity and lymphocyte (B and T cell) proliferation were evaluated using the parallelogram approach for risk assessment. This study aimed to substantiate results from field studies with dolphins, assess the sensitivities between the mouse model and dolphins, and to evaluate risk using the parallelogram approach. In mouse cells, NK cell activity increased at in vitro doses 0.05, 0.5 and 25 µg DE-71 ml(-1) , whereas proliferation was not modulated. In dolphin cells, NK cell activity and lymphocyte proliferation was not altered after in vitro exposure. In vitro exposure of dolphin PBLs to DE-71 showed similar results to correlative field studies; NK cell activity in mice was more sensitive to in vitro exposure than dolphins, and the parallelogram approach showed correlation with all three endpoints to predict risk in bottlenose dolphins. PMID:24706408

  3. Evidence for a Numerosity Category that is Based on Abstract Qualities of ‘Few’ versus ‘Many’ in the Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    OnurGüntürkün

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available A previous study (Kilian et al., 2003 had demonstrated that bottlenose dolphins can discriminate visual stimuli differing in numerosity. The aim of the present study was twofold: First, we sought to determine if dolphins are able to use a numerical category based on ‘few’ versus ‘many’ when discriminating stimuli according to the number of their constituent patterns. Second, we aimed to extend the previously demonstrated range of numbers, thereby testing the limits of the numerical abilities of bottlenose dolphins. To this end, one adult bottlenose dolphin learned to discriminate between two simultaneously presented stimuli which varied in the number of elements they contained. After initial training, several confounding parameters were excluded to render it likely that discrimination performance indeed depended on numerosity. Subsequently, the animal was tested with new stimuli of intermediate as well as higher numbers of elements. Once discrimination had been achieved, a reversal-training on a subset of stimuli was initiated. Afterwards, the subject generalized the reversal successful to new and unreinforced stimuli. Our results reveal two main findings: Firstly, our data strongly suggest a magnitude and a distance effect. Thus, coding of numerical information in dolphins might follow logarithmic scaling as postulated by the Weber-Fechner law. Secondly, after learning a reversal of contingencies, the dolphin generalized the reversal successful to new and unreinforced stimuli. Thus, within the limits of a study that was conducted with a single individual, our results suggest that dolphins are able to learn and use a numerical category that is based on abstract qualities of ‘few’ versus ‘many’.

  4. Stable isotopes of captive Cetaceans (Killer Whales and Bottlenose dolphins)

    OpenAIRE

    Caut, Stéphane; Laran, Sophie; Garcia-Hartmann, Emmanuel; Das, Krishna

    2011-01-01

    There is currently a great deal of interest in using stable-isotope methods to investigate diet, trophic level and migration movement in wild cetaceans. Fundamental to the interpretation of these methods is the need to understand how diet isotopic values are reflected in consumer tissues. In this study, we investigated patterns of isotopic discrimination between diet and blood constituents of two species of cetaceans (killer whale, Orcinus orca and 19 bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops truncutus) f...

  5. Early Social Networks Predict Survival in Wild Bottlenose Dolphins

    OpenAIRE

    Stanton, Margaret A.; Mann, Janet

    2012-01-01

    A fundamental question concerning group-living species is what factors influence the evolution of sociality. Although several studies link adult social bonds to fitness, social patterns and relationships are often formed early in life and are also likely to have fitness consequences, particularly in species with lengthy developmental periods, extensive social learning, and early social bond-formation. In a longitudinal study of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.), calf social network structure...

  6. Behavioural ecology and habitat use of bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) in São Tomé and Príncipe

    OpenAIRE

    Pereira, Andreia Filipa da Silva, 1985-

    2012-01-01

    Tese de mestrado. Biologia (Biologia da Conservação). Universidade de Lisboa, Faculdade de Ciências, 2012 Ecological factors related to habitat type that influence food resources are major determinants in the way animals occur, select habitats, behave and interact with each other. The bottlenose dolphin is a cosmopolitan species, and because of its coastal habits in some areas populations have been declining. Additionally, in open environments there is a gap regarding information and asses...

  7. Estimates of DNA strand breakage in bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) leukocytes measured with the Comet and DNA diffusion assays

    OpenAIRE

    Adriana Díaz; Sandra Carro; Livia Santiago; Juan Estévez; Celia Guevara; Miriam Blanco; Laima Sánchez; Liena Sánchez; Nirka López; Danilo Cruz; Ronar López; Cuetara, Elizabeth B.; Jorge Luis Fuentes

    2009-01-01

    The analysis of DNA damage by mean of Comet or single cell gel electrophoresis (SCGE) assay has been commonly used to assess genotoxic impact in aquatic animals being able to detect exposure to low concentrations of contaminants in a wide range of species. The aims of this work were 1) to evaluate the usefulness of the Comet to detect DNA strand breakage in dolphin leukocytes, 2) to use the DNA diffusion assay to determine the amount of DNA strand breakage associated with apoptosis or necrosi...

  8. The neocortex of cetartiodactyls: I. A comparative Golgi analysis of neuronal morphology in the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), the minke whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata), and the humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butti, Camilla; Janeway, Caroline M; Townshend, Courtney; Wicinski, Bridget A; Reidenberg, Joy S; Ridgway, Sam H; Sherwood, Chet C; Hof, Patrick R; Jacobs, Bob

    2015-11-01

    The present study documents the morphology of neurons in several regions of the neocortex from the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), the North Atlantic minke whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata), and the humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae). Golgi-stained neurons (n = 210) were analyzed in the frontal and temporal neocortex as well as in the primary visual and primary motor areas. Qualitatively, all three species exhibited a diversity of neuronal morphologies, with spiny neurons including typical pyramidal types, similar to those observed in primates and rodents, as well as other spiny neuron types that had more variable morphology and/or orientation. Five neuron types, with a vertical apical dendrite, approximated the general pyramidal neuron morphology (i.e., typical pyramidal, extraverted, magnopyramidal, multiapical, and bitufted neurons), with a predominance of typical and extraverted pyramidal neurons. In what may represent a cetacean morphological apomorphy, both typical pyramidal and magnopyramidal neurons frequently exhibited a tri-tufted variant. In the humpback whale, there were also large, star-like neurons with no discernable apical dendrite. Aspiny bipolar and multipolar interneurons were morphologically consistent with those reported previously in other mammals. Quantitative analyses showed that neuronal size and dendritic extent increased in association with body size and brain mass (bottlenose dolphin < minke whale < humpback whale). The present data thus suggest that certain spiny neuron morphologies may be apomorphies in the neocortex of cetaceans as compared to other mammals and that neuronal dendritic extent covaries with brain and body size. PMID:25100560

  9. Stereology of the thyroid gland in Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus in comparison with human (Homo sapiens: quantitative and functional implications.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian Chin Wing Kot

    Full Text Available The mammalian thyroid gland maintains basal metabolism in tissues for optimal function. Determining thyroid volume is important in assessing growth and involution. Volume estimation is also important in stereological studies. Direct measurements of colloid volume and nuclear-to-cytoplasmic ratio of the follicular cells may provide important information about thyroid gland function such as hormone storage and secretion, which helps understand the changes at morphological and functional levels. The present study determined the colloid volume using simple stereological principle and the nuclear-to-cytoplasmic ratio of 4 Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins and 2 human thyroid glands. In both dolphin and human thyroid glands, the size of the follicles tended to be quite variable. The distribution of large and small follicles within the thyroid gland was also found to be random in both the dolphin and human thyroid gland; however, the size of follicles appeared to decrease as a function of increasing age in the dolphin thyroid gland. The mean colloid volume of the dolphin thyroid gland and human thyroid gland was 1.22×10(5 µm(3 and 7.02×10(5 µm(3 respectively. The dolphin and human subjects had a significant difference in the mean colloid volume. The mean N/C ratio of the dolphin thyroid follicular epithelia and human follicular epithelia was 0.50 and 0.64 respectively. The dolphin and human subjects had a significant difference in the mean N/C ratio. This information contributes to understanding dolphin thyroid physiology and its structural adaptations to meet the physical demands of the aquatic environment, and aids with ultrasonography and corrective therapy in live subjects.

  10. Gene expression changes in bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops truncatus, skin cells following exposure to methylmercury (MeHg) or perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mollenhauer, Meagan A.M. [Department of Pediatrics, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC (United States); Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology and Pathobiology, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC (United States)], E-mail: willimea@musc.edu; Carter, Barbara J. [EcoArray, Inc., Gainesville, FL (United States); Peden-Adams, Margie M. [Department of Pediatrics, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC (United States); Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology and Pathobiology, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC (United States); Marine Biomedicine and Environmental Science Center, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC (United States); Mystic Aquarium and Institute for Exploration, Mystic, CT (United States); Bossart, Gregory D. [Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institution, Fort Pierce, FL (United States); Fair, Patricia A. [National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration/National Ocean Service/Center for Coastal Environmental Health and Biomolecular Research, Charleston, SC (United States)

    2009-01-18

    Methylmercury (MeHg) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) bioaccumulate and biomagnify in the environment and increasing concentrations of these pollutants have been found in wildlife and humans. Both chemicals are worldwide contaminants with wide ranging biological effects and have been identified in relatively high concentrations in apex level marine mammals such as bottlenose dolphins. The primary objective of this study was to determine if exposure to MeHg or PFOS would alter the gene expression in primary bottlenose dolphin epidermal cell cultures. Primary skin cells were isolated and cultured from skin samples collected from wild bottlenose dolphins. The cells were subsequently exposed to 13 ppm PFOS or 1 ppm MeHg and changes in gene expression were analyzed by suppressive subtractive hybridization (SSH) and quantitative real-time PCR (QPCR). 116 genes were positively identified in the dolphin skin cells by SSH. Of these, 16 total genes were analyzed by QPCR (9 and 11 genes following PFOS or MeHg exposure, respectively, with four overlapping genes). Results indicate MeHg significantly alters gene expression patterns following 24 h exposure, but has no measurable effect after only 1 h. PFOS exposure, however, caused significant alterations following both 1 and 25 h. Overall, the changes in gene expression observed indicate these concentrations of MeHg and PFOS significantly alter normal gene expression patterns. The changes in gene expression following exposure to these contaminants not only indicate a cellular stress response, but also decreased cell cycle progression and cellular proliferation and reduced protein translation. Alterations in normal cellular biology, like those observed, may lead to changes in health in marine mammals exposed to contaminants; however, this warrants further investigation.

  11. Gene expression changes in bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops truncatus, skin cells following exposure to methylmercury (MeHg) or perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Methylmercury (MeHg) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) bioaccumulate and biomagnify in the environment and increasing concentrations of these pollutants have been found in wildlife and humans. Both chemicals are worldwide contaminants with wide ranging biological effects and have been identified in relatively high concentrations in apex level marine mammals such as bottlenose dolphins. The primary objective of this study was to determine if exposure to MeHg or PFOS would alter the gene expression in primary bottlenose dolphin epidermal cell cultures. Primary skin cells were isolated and cultured from skin samples collected from wild bottlenose dolphins. The cells were subsequently exposed to 13 ppm PFOS or 1 ppm MeHg and changes in gene expression were analyzed by suppressive subtractive hybridization (SSH) and quantitative real-time PCR (QPCR). 116 genes were positively identified in the dolphin skin cells by SSH. Of these, 16 total genes were analyzed by QPCR (9 and 11 genes following PFOS or MeHg exposure, respectively, with four overlapping genes). Results indicate MeHg significantly alters gene expression patterns following 24 h exposure, but has no measurable effect after only 1 h. PFOS exposure, however, caused significant alterations following both 1 and 25 h. Overall, the changes in gene expression observed indicate these concentrations of MeHg and PFOS significantly alter normal gene expression patterns. The changes in gene expression following exposure to these contaminants not only indicate a cellular stress response, but also decreased cell cycle progression and cellular proliferation and reduced protein translation. Alterations in normal cellular biology, like those observed, may lead to changes in health in marine mammals exposed to contaminants; however, this warrants further investigation

  12. Abundance and Summer Distribution of a Local Stock of Black Sea Bottlenose Dolphins, Tursiops truncatus (Cetacea, Delphinidae, in Coastal Waters near Sudak (Ukraine, Crimea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gladilina E. V.

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The first assessment of abundance of a local population of bottlenose dolphins in the Black Sea (near the Sudak coast in 2011–2012 has been conducted: the results of a mark-recapture study of photo identified animals were complemented by a vessel line transect survey. The overall abundance of a population was estimated at between 621 ± 198 and 715 ± 267 animals (Chapman and Petersen estimates, and the majority of members of the population were recorded in the surveyed area. The summer range covered the area of a few hundred square kilometers, similar to migrating coastal stocks in other world regions. The greatest density of distribution was observed in August in sea 45–60 m deep; in addition, frequent approaches to the coastline are usual for dolphins of this stock. These trends in distribution may be partly explained by distribution of prey. Interaction with sprat trawling fisheries can be a factor shaping the local population structure. Coastal waters of Sudak and adjoining sea areas are an important habitat for bottlenose dolphins in the northern Black Sea, significant for their conservation.

  13. The vocal imitation of bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) signature whistles: their use in vocal matching interactions and their role as vocal labels

    OpenAIRE

    King, Stephanie Laura

    2012-01-01

    The bottlenose dolphin uses vocal learning to develop its own unique acoustic signal. This signal encodes the identity of the signaller, and is known as the animal’s signature whistle. The dolphin’s ability for vocal learning means that the signature whistle of one animal may be found in the vocal repertoire of other animals. This copying of signature whistle types may allow conspecifics to label or address one another. This thesis investigated the use of signature whistle copying in both cap...

  14. Prevalence of brevetoxins in prey fish of bottlenose dolphins in Sarasota Bay, Florida

    OpenAIRE

    Fire, Spencer E.; Flewelling, Leanne J.; Naar, Jerome; Twiner, Michael J.; Henry, Michael S.; Pierce, Richard H.; Gannon, Damon P.; Wang, Zhihong; Davidson, Leigh; Wells, Randall S.

    2008-01-01

    Blooms of the brevetoxin-producing dinoflagellate Karenia brevis have been linked to high mortality of bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus on Florida’s Gulf of Mexico coast. A clear understanding of trophic transfer of brevetoxin from its algal source up the food web to top predators is needed to assess exposure of affected dolphin populations. Prey fish constitute a means of accumulating and transferring brevetoxins and are potential vectors of brevetoxin to dolphins frequently exposed to...

  15. Cetacean Morbillivirus in Coastal Indo-Pacific Bottlenose Dolphins, Western Australia

    OpenAIRE

    Stephens, Nahiid; Duignan, Pádraig J.; Wang, Jianning; Bingham, John; Finn, Hugh; Bejder, Lars; Patterson, Anthony P.; Holyoake, Carly

    2014-01-01

    Cetacean morbillivirus (CeMV) has caused several epizootics in multiple species of cetaceans globally and is an emerging disease among cetaceans in Australia. We detected CeMV in 2 stranded coastal Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) in Western Australia. Preliminary phylogenetic data suggest that this virus variant is divergent from known strains.

  16. Biscayne Bay Florida Bottlenose Dolphin Studies

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — These data sets include a compilation of small vessel based studies of bottlenose dolphins that reside within Biscayne Bay, Florida, adjacent estuaries and...

  17. Annual, seasonal and individual variation in hematology and clinical blood chemistry profiles in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from Sarasota Bay, Florida.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Ailsa J; Wells, Randall S; Sweeney, Jay C; Townsend, Forrest I; Balmer, Brian C; Hohn, Aleta A; Rhinehart, Howard L

    2007-10-01

    Hematology and clinical blood chemistry (HCBC) profiles in free-living bottlenose dolphins from Sarasota Bay, Florida have been monitored over a 14-year period. This long-term dataset includes samples from recaptured dolphins, enabling individual variation to be accounted for when investigating seasonal and annual variability. Four different laboratories carried out the assays and inter-laboratory comparisons found significant differences in 31 of 39 parameters measured. However, variability in comparable HCBCs by sex, age, condition, season and year could be investigated. Significant relationships with the independent variables were found for the majority of the HCBCs. Notable consistent seasonal differences included significantly elevated glucose and significantly lower creatinine concentrations in winter compared to summer. These differences may be due to energetic or thermoregulatory fluctuations in the animals by season and do not necessarily have any clinical significance. Erythrocyte counts were significantly lower in the winter, possibly also due to nutritional differences. Albumin and calcium levels in this population have increased significantly over the years of monitoring and consistently across seasons, being higher in the winter than the summer. Again, nutritional and thermal constraints seem to be the most likely environmental factors influencing these patterns. PMID:17524692

  18. Is blood thicker than water? The role of kin and non-kin in non-mother-calf associations of captive bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levengood, Alexis L; Dudzinski, Kathleen M

    2016-03-01

    Relationships are important for social animals and kinship can play a vital role. Still, occurrence and function of kin bonds (aside from mother) in delphinid calf associations, alloparenting, or calf rearing are poorly represented in the literature. This study examined the role of kin and non-kin in non-mother-calf associations for a managed population of bottlenose dolphins. Calf associations were event sampled to determine if kin and non-kin differences existed in frequency or duration. Calves with kin present exhibited a higher average number of associates than calves without kin. Yet calves showed no conclusive association preference in frequency; though some individuals showed early signs of developing kin preferences. Duration and context of associations did not differ between kin and non-kin, suggesting they serve the same developmental purpose. However, personality, calf age, and associate age played a greater role in the formation of calf associations, supporting the notion that calves choose associates with similar traits, aiding in their development in difficult and changing environments. Though kinship is important in the formation of relationships in older dolphins, it appears that outside the mother-calf bond, there are other more influential factors, such as age, personality, and sociality in the formation of early developmental bonds. PMID:26718883

  19. Mercury and selenium in blood and epidermis of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from Sarasota Bay, FL: interaction and relevance to life history and hematologic parameters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woshner, Victoria; Knott, Katrina; Wells, Randall; Willetto, Carla; Swor, Rhonda; O'Hara, Todd

    2008-09-01

    Blood and epidermal biopsies from free-ranging Tursiops truncatus captured and released during either summer or winter health assessments in Sarasota Bay, FL, were evaluated for concentrations of mercury, selenium, stable isotopes (d(13)C and d(15)N), and blood glutathione peroxidase activity in conjunction with routine hematology and serum chemistry panels. Major objectives were to: 1) quantify and describe relationships among mercury, selenium, glutathione peroxidase, and stable isotopes of C and N in blood and epidermis; 2) elucidate major parameters that influence blood mercury and glutathione peroxidase activity; 3) relate measures of tissue mercury, selenium, and glutathione peroxidase to specific ecological, hematological, morphological, or life history parameters, including season, sex, age, and trophic level. Mercury in both tissues examined is almost exclusively methylmercury. Epidermal concentrations of mercury and selenium reflect their respective amounts in blood, albeit at several times blood concentrations of mercury. The strong association between blood mercury and serum selenium, in conjunction with a lack of significant correlation between blood mercury and glutathione peroxidase, implies that a substantial proportion of blood mercury is affiliated with another selenium-containing moiety or is related to recent dietary intakes (e.g., trophic level, intensive fish consumption). Circulating blood mercury may be described in terms of serum selenium concentration, along with interaction terms among serum selenium, blood d(15)N, and age. Current selenium concentrations in Sarasota Bay dolphins appear adequate for maintenance of blood glutathione peroxidase activity. However, dolphins evidently are subject to seasonal exacerbation of oxidative stress, which might render them more vulnerable to toxic effects of mercury. PMID:19165553

  20. What do dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) understand about hidden objects?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaakkola, Kelly; Guarino, Emily; Rodriguez, Mandy; Erb, Linda; Trone, Marie

    2010-01-01

    Object permanence, the ability to mentally represent and reason about objects that have disappeared from view, is a fundamental cognitive skill that has been extensively studied in human infants and terrestrial animals, but not in marine animals. A series of four experiments examined this ability in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). After being trained on a "find the object" game, dolphins were tested on visible and invisible displacement tasks, and transpositions. In Experiments 1 and 2, dolphins succeeded at visible displacements, but not at invisible displacements or transpositions. Experiment 3 showed that they were able to pass an invisible displacement task in which a person's hand rather than a container was used as the displacement device. However, follow-up controls suggested they did so by learning local rules rather than via a true representation of the movement of hidden objects. Experiment 4 demonstrated that the dolphins did not rely on such local rules to pass visible displacement tasks. Thus, like many terrestrial animals, dolphins are able to succeed on visible displacement tasks, but seem unable to succeed on tasks requiring the tracking of hidden objects. PMID:19543756

  1. Metabolite content profiling of bottlenose dolphin exhaled breath.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aksenov, Alexander A; Yeates, Laura; Pasamontes, Alberto; Siebe, Craig; Zrodnikov, Yuriy; Simmons, Jason; McCartney, Mitchell M; Deplanque, Jean-Pierre; Wells, Randall S; Davis, Cristina E

    2014-11-01

    Changing ocean health and the potential impact on marine mammal health are gaining global attention. Direct health assessments of wild marine mammals, however, is inherently difficult. Breath analysis metabolomics is a very attractive assessment tool due to its noninvasive nature, but it is analytically challenging. It has never been attempted in cetaceans for comprehensive metabolite profiling. We have developed a method to reproducibly sample breath from small cetaceans, specifically Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). We describe the analysis workflow to profile exhaled breath metabolites and provide here a first library of volatile and nonvolatile compounds in cetacean exhaled breath. The described analytical methodology enabled us to document baseline compounds in exhaled breath of healthy animals and to study changes in metabolic content of dolphin breath with regard to a variety of factors. The method of breath analysis may provide a very valuable tool in future wildlife conservation efforts as well as deepen our understanding of marine mammals biology and physiology. PMID:25254551

  2. 77 FR 22759 - Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Southeast Region Bottlenose Dolphin...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-04-17

    ... Region Bottlenose Dolphin Conservation Outreach Survey AGENCY: National Oceanic and Atmospheric... bottlenose dolphins, which are protected under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. In particular, the surveys... regulations prohibiting feeding and harassment of bottlenose dolphins, and how they gained their knowledge...

  3. Platelet-Rich Plasma and Adipose-Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells for Regenerative Medicine-Associated Treatments in Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus)

    OpenAIRE

    Richard J Griffeth; Daniel García-Párraga; Maravillas Mellado-López; Jose Luis Crespo-Picazo; Mario Soriano-Navarro; Alicia Martinez-Romero; Victoria Moreno-Manzano

    2014-01-01

    Dolphins exhibit an extraordinary capacity to heal deep soft tissue injuries. Nevertheless, accelerated wound healing in wild or captive dolphins would minimize infection and other side effects associated with open wounds in marine animals. Here, we propose the use of a biological-based therapy for wound healing in dolphins by the application of platelet-rich plasma (PRP). Blood samples were collected from 9 different dolphins and a specific and simple protocol which concentrates platelets gr...

  4. COPLANAR PCB AND METAL RESIDUES IN DOLPHINS FROM THE U.S. ATLANTIC COAST INCLUDING THE BOTTLENOSE DOLPHIN OBTAINED DURING THE 1987/88 MASS MORTALITY

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) collected during the 1987/88 mass mortality event along the Atlantic coast of the United States have been analyzed for coplanar PCBs #77, 105, 126 and 169 in blubber, and for the metals Hg, Pb, Cd, Mn, and Cr, and the non-metallic element ...

  5. Platelet-rich plasma and adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells for regenerative medicine-associated treatments in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard J Griffeth

    Full Text Available Dolphins exhibit an extraordinary capacity to heal deep soft tissue injuries. Nevertheless, accelerated wound healing in wild or captive dolphins would minimize infection and other side effects associated with open wounds in marine animals. Here, we propose the use of a biological-based therapy for wound healing in dolphins by the application of platelet-rich plasma (PRP. Blood samples were collected from 9 different dolphins and a specific and simple protocol which concentrates platelets greater than two times that of whole blood was developed. As opposed to a commonly employed human protocol for PRP preparation, a single centrifugation for 3 minutes at 900 rpm resulted in the best condition for the concentration of dolphin platelets. By FACS analysis, dolphin platelets showed reactivity to platelet cell-surface marker CD41. Analysis by electron microscopy revealed that dolphin platelets were larger in size than human platelets. These findings may explain the need to reduce the duration and speed of centrifugation of whole blood from dolphins to obtain a 2-fold increase and maintain proper morphology of the platelets. For the first time, levels of several growth factors from activated dolphin platelets were quantified. Compared to humans, concentrations of PDGF-BB were not different, while TGFβ and VEGF-A were significantly lower in dolphins. Additionally, adipose tissue was obtained from cadaveric dolphins found along the Spanish Mediterranean coast, and adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells (ASCs were successfully isolated, amplified, and characterized. When dolphin ASCs were treated with 2.5 or 5% dolphin PRP they exhibited significant increased proliferation and improved phagocytotic activity, indicating that in culture, PRP may improve the regenerative capacity of ASCs. Taken together, we show an effective and well-defined protocol for efficient PRP isolation. This protocol alone or in combination with ASCs, may constitute the basis of a

  6. Platelet-rich plasma and adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells for regenerative medicine-associated treatments in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffeth, Richard J; García-Párraga, Daniel; Mellado-López, Maravillas; Crespo-Picazo, Jose Luis; Soriano-Navarro, Mario; Martinez-Romero, Alicia; Moreno-Manzano, Victoria

    2014-01-01

    Dolphins exhibit an extraordinary capacity to heal deep soft tissue injuries. Nevertheless, accelerated wound healing in wild or captive dolphins would minimize infection and other side effects associated with open wounds in marine animals. Here, we propose the use of a biological-based therapy for wound healing in dolphins by the application of platelet-rich plasma (PRP). Blood samples were collected from 9 different dolphins and a specific and simple protocol which concentrates platelets greater than two times that of whole blood was developed. As opposed to a commonly employed human protocol for PRP preparation, a single centrifugation for 3 minutes at 900 rpm resulted in the best condition for the concentration of dolphin platelets. By FACS analysis, dolphin platelets showed reactivity to platelet cell-surface marker CD41. Analysis by electron microscopy revealed that dolphin platelets were larger in size than human platelets. These findings may explain the need to reduce the duration and speed of centrifugation of whole blood from dolphins to obtain a 2-fold increase and maintain proper morphology of the platelets. For the first time, levels of several growth factors from activated dolphin platelets were quantified. Compared to humans, concentrations of PDGF-BB were not different, while TGFβ and VEGF-A were significantly lower in dolphins. Additionally, adipose tissue was obtained from cadaveric dolphins found along the Spanish Mediterranean coast, and adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells (ASCs) were successfully isolated, amplified, and characterized. When dolphin ASCs were treated with 2.5 or 5% dolphin PRP they exhibited significant increased proliferation and improved phagocytotic activity, indicating that in culture, PRP may improve the regenerative capacity of ASCs. Taken together, we show an effective and well-defined protocol for efficient PRP isolation. This protocol alone or in combination with ASCs, may constitute the basis of a biological

  7. Cultural transmission of tool use combined with habitat specializations leads to fine-scale genetic structure in bottlenose dolphins

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kopps, Anna M.; Ackermann, Corinne Y.; Sherwin, William B.; Allen, Simon J.; Bejder, Lars; Kruetzen, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Socially learned behaviours leading to genetic population structure have rarely been described outside humans. Here, we provide evidence of fine-scale genetic structure that has probably arisen based on socially transmitted behaviours in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.) in western Shark Bay, Weste

  8. Changes in whistle structure of resident bottlenose dolphins in relation to underwater noise and boat traffic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gospić, Nikolina Rako; Picciulin, Marta

    2016-04-15

    The habitat of the resident bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) of the Cres-Lošinj archipelago overlaps with routes of intense boat traffic. Within these waters, Sea Ambient Noise (SAN) was sampled across ten acoustic stations between 2007 and 2009. Data on boat presence was concurrently collected and when dolphins were sighted group behaviour was also recorded. Acoustic recordings were analysed for 1/3 octave bands. Samples containing dolphin whistles were analysed and compared with boat presence and SAN levels. Results indicate that dolphins whistle at higher frequencies in conditions of elevated low frequency noise. Conversely, they reduce maximum, delta and start frequencies and frequency modulations when noise levels increase significantly across higher frequencies. The study shows that high levels of SAN causes significant changes in the acoustic structure of dolphin whistles. Additionally, changes in whistle parameters, in the presence of boats, appear to be related to the behavioural state of the dolphin group. PMID:26917094

  9. Effect of lactation stage and concurrent pregnancy on milk composition in the bottlenose dolphin

    OpenAIRE

    West, K.L.; Oftedal, O T; Carpenter, J R; Krames, B J; Campbell, M.; Sweeney, J C

    2007-01-01

    Although many toothed whales (Cetacea: Odontoceti) lactate for 2–3 years or more, it is not known whether milk composition is affected by lactation stage in any odontocete species. We collected 64 pooled milk samples spanning 1–30 months postpartum from three captive bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus. Milks were assayed for water, fat, crude protein (TN × 6.38) and sugar; gross energy was calculated. Ovulation and pregnancy were determined via monitoring of milk progesterone. Based on an...

  10. Development and Application of Specific Cytokine Assays in Tissue Samples from a Bottlenose Dolphin with Hyperinsulinemia

    OpenAIRE

    Eberle, Kirsten C.; Waters, Theresa E.; Jensen, Eric D.; Venn-Watson, Stephanie K.; Sacco, Randy E.

    2013-01-01

    Chronic inflammation has been associated with insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes (T2D) in humans. Postmortem hepatic and splenic tissue from a 46-year-old geriatric male bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) with insulin resistance (chronic hyperinsulinemia with hyperglycemia), chronic inflammation (white blood cell count greater than 12,000 cells/μL), and mild fatty liver disease was evaluated for elevated pro-inflammatory mediators. Cytokine mRNA expression in postmortem hepatic and s...

  11. Development and application of specific cytokine assays in tissue samples from a bottlenose dolphin with hyperinsulinemia

    OpenAIRE

    RandyESacco; EricJensen; StephanieVenn-Watson

    2013-01-01

    Chronic inflammation has been associated with insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes (T2D) in humans. Postmortem hepatic and splenic tissue from a 46-year-old geriatric male bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) with insulin resistance (chronic hyperinsulinemia with hyperglycemia), chronic inflammation (white blood cell count greater than 12,000 cells/μL), and mild fatty liver disease was evaluated for elevated pro-inflammatory mediators. Cytokine mRNA expression in postmortem hepatic and...

  12. Cultural transmission of tool use in bottlenose dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krützen, Michael; Mann, Janet; Heithaus, Michael R; Connor, Richard C; Bejder, Lars; Sherwin, William B

    2005-06-21

    In Shark Bay, wild bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.) apparently use marine sponges as foraging tools. We demonstrate that genetic and ecological explanations for this behavior are inadequate; thus, "sponging" classifies as the first case of an existing material culture in a marine mammal species. Using mitochondrial DNA analyses, we show that sponging shows an almost exclusive vertical social transmission within a single matriline from mother to female offspring. Moreover, significant genetic relatedness among all adult spongers at the nuclear level indicates very recent coancestry, suggesting that all spongers are descendents of one recent "Sponging Eve." Unlike in apes, tool use in this population is almost exclusively limited to a single matriline that is part of a large albeit open social network of frequently interacting individuals, adding a new dimension to charting cultural phenomena among animals. PMID:15947077

  13. Observations of NC stop nets for bottlenose dolphin takes

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — To observe the NC stop net fishery to document the entanglement of bottlenose dolphins and movement of dolphins around the nets.

  14. Cultural transmission of tool use combined with habitat specializations leads to fine-scale genetic structure in bottlenose dolphins

    OpenAIRE

    Kopps, Anna M.; Ackermann, Corinne Y.; William B Sherwin; Simon J Allen; Bejder, Lars; Krützen, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Socially learned behaviours leading to genetic population structure have rarely been described outside humans. Here, we provide evidence of fine-scale genetic structure that has probably arisen based on socially transmitted behaviours in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.) in western Shark Bay, Western Australia. We argue that vertical social transmission in different habitats has led to significant geographical genetic structure of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) haplotypes. Dolphins with mtDNA hap...

  15. Environmental factors governing the distribution of the bottlenose (Tursiops truncatus and the spotted dolphin (Stenella attenuata in Golfo Dulce, South Pacific, off Costa Rica Factores ambientales que gobiernan la distribución del delfín bufeo (Tursiops truncatus y del delfín manchado (Stenella attenuata en el Golfo Dulce, Pacífico sur de Costa Rica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Priscilla Cubero-Pardo

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available This study, conducted from June 1996 to July 1997, was directed at determining the abiotic environmental factors governing the distribution of the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus and the pan-tropical spotted dolphin (Stenella attenuata in Golfo Dulce. The spotted dolphin was associated with significantly deeper zones (t-test = -9.761; p Este estudio, efectuado de junio 1996 ajulio 1997, fue dirigido a determiner factores ambientales abi óticos que regulan la distribución del delfín bufeo (Tursiops truncatus y el delfín manchado (Stenella attenuata en el Golfo Dulce. El delfín manchado estuvo asociado a zonas significativamente más profundas (t-test = -9,761; p < 0,001; n = 202 y con mayor salinidad (t-test = -3,538; p = 0,001, n = 202, comparadas con el delfín bufeo. La combinación de variables ambientales en las áreas de distribución de cada especie en el Golfo Dulce fue diferente tanto a nivel espacial (F = 9,724; df = 12; p < 0,001 como estacional (F = 9,735; df = 12; p < 0,001. Entre todas las variables ambientales consideradas, el Análisis Múltiple Discriminante (MDA reveló la profundidad como el factor con mayor diferencia entre las áreas de distribución de las dos especies. Se analizó la relación entre el tamaño de grupo en cada especie, la profundidad y la ubicación de sus áreas de distribución respecto a la costa y fue propuesta evidencia entre esos aspectos y variaciones en estrategias de forrageo y composición de presas entre ambas especies, a fin de explicar las diferencias existentes a nivel de distribución espacial. Las variaciones estacionales en la salinidad de las áreas de distribución y su relación inversa con la época del año fueron analizadas en función de sus posibles efectos combinados sobre la composición de las presas en las épocas del año, a fin de explicar las variaciones en los patrones de distribución a nivel estacional

  16. THE NUTRIENT COMPOSITION OF THE DIET OF BOTTLENOSE DOLPHINS (TURSIOPS TRUNCATUS) IS BETTER ASSESSED RELATIVE TO METABOLIZABLE ENERGY THAN DRY MATTER.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ardente, Amanda J; Hill, Richard C

    2015-06-01

    Nutrient concentrations in a diet can be expressed either "as fed," relative to dry matter (DM), or relative to metabolizable energy (ME). Most published literature evaluates the diet of dolphins by comparing nutrient content relative to DM. Nevertheless, ME requirements, not DM, determine how much food dolphins need to maintain their body condition. The purpose of this paper is to illustrate why it is important to calculate the ME content of fish fed to dolphins and compare nutrient concentrations in dolphin diets relative to ME, not DM. Two studies that compared the nutrient composition of fish species on a DM basis were reevaluated. The ME content of each fish species was calculated and found to vary widely among species, from 0.94 to 1.58 Mcal/kg as fed. Water, mineral, and fat concentrations relative to ME also varied markedly among fish species. To demonstrate the magnitude of nutrient content differences between fish, the percent change in nutrient concentration for each species was calculated relative to herring. The percent changes for DM and ME analyses were then compared. Percent change in nutrient concentration was either over- or underestimated on a DM basis when compared with the percent change on an ME basis. Notable discrepancies were evident among important nutrients, such as crude protein, water, and sodium. Caretakers of managed dolphins must account for differences in energy density when deciding how much to feed and assessing the nutrient composition of the diet. PMID:26056869

  17. Novel diversity of bacterial communities associated with bottlenose dolphin upper respiratory tracts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Wesley R; Torralba, Manolito; Fair, Patricia A; Bossart, Gregory D; Nelson, Karen E; Morris, Pamela J

    2009-12-01

    Respiratory illness is thought to be most the common cause of death in both wild and captive populations of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). The suspected pathogens that have been isolated from diseased animals have also been isolated from healthy individuals, suggesting they may be part of the normal flora. Our current understanding of the bacteria associated with the upper respiratory tract (URT) of bottlenose dolphins is based exclusively upon culture-based isolation and identification. Because Tenacibaculum, Fluviicola and Flavobacterium; however, they were sufficiently different from database sequences from both cultured and uncultured organisms to suggest they represent novel genera and species. Our findings also demonstrate the dominance of three of the four bacterial phyla that dominate other mammalian microbiomes, including those of humans, and show tremendous diversity at the species/strain level, suggesting tight coevolution of the dolphin host and its URT bacterial community. PMID:23765934

  18. Nocturnal location and activity of Pacific coast bottlenose dolphins determined by a sonobuoy array

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howarth, Eric S.; Defran, R. H.

    2002-05-01

    Pacific coast bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) move offshore, presumably to feed as the sun sets [Hanson and Defran (1993), Ward (1998), Day (1998)] and are most often found inshore on the surfline at sunrise. The purpose of this research was to document their activity and location during nocturnal hours. A sonobuoy array was deployed in a triangle configuration centered approximately 500 m from the mean low low water line at Torrey Pines State Beach, CA. Surveys were conducted for 11 nights between October 1999 and November 1999 and for 21 nights between August 2000 and December 2000. Dolphin vocalizations were detected on 26 of 33 nights.

  19. Purification and characterization of the major whey proteins from the milks of the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), the Florida manatee (Trichechus manatus latirostris), and the beagle (Canis familiaris).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pervaiz, S; Brew, K

    1986-05-01

    The major whey proteins of the milks of the dolphin, manatee, and beagle were purified by gel filtration and ion exchange chromatography and characterized and identified by molecular weight determination, amino acid analysis, N-terminal sequencing, and activity measurements. The major whey protein components from all three species were found to be monomeric beta-lactoglobulins. These proteins were all active in binding retinol. Dolphin milk contained two beta-lactoglobulins (designated 1 and 2) which showed a slight difference in molecular weight and considerably divergent N-terminal sequences, whereas the other milks only contained a single form of beta-lactoglobulin. alpha-Lactalbumins were purified from dolphin and dog milks and were active in promoting lactose synthesis by bovine galactosyltransferase. The dolphin protein had an N-terminal sequence more similar to ruminant alpha-lactalbumins than to those known from other species. Although alpha-lactalbumin activity has been detected in manatee milk at low levels, the corresponding protein was not isolated. In addition, dog milk was found to contain high levels of lysozyme (greater than 1.0 mg/ml), which were identified by activity and sequencing. The functional and evolutionary implications of these results are discussed. PMID:3707136

  20. 50 CFR 229.35 - Bottlenose Dolphin Take Reduction Plan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Coast Charts 1:80,000 scale), and as described in 33 CFR... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 7 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Bottlenose Dolphin Take Reduction Plan... § 229.35 Bottlenose Dolphin Take Reduction Plan. (a) Purpose and scope. The purpose of this section...

  1. Mercury and persistent organic pollutant concentrations in free-ranging bottlenose dolphins from Lower Keys and Coastal Everglades (South Florida)

    OpenAIRE

    Damseaux, France; Kiszka, Jeremy; Heithaus, Michael,; Scholl, Georges; Eppe, Gauthier; Thomé, Jean-Pierre; Lewis, Jennifer; Das, Krishna

    2016-01-01

    The bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) is a major apex predator and the most common cetacean species found in nearshore waters of South Florida, including the Lower Florida Keys (LFK) and the Florida Coastal Everglades (FCE). The objective of this study was 1) to assess contamination levels of total mercury (T-Hg) in skin and persistent organic pollutants (PCBs, PBDEs, DDT, HCH, HCB, DLCs and PCDD/Fs) in blubber samples of bottlenose dolphins from the LFK (8 males and 16 females) and fro...

  2. Evidence for infanticide in bottlenose dolphins: an explanation for violent interactions with harbour porpoises?

    OpenAIRE

    Patterson, I A; Reid, R.J.; Wilson, B.; Grellier, K; Ross, H. M.; Thompson, P M

    1998-01-01

    Most harbour porpoises found dead on the north-east coast of Scotland show signs of attack by sympatric bottlenose dolphins, but the reason(s) for these violent interactions remain(s) unclear. Post-mortem examinations of stranded bottlenose dolphins indicate that five out of eight young calves from this same area were also killed by bottlenose dolphins. These data, together with direct observations of an aggressive interaction between an adult bottlenose dolphin and a dead bottlenose dolphin ...

  3. Secretory patterns of catecholamines in Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Miwa; Nozawa, Aoi; Ueda, Keiichi; Bungo, Takashi; Terao, Hiromi; Asahina, Kiyoshi

    2012-05-15

    Catecholamines (CAs), namely adrenaline (A), noradrenaline (NA), and dopamine (DA), are secreted by the sympathoadrenal system and participate in a diverse array of functions, e.g., heat production, cardiovascular regulation, stress response and so on. However, little is known regarding peripheral CA fluctuations in cetaceans; nevertheless aquatic animals like them have needed to modify their physiological response especially for thermoregulation in water and oxygen economy during diving. To understand CA dynamism in cetaceans, diurnal changes in serum A, NA, and DA concentrations were measured during the winter and summer solstices in four Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus). The average serum NA concentration was much higher than the average A and DA concentrations, and all concentrations were higher than those reported in other cetacean species. No distinct diurnal fluctuations were observed in CA concentrations in either solstice, suggesting inhibition of the decrease in CA concentrations during nocturnal periods by the unique sleep pattern of dolphins. All the serum CA concentrations were negatively correlated with water temperature as body temperatures were, indicating that the sympathoadrenal system might be more active during winter than in summer season, suggesting a role of CA in thermoregulation. PMID:22405705

  4. Fatal Systemic Morbillivirus Infection in Bottlenose Dolphin, Canary Islands, Spain

    OpenAIRE

    Sierra, Eva; Zucca, Daniele; Arbelo, Manuel; García-Álvarez, Natalia; Andrada, Marisa; Déniz, Soraya; Fernández, Antonio

    2014-01-01

    A systemic morbillivirus infection was diagnosed postmortem in a juvenile bottlenose dolphin stranded in the eastern North Atlantic Ocean in 2005. Sequence analysis of a conserved fragment of the morbillivirus phosphoprotein gene indicated that the virus is closely related to dolphin morbillivirus recently reported in striped dolphins in the Mediterranean Sea.

  5. Microarray applications to understand the impact of exposure to environmental contaminants in wild dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mancia, Annalaura; Abelli, Luigi; Kucklick, John R; Rowles, Teresa K; Wells, Randall S; Balmer, Brian C; Hohn, Aleta A; Baatz, John E; Ryan, James C

    2015-02-01

    It is increasingly common to monitor the marine environment and establish geographic trends of environmental contamination by measuring contaminant levels in animals from higher trophic levels. The health of an ecosystem is largely reflected in the health of its inhabitants. As an apex predator, the common bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) can reflect the health of near shore marine ecosystems, and reflect coastal threats that pose risk to human health, such as legacy contaminants or marine toxins, e.g. polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and brevetoxins. Major advances in the understanding of dolphin biology and the unique adaptations of these animals in response to the marine environment are being made as a result of the development of cell-lines for use in in vitro experiments, the production of monoclonal antibodies to recognize dolphin proteins, the development of dolphin DNA microarrays to measure global gene expression and the sequencing of the dolphin genome. These advances may play a central role in understanding the complex and specialized biology of the dolphin with regard to how this species responds to an array of environmental insults. This work presents the creation, characterization and application of a new molecular tool to better understand the complex and unique biology of the common bottlenose dolphin and its response to environmental stress and infection. A dolphin oligo microarray representing 24,418 unigene sequences was developed and used to analyze blood samples collected from 69 dolphins during capture-release health assessments at five geographic locations (Beaufort, NC, Sarasota Bay, FL, Saint Joseph Bay, FL, Sapelo Island, GA and Brunswick, GA). The microarray was validated and tested for its ability to: 1) distinguish male from female dolphins; 2) differentiate dolphins inhabiting different geographic locations (Atlantic coasts vs the Gulf of Mexico); and 3) study in detail dolphins resident in one site, the Georgia coast, known to

  6. GoM Estuarine Bottlenose Dolphin Photo-identification studies

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — These data sets include a compilation of small vessel based studies of bottlenose dolphins that reside within Mississippi Sound and nearshore coastal waters. The...

  7. Investigation of unusual mortalities of bottlenose dolphins along the mid-Texas coastal bay ecosystem during 1992

    OpenAIRE

    Colbert, A. A.; Scott, G. I.; Fulton, M. H.; Wirth, E.F.; Daugomah, J. W.; Key, P B; Strozier, E. D.; Galloway, S. B.

    1999-01-01

    An investigation was conducted into the deaths of more than 220 bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) that occurred within the coastal bay ecosystem of mid-Texas between January and May 1992. The high mortality rate was unusual in that it was limited to a relatively small geographical area, occurred primarily within an inshore bay system separated from the Gulf of Mexico by barrier islands, and coincided with deaths of other taxa including birds and fish. Factors examined to determine th...

  8. Stable isotopes of captive cetaceans (killer whales and bottlenose dolphins).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caut, Stéphane; Laran, Sophie; Garcia-Hartmann, Emmanuel; Das, Krishna

    2011-02-15

    There is currently a great deal of interest in using stable isotope methods to investigate diet, trophic level and migration in wild cetaceans. In order to correctly interpret the results stemming from these methods, it is crucial to understand how diet isotopic values are reflected in consumer tissues. In this study, we investigated patterns of isotopic discrimination between diet and blood constituents of two species of cetaceans (killer whale, Orcinus orca, and bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops truncatus) fed controlled diets over 308 and 312 days, respectively. Diet discrimination factors (Δ; mean ± s.d.) for plasma were estimated to Δ(13)C=2.3±0.6‰ and Δ(15)N=1.8±0.3‰, respectively, for both species and to Δ(13)C=2.7±0.3‰ and Δ(15)N=0.5±0.1‰ for red blood cells. Delipidation did not have a significant effect on carbon and nitrogen isotopic values of blood constituents, confirming that cetacean blood does not serve as a reservoir of lipids. In contrast, carbon isotopic values were higher in delipidated samples of blubber, liver and muscle from killer whales. The potential for conflict between fisheries and cetaceans has heightened the need for trophic information about these taxa. These results provide the first published stable isotope incorporation data for cetaceans, which are essential if conclusions are to be drawn on issues concerning trophic structures, carbon sources and diet reconstruction. PMID:21270301

  9. Vocal copying of individually distinctive signature whistles in bottlenose dolphins

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Stephanie L.; Sayigh, Laela S.; Wells, Randall S.; Fellner, Wendi; Janik, Vincent M.

    2013-01-01

    Vocal learning is relatively common in birds but less so in mammals. Sexual selection and individual or group recognition have been identified as major forces in its evolution. While important in the development of vocal displays, vocal learning also allows signal copying in social interactions. Such copying can function in addressing or labelling selected conspecifics. Most examples of addressing in non-humans come from bird song, where matching occurs in an aggressive context. However, in other animals, addressing with learned signals is very much an affiliative signal. We studied the function of vocal copying in a mammal that shows vocal learning as well as complex cognitive and social behaviour, the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus). Copying occurred almost exclusively between close associates such as mother–calf pairs and male alliances during separation and was not followed by aggression. All copies were clearly recognizable as such because copiers consistently modified some acoustic parameters of a signal when copying it. We found no evidence for the use of copying in aggression or deception. This use of vocal copying is similar to its use in human language, where the maintenance of social bonds appears to be more important than the immediate defence of resources. PMID:23427174

  10. Audiogram variability in normal bottlenose dolphins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tarakanov, Mikhail B.; Pletenko, Mikhail G.; Popov, Vladimir V.; Supin, Alexander Ya.

    2005-04-01

    Audiograms have been obtained in about a dozen of odontocete species, but mostly in one or two individuals each. However, some inter-individual difference in hearing sensitivity is inevitable. Therefore, a representative number of animals should be investigated to get a normal audiogram standard. In the present study, an attempt has been made to estimate the audiogram scatter among normal bottlenose dolphins. Measurements were made in dolphins captured in wild and kept in captivity 3 to 5 months, using auditory evoked potential technique (envelope following response) to measure hearing thresholds in far acoustic field. Seven subjects, 5 males and 2 females, provisionally from 3 to 15 years old, were investigated during the summer season of 2004. Hearing thresholds were measured at frequencies from 8 to 152 kHz with quarter-octave steps. All the subjects had qualitatively similar audiograms. The best sensitivity was from 38.9 dB re 1 uPa (at 32 kHz) to 51.9 dB (at 16 kHz), with a minimum of the averaged audiogram of 47.1 dB at 45 kHz. High-frequency cut-off was 152 kHz at a level of 40 dB above the lowest threshold. Standard deviation of threshold was from 4.1 to 10.3 dB. [Work supported by RFBR and Russian President Grants.

  11. Left hemispheric advantage for numerical abilities in the bottlenose dolphin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kilian, Annette; von Fersen, Lorenzo; Güntürkün, Onur

    2005-02-28

    In a two-choice discrimination paradigm, a bottlenose dolphin discriminated relational dimensions between visual numerosity stimuli under monocular viewing conditions. After prior binocular acquisition of the task, two monocular test series with different number stimuli were conducted. In accordance with recent studies on visual lateralization in the bottlenose dolphin, our results revealed an overall advantage of the right visual field. Due to the complete decussation of the optic nerve fibers, this suggests a specialization of the left hemisphere for analysing relational features between stimuli as required in tests for numerical abilities. These processes are typically right hemisphere-based in other mammals (including humans) and birds. The present data provide further evidence for a general right visual field advantage in bottlenose dolphins for visual information processing. It is thus assumed that dolphins possess a unique functional architecture of their cerebral asymmetries. PMID:15686828

  12. Development and application of specific cytokine assays in tissue samples from a bottlenose dolphin with hyperinsulinemia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    RandyESacco

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Chronic inflammation has been associated with insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes (T2D in humans. Postmortem hepatic and splenic tissue from a 46-year-old geriatric male bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus with insulin resistance (chronic hyperinsulinemia with hyperglycemia, chronic inflammation (white blood cell count greater than 12,000 cells/μL, and mild fatty liver disease was evaluated for elevated pro-inflammatory mediators. Cytokine mRNA expression in postmortem hepatic and splenic tissue, as determined by real-time PCR, included an array of cytokines: TGF-β, TNF-α, IFN-γ, IL-2, IL-4, IL-10, IL-12p40, IL-13, and IL-18. Values from this dolphin were compared to a younger reference dolphin with no known chronic metabolic perturbations or inflammation. Levels of TGF-β, TNF-α, and IL-4 were higher in the case dolphin's liver compared to that of the reference dolphin. In the case dolphin's spleen, IL-10 and IFN-γ mRNA was upregulated while IL-4 was less than reference dolphin. IL-18 and IL-13 were upregulated in both tissues. Fluorescent immunohistochemistry (IHC utilized the following antibodies: anti-porcine IL-6, anti-bovine IFN-γ, IL-4, and IL-10, anti-human TGF-β, anti-ovine IL-1β, and anti-dolphin IL-8. Fluorescent IHC in spleen from the case dolphin revealed staining of IL-4, IL-6, IL-8, and TGF-β throughout the tissue. IL-10 and IFN-γ were seen to predominate in areas surrounding the follicles of splenic tissue. This is the first characterization of cytokine levels in dolphin hepatic and splenic tissue. While there are limitations to a case study, this report of inflammatory biomarkers in tissues of a dolphin with insulin resistance and fatty liver disease are similar to those observed in human patients.

  13. Differences in the whistle characteristics and repertoire of Bottlenose and Spinner Dolphins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carmen Bazúa-Durán

    2004-06-01

    Full Text Available Several methods have been used to compare the whistles produced by dolphins. The two methods used in this study are: (1 a classification of whistle contours in six categories (i.e. constant frequency, upsweep, downsweep, concave, convex, and sine and (2 the extraction of frequency and time parameters from each whistle contour. Bottlenose Dolphin Tursiops truncatus whistles are described in the same way when comparing whistle contour distributions in each of the six categories and whistle frequency and time parameters using Discriminant Function Analysis. For Spinner Dolphin Stenella longirostris whistles, each method describes whistles differently. Several facts may explain these differences in describing dolphin whistles, such as a greater fluidity of Spinner Dolphin groups when compared to Bottlenose Dolphin groups, greater geographic variation in the whistles of Bottlenose Dolphins than in those of Spinner Dolphins, an average beginning frequency 16% lower than the average ending frequency in Spinner Dolphin whistles compared to a varied relationship for Bottlenose Dolphins, and stricter criteria used to define whistle contour categories in the study of Spinner Dolphin whistles than in the Bottlenose Dolphin whistle study.Vários métodos foram usados para comparar assobios produzidos por golfinhos. Os dois métodos usados no presente estudo são: (1 uma classificação dos contornos do assobio em seis categorias (freqüência constante, modulação ascendente, modulação descendente, côncavo, convexo e senóide e (2 a extração dos parâmetros de freqüência e tempo de cada contorno de assobio. Os assobios do Golfinho-nariz-de-garrafa ou Golfinho-flíper Tursiops truncatus são definidos da mesma maneira quando se compara, por análise de função discriminatória, a distribuição dos contornos de assobios nas seis categorias e os parâmetros tonais e temporais dos assobios. Os assobios do Golfinho-saltador Stenella longirostris s

  14. Quantification of the interaction between bottlenose dolphins and the Atlantic blue crab fishery in Charleston, South Carolina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duquette, Ashley

    Entanglement in commercial fishery equipment is the number one anthropogenic cause of marine mammal death worldwide. The Atlantic blue crab fishery is the number one cause of fishery related incidents for bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in South Carolina. It is hypothesized that the dolphins are attracted to the pots either by the bait or possibly the other marine life drawn to the pots. Hydrophones deployed in baited and unbaited crab pots recorded dolphin vocalizations which were used as proxy for dolphin presence. Recorded data were used to quantify the interaction between dolphins and crab pots as well as elucidate the effects of tide, bait presences, and time of day on the interactions. Sonar imaging was deployed to determine if prey species aggregated around the crab pots and whether bait presence affects the fish activity. The hydrophones recorded 1,103 hours of audio data, and 18 hours of visual data were recorded by the dual-frequency identification sonar. The results found that dolphin interactions with the crab pots were not significantly impacted by the presence of bait. Time of day and tidal stage did affect the frequency and duration of interactions. Prey species were observed aggregating around the crab pots and no impact of bait presence on fish activity was observed. Results from this study will aid in the understanding of when and why bottlenose dolphins interact with the Atlantic blue crab fishery. Such information can then be used in the formulation of preventative measures against entanglement.

  15. Hearing sensation levels of emitted biosonar clicks in an echolocating Atlantic bottlenose dolphin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Songhai Li

    Full Text Available Emitted biosonar clicks and auditory evoked potential (AEP responses triggered by the clicks were synchronously recorded during echolocation in an Atlantic bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus trained to wear suction-cup EEG electrodes and to detect targets by echolocation. Three targets with target strengths of -34, -28, and -22 dB were used at distances of 2 to 6.5 m for each target. The AEP responses were sorted according to the corresponding emitted click source levels in 5-dB bins and averaged within each bin to extract biosonar click-related AEPs from noise. The AEP amplitudes were measured peak-to-peak and plotted as a function of click source levels for each target type, distance, and target-present or target-absent condition. Hearing sensation levels of the biosonar clicks were evaluated by comparing the functions of the biosonar click-related AEP amplitude-versus-click source level to a function of external (in free field click-related AEP amplitude-versus-click sound pressure level. The results indicated that the dolphin's hearing sensation levels to her own biosonar clicks were equal to that of external clicks with sound pressure levels 16 to 36 dB lower than the biosonar click source levels, varying with target type, distance, and condition. These data may be assumed to indicate that the bottlenose dolphin possesses effective protection mechanisms to isolate the self-produced intense biosonar beam from the animal's ears during echolocation.

  16. Chemical residues in Dolphins from the US Atlantic coast including atlantic bottlenose obtained during the 1987/88 mass mortality

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kuehl, D.W.; Haebler, R.; Potter, C.

    1991-01-01

    Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) collected during the 1987/88 mass mortality event along the Atlantic coast of the United States have been analyzed for anthropogenic chemical contaminants. Average contaminant concentrations in adult males were higher than the average concentrations measured in adult females. Females could be divided into two groups by contaminant concentrations, one with low concentrations, and another with concentrations 4.4 times (PCBs) to 8.9 times (p,p'-DDE) greater. Contaminant concentrations in bottlenose were generally greater than the concentrations measured in either common (Delphinus delphis) or white-sided (Lagernorhynchus acutus) dolphins from the western North Atlantic Ocean. A subset of animals screened for unusual chemical contaminants showed that numerous polybrominated chemicals were present, including polybrominated biphenyls and diphenyl ethers not previously found in marine mammals from U.S. coastal waters.

  17. Evaluation of potential protective factors against metabolic syndrome in bottlenose dolphins:feeding and activity patterns of dolphins in Sarasota Bay, Florida

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wells, Randall S.; McHugh, Katherine A.; Douglas, David C.; Shippee, Steve; McCabe, Elizabeth Berens; Barros, Nélio B.; Phillips, Goldie T.

    2014-01-01

    Free-ranging bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) living in Sarasota Bay, Florida appear to have a lower risk of developing insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome compared to a group of dolphins managed under human care. Similar to humans, differences in diet and activity cycles between these groups may explain why Sarasota dolphins have lower insulin, glucose, and lipids. To identify potential protective factors against metabolic syndrome, existing and new data were incorporated to describe feeding and activity patterns of the Sarasota Bay wild dolphin community. Sarasota dolphins eat a wide variety of live fish and spend 10–20% of daylight hours foraging and feeding. Feeding occurs throughout the day, with the dolphins eating small proportions of their total daily intake in brief bouts. The natural pattern of wild dolphins is to feed as necessary and possible at any time of the day or night. Wild dolphins rarely eat dead fish or consume large amounts of prey in concentrated time periods. Wild dolphins are active throughout the day and night; they may engage in bouts of each key activity category at any time during daytime. Dive patterns of radio-tagged dolphins varied only slightly with time of day. Travel rates may be slightly lower at night, suggesting a diurnal rhythm, albeit not one involving complete, extended rest. In comparison, the managed dolphins are older; often fed a smaller variety of frozen-thawed fish types; fed fish species not in their natural diet; feedings and engaged activities are often during the day; and they are fed larger but fewer meals. In summary, potential protective factors against metabolic syndrome in dolphins may include young age, activity, and small meals fed throughout the day and night, and specific fish nutrients. These protective factors against insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes are similar to those reported in humans. Further studies may benefit humans and dolphins.

  18. Evaluation of potential protective factors against metabolic syndrome in bottlenose dolphins: feeding and activity patterns of dolphins in Sarasota Bay, Florida

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    RandallWells

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Free-ranging bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus living in Sarasota Bay, Florida appear to have a lower risk of developing insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome compared to a group of dolphins managed under human care. Similar to humans, differences in diet and activity cycles between these groups may explain why Sarasota dolphins have lower insulin, glucose, and lipids. To identify potential protective factors against metabolic syndrome, existing and new data were incorporated to describe feeding and activity patterns of the Sarasota Bay wild dolphin community. Sarasota dolphins eat a wide variety of live fish and spend 10-20% of daylight hours foraging and feeding. Feeding occurs throughout the day, with the dolphins eating small proportions of their total daily intake in brief bouts. The natural pattern of wild dolphins is to feed as necessary and possible at any time of the day or night. Wild dolphins rarely eat dead fish or consume large amounts of prey in concentrated time periods. Wild dolphins are active throughout the day and night; they may engage in bouts of each key activity category at any time during daytime. Dive patterns of radio-tagged dolphins varied only slightly with time of day. Travel rates may be slightly lower at night, suggesting a diurnal rhythm, albeit not one involving complete, extended rest. In comparison, the managed dolphins are older; often fed a smaller variety of frozen-thawed fish types; fed fish species not in their natural diet; feedings and engaged activities are often during the day; and they are fed larger but fewer meals. In summary, potential protective factors against metabolic syndrome in dolphins may include young age, activity and small meals fed throughout the day and night, and specific fish nutrients. These protective factors against insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes are similar to those reported in humans. Further studies may benefit humans and dolphins.

  19. Plasma Hypoxanthine-Guanine Phosphoribosyl Transferase Activity in Bottlenose Dolphins Contributes to Avoiding Accumulation of Non-recyclable Purines

    Science.gov (United States)

    López-Cruz, Roberto I.; Crocker, Daniel E.; Gaxiola-Robles, Ramón; Bernal, Jaime A.; Real-Valle, Roberto A.; Lugo-Lugo, Orlando; Zenteno-Savín, Tania

    2016-01-01

    Marine mammals are exposed to ischemia/reperfusion and hypoxia/reoxygenation during diving. During oxygen deprivation, adenosine triphosphate (ATP) breakdown implies purine metabolite accumulation, which in humans is associated with pathological conditions. Purine recycling in seals increases in response to prolonged fasting and ischemia. Concentrations of metabolites and activities of key enzymes in purine metabolism were examined in plasma and red blood cells from bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) and humans. Hypoxanthine and inosine monophosphate concentrations were higher in plasma from dolphins than humans. Plasma hypoxanthine-guanine phosphoribosyl transferase (HGPRT) activity in dolphins suggests an elevated purine recycling rate, and a mechanism for avoiding accumulation of non-recyclable purines (xanthine and uric acid). Red blood cell concentrations of hypoxanthine, adenosine diphosphate, ATP and guanosine triphosphate were lower in dolphins than in humans; adenosine monophosphate and nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide concentrations were higher in dolphins. HGPRT activity in red blood cells was higher in humans than in dolphins. The lower concentrations of purine catabolism and recycling by-products in plasma from dolphins could be beneficial in providing substrates for recovery of ATP depleted during diving or vigorous swimming. These results suggest that purine salvage in dolphins could be a mechanism for delivering nucleotide precursors to tissues with high ATP and guanosine triphosphate requirements. PMID:27375492

  20. Fatal Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae septicemia in two Atlantic dolphins (Stenella frontalis and Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Díaz-Delgado, J; Arbelo, M; Sierra, E; Vela, A; Domínguez, M; Paz, Y; Andrada, M; Domínguez, L; Fernández, A

    2015-09-17

    We describe gross, histopathologic, ultrastructural, immunohistochemical, and microbiologic features of acute septicemia by Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae in an Atlantic spotted dolphin Stenella frontalis and an Atlantic bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus. Generalized lymphadenomegaly and widespread hemorrhages were the most consistent macroscopic findings. Tricavitary effusion and icterus were noted in one individual. Histologically, all organs examined showed numerous variably sized bacillary bacterial emboli (Gram-positive; Ziehl-Neelsen-negative), typically associated with systemic congestion, edema, hemorrhages, and fibrinocellular thrombi. These bacteria were frequently intravascular, either extracellular or intramonocytic/macrophagic, and to a lesser extent, free within the interstitium of parenchymal organs. In both cases, microbiological analysis yielded E. rhusiopathiae. A primary anti-E. rhusiopathiae antibody created in mice from one of the strains isolated allowed positive immunohistochemical detection. Electron microscopy and dual immunohistochemistry with lysozyme and MAC387 antibodies confirmed the intramacrophagic location of the bacilli. E. rhusiopathiae, a known multispecies and zoonotic agent, should be considered as a potential etiologic agent in septicemia cases in free-ranging individuals of these dolphin species. PMID:26378410

  1. A wild Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin adopts a socially and genetically distant neonate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakai, Mai; Kita, Yuki F; Kogi, Kazunobu; Shinohara, Masanori; Morisaka, Tadamichi; Shiina, Takashi; Inoue-Murayama, Miho

    2016-01-01

    Alloparental behaviour and adoption have been reported in many mammals and birds. Such behaviours are energetically costly, and their causes and functions remain unclear. We observed the adoption behaviour of a wild Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) near Mikura Island, Japan. A calf was seen with its mother on six observation days. Following the mother's death, the calf was observed with a sub-adult female on all 18 observation days from May to September 2012. On three days, the calf was observed swimming with this female in the suckling position and milk was seen leaking from the female's mammary slit. A five-year dataset revealed no significant social or kin relationships between the biological mother and allomother, indicating that kinship and social relationships did not play an important role in the observed adoption. PMID:27049937

  2. How does Australia's largest dolphin-watching industry affect the behaviour of a small and resident population of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steckenreuter, Andre; Möller, Luciana; Harcourt, Robert

    2012-04-30

    The small, genetically distinct population of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) in Port Stephens, New South Wales (NSW), is the target of the largest dolphin-watching industry in Australia and is located within the Port Stephens - Great Lakes Marine Park that was created in 2005. The effects of this industry have been identified as of significant management importance by the Marine Parks Authority NSW. Accordingly, the impact of commercial dolphin-watching boats was investigated from boat-based surveys from August 2008 to August 2009. Presence of dolphin-watching boats altered both the dolphins' behavioural states and activity budgets. Dolphins spent 66.5% less time feeding and 44.2% less time socialising, spent four times more milling, and were never observed to rest in the presence of dolphin-watching boats. Moreover, dolphin groups were more cohesive during dolphin-watching boat encounters and dolphins tended to avoid tour boats. These effects were exacerbated as the number of boats increased and the distance from boats decreased. The rate of approach was high with boats approaching each dolphin group three times per day in winter and six times in summer. Moreover, groups of dolphins with newborns were approached closer than state regulated minimum approach distances in nine out of ten encounters. Globally, dolphin-watching industries frequent small resident groups of coastal dolphins and effects are likely to be similar. We suggest that existing controls are inadequate and that these together with additional regulations be enforced by a regular presence of authorities. We suggest no more than one dolphin-watching boat within 50 m of a group of dolphins, or 100 m if calves are present. Operating times of dolphin-watching boats should be restricted in numbers after 1 pm, i.e., during preferred foraging times for dolphins. Additionally, exclusion zones should be considered to reduce pressure on dolphins undertaking critical activities such as

  3. The emergence of unshared consensus decisions in bottlenose dolphins

    OpenAIRE

    Lusseau, David; Conradt, Larissa

    2009-01-01

    Unshared consensus decision-making processes, in which one or a small number of individuals make the decision for the rest of a group, are rarely documented. However, this mechanism can be beneficial for all group members when one individual has greater knowledge about the benefits of the decision than other group members. Such decisions are reached during certain activity shifts within the population of bottlenose dolphins residing in Doubtful Sound, New Zealand. Behavioral signals are perfo...

  4. A kinematic study on (unintentional imitation in bottlenose dolphins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luisa Sartori

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of observing other’s movements on subsequent performance in bottlenose dolphins. The imitative ability of non-human animals has intrigued a number of researchers. So far, however, studies in dolphins have been confined to intentional imitation concerned with the explicit request to imitate other agents. In the absence of instruction to imitate, do dolphins (unintentionally replicate other’s movement features? To test this, dolphins were filmed while reaching and touching a stimulus before and after observing another dolphin (i.e., model performing the same action. All videos were reviewed and segmented in order to extract the relevant movements. A marker was inserted post-hoc via software on the videos upon the anatomical landmark of interest (i.e. rostrum and was tracked throughout the time course of the movement sequence. The movement was analyzed using an in-house software developed to perform two-dimensional (2D post-hoc kinematic analysis. The results indicate that dolphins’ kinematics is sensitive to other’s movement features. Movements performed for the ‘visuomotor priming’ condition were characterized by a kinematic pattern similar to that performed by the observed dolphin (i.e., model. Addressing the issue of spontaneous imitation in bottlenose dolphins might allow ascertaining whether the potential or impulse to produce an imitative action is generated, not just when they intend to imitate, but whenever they watch another conspecific’s behavior. In closing, this will clarify whether motor representational capacity is a by-product of factors specific to humans or whether more general characteristics such as processes of associative learning prompted by high level of encephalization could help to explain the evolution of this ability.

  5. A computational model of the bottlenose dolphin sonar: Feature-extracting method

    OpenAIRE

    Zorikov, T.

    2009-01-01

    The data describing a process of echo-image formation in bottlenose dolphin sonar perception were accumulated in our experimental explorations. These data were formalized mathematically and used in the computational model, comparative testing of which in echo-discrimination tasks revealed no less capabilities then those of bottlenose dolphins.

  6. Comparison of lipids in selected tissues of the Florida manatee (Order Sirenia) and bottlenose dolphin (Order Cetacea; Suborder Odontoceti).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ames, Audra L; Van Vleet, Edward S; Reynolds, John E

    2002-07-01

    The position, porosity and oil-filled nature of the zygomatic process of the squamosal bone (ZPSB) of the Florida manatee, Trichechus manatus latirostris, suggest that it may have a similar sound conduction function to that of the intramandibular fat body (IMFB) of the bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops truncatus, and other odontocetes. To examine this possibility we determined the lipid composition of the ZPSB and adipose tissue from the dorsal part of the head region of the Florida manatee, and compared it to that of the dolphin IMFB and melon (another fatty area implicated in sound conduction in odontocetes). Lipids from manatee ZPSB and from adipose tissue were composed almost entirely of triacylglycerols. The most abundant fatty acids of the ZPSB were 18:1, 16:0, 14:0 and 16:1. The major fatty acids of the adipose tissue in the head were the four mentioned above, along with 12:0 and 18:0. Manatee samples did not contain isovaleric acid (iso-5:0), which was found in the bottlenose dolphin IMFB and melon, and has been related to sound conduction in dolphins and some other odontocetes. Thus, if manatee tissues are capable of sound conduction, and this process does occur through the ZPSB, a somewhat different suite of lipid components must support this function. PMID:12091108

  7. Training bottlenose dolphins to overcome avoidance of environmental enrichment objects in order to stimulate play activities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neto, Márcia P; Silveira, Miguel; Dos Santos, Manuel E

    2016-05-01

    Enrichment programs may contribute to the quality of life and stress reduction in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) kept in zoos and aquaria. The results of these programs are generally positive in terms of welfare, but the magnitude of their effects may vary greatly between individuals of the same species, especially when the enrichment plans are based on the introduction of manipulative objects. Some animals will interact spontaneously with novel objects, even without food rewards and in the absence of the trainers, while others show no interest or even aversion toward the objects. To determine if formal training can improve these conditions, we measured the effects of an operant conditioning program in the manipulation of objects by dolphins that initially avoided them. This program took place between April and October 2013 at Zoomarine Portugal. Subjects were two female and two male bottlenose dolphins (adults with ages from 17 to 35 years) that after a preliminary analysis showed avoidance or low interest in the manipulation of various toys. The level of interaction with introduced enrichment objects was observed before and after formal training to explore the toys (sixteen 20-min observation sessions per animal "before" and "after training"). In all subjects, an index of interest in object manipulation, in the absence of trainers, increased significantly after the application of the training techniques. The results show that an initial reinforcement program focused on the manipulation of toys may overcome resistance, improving the effects of environmental enrichment plans, and it is a potentially useful strategy to increase the welfare of some captive animals. Zoo Biol. 35:210-215, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26969822

  8. Distribution, abundance and age composition in groups of dolphins Tursiops truncatus (Cetacea: Delphinidae in north coast of Matanzas province, Cuba

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nirka López

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Bottle-nose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus are organized in populations of special characteristics and strong conservation issues, still unevaluated inCuban waters. During the studied period 2002 – 2009 we conducted 20 surveys in the north coast of Matanzas province, Cuba, to describe dolphin populations in the area. Counts were conducted using distance sampling method along 4122 km and during 329 hours. From each sighting we record geo-graphic location, group size, distance and angle with the trajectory and number of calves or neonates. We also conducted photoidentification sessions in each group. Jolly-Seber capture-recapture method was used to estimate population size from re-sighting of known individuals, stored in a picture data-base. The area of higher sighting probability was in the north side of Hicacos peninsula. Mean group size was 7,5 dolphins and neonates were almost 9 % of individuals (n=827. Groups with neonates were more numerous. Form distances and sightings we estimate densities of 0,2-1,8 ind/Km2. We identi-fied 128 dolphins, of which 71 were observed more than once. Population sizes estimated from recapture data was between 100 and 150 dolphins in the region. This population is characterized by small foraging units, and re-sightings support the hypothesis of, at least, there is a resident population core in the area.

  9. Predicting bottlenose dolphin distribution along Liguria coast (northwestern Mediterranean Sea) through different modeling techniques and indirect predictors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marini, C; Fossa, F; Paoli, C; Bellingeri, M; Gnone, G; Vassallo, P

    2015-03-01

    Habitat modeling is an important tool to investigate the quality of the habitat for a species within a certain area, to predict species distribution and to understand the ecological processes behind it. Many species have been investigated by means of habitat modeling techniques mainly to address effective management and protection policies and cetaceans play an important role in this context. The bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) has been investigated with habitat modeling techniques since 1997. The objectives of this work were to predict the distribution of bottlenose dolphin in a coastal area through the use of static morphological features and to compare the prediction performances of three different modeling techniques: Generalized Linear Model (GLM), Generalized Additive Model (GAM) and Random Forest (RF). Four static variables were tested: depth, bottom slope, distance from 100 m bathymetric contour and distance from coast. RF revealed itself both the most accurate and the most precise modeling technique with very high distribution probabilities predicted in presence cells (90.4% of mean predicted probabilities) and with 66.7% of presence cells with a predicted probability comprised between 90% and 100%. The bottlenose distribution obtained with RF allowed the identification of specific areas with particularly high presence probability along the coastal zone; the recognition of these core areas may be the starting point to develop effective management practices to improve T. truncatus protection. PMID:25460419

  10. Cultural transmission of tool use combined with habitat specializations leads to fine-scale genetic structure in bottlenose dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kopps, Anna M; Ackermann, Corinne Y; Sherwin, William B; Allen, Simon J; Bejder, Lars; Krützen, Michael

    2014-05-01

    Socially learned behaviours leading to genetic population structure have rarely been described outside humans. Here, we provide evidence of fine-scale genetic structure that has probably arisen based on socially transmitted behaviours in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.) in western Shark Bay, Western Australia. We argue that vertical social transmission in different habitats has led to significant geographical genetic structure of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) haplotypes. Dolphins with mtDNA haplotypes E or F are found predominantly in deep (more than 10 m) channel habitat, while dolphins with a third haplotype (H) are found predominantly in shallow habitat (less than 10 m), indicating a strong haplotype-habitat correlation. Some dolphins in the deep habitat engage in a foraging strategy using tools. These 'sponging' dolphins are members of one matriline, carrying haplotype E. This pattern is consistent with what had been demonstrated previously at another research site in Shark Bay, where vertical social transmission of sponging had been shown using multiple lines of evidence. Using an individual-based model, we found support that in western Shark Bay, socially transmitted specializations may have led to the observed genetic structure. The reported genetic structure appears to present an example of cultural hitchhiking of mtDNA haplotypes on socially transmitted foraging strategies, suggesting that, as in humans, genetic structure can be shaped through cultural transmission. PMID:24648223

  11. A Quantitative Analysis of Pulsed Signals Emitted by Wild Bottlenose Dolphins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Couchinho, Miguel N.; dos Santos, Manuel E.

    2016-01-01

    Common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), produce a wide variety of vocal emissions for communication and echolocation, of which the pulsed repertoire has been the most difficult to categorize. Packets of high repetition, broadband pulses are still largely reported under a general designation of burst-pulses, and traditional attempts to classify these emissions rely mainly in their aural characteristics and in graphical aspects of spectrograms. Here, we present a quantitative analysis of pulsed signals emitted by wild bottlenose dolphins, in the Sado estuary, Portugal (2011–2014), and test the reliability of a traditional classification approach. Acoustic parameters (minimum frequency, maximum frequency, peak frequency, duration, repetition rate and inter-click-interval) were extracted from 930 pulsed signals, previously categorized using a traditional approach. Discriminant function analysis revealed a high reliability of the traditional classification approach (93.5% of pulsed signals were consistently assigned to their aurally based categories). According to the discriminant function analysis (Wilk’s Λ = 0.11, F3, 2.41 = 282.75, P < 0.001), repetition rate is the feature that best enables the discrimination of different pulsed signals (structure coefficient = 0.98). Classification using hierarchical cluster analysis led to a similar categorization pattern: two main signal types with distinct magnitudes of repetition rate were clustered into five groups. The pulsed signals, here described, present significant differences in their time-frequency features, especially repetition rate (P < 0.001), inter-click-interval (P < 0.001) and duration (P < 0.001). We document the occurrence of a distinct signal type–short burst-pulses, and highlight the existence of a diverse repertoire of pulsed vocalizations emitted in graded sequences. The use of quantitative analysis of pulsed signals is essential to improve classifications and to better assess the contexts

  12. A Quantitative Analysis of Pulsed Signals Emitted by Wild Bottlenose Dolphins.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Rita Luís

    Full Text Available Common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus, produce a wide variety of vocal emissions for communication and echolocation, of which the pulsed repertoire has been the most difficult to categorize. Packets of high repetition, broadband pulses are still largely reported under a general designation of burst-pulses, and traditional attempts to classify these emissions rely mainly in their aural characteristics and in graphical aspects of spectrograms. Here, we present a quantitative analysis of pulsed signals emitted by wild bottlenose dolphins, in the Sado estuary, Portugal (2011-2014, and test the reliability of a traditional classification approach. Acoustic parameters (minimum frequency, maximum frequency, peak frequency, duration, repetition rate and inter-click-interval were extracted from 930 pulsed signals, previously categorized using a traditional approach. Discriminant function analysis revealed a high reliability of the traditional classification approach (93.5% of pulsed signals were consistently assigned to their aurally based categories. According to the discriminant function analysis (Wilk's Λ = 0.11, F3, 2.41 = 282.75, P < 0.001, repetition rate is the feature that best enables the discrimination of different pulsed signals (structure coefficient = 0.98. Classification using hierarchical cluster analysis led to a similar categorization pattern: two main signal types with distinct magnitudes of repetition rate were clustered into five groups. The pulsed signals, here described, present significant differences in their time-frequency features, especially repetition rate (P < 0.001, inter-click-interval (P < 0.001 and duration (P < 0.001. We document the occurrence of a distinct signal type-short burst-pulses, and highlight the existence of a diverse repertoire of pulsed vocalizations emitted in graded sequences. The use of quantitative analysis of pulsed signals is essential to improve classifications and to better assess the

  13. Seasonal changes of blood composition in captive bottlenose dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terasawa, Fumio; Kitamura, Masakazu; Fujimoto, Asami; Hayama, Shin-ichi

    2002-11-01

    To determine how blood values in bottlenose dolphins changed during the year, 504 blood samples were taken from 9 dolphins from 1991 to 1999 and clinical blood examinations were undertaken monthly including 3 hematological and 19 serum chemistry tests. In creatinine, significant seasonal changes were found among three groups of adult males, adult females and juveniles, and the average values in summer were 15-38% higher than those in winter. In two out of three groups the average total cholesterol value were highest in winter, and the lowest of all groups were in summer. In two other groups the peaks of average FFA value were recorded in summer, and the lows were in winter. PMID:12499700

  14. Behavioral responses of captive bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus)to a continuous 20 kHz pure tone%圈养瓶鼻海豚对20kHz连续声信号的行为响应研究

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    牛富强; 许肖梅; 杨燕明; 刘贞文; 文洪涛

    2012-01-01

    Two captive bottlenose dolphins housed in a float cage in a Bay were subjected to a continuous 20 kHz tonal signal. The behavioral responses of dolphins were judged by comparing the surface distances relative to the sound source, number of surfacings, and number of the echolocation clicks production of the dolphins, during test periods and baseline periods. The avoidance threshold sound pressure level (SPL) for a continuous 20 kHz tonal signal for the bottlenose dolphins was estimated to be 154 ±2 Db (re 1 /LtPa, rms). In addation, the comparison between the avoidance threshold SPL for harbor porpoises to a 50 kHz continuous signal and bottlenose dolphins to a 20 kHz continuous signal was also studied. The results showed that the dolphins moved away from the sound source and came to the surface more frequently during the test periods than the baseline periods, but they produced clicks significantly fewer. Therefore, a continuous 20 kHz tonal signal seems to deter bottlenose dolphins from an area.%将20 kHz连续声信号作为刺激信号,测试了厦门某海湾圈养的两只瓶鼻海豚对该信号的行为变化.通过对比信号发射期与间歇期海豚相对声源的水面距离、露出水面的次数以及水下发出的click定位声信号的数目等变化,判断发射信号对海豚行为的影响.给出了瓶鼻海豚对测试信号产生躲避行为的声压级门限(154±2 dB re 1μPa,rms),并与鼠海豚的躲避声压门限级进行了对比.结果表明:信号发射期,瓶鼻海豚移离了声源位置,增加了露出水面的次数,水下发出click声信号的次数明显减少.因此,瓶鼻海豚对20kHz连续信号产生了行为改变.

  15. A kinematic study on (un)intentional imitation in bottlenose dolphins

    OpenAIRE

    Luisa Sartori; Maria Bulgheroni; Raffaella Tizzi; Umberto Castiello

    2015-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of observing other’s movements on subsequent performance in bottlenose dolphins. The imitative ability of non-human animals has intrigued a number of researchers. So far, however, studies in dolphins have been confined to intentional imitation concerned with the explicit request to imitate other agents. In the absence of instruction to imitate, do dolphins (un)intentionally replicate other’s movement features? To test this, dolphins w...

  16. Bottlenose dolphin age structure and growth in the Mississippi Sound region of the Gulf of Mexico

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Teeth were collected from bottlenose dolphins that stranded within the north-central Gulf of Mexico between 1986-2003. These teeth were sectioned and growth rings...

  17. GoM Estuarine Bottlenose Dolphin Photo-identification studies - NRDA

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — These data sets include a compilation of small vessel based studies of bottlenose dolphins that reside within Barataria Bay, LA, Mississippi Sound, MS and nearshore...

  18. A Permanent Automated Real-Time Passive Acoustic Monitoring System for Bottlenose Dolphin Conservation in the Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brunoldi, Marco; Bozzini, Giorgio; Casale, Alessandra; Corvisiero, Pietro; Grosso, Daniele; Magnoli, Nicodemo; Alessi, Jessica; Bianchi, Carlo Nike; Mandich, Alberta; Morri, Carla; Povero, Paolo; Wurtz, Maurizio; Melchiorre, Christian; Viano, Gianni; Cappanera, Valentina; Fanciulli, Giorgio; Bei, Massimiliano; Stasi, Nicola; Taiuti, Mauro

    2016-01-01

    Within the framework of the EU Life+ project named LIFE09 NAT/IT/000190 ARION, a permanent automated real-time passive acoustic monitoring system for the improvement of the conservation status of the transient and resident population of bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) has been implemented and installed in the Portofino Marine Protected Area (MPA), Ligurian Sea. The system is able to detect the simultaneous presence of dolphins and boats in the area and to give their position in real time. This information is used to prevent collisions by diffusing warning messages to all the categories involved (tourists, professional fishermen and so on). The system consists of two gps-synchronized acoustic units, based on a particular type of marine buoy (elastic beacon), deployed about 1 km off the Portofino headland. Each one is equipped with a four-hydrophone array and an onboard acquisition system which can record the typical social communication whistles emitted by the dolphins and the sound emitted by boat engines. Signals are pre-filtered, digitized and then broadcast to the ground station via wi-fi. The raw data are elaborated to get the direction of the acoustic target to each unit, and hence the position of dolphins and boats in real time by triangulation. PMID:26789265

  19. A Permanent Automated Real-Time Passive Acoustic Monitoring System for Bottlenose Dolphin Conservation in the Mediterranean Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brunoldi, Marco; Bozzini, Giorgio; Casale, Alessandra; Corvisiero, Pietro; Grosso, Daniele; Magnoli, Nicodemo; Alessi, Jessica; Bianchi, Carlo Nike; Mandich, Alberta; Morri, Carla; Povero, Paolo; Wurtz, Maurizio; Melchiorre, Christian; Viano, Gianni; Cappanera, Valentina; Fanciulli, Giorgio; Bei, Massimiliano; Stasi, Nicola; Taiuti, Mauro

    2016-01-01

    Within the framework of the EU Life+ project named LIFE09 NAT/IT/000190 ARION, a permanent automated real-time passive acoustic monitoring system for the improvement of the conservation status of the transient and resident population of bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) has been implemented and installed in the Portofino Marine Protected Area (MPA), Ligurian Sea. The system is able to detect the simultaneous presence of dolphins and boats in the area and to give their position in real time. This information is used to prevent collisions by diffusing warning messages to all the categories involved (tourists, professional fishermen and so on). The system consists of two gps-synchronized acoustic units, based on a particular type of marine buoy (elastic beacon), deployed about 1 km off the Portofino headland. Each one is equipped with a four-hydrophone array and an onboard acquisition system which can record the typical social communication whistles emitted by the dolphins and the sound emitted by boat engines. Signals are pre-filtered, digitized and then broadcast to the ground station via wi-fi. The raw data are elaborated to get the direction of the acoustic target to each unit, and hence the position of dolphins and boats in real time by triangulation. PMID:26789265

  20. Why Are Male Social Relationships Complex in the Doubtful Sound Bottlenose Dolphin Population?

    OpenAIRE

    Lusseau, David

    2007-01-01

    Background Access to oestrus females tends to be the main driver of male sociality. This factor can lead to complex behavioural interactions between males and groups of males. Male bottlenose dolphins may form alliances to consort females and to compete with other males. In some populations these alliances may form temporary coalitions when competing for females. I examined the role of dyadic and group interactions in the association patterns of male bottlenose dolphins in Doubtful Sound, New...

  1. Two isoforms of aquaporin 2 responsive to hypertonic stress in the bottlenose dolphin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Miwa; Wakui, Hitomi; Itou, Takuya; Segawa, Takao; Inoshima, Yasuo; Maeda, Ken; Kikuchi, Kiyoshi

    2016-04-15

    This study investigated the expression of aquaporin 2 (AQP2) and its newly found alternatively spliced isoform (alternative AQP2) and the functions of these AQP2 isoforms in the cellular hyperosmotic tolerance in the bottlenose dolphin, ITALIC! Tursiops truncatus mRNA sequencing revealed that alternative AQP2 lacks the fourth exon and instead has a longer third exon that includes a part of the original third intron. The portion of the third intron, now part of the coding region of alternative AQP2, is highly conserved among many species of the order Cetacea but not among terrestrial mammals. Semi-quantitative PCR revealed that AQP2 was expressed only in the kidney, similar to terrestrial mammals. In contrast, alternative AQP2 was expressed in all organs examined, with strong expression in the kidney. In cultured renal cells, expression of both AQP2 isoforms was upregulated by the addition to the medium of NaCl but not by the addition of mannitol, indicating that the expression of both isoforms is induced by hypersalinity. Treatment with small interfering RNA for both isoforms resulted in a decrease in cell viability in hypertonic medium (500 mOsm kg(-1)) when compared with controls. These findings indicate that the expression of alternatively spliced AQP2 is ubiquitous in cetacean species, and it may be one of the molecules important for cellular osmotic tolerance throughout the body. PMID:26944501

  2. Retrospective analysis of bottlenose dolphin foraging: a legacy of anthropogenic ecosystem disturbance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossman, Sam; Barros, Nélio B.; Ostrom, Peggy H.; Stricker, Craig A.; Hohn, Aleta A.; Gandhi, Hasand; Wells, Randall S.

    2013-01-01

    We used stable isotope analysis to investigate the foraging ecology of coastal bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in relation to a series of anthropogenic disturbances. We first demonstrated that stable isotopes are a faithful indicator of habitat use by comparing muscle isotope values to behavioral foraging data from the same individuals. δ13C values increased, while δ34S and δ15N values decreased with the percentage of feeding observations in seagrass habitat. We then utilized stable isotope values of muscle to assess temporal variation in foraging habitat from 1991 to 2010 and collagen from tooth crown tips to assess the time period 1944 to 2007. From 1991 to 2010, δ13C values of muscle decreased while δ34S values increased indicating reduced utilization of seagrass habitat. From 1944 to 1989 δ13C values of the crown tip declined significantly, likely due to a reduction in the coverage of seagrass habitat and δ15N values significantly increased, a trend we attribute to nutrient loading from a rapidly increasing human population. Our results demonstrate the utility of using marine mammal foraging habits to retrospectively assess the extent to which anthropogenic disturbance impacts coastal food webs.

  3. A survey for the conservation of dolphins in Ghanaian coastal waters

    OpenAIRE

    Ofori-Danson, P.K.; Van Waerebeek, K.; Debrah, S.

    2003-01-01

    Surveys were undertaken to identify common dolphin species landed by local fishers in the coastal waters of Ghana between 1998 and 2000. Altogether, 14 out of the known 18 dolphin species in the West African sub-region were identified. They were predominated by the clymene dolphin, Stenella clymene (35%) followed by the pantropical spotted dolphin, Stenella attenuate (1 7%), the bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops truncatus (1 6%), and Risso 's dolphin, Grampus griseus (7%). Although some coastal co...

  4. Bottlenose dolphins modify behavior to reduce metabolic effect of tag attachment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Hoop, Julie M; Fahlman, Andreas; Hurst, Thomas; Rocho-Levine, Julie; Shorter, K Alex; Petrov, Victor; Moore, Michael J

    2014-12-01

    Attaching bio-telemetry or -logging devices ('tags') to marine animals for research and monitoring adds drag to streamlined bodies, thus affecting posture, swimming gaits and energy balance. These costs have never been measured in free-swimming cetaceans. To examine the effect of drag from a tag on metabolic rate, cost of transport and swimming behavior, four captive male dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) were trained to swim a set course, either non-tagged (n=7) or fitted with a tag (DTAG2; n=12), and surface exclusively in a flow-through respirometer in which oxygen consumption VO₂ and carbon dioxide production (VO₂; ml kg(-1) min(-1)) rates were measured and respiratory exchange ratio (VO₂/resting VO₂) was calculated. Tags did not significantly affect individual mass-specific oxygen consumption, physical activity ratios (exercise /resting ), total or net cost of transport (COT; J m(-1) kg(-1)) or locomotor costs during swimming or two-minute recovery phases. However, individuals swam significantly slower when tagged (by ~11%; mean ± s.d., 3.31±0.35 m s(-1)) than when non-tagged (3.73±0.41 m s(-1)). A combined theoretical and computational fluid dynamics model estimating drag forces and power exertion during swimming suggests that drag loading and energy consumption are reduced at lower swimming speeds. Bottlenose dolphins in the specific swimming task in this experiment slowed to the point where the tag yielded no increases in drag or power, while showing no difference in metabolic parameters when instrumented with a DTAG2. These results, and our observations, suggest that animals modify their behavior to maintain metabolic output and energy expenditure when faced with tag-induced drag. PMID:25324344

  5. The vitamin D3 transcriptomic response in skin cells derived from the Atlantic bottlenose dolphin

    OpenAIRE

    Ellis, Blake C.; Gattoni-Celli, Sebastiano; Mancia, Annalaura; Kindy, Mark S.

    2009-01-01

    The Atlantic bottlenose dolphin has attracted attention due to the evident impact that environmental stressors have taken on its health. In order to better understand the mechanisms linking environmental health with dolphin health, we have established cell cultures from dolphin skin as in vitro tools for molecular evaluations. The vitamin D3 pathway is one mechanism of interest because of its well established chemopreventative and immunomodulatory properties in terrestrial mammals. On the oth...

  6. Fishery gear interactions from stranded bottlenose dolphins, Florida manatees and sea turtles in Florida, U.S.A.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adimey, Nicole M; Hudak, Christine A; Powell, Jessica R; Bassos-Hull, Kim; Foley, Allen; Farmer, Nicholas A; White, Linda; Minch, Karrie

    2014-04-15

    Documenting the extent of fishery gear interactions is critical to wildlife conservation efforts, especially for reducing entanglements and ingestion. This study summarizes fishery gear interactions involving common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus truncatus), Florida manatees (Trichechus manatus latirostris) and sea turtles: loggerhead (Caretta caretta), green turtle (Chelonia mydas), leatherback (Dermochelys coriacea), hawksbill (Eretmochelys imbricata), Kemp's ridley (Lepidochelys kempii), and olive ridley (Lepidochelys olivacea) stranding in Florida waters during 1997-2009. Fishery gear interactions for all species combined were 75.3% hook and line, 18.2% trap pot gear, 4.8% fishing nets, and 1.7% in multiple gears. Total reported fishery gear cases increased over time for dolphins (p<0.05), manatees (p<0.01), loggerheads (p<0.05) and green sea turtles (p<0.05). The proportion of net interaction strandings relative to total strandings for loggerhead sea turtles increased (p<0.05). Additionally, life stage and sex patterns were examined, fishery gear interaction hotspots were identified and generalized linear regression modeling was conducted. PMID:24613263

  7. Bottlenosed dolphin and human recognition of veridical and degraded video displays of an artificial gestural language.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herman, L M; Morrel-Samuels, P; Pack, A A

    1990-06-01

    2 bottlenosed dolphins proficient in interpreting gesture language signs viewed veridical and degraded gestures via TV without explicit training. In Exp. 1, dolphins immediately understood most gestures: Performance was high throughout degradations successively obscuring the head, torso, arms, and fingers, though deficits occurred for gestures degraded to a point-light display (PLD) of the signer's hands. In Exp. 2, humans of varying gestural fluency saw the PLD and veridical gestures from Exp. 1. Again, performance declined in the PLD condition. Though the dolphin recognized gestures as accurately as fluent humans, effects of the gesture's formational properties were not identical for humans and dolphin. Results suggest that the dolphin uses a network of semantic and gestural representations, that bottom-up processing predominates when the dolphin's short-term memory is taxed, and that recognition is affected by variables germane to grammatical category, short-term memory, and visual perception. PMID:2141354

  8. 77 FR 21946 - Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to Commercial Fishing Operations; Bottlenose Dolphin Take...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-04-12

    ... 2001 and the BDTRP implemented in 2006 to reduce impacts from commercial fishing. The geographic scope... regulation or have a significant impact on the environment. NMFS prepared an EA on the final rule (71 FR... Incidental to Commercial Fishing Operations; Bottlenose Dolphin Take Reduction Plan AGENCY: National...

  9. Quantitative tools for comparing animal communication systems: information theory applied to bottlenose dolphin whistle repertoires.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCOWAN; Hanser; Doyle

    1999-02-01

    Comparative analysis of nonhuman animal communication systems and their complexity, particularly in comparison to human language, has been generally hampered by both a lack of sufficiently extensive data sets and appropriate analytic tools. Information theory measures provide an important quantitative tool for examining and comparing communication systems across species. In this paper we use the original application of information theory, that of statistical examination of a communication system's structure and organization. As an example of the utility of information theory to the analysis of animal communication systems, we applied a series of information theory statistics to a statistically categorized set of bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus, whistle vocalizations. First, we use the first-order entropic relation in a Zipf-type diagram (Zipf 1949 Human Behavior and the Principle of Least Effort) to illustrate the application of temporal statistics as comparative indicators of repertoire complexity, and as possible predictive indicators of acquisition/learning in animal vocal repertoires. Second, we illustrate the need for more extensive temporal data sets when examining the higher entropic orders, indicative of higher levels of internal informational structure, of such vocalizations, which could begin to allow the statistical reconstruction of repertoire organization. Third, we propose using 'communication capacity' as a measure of the degree of temporal structure and complexity of statistical correlation, represented by the values of entropic order, as an objective tool for interspecies comparison of communication complexity. In doing so, we introduce a new comparative measure, the slope of Shannon entropies, and illustrate how it potentially can be used to compare the organizational complexity of vocal repertoires across a diversity of species. Finally, we illustrate the nature and predictive application of these higher-order entropies using a preliminary

  10. TOXOPLASMOSIS IN CAPTIVE DOLPHINS (TURSIOPS TRUNCATUS) AND WALRUS (ODOBENUS ROSMRUS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toxoplasma gondii infection in marine mammals is intriguing and indicative of contamination of the ocean environment and coastal waters with oocysts. Toxoplasma gondii infection was detected in captive marine mammals at a seaquarium in Canada. Antibodies to T. gondii were found in all 7 bottlenose ...

  11. Forebrain neuroanatomy of the neonatal and juvenile dolphin (T. truncatus & S. coeruloalba)

    OpenAIRE

    Antonella Peruffo; Luca Bonfanti

    2015-01-01

    Knowledge of dolphin functional neuroanatomy mostly derives from post-mortem studies and non-invasive approaches (i.e. magnetic resonance imaging), due to limitations in experimentation on cetaceans. As a consequence the availability of well-preserved tissues for histology is scarce, and detailed histological analyses are referred mainly to adults. Here we studied the neonatal/juvenile brain in two species of dolphins, the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) and the striped dolphin (Stene...

  12. Forebrain neuroanatomy of the neonatal and juvenile dolphin (T. truncatus and S. coeruloalba)

    OpenAIRE

    Parolisi, Roberta; Peruffo, Antonella; Messina, Silvia; Panin, Mattia; Montelli, Stefano; Giurisato, Maristella; Cozzi, Bruno; Bonfanti, Luca

    2015-01-01

    Knowledge of dolphin functional neuroanatomy mostly derives from post-mortem studies and non-invasive approaches (i.e., magnetic resonance imaging), due to limitations in experimentation on cetaceans. As a consequence the availability of well-preserved tissues for histology is scarce, and detailed histological analyses are referred mainly to adults. Here we studied the neonatal/juvenile brain in two species of dolphins, the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) and the striped dolphin (Sten...

  13. A kinematic study on (un)intentional imitation in bottlenose dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sartori, Luisa; Bulgheroni, Maria; Tizzi, Raffaella; Castiello, Umberto

    2015-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of observing other's movements on subsequent performance in bottlenose dolphins. The imitative ability of non-human animals has intrigued a number of researchers. So far, however, studies in dolphins have been confined to intentional imitation concerned with the explicit request to imitate other agents. In the absence of instruction to imitate, do dolphins (un)intentionally replicate other's movement features? To test this, dolphins were filmed while reaching and touching a stimulus before and after observing another dolphin (i.e., model) performing the same action. All videos were reviewed and segmented in order to extract the relevant movements. A marker was inserted post hoc via software on the videos upon the anatomical landmark of interest (i.e., rostrum) and was tracked throughout the time course of the movement sequence. The movement was analyzed using an in-house software developed to perform two-dimensional (2D) post hoc kinematic analysis. The results indicate that dolphins' kinematics is sensitive to other's movement features. Movements performed for the "visuomotor priming" condition were characterized by a kinematic pattern similar to that performed by the observed dolphin (i.e., model). Addressing the issue of spontaneous imitation in bottlenose dolphins might allow ascertaining whether the potential or impulse to produce an imitative action is generated, not just when they intend to imitate, but whenever they watch another conspecific's behavior. In closing, this will clarify whether motor representational capacity is a by-product of factors specific to humans or whether more general characteristics such as processes of associative learning prompted by high level of encephalization could help to explain the evolution of this ability. PMID:26300764

  14. Preparing the Perfect Cuttlefish Meal: Complex Prey Handling by Dolphins

    OpenAIRE

    Finn, Julian; Tregenza, Tom; Norman, Mark

    2009-01-01

    Dolphins are well known for their complex social and foraging behaviours. Direct underwater observations of wild dolphin feeding behaviour however are rare. At mass spawning aggregations of giant cuttlefish (Sepia apama) in the Upper Spencer Gulf in South Australia, a wild female Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) was observed and recorded repeatedly catching, killing and preparing cuttlefish for consumption using a specific and ordered sequence of behaviours. Cuttlefish were ...

  15. Evaluation of seasonal changes of serum and plasma estradiol-17β, progesterone and testosterone in dolphins (Tursiops truncatus by chemiluminescence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Santo Fragalà

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Aim: The purpose of the research was to test and validate an innovative and safe chemiluminescence method to evaluate sexual hormones in serum and plasma samples of Tursiops truncatus. Materials and Methods: The research was performed on 9 bottlenose dolphins entertained in Oltremare and in Zoomarine aquatic parks, sampled by the tail vein or from the ventral one and an ultrasound monitoring, throughout a 6 months period. Blood samples were analyzed using a chemiluminescence method. Data obtained were compared to radioimmunoassay and enzyme immuno assay reference data, with the purpose to test and validate this method, through the calculation of the coefficient of variability, and its reliability on serum and plasma samples. A one-way analysis of variance was applied to test the effect of time on serum and plasma hormonal changes. Results: Mean concentrations of estradiol-17β in serum were equal to 149.07±6.82 pmol/L, and in plasma equal to 159.14±12.99 pmol/L; mean values of progesterone in serum were equal to 0.69±0.05 pmol/L, and in plasma equal to 0.64±0.05 pmol/L; mean values of testosterone in serum were equal to 44.43±14.42 nmol/L, and in plasma equal to 48.99±11.20 nmol/L. Conclusion: It would be interesting to widen the investigations on a larger number of subjects, in which the relationship between the concentrations of free and binding steroid hormones, with the dosing of binding proteins, would define the physiological ranges of reference in the T. truncatus.

  16. A preliminary study of habitat and resource partitioning among co-occurring tropical dolphins around Mayotte, south-west Indian Ocean

    OpenAIRE

    Gross, Alexandra; Kiszka, Jeremy; Canneyt, Olivier Van; Richard, Pierre; Ridoux, Vincent

    2009-01-01

    International audience Mayotte in the southwest Indian Ocean is characterized by high dolphin diversity. They may coexist within a fairly small area around the island because they exploit neither the same preferential habitats nor the same resources. This preliminary study aimed to investigate ecological niche segregation among these delphinid communities: the Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops aduncus, the pantropical spotted dolphin, Stenella attenuata, the spinner dolphin, Stenel...

  17. High frequency components in bottlenose dolphin echolocation signals

    OpenAIRE

    Toland, Ronald W., Jr.

    1998-01-01

    The research described in this thesis is a continuation of work started by the Applied Research Laboratories of the University of Texas at Austin into the analysis of biosonar signals. Experiments conducted in 1997 on two species of small toothed whales found these species to emit significant high frequency signal components, extending to as high as 400 to 500 kHz. To assess the importance of these high frequencies in dolphin echolocation and target identification, experiments were performed ...

  18. Comparison of mercury contamination in live and dead dolphins from a newly described species, Tursiops australis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alissa Monk

    Full Text Available Globally it is estimated that up to 37% of all marine mammals are at a risk of extinction, due in particular to human impacts, including coastal pollution. Dolphins are known to be at risk from anthropogenic contaminants due to their longevity and high trophic position. While it is known that beach-cast animals are often high in contaminants, it has not been possible to determine whether levels may also be high in live animals from the same populations. In this paper we quantitatively assess mercury contamination in the two main populations of a newly described dolphin species from south eastern Australia, Tursiops australis. This species appear to be limited to coastal waters in close proximity to a major urban centre, and as such is likely to be vulnerable to anthropogenic pollution. For the first time, we were able to compare blubber mercury concentrations from biopsy samples of live individuals and necropsies of beach-cast animals and show that beach-cast animals were highly contaminated with mercury, at almost three times the levels found in live animals. Levels in live animals were also high, and are attributable to chronic low dose exposure to mercury from the dolphin's diet. Measurable levels of mercury were found in a number of important prey fish species. This illustrates the potential for low dose toxins in the environment to pass through marine food webs and potentially contribute to marine mammal deaths. This study demonstrates the potential use of blubber from biopsy samples to make inferences about the health of dolphins exposed to mercury.

  19. Why are male social relationships complex in the Doubtful Sound bottlenose dolphin population?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Lusseau

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Access to oestrus females tends to be the main driver of male sociality. This factor can lead to complex behavioural interactions between males and groups of males. Male bottlenose dolphins may form alliances to consort females and to compete with other males. In some populations these alliances may form temporary coalitions when competing for females. I examined the role of dyadic and group interactions in the association patterns of male bottlenose dolphins in Doubtful Sound, New Zealand. There is no apparent mating competition in this population and no consortship has been observed, yet agonistic interactions between males occur regularly. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: By comparing the network of male interactions in several social dimensions (affiliative, agonistic, and associative I show that while agonistic interactions relate to dyadic association patterns, affiliative interactions seem to relate to group association patterns. Some evidence suggests that groups of males also formed temporary coalitions during agonistic interactions. While different groups of males had similar relationships with non-oestrus females, the time they spent with oestrus females and mothers of newborns differed greatly. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: After considering several hypotheses, I propose that the evolution of these complex relationships was driven by sexual competition probably to out-compete other males for female choice.

  20. Passive acoustic monitoring of bottlenose dolphin and harbour porpoise, in Cardigan Bay, Wales, with implications for habitat use and partitioning

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Simon, Malene Juul; Nuuttila, Hanna; Reyes-Zamudio, Mercedes M;

    2010-01-01

    -October for dolphins and in October-March for porpoise, revealing a previously unknown importance of the place to harbour porpoise during winter. Though the two species are sympatric, simultaneous detections of both species were rare and indication of temporal habitat partitioning between the two species in......Knowledge about harbour porpoise and bottlenose dolphin occurrence in Cardigan Bay Special Area of Conservation (SAC), Wales, is limited to daylight hours during summer, when conditions are suitable for traditional visual surveys. T-PODs are autonomous instruments programmed to log time-cues of...... species-specific echolocation signals for long periods of time. Here we investigated bottlenose dolphin and harbour porpoise habitat use and partitioning by deploying ten calibrated T-PODs in Cardigan Bay SAC for one year. The T-PODs detected both species all year round with a peak of detections in April...

  1. Functional Genomics and Cell Biology of the Dolphin (Tursiops runcatus): Establishment of Novel Molecular Tools to Study Marine Mammals in Changing Environments

    OpenAIRE

    Mancia, Annalaura

    2010-01-01

    The dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) is a mammal that is adapted to life in a totally aquatic environment. Despite the popularity and even iconic status of the dolphin, our knowledge of its physiology, its unique adaptations and the effects on it of environmental stressors are limited. One approach to improve this limited understanding is the implementation of established cellular and molecular methods to provide sensitive and insightful information for dolphin biology. We initiated our studi...

  2. A comparative analysis of the diet of the long-beaked common dolphin (Delphinus capensis) with three other small cetaceans from coastal Peru. Scientific Committee document SC/56/SM2, International Whaling Commission, July 2004, Sorrento, Italy

    OpenAIRE

    García-Godos, I.; Van Waerebeek, K.; Reyes, J C; Alfaro, J

    2004-01-01

    The diet of long-beaked common dolphin Delphinus capensis, dusky dolphin Lagenorhynchus obscurus, Burmeister’s porpoise Phocoena spinipinnis, and bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus, was determined based on 281 stomach contents collected along the Peruvian central coast and San Juan de Marcona in the period 1987-1993. Counts of otoliths, squid beaks and some other remains were used to estimate frequency of occurrence and prey percentage of composition (PC). Long-beaked common dolphins (n=11...

  3. Dolphin social intelligence: complex alliance relationships in bottlenose dolphins and a consideration of selective environments for extreme brain size evolution in mammals

    OpenAIRE

    Richard C Connor

    2007-01-01

    Bottlenose dolphins in Shark Bay, Australia, live in a large, unbounded society with a fission–fusion grouping pattern. Potential cognitive demands include the need to develop social strategies involving the recognition of a large number of individuals and their relationships with others. Patterns of alliance affiliation among males may be more complex than are currently known for any non-human, with individuals participating in 2–3 levels of shifting alliances. Males mediate alliance relatio...

  4. The encoding of individual identity in dolphin signature whistles : how much information is needed?

    OpenAIRE

    Kershenbaum, Arik; Sayigh, Laela; Janik, Vincent M.

    2013-01-01

    Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) produce many vocalisations, including whistles that are unique to the individual producing them. Such “signature whistles” play a role in individual recognition and maintaining group integrity. Previous work has shown that humans can successfully group the spectrographic representations of signature whistles according to the individual dolphins that produced them. However, attempts at using mathematical algorithms to perform a similar task have been le...

  5. Ecological niche segregation within a community of sympatric dolphins around a tropical island

    OpenAIRE

    Kiszka, Jeremy; Simon-Bouhet, B.; Martinez, Ludivine; Pusineri, Claire; Richard, Pierre; Ridoux, Vincent

    2011-01-01

    International audience Investigating ecological segregation among organisms of a given community is challenging, especially when these organisms share similar patterns of distribution, and similar size and morphology. Around the island of Mayotte, a diversified community of at least four sympatric delphinids is present year round within a very restricted range: the Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus), the spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris), the pantropical spotted dolph...

  6. Post-conflict affiliation as conflict management in captive bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus)

    OpenAIRE

    Chisato Yamamoto; Tadamichi Morisaka; Keisuke Furuta; Toshiaki Ishibashi; Akihiko Yoshida; Michihiro Taki; Yoshihisa Mori; Masao Amano

    2015-01-01

    Post-conflict affiliation between former opponents or between one of the former opponents and bystanders might have the function of conflict management, which reduces the costs associated with aggressions. One of the suggested functions of post-conflict affiliation is decreased renewed aggressions directed from aggressors to victims. However, the effect of post-conflict affiliation on renewed aggressions by victims has not been investigated. We examined whether post-conflict affiliations decr...

  7. Preliminary report on bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) uterine samples for parity analysis

    OpenAIRE

    Meisner, Rene; McFee, Wayne E.

    2004-01-01

    There have been numerous studies on various mammalian species regarding vascular changes in uterine arteries elucidating the effects of parity. In equids, vascular changes of uterine arteries have been demonstrated to occur in uniparous and multiparous mares. The severity of these arteriole changes suggests a link to previous pregnancies. Differences in the number or range of pregnancies can be ascertained through microscopic evaluation of elastin deposition in the arterioles, perivascular fi...

  8. Perception time and movement time in dolphin pulsing and whistling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ridgway, Sam; Carder, Donald

    2002-05-01

    Auditory/vocal response time was separated into perception time (PT) and movement time (MT) in trials with bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus)-two males and one female. Pressure catheters accepted into the nasal cavity by each dolphin recorded the pressure increase that preceded sound production. Time from acoustic stimulus onset to onset of pressure rise was recorded as PT (range 57 to 314 ms) and pressure rise onset to dolphin sound onset was recorded as MT (range 63 to 363 ms). Blindfolded dolphins trained to report a target by whistling often responded before completion of their 200- to 800-ms echolocation click trains. Detection of the target, indicated by whistling, before termination of the animal's own click train, suggests that dolphins do not voluntarily respond to each successive click but rather set a rhythm such that each click is emitted about 20 ms after the target echo arrives.

  9. The bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus foraging around a fish farm: Effects of prey abundance on dolphins' behavior

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Bruno D(I)AZ L(O)PEZ

    2009-01-01

    ing tactics according to the abundance of prey. When top predators display behavioral responses to activities not directed at them, the task of studying all possible effects of human activities can become even more challenging .

  10. Dolphin Prey Availability and Calorific Value in an Estuarine and Coastal Environment

    OpenAIRE

    McCluskey, Shannon M.; Bejder, Lars; Loneragan, Neil R.

    2016-01-01

    Prey density has long been associated with prey profitability for a predator, but prey quality has seldom been quantified. We assessed the potential prey availability and calorific value for Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) in an estuarine and coastal environment of temperate south-western Australia. Fish were sampled using three methods (21.5 m beach seine, multi-mesh gillnet, and fish traps), across three regions (Estuary, Bay, and Ocean) in the study area. The total biom...

  11. Dolphin prey availability and calorific value in an estuarine and coastal environment

    OpenAIRE

    Shannon Marie McCluskey; Lars eBejder; Loneragan, Neil R.

    2016-01-01

    Prey density has long been associated with prey profitability for a predator, but prey quality has seldom been quantified. We assessed the potential prey availability and calorific value for Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) in an estuarine and coastal environment of temperate south-western Australia. Fish were sampled using three methods across three regions (Estuary, Bay and Ocean) in the study area using a 21.5 m beach seine, multi-mesh gillnet, and fish traps. The total ...

  12. Feeding a Modified Fish Diet to Bottlenose Dolphins Leads to an Increase in Serum Adiponectin and Sphingolipids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sobolesky, Philip M.; Harrell, Tyler S.; Parry, Celeste; Venn-Watson, Stephanie; Janech, Michael G.

    2016-01-01

    Feeding a modified fish diet has been suggested to improve insulin sensitivity in bottlenose dolphins; however, insulin sensitivity was not directly measured. Since demonstrating an improvement in insulin sensitivity is technically difficult in dolphins, we postulated that directional changes in the hormone axis: fibroblast growth factor 21 (FGF21)/Adiponectin/Ceramide (Cer), could provide further support to this hypothesis. We measured 2-h post-prandial serum FGF21, total adiponectin, percent unmodified adiponectin, ceramide, and sphingosine levels from dolphins fed a diet rich in heptadecanoic acid (C17:0) over 24 weeks. Serum FGF21 was quantified by ELISA with an observed range of 129–1599 pg/ml, but did not significantly change over the 24-week study period. Total adiponectin levels (mean ± SD) significantly increased from 776 ± 400 pmol/ml at week 0 to 1196 ± 467 pmol/ml at week 24. The percent unmodified adiponectin levels (mean ± SD) decreased from 23.8 ± 6.0% at week 0 to 15.2 ± 5.2% at week 24. Interestingly, although FGF21 levels did not change, there was a good correlation between FGF21 and total adiponectin (ρ = 0.788, P < 0.001). We quantified the abundances of serum ceramides and sphingosines (SPH) because adiponectin has a defined role in sphingolipid metabolism through adiponectin receptor-mediated activation of ceramidases. The most abundant ceramide in dolphin sera was Cer 24:1 comprising 49% of the ceramides measured. Significant reductions were observed in the unsaturated Cer 18:1, Cer 20:1, and Cer 24:1, whereas significant increases were observed in saturated Cer 22:0, Cer 24:0, and Cer 26:0. However, total serum ceramides did not change. Significant elevations were detected for total sphingosine, dihydrosphingosine, sphingosine-1-phosphate, and dihydrosphingosine-1-phosphate. Proteomic analysis of the serum proteins revealed few changes in serum proteins over the study period. In conclusion

  13. DNA strand breaks (comet assay) in blood lymphocytes from wild bottlenose dolphins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Highlights: • The comet assay was conducted on dolphin lymphocytes from two estuaries in southeastern USA. • There were significant differences in DNA strand breaks between the two dolphin populations. • Higher DNA strand breaks in one population may have been due to higher contaminant concentrations. -- Abstract: The comet assay was carried out on blood lymphocytes from a large number of wild dolphins (71 from Indian River Lagoon, FL, USA; 51 from Charleston Harbor, SC, USA) and provides a baseline study of DNA strand breaks in wild dolphin populations. There were no significant differences in the comet assay (% DNA in tail) results between the different age and sex categories. Significant difference in DNA strand breaks were found between Charleston Harbor dolphins (median – 17.4% DNA in tail) and Indian River Lagoon dolphins (median – 14.0% DNA in tail). A strong correlation found between T-cell proliferation and DNA strand breaks in dolphin lymphocytes suggests that dolphins with a high numbers of DNA strand breaks have a decreased ability to respond to infection. Higher concentrations of genotoxic agents in Charleston Harbor compared with Indian River lagoon may have been one of the causes of higher DNA strand breaks in these dolphins

  14. Echolocation characteristics of free-swimming bottlenose dolphins during object detection and identification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Houser, Dorian; Martin, Stephen W.; Bauer, Eric J.; Phillips, Michael; Herrin, Tim; Cross, Matt; Vidal, Andrea; Moore, Patrick W.

    2005-04-01

    A biosonar measurement tool (BMT) was created to investigate dolphin echolocation search strategies by recording echolocation clicks, returning echoes, and three-dimensional angular motion, velocity, and depth of free-swimming dolphins performing open-water target detections. Trial start and stop times, locations determined from a differential global positioning system (DGPS), and BMT motion and acoustic data were used to produce spatial and acoustic representations of the searches. Two dolphins (LUT, FLP) searched for targets lying on the seafloor of a bay environment while carrying the BMT. LUT searched rapidly (Dolphins amplified target echo returns by either increasing the click source level or reducing distance to the target but without reducing source level. The distribution of echolocation click-peak frequencies suggested a bias in the dominant frequency components of clicks, possibly due to mechanical constraints of the click generator. Prior training and hearing loss accommodation potentially explain differences in the search strategies of the two dolphins. .

  15. Spatial and Temporal Variations in the Occurrence and Foraging Activity of Coastal Dolphins in Menai Bay, Zanzibar, Tanzania

    OpenAIRE

    Andrew J Temple; Tregenza, Nick; Amir, Omar A.; Jiddawi, Narriman; Berggren, Per

    2016-01-01

    Understanding temporal patterns in distribution, occurrence and behaviour is vital for the effective conservation of cetaceans. This study used cetacean click detectors (C-PODs) to investigate spatial and temporal variation in occurrence and foraging activity of the Indo-Pacific bottlenose (Tursiops aduncus) and Indian Ocean humpback (Sousa plumbea) dolphins resident in the Menai Bay Conservation Area (MBCA), Zanzibar, Tanzania. Occurrence was measured using detection positive minutes. Inter-...

  16. 瓶鼻海豚的click声信号特性%Vocalization and signal characteristic of bottlenose dolphin

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    牛富强; 杨燕明; 文洪涛; 刘贞文

    2011-01-01

    对自然环境下圈养在网箱内的瓶鼻海豚的发声及信号特性进行研究,利用实验室构建的宽频信号记录系统,获取大量的海豚原始发声信号,借助Matlab软件对这些信号进行时域、频谱分析.结果表明,瓶鼻海豚的发声信号复杂多样,主要分为滴答声、哨叫声和爆裂脉冲等三类.重点研究的的答声属于高频窄脉冲,频率分布范围广,集中在2~160kHz,峰值频率在110kHz附近,高于室内环境下瓶鼻海豚的答声信号的峰值频率;并且不同的声行为下,瓶鼻海豚发出的答声的次数有明显不同,喂食和训练时,发声次数较多,但频谱特性的变化趋势基本一致.%The research on the vocalization and signal characteristics of bottlenose dolphins in natural environment has been done. A large amount of original vocal signals are obtained by the broad frequency-band recording system integrated by laboratory instruments. Signals are evaluated by Matlab tools, and the results suggest that the sounds of botdenose dolphins are complex and diverse, mainly including click, whistles and burst pulses etc. The paper focuses on the clicks having high frequency and narrow time. Clicks have a wide range of frequency distribution concentrating in 2~160 kHz and the peak frequency as high as 110 kHz, but dolphins in tank emit clicks with lower peak frequencies. The number of clicks is obviously different under different acoustic behavior. Dolphins emit clicks more frequently at feeding and training times but the trends of spectral characteristic variation are basically the same.

  17. Echolocation characteristics of free-swimming bottlenose dolphins during object detection and identification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Houser, Dorian; Martin, Stephen W; Bauer, Eric J; Phillips, Michael; Herrin, Tim; Cross, Matt; Vidal, Andrea; Moore, Patrick W

    2005-04-01

    A biosonar measurement tool (BMT) was created to investigate dolphin echolocation search strategies by recording echolocation clicks, returning echoes, and three-dimensional angular motion, velocity, and depth of free-swimming dolphins performing open-water target detections. Trial start and stop times, locations determined from a differential global positioning system (DGPS), and BMT motion and acoustic data were used to produce spatial and acoustic representations of the searches. Two dolphins (LUT, FLP) searched for targets lying on the seafloor of a bay environment while carrying the BMT. LUT searched rapidly (energy distributions dominating from 30-60 kHz. Dolphins amplified target echo returns by either increasing the click source level or reducing distance to the target but without reducing source level. The distribution of echolocation click-peak frequencies suggested a bias in the dominant frequency components of clicks, possibly due to mechanical constraints of the click generator. Prior training and hearing loss accommodation potentially explain differences in the search strategies of the two dolphins. PMID:15898671

  18. Long-term responses of Burrunan dolphins (Tursiops australis) to swim-with dolphin tourism in Port Phillip Bay, Victoria, Australia: A population at risk

    OpenAIRE

    Nicole E. Filby; Stockin, Karen A.; Carol Scarpaci

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated Burrunan dolphin responses to dolphin-swim tour vessels across two time periods: 1998–2000 and 2011–2013. A total of 211 dolphin sightings were documented across 306 surveys. Sighting success rate and mean encounter time with dolphins decreased significantly by 12.8% and 8.2 min, respectively, between periods. Approaches that did not contravene regulations elicited highest approach responses by dolphins towards tour vessels, whereas dolphins’ responded to illegal appro...

  19. Fetal distress and in utero pneumonia in perinatal dolphins during the Northern Gulf of Mexico unusual mortality event.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colegrove, Kathleen M; Venn-Watson, Stephanie; Litz, Jenny; Kinsel, Michael J; Terio, Karen A; Fougeres, Erin; Ewing, Ruth; Pabst, D Ann; McLellan, William A; Raverty, Stephen; Saliki, Jeremiah; Fire, Spencer; Rappucci, Gina; Bowen-Stevens, Sabrina; Noble, Lauren; Costidis, Alex; Barbieri, Michelle; Field, Cara; Smith, Suzanne; Carmichael, Ruth H; Chevis, Connie; Hatchett, Wendy; Shannon, Delphine; Tumlin, Mandy; Lovewell, Gretchen; McFee, Wayne; Rowles, Teresa K

    2016-04-12

    An unusual mortality event (UME) involving primarily common bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus of all size classes stranding along coastal Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama, USA, started in early 2010 and continued into 2014. During this northern Gulf of Mexico UME, a distinct cluster of perinatal dolphins (total body length dolphin strandings that were perinates between 2009 and 2013 were compared to baseline strandings (2000-2005). A case-reference study was conducted to compare demographics, histologic lesions, and Brucella sp. infection prevalence in 69 UME perinatal dolphins to findings from 26 reference perinates stranded in South Carolina and Florida outside of the UME area. Compared to reference perinates, UME perinates were more likely to have died in utero or very soon after birth (presence of atelectasis in 88 vs. 15%, p dolphins were particularly susceptible to late-term pregnancy failures and development of in utero infections including brucellosis. PMID:27068499

  20. Detection of Multiple Budding Yeast Cells and a Partial Sequence of 43-kDa Glycoprotein Coding Gene of Paracoccidioides brasiliensis from a Case of Lacaziosis in a Female Pacific White-Sided Dolphin (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minakawa, Tomoko; Ueda, Keiichi; Tanaka, Miyuu; Tanaka, Natsuki; Kuwamura, Mitsuru; Izawa, Takeshi; Konno, Toshihiro; Yamate, Jyoji; Itano, Eiko Nakagawa; Sano, Ayako; Wada, Shinpei

    2016-08-01

    Lacaziosis, formerly called as lobomycosis, is a zoonotic mycosis, caused by Lacazia loboi, found in humans and dolphins, and is endemic in the countries on the Atlantic Ocean, Indian Ocean and Pacific Ocean of Japanese coast. Susceptible Cetacean species include the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), the Indian Ocean bottlenose dolphin (T. aduncus), and the estuarine dolphin (Sotalia guianensis); however, no cases have been recorded in other Cetacean species. We diagnosed a case of Lacaziosis in a Pacific white-sided dolphin (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens) nursing in an aquarium in Japan. The dolphin was a female estimated to be more than 14 years old at the end of June 2015 and was captured in a coast of Japan Sea in 2001. Multiple, lobose, and solid granulomatous lesions with or without ulcers appeared on her jaw, back, flipper and fluke skin, in July 2014. The granulomatous skin lesions from the present case were similar to those of our previous cases. Multiple budding and chains of round yeast cells were detected in the biopsied samples. The partial sequence of 43-kDa glycoprotein coding gene confirmed by a nested PCR and sequencing, which revealed a different genotype from both Amazonian and Japanese lacaziosis in bottlenose dolphins, and was 99 % identical to those derived from Paracoccidioides brasiliensis; a sister fungal species to L. loboi. This is the first case of lacaziosis in Pacific white-sided dolphin. PMID:26883513

  1. The occurrence and distribution of dolphins in Zanzibar, Tanzania, with comments on the differences between two species of tursiops

    OpenAIRE

    Amir, O.A.; Jiddawi, N.S.; Berggren, P

    2005-01-01

    Incidental catches (bycatch) in gillnet fisheries off Zanzibar (Unguja Island), as a source of mortality among several species of dolphins, were reported in a questionnaire survey conducted in 1999. As a follow-up to that survey, from January 2000 to August 2003, we monitored the incidental catches of dolphins collected from 12 fish landing sites. Six species of dolphins were recorded from 143 specimens retrieved from bycatches in drift- and bottom set gillnets. Of these, 68 (48%) were Indo-P...

  2. Shared Reproductive State Enhances Female Associations in Dolphins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luciana M. Möller

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available Female bottlenose dolphins (genus Tursiops usually associate at moderate level with other females within social clusters called bands or cliques. It has been suggested that reproductive state may play the predominant role in determining associations within female T. truncatus bands. Here, we test the hypothesis that reproductive state correlates with associations of female Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (T. aduncus. We found that females in similar reproductive state, which included females from late pregnancy to the first year of their calves' life or females from early pregnancy to their calves' newborn period, had higher-association coefficients with each other than they did with females in different reproductive states (females with older calves or without calves. This was observed both within and across social clusters suggesting that reproductive state, at least for pregnant females and those with young calves, plays an important role in determining who to associate with. However, a female's most frequent associate was not always with another in similar reproductive state. We suggest that several factors, including reproductive state, may be of importance in determining associations of female bottlenose dolphins.

  3. Long-term responses of Burrunan dolphins (Tursiops australis to swim-with dolphin tourism in Port Phillip Bay, Victoria, Australia: A population at risk

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicole E. Filby

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available This study investigated Burrunan dolphin responses to dolphin-swim tour vessels across two time periods: 1998–2000 and 2011–2013. A total of 211 dolphin sightings were documented across 306 surveys. Sighting success rate and mean encounter time with dolphins decreased significantly by 12.8% and 8.2 min, respectively, between periods. Approaches that did not contravene regulations elicited highest approach responses by dolphins towards tour vessels, whereas dolphins’ responded to illegal approaches most frequently with avoidance. Small groups responded to tour vessels with avoidance significantly more than large groups. Initial dolphin behaviour had a strong effect on dolphin’s responses to tour vessels, with resting groups the most likely to exhibit avoidance. Calves were significantly more likely to be present during swims in 2011–2013. Dolphin’s responses to tour vessels changed across time, with effect responses (avoidance and approach increasing significantly as dolphins gained cumulative experience. These dolphins are forced to expend a greater level of time and energy avoiding or approaching boats, shifting from a non-effect response to an effect response. Consequences of this include possible decrease in biological fitness by detracting from core biological activities such as foraging and resting. Combined with a decrease in sighting success between periods, the results imply that this population of dolphins, which is endemic to Australia and listed as threatened under the Victorian Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988, may not be well suited to the dolphin-swim industry. The management implications of these results warrant a shift from passive to active management in Port Phillip Bay. The importance of long-term research is highlighted, given behavioural responses detected herein would be undetected in short-term studies.

  4. Establishing baseline levels of trace elements in blood and skin of bottlenose dolphins in Sarasota Bay, Florida: implications for non-invasive monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bryan, Colleen E; Christopher, Steven J; Balmer, Brian C; Wells, Randall S

    2007-12-15

    Several major unusual mortality events occurring in recent years have increased the level of concern for the health of bottlenose dolphin populations along the United States Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico coasts. Trace element concentrations were examined in a population of free-ranging dolphins in Sarasota Bay, Florida, in order to develop a benchmark for future comparisons within and between populations. Whole blood (n=51) and skin (n=40) samples were collected through capture and release health assessment events during 2002-2004. Samples were analyzed for Al, V, Cr, Mn, Cu, Zn, As, Se, Rb, Sr, Mo, Cd, and Pb by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICPMS) and Hg via atomic fluorescence spectrometry (AFS). Trace element concentrations (wet mass) in skin were 2 to 45 times greater than blood, except Cu was approximately 1.5 times higher in blood. Statistically strong correlations (pdolphins had significantly greater Hg concentrations in blood and skin and Pb concentrations in skin, relative to males. Calves exhibited significantly lower V, As, and Hg concentrations in blood and V and Hg concentrations in skin, relative to other age classes. Rubidium and Cu concentrations in skin were greatest in subadults and calves, respectively. In blood, V, Zn, and As concentrations were significantly greater in winter, relative to summer, and the opposite trend was observed for Rb and Sr concentrations. In skin, Cu and Zn concentrations were significantly greater in winter, relative to summer, and the opposite trend was observed for Mn, Rb, Cd, and Pb concentrations. The baseline concentrations and trends established in this study will serve as a benchmark for comparison and aid in sampling design for future monitoring of this population and other coastal bottlenose dolphin populations. PMID:17870146

  5. Resumption of traditional drive hunting of dolphins in the Solomon Islands in 2013.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oremus, Marc; Leqata, John; Baker, C Scott

    2015-05-01

    The 'drive hunting' of dolphins has a long history in the Solomon Islands, specifically at the island of Malaita. In 2010, the most active village, Fanalei, suspended hunting in exchange for financial compensation from an international non-governmental organization but resumed hunting again in early 2013. Here, we report on a visit to Fanalei in March 2013 to document the species and number of dolphins killed in the renewed hunting. Detailed records for the 2013 hunting, up to the time of our visit, included at least 1500 pantropical spotted dolphins (Stenella attenuata), 159 spinner dolphins (Stenella longirostris) and 15 'bottlenose' dolphins, probably Tursiops truncatus. Molecular identification confirmed two of the species, pantropical spotted and spinner dolphins. A summary of all available records from 1976 to 2013 documented a minimum total of 15 454 dolphins killed by the Fanalei villagers alone. We also found the local price of a dolphin tooth had increased from about US$0.14 (SBD$1) in 2004 to about US$0.70 (SBD$5) in 2013. The large number of dolphins killed and the apparent incentive for future hunting offered by the increasing commercial value of teeth, highlight an urgent need to monitor hunts and assess the abundance and trends in local populations. PMID:26064656

  6. A mini review of dolphin carbohydrate metabolism and suggestions for future research using exhaled air

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sam eRidgway

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available In the 1960s, I explored some aspects of carbohydrate metabolism in healthy bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus. Their physiological picture resembled what had been described for hyperthyroid diabetics. Dolphins have elevated thyroid hormone turnover, and fasting dolphins maintain a relatively high level of plasma glucose. After dolphins ingest glucose, plasma levels remain high for many hours. Interestingly, plasma glucose must exceed 300 mg/dL (about twice as high as the human threshold before glucose appears in urine. Due to their diabetes-like states, trainability, and unique natural respiratory anatomy and physiology, dolphins may offer useful clues to metabolites in the breath that may be used to non-invasively monitor diabetes in humans. Dolphins take very rapid and deep breaths that are four or five times as deep as humans and other terrestrial mammals, making them ideal for physiological assessment using non-invasive exhaled air. Avenues for successfully identifying breath-based markers for metabolic disease and physiology in dolphins can be done with both modern technology and the evolutionarily advantageous canine nose. This review summarizes aspects of dolphin metabolism previously learned and offers new directions for diabetes research that may benefit both dolphin and human health.

  7. Cultural transmission of tool use by Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.) provides access to a novel foraging niche

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kruetzen, Michael; Kreicker, Sina; MacLeod, Colin D.; Learmonth, Jennifer; Kopps, Anna M.; Walsham, Pamela; Allen, Simon J.

    2014-01-01

    Culturally transmitted tool use has important ecological and evolutionary consequences and has been proposed as a significant driver of human evolution. Such evidence is still scarce in other animals. In cetaceans, tool use has been inferred using indirect evidence in one population of Indo-Pacific

  8. Establishing baseline levels of trace elements in blood and skin of bottlenose dolphins in Sarasota Bay, Florida: Implications for non-invasive monitoring

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bryan, Colleen E. [National Institute of Standards and Technology, Hollings Marine Laboratory, 331 Fort Johnson Road, Charleston, South Carolina 29412 (United States); College of Charleston, Grice Marine Laboratory, 205 Fort Johnson Road, Charleston, South Carolina 29412 (United States)], E-mail: colleen.bryan@nist.gov; Christopher, Steven J. [National Institute of Standards and Technology, Hollings Marine Laboratory, 331 Fort Johnson Road, Charleston, South Carolina 29412 (United States); Balmer, Brian C.; Wells, Randall S. [Chicago Zoological Society c/o Mote Marine Laboratory, 1600 Ken Thompson Parkway, Sarasota, Florida 34236 (United States)

    2007-12-15

    Several major unusual mortality events occurring in recent years have increased the level of concern for the health of bottlenose dolphin populations along the United States Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico coasts. Trace element concentrations were examined in a population of free-ranging dolphins in Sarasota Bay, Florida, in order to develop a benchmark for future comparisons within and between populations. Whole blood (n = 51) and skin (n = 40) samples were collected through capture and release health assessment events during 2002-2004. Samples were analyzed for Al, V, Cr, Mn, Cu, Zn, As, Se, Rb, Sr, Mo, Cd, and Pb by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICPMS) and Hg via atomic fluorescence spectrometry (AFS). Trace element concentrations (wet mass) in skin were 2 to 45 times greater than blood, except Cu was approximately 1.5 times higher in blood. Statistically strong correlations (p < 0.05) were found for V, As, Se, Rb, Sr, and Hg between blood and skin demonstrating that these tissues can be used as effective non-lethal monitoring tools. The strongest correlation was established for Hg (r = 0.9689) and concentrations in both blood and skin were above the threshold at which detrimental effects are observed in other vertebrate species. Female dolphins had significantly greater Hg concentrations in blood and skin and Pb concentrations in skin, relative to males. Calves exhibited significantly lower V, As, and Hg concentrations in blood and V and Hg concentrations in skin, relative to other age classes. Rubidium and Cu concentrations in skin were greatest in subadults and calves, respectively. In blood, V, Zn, and As concentrations were significantly greater in winter, relative to summer, and the opposite trend was observed for Rb and Sr concentrations. In skin, Cu and Zn concentrations were significantly greater in winter, relative to summer, and the opposite trend was observed for Mn, Rb, Cd, and Pb concentrations. The baseline concentrations and trends

  9. Establishing baseline levels of trace elements in blood and skin of bottlenose dolphins in Sarasota Bay, Florida: Implications for non-invasive monitoring

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Several major unusual mortality events occurring in recent years have increased the level of concern for the health of bottlenose dolphin populations along the United States Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico coasts. Trace element concentrations were examined in a population of free-ranging dolphins in Sarasota Bay, Florida, in order to develop a benchmark for future comparisons within and between populations. Whole blood (n = 51) and skin (n = 40) samples were collected through capture and release health assessment events during 2002-2004. Samples were analyzed for Al, V, Cr, Mn, Cu, Zn, As, Se, Rb, Sr, Mo, Cd, and Pb by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICPMS) and Hg via atomic fluorescence spectrometry (AFS). Trace element concentrations (wet mass) in skin were 2 to 45 times greater than blood, except Cu was approximately 1.5 times higher in blood. Statistically strong correlations (p < 0.05) were found for V, As, Se, Rb, Sr, and Hg between blood and skin demonstrating that these tissues can be used as effective non-lethal monitoring tools. The strongest correlation was established for Hg (r = 0.9689) and concentrations in both blood and skin were above the threshold at which detrimental effects are observed in other vertebrate species. Female dolphins had significantly greater Hg concentrations in blood and skin and Pb concentrations in skin, relative to males. Calves exhibited significantly lower V, As, and Hg concentrations in blood and V and Hg concentrations in skin, relative to other age classes. Rubidium and Cu concentrations in skin were greatest in subadults and calves, respectively. In blood, V, Zn, and As concentrations were significantly greater in winter, relative to summer, and the opposite trend was observed for Rb and Sr concentrations. In skin, Cu and Zn concentrations were significantly greater in winter, relative to summer, and the opposite trend was observed for Mn, Rb, Cd, and Pb concentrations. The baseline concentrations and trends

  10. Patterns of dolphin bycatch in a north-western Australian trawl fishery.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon J Allen

    Full Text Available The bycatch of small cetaceans in commercial fisheries is a global wildlife management problem. We used data from skippers' logbooks and independent observers to assess common bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus bycatch patterns between 2003 and 2009 in the Pilbara Trawl Fishery, Western Australia. Both datasets indicated that dolphins were caught in all fishery areas, across all depths and throughout the year. Over the entire datasets, observer reported bycatch rates (n = 52 dolphins in 4,124 trawls, or 12.6 dolphins/1,000 trawls were ca. double those reported by skippers (n = 180 dolphins in 27,904 trawls, or 6.5 dolphins/1,000 trawls. Generalised Linear Models based on observer data, which better explained the variation in dolphin bycatch, indicated that the most significant predictors of dolphin catch were: (1 vessel--one trawl vessel caught significantly more dolphins than three others assessed; (2 time of day--the lowest dolphin bycatch rates were between 00:00 and 05:59; and (3 whether nets included bycatch reduction devices (BRDs--the rate was reduced by ca. 45%, from 18.8 to 10.3 dolphins/1,000 trawls, after their introduction. These results indicated that differences among vessels (or skippers' trawling techniques and dolphin behavior (a diurnal pattern influenced the rates of dolphin capture; and that spatial or seasonal adjustments to trawling effort would be unlikely to significantly reduce dolphin bycatch. Recent skipper's logbook data show that dolphin bycatch rates have not declined since those reported in 2006, when BRDs were introduced across the fishery. Modified BRDs, with top-opening escape hatches from which dolphins might escape to the surface, may be a more effective means of further reducing dolphin bycatch. The vulnerability of this dolphin population to trawling-related mortality cannot be assessed in the absence of an ongoing observer program and without information on trawler-associated dolphin community

  11. Forebrain neuroanatomy of the neonatal and juvenile dolphin (T. truncatus and S. coeruloalba).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parolisi, Roberta; Peruffo, Antonella; Messina, Silvia; Panin, Mattia; Montelli, Stefano; Giurisato, Maristella; Cozzi, Bruno; Bonfanti, Luca

    2015-01-01

    Knowledge of dolphin functional neuroanatomy mostly derives from post-mortem studies and non-invasive approaches (i.e., magnetic resonance imaging), due to limitations in experimentation on cetaceans. As a consequence the availability of well-preserved tissues for histology is scarce, and detailed histological analyses are referred mainly to adults. Here we studied the neonatal/juvenile brain in two species of dolphins, the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) and the striped dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba), with special reference to forebrain regions. We analyzed cell density in subcortical nuclei, white/gray matter ratio, and myelination in selected regions at different anterior-posterior levels of the whole dolphin brain at different ages, to better define forebrain neuroanatomy and the developmental stage of the dolphin brain around birth. The analyses were extended to the periventricular germinal layer and the cerebellum, whose delayed genesis of the granule cell layer is a hallmark of postnatal development in the mammalian nervous system. Our results establish an atlas of the young dolphin forebrain and, on the basis of occurrence/absence of delayed neurogenic layers, confirm the stage of advanced brain maturation in these animals with respect to most terrestrial mammals. PMID:26594155

  12. Forebrain neuroanatomy of the neonatal and juvenile dolphin (T. truncatus & S. coeruloalba

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberta eParolisi

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Knowledge of dolphin functional neuroanatomy mostly derives from post-mortem studies and non-invasive approaches (i.e. magnetic resonance imaging, due to limitations in experimentation on cetaceans. As a consequence the availability of well-preserved tissues for histology is scarce, and detailed histological analyses are referred mainly to adults. Here we studied the neonatal/juvenile brain in two species of dolphins, the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus and the striped dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba, with special reference to forebrain regions. We analyzed cell density in subcortical nuclei, white/grey matter ratio, and myelination in selected regions at different anterior-posterior levels of the whole dolphin brain at different ages, to better define forebrain neuroanatomy and the developmental stage of the dolphin brain around birth. The analysis were extended to the periventricular germinal layer and the cerebellum, whose delayed genesis of the granule cell layer is a hallmark of postnatal development in the mammalian nervous system. Our results establish an atlas of the young dolphin forebrain and, on the basis of occurrence/absence of delayed neurogenic layers, confirm the stage of advanced brain maturation in these animals with respect to most terrestrial mammals.

  13. Dolphins. LC Science Tracer Bullet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niskern, Diana, Comp.

    The family Delphinidae is the largest family of toothed whales. It includes not only those mammals commonly referred to as dolphins, such as the bottlenosed dolphin often seen in captivity, but also the killer whale. This literature and resources guide is not intended to be a comprehensive bibliography on dolphins; the guide is designed--as the…

  14. Evidence suggests vocal production learning in a cross-fostered Risso's dolphin (Grampus griseus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Favaro, Livio; Neves, Silvana; Furlati, Stefano; Pessani, Daniela; Martin, Vidal; Janik, Vincent M

    2016-07-01

    Vocal learning is a rare skill in mammals, and we have limited information about the contexts in which they use it. Previous studies suggested that cetaceans in general are skilled at imitating sounds, but only few species have been studied to date. To expand this investigation to another species and to investigate the possible influence of the social environment on vocal learning, we studied the whistle repertoire of a female Risso's dolphin (Grampus griseus) that was stranded at an early age and was subsequently raised in a group of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). We show that this cross-fostered animal produced vocal signals more akin to those of its Tursiops poolmates than those of Risso's dolphins in the wild. This is one of very few systematic cross-fostering studies in cetaceans and the first to suggest vocal production learning in the Risso's dolphin. Our findings also suggest that social experience is a major factor in the development of the vocal repertoire in this species. PMID:26874843

  15. Seven new dolphin mitochondrial genomes and a time-calibrated phylogeny of whales

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhou Kaiya

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The phylogeny of Cetacea (whales is not fully resolved with substantial support. The ambiguous and conflicting results of multiple phylogenetic studies may be the result of the use of too little data, phylogenetic methods that do not adequately capture the complex nature of DNA evolution, or both. In addition, there is also evidence that the generic taxonomy of Delphinidae (dolphins underestimates its diversity. To remedy these problems, we sequenced the complete mitochondrial genomes of seven dolphins and analyzed these data with partitioned Bayesian analyses. Moreover, we incorporate a newly-developed "relaxed" molecular clock to model heterogenous rates of evolution among cetacean lineages. Results The "deep" phylogenetic relationships are well supported including the monophyly of Cetacea and Odontoceti. However, there is ambiguity in the phylogenetic affinities of two of the river dolphin clades Platanistidae (Indian River dolphins and Lipotidae (Yangtze River dolphins. The phylogenetic analyses support a sister relationship between Delphinidae and Monodontidae + Phocoenidae. Additionally, there is statistically significant support for the paraphyly of Tursiops (bottlenose dolphins and Stenella (spotted dolphins. Conclusion Our phylogenetic analysis of complete mitochondrial genomes using recently developed models of rate autocorrelation resolved the phylogenetic relationships of the major Cetacean lineages with a high degree of confidence. Our results indicate that a rapid radiation of lineages explains the lack of support the placement of Platanistidae and Lipotidae. Moreover, our estimation of molecular divergence dates indicates that these radiations occurred in the Middle to Late Oligocene and Middle Miocene, respectively. Furthermore, by collecting and analyzing seven new mitochondrial genomes, we provide strong evidence that the delphinid genera Tursiops and Stenella are not monophyletic, and the current taxonomy

  16. Preparing the perfect cuttlefish meal: complex prey handling by dolphins.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julian Finn

    Full Text Available Dolphins are well known for their complex social and foraging behaviours. Direct underwater observations of wild dolphin feeding behaviour however are rare. At mass spawning aggregations of giant cuttlefish (Sepia apama in the Upper Spencer Gulf in South Australia, a wild female Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus was observed and recorded repeatedly catching, killing and preparing cuttlefish for consumption using a specific and ordered sequence of behaviours. Cuttlefish were herded to a sand substrate, pinned to the seafloor, killed by downward thrust, raised mid-water and beaten by the dolphin with its snout until the ink was released and drained. The deceased cuttlefish was then returned to the seafloor, inverted and forced along the sand substrate in order to strip the thin dorsal layer of skin off the mantle, thus releasing the buoyant calcareous cuttlebone. This stepped behavioural sequence significantly improves prey quality through 1 removal of the ink (with constituent melanin and tyrosine, and 2 the calcareous cuttlebone. Observations of foraging dolphin pods from above-water at this site (including the surfacing of intact clean cuttlebones suggest that some or all of this prey handling sequence may be used widely by dolphins in the region. Aspects of the unique mass spawning aggregations of giant cuttlefish in this region of South Australia may have contributed to the evolution of this behaviour through both high abundances of spawning and weakened post-spawning cuttlefish in a small area (>10,000 animals on several kilometres of narrow rocky reef, as well as potential long-term and regular visitation by dolphin pods to this site.

  17. Novel Atlantic bottlenose dolphin parainfluenza virus TtPIV-1 clusters with bovine PIV-3 genotype B strains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eberle, Kirsten C; Neill, John D; Venn-Watson, Stephanie K; McGill, Jodi L; Sacco, Randy E

    2015-10-01

    Parainfluenza virus 3 (PIV-3) is a common viral infection not only in humans, but also in many other species. Serological evidence suggests that nearly 100 % of children in the United States have been infected with PIV-3 by 5 years of age. Similarly, in cattle, PIV-3 is commonly associated with bovine respiratory disease complex. A novel dolphin PIV-3 (TtPIV-1) was described by Nollens et al. in 2008 from a dolphin that was diagnosed with an unknown respiratory illness. At that time, TtPIV-1 was found to be most similar to, but distinct from, bovine PIV-3 (BPIV-3). In the present study, similar viral growth kinetics and pro-inflammatory cytokine (IL-1β, IL-6, and CXCL8) production were seen between BPIV-3 and TtPIV-1 in BEAS-2B, MDBK, and Vero cell lines. Initial nomenclature of TtPIV-1 was based on partial sequence of the fusion and RNA polymerase genes. Based on the similarities we saw with the in vitro work, it was important to examine the TtPIV-1 genome in more detail. Full genome sequencing and subsequent phylogenetic analysis revealed that all six viral genes of TtPIV-1 clustered within the recently described BPIV-3 genotype B strains, and it is proposed that TtPIV-1 be re-classified with BPIV-3 genotype B strains. PMID:26174699

  18. A comparison of pectoral fin contact between two different wild dolphin populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dudzinski, K.M.; Gregg, J.D.; Ribic, C.A.; Kuczaj, S.A.

    2009-01-01

    Contact behaviour involving the pectoral fin has been documented in a number of dolphin species, and various explanations about its function have been offered. Pectoral fin contact can take a variety of forms, and involves a number of body parts and movements, likely differing depending upon social or ecological context. For this study, we compare the pectoral fin contact behaviour of two species of wild dolphins: Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) from around Mikura Island, Japan, and Atlantic spotted dolphins (Stenella frontalis) from The Bahamas. The two study populations exhibit surprising similarity in the ways in which pectoral fin contacts are used, despite differences in species and environmental conditions at the two sites. Differences in contact rates for calves between the two sites suggest that calf-focused aggression from adult dolphins is more prevalent at Mikura than in The Bahamas. Our results suggest that pectoral fin contact behaviour seems to be driven primarily by social pressures, and may be similar in function to allogrooming described in primates. ?? 2008 Elsevier B.V.

  19. Visual laterality in dolphins: importance of the familiarity of stimuli

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Background Many studies of cerebral asymmetries in different species lead, on the one hand, to a better understanding of the functions of each cerebral hemisphere and, on the other hand, to develop an evolutionary history of hemispheric laterality. Our animal model is particularly interesting because of its original evolutionary path, i.e. return to aquatic life after a terrestrial phase. The rare reports concerning visual laterality of marine mammals investigated mainly discrimination processes. As dolphins are migrant species they are confronted to a changing environment. Being able to categorize new versus familiar objects would allow dolphins a rapid adaptation to novel environments. Visual laterality could be a prerequisite to this adaptability. To date, no study, to our knowledge, has analyzed the environmental factors that could influence their visual laterality. Results We investigated visual laterality expressed spontaneously at the water surface by a group of five common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in response to various stimuli. The stimuli presented ranged from very familiar objects (known and manipulated previously) to familiar objects (known but never manipulated) to unfamiliar objects (unknown, never seen previously). At the group level, dolphins used their left eye to observe very familiar objects and their right eye to observe unfamiliar objects. However, eyes are used indifferently to observe familiar objects with intermediate valence. Conclusion Our results suggest different visual cerebral processes based either on the global shape of well-known objects or on local details of unknown objects. Moreover, the manipulation of an object appears necessary for these dolphins to construct a global representation of an object enabling its immediate categorization for subsequent use. Our experimental results pointed out some cognitive capacities of dolphins which might be crucial for their wild life given their fission-fusion social system

  20. Visual laterality in dolphins: importance of the familiarity of stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Blois-Heulin Catherine

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Many studies of cerebral asymmetries in different species lead, on the one hand, to a better understanding of the functions of each cerebral hemisphere and, on the other hand, to develop an evolutionary history of hemispheric laterality. Our animal model is particularly interesting because of its original evolutionary path, i.e. return to aquatic life after a terrestrial phase. The rare reports concerning visual laterality of marine mammals investigated mainly discrimination processes. As dolphins are migrant species they are confronted to a changing environment. Being able to categorize new versus familiar objects would allow dolphins a rapid adaptation to novel environments. Visual laterality could be a prerequisite to this adaptability. To date, no study, to our knowledge, has analyzed the environmental factors that could influence their visual laterality. Results We investigated visual laterality expressed spontaneously at the water surface by a group of five common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus in response to various stimuli. The stimuli presented ranged from very familiar objects (known and manipulated previously to familiar objects (known but never manipulated to unfamiliar objects (unknown, never seen previously. At the group level, dolphins used their left eye to observe very familiar objects and their right eye to observe unfamiliar objects. However, eyes are used indifferently to observe familiar objects with intermediate valence. Conclusion Our results suggest different visual cerebral processes based either on the global shape of well-known objects or on local details of unknown objects. Moreover, the manipulation of an object appears necessary for these dolphins to construct a global representation of an object enabling its immediate categorization for subsequent use. Our experimental results pointed out some cognitive capacities of dolphins which might be crucial for their wild life given their

  1. Estudo da utilização do território pela população de roazes (Tursiops truncatus) do estuário do Sado a partir de dados obtidos em embarcações de Dolphin Watch

    OpenAIRE

    Grilo, Sara Isabel de Brito Esteves, 1986-

    2010-01-01

    Tese de mestrado. Biologia (Ecologia Marinha). Universidade de Lisboa, Faculdade de Ciências, 2010 O Dolphin Watch é uma actividade em expansão no estuário do Sado, dedicada à observação da população residente de roazes. O objectivo deste estudo consistiu em fornecer dados actualizados relativos à utilização do território, estrutura populacional e comportamento de Tursiops truncatus, a partir de observações realizadas a bordo de uma embarcação de Dolphin Watch. Realizaram-se 25 saídas, de ...

  2. Habitat selection of two island-associated dolphin species from the south-west Indian Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Condet, Manon; Dulau-Drouot, Violaine

    2016-08-01

    Identifying suitable habitats of protected species is an essential question in ecology and conservation planning. Modelling approaches have been widely used to identify environmental features that contribute to a species' ecological requirements and distribution. On Reunion Island, a fast-growing French territory located in the south-western Indian Ocean, anthropogenic impacts are mainly concentrated along the coast, representing a potential threat for Indo-Pacific bottlenose (Tursiops aduncus) and spinner (Stenella longirostris) dolphins, two resident coastal species. Beside coastal development, commercial and recreational dolphin-watching are growing, particularly along the west coast. To promote effective local management, habitat modelling was applied using presence-only data collected from 2008 to 2012 on the west coast of the island. Ecological Niche Factor Analyses were used to investigate the effect of physiographic variables on the distribution of these two dolphin species and delineate suitable habitats. It was found that the core habitat of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins was mainly restricted by depth and confined to coastal waters ranging from 4.7 to 75.8 m deep. The species preferentially used soft substrates (sand and mud) and tended to be ubiquitous in terms of substrate type/color used. Foraging activities were significantly related to soft substrates. The diurnal core habitat of spinner dolphins was confined to one discrete area, on the flat portion of the insular shelf, between 45.1 m and 70.7 m of depth. Suitable habitat was mainly related to soft and light-colored substrates, with a clear avoidance of dark-colored substrates. The core habitats of both species were very restrained spatially and therefore vulnerable to human activities. The fine scale habitat mapping achieved in this study represents baseline data to conduct ad hoc impact assessment and support conservation actions.

  3. CHARACTERIZATION OF ANTERIOR SEGMENT OPHTHALMOLOGIC LESIONS IDENTIFIED IN FREE-RANGING DOLPHINS AND THOSE UNDER HUMAN CARE.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colitz, Carmen M H; Walsh, Michael T; McCulloch, Stephen D

    2016-03-01

    Cetaceans in the wild and under human care develop a variety of ocular lesions. Although they have echolocation, cetacean species have good sight, making ocular health an important part of overall health care. The cornea is the primary site of abnormalities in both populations. Typical lesions of cetaceans under human care are characterized in this retrospective review of cases. One hundred eighty animals (n = 360 eyes) were chosen from the author's ophthalmologic examination reports from different geographic areas; they included Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), Pacific bottle nose dolphins (Tursiopstruncatus gilli), Indopacific bottlenose dolphins (Steno bredanensis), Indopacific humpback dolphins (Sousa chinensis), and roughtooth dolphins (Steno bredanensis). These animals were examined at least once, although most were examined numerous times over many years; lesions were categorized and are described. Seventy-seven eyes from 47 animals were normal. Medial keratopathy was the most common lesion and identified in 180 eyes from 97 animals, with 83 affected bilaterally. Horizontal keratopathy was identified in 69 eyes from 41 animals, with 28 affected bilaterally. Axial keratopathy and nonspecific axial opacities were identified in 67 eyes from 44 animals, with 21 affected bilaterally. Seventy-eight eyes from 50 animals, with 28 affected bilaterally, had more than one type of corneal lesion. Cataracts were identified in 32 eyes from 19 animals, with 13 affected bilaterally. Traumatic injuries were also common and involved eyelids and cornea. Sixteen eyes from 11 animals were blind; five dolphins were blind bilaterally due to phthisis bulbi secondary to corneal perforation or severe trauma. None of the diseases had a sex predisposition; however, medial keratopathy was significantly more common as a bilateral presentation than as a unilateral presentation. Cetaceans under human care with impaired sight can use echolocation; however, ocular health

  4. Visual laterality in belugas (Delphinapterus leucas) and Pacific white-sided dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens) when viewing familiar and unfamiliar humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeater, Deirdre B; Hill, Heather M; Baus, Natalie; Farnell, Heather; Kuczaj, Stan A

    2014-11-01

    Lateralization of cognitive processes and motor functions has been demonstrated in a number of species, including humans, elephants, and cetaceans. For example, bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) have exhibited preferential eye use during a variety of cognitive tasks. The present study investigated the possibility of visual lateralization in 12 belugas (Delphinapterus leucas) and six Pacific white-sided dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens) located at two separate marine mammal facilities. During free swim periods, the belugas and Pacific white-sided dolphins were presented a familiar human, an unfamiliar human, or no human during 10-15 min sessions. Session videos were coded for gaze duration, eye presentation at approach, and eye preference while viewing each stimulus. Although we did not find any clear group level lateralization, we found individual left eye lateralized preferences related to social stimuli for most belugas and some Pacific white-sided dolphins. Differences in gaze durations were also observed. The majority of individual belugas had longer gaze durations for unfamiliar rather than familiar stimuli. These results suggest that lateralization occurs during visual processing of human stimuli in belugas and Pacific white-sided dolphins and that these species can distinguish between familiar and unfamiliar humans. PMID:24831888

  5. A preliminary study of habitat and resource partitioning among co-occurring tropical dolphins around Mayotte, southwest Indian Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gross, Alexandra; Kiszka, Jeremy; Van Canneyt, Olivier; Richard, Pierre; Ridoux, Vincent

    2009-09-01

    Mayotte in the southwest Indian Ocean is characterized by high dolphin diversity. They may coexist within a fairly small area around the island because they exploit neither the same preferential habitats nor the same resources. This preliminary study aimed to investigate ecological niche segregation among these delphinid communities: the Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops aduncus, the pantropical spotted dolphin, Stenella attenuata, the spinner dolphin, Stenella longirostris, and the melon-headed whale, Peponocephala electra. Two approaches were used. Habitat preferences were investigated by analysing dolphin sighting data and associated physiographical characteristics. Resource partitioning was explored by analysing C and N stable isotopes in skin and blubber biopsies. Only T. aduncus, which showed clear association with coastal habitats in the lagoon, differed from the others in terms of habitat preferences, characterised by shallow depth and slope, and proximity to the coast. All other species shared similar oceanic habitats immediately outside the lagoon, these being of higher depth and slope, greater distance from the coast and were not discernable by discriminant analysis. The two Stenella species and the melon-headed whale displayed very high overlap in habitat physiographic variables. The analysis of stable isotopes confirmed the ecological isolation of T. aduncus and revealed a clear segregation of P. electra compared to the two Stenella that was not apparent in the habitat analysis. This may reflect ecological differences that were not observable from diurnal surface observations.

  6. Biscayne Bay Dolphin Photo ID System

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — It has been shown through a variety of photo-identification studies that populations of bottlenose dolphin inhabit the various embayments along the coast of...

  7. ORGANOCHLORINE, ORGANOBROMINE, METAL, AND SELENIUM RESIDUES IN BOTTLENOSE DOLPHINS (TURSIOPS TRUNCATUS) COLLECTED DURING AN UNUSUAL MORTALITY EVENT IN THE GULF OF MEXICO, 1990

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), cis-chlordane, oxychlordane, heptachlor epoxide, mirex, hexachlorobenzene HCB), lindane, octachlorostyrene (OCS),p,p'-DDE,p,p'-DDT, dieldrin, triphenylphosphate (TPP), polybrominated biphenyls (PBBs), and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PB-DPEs) ...

  8. 78 FR 17639 - Marine Mammals; File No. 17941

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-03-22

    ... within 50 yards during the filming. Four pantropical spotted dolphins (Stenella attenuata) may also be... photography on bottlenose (Tursiops truncatus) and spinner (Stenella longirostris) dolphins. DATES:...

  9. Characterization of the whistles of Tursiops truncatus (Cetacea: Delphinidae and their association with surface behavior

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Romero-Mujalli, Daniel

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Acoustic communication is common in dolphins and encompasses a variety of sounds, either vocal or not. Among vocalizations, whistles are continuous narrow-band and frequency-modulated sounds, with a frequency range between 2-24 kHz. The aim of this study was to characterize the whistles of a resident group of bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus in the coast of Aragua state (Venezuela and to determine their association with surface behavior. On average, whistle frequency ranged from 7 to 16 kHz. Six types of whistles, according to the contour of frequency modulation, were found: constant, ascending, descending, ascending-descending, descending-ascending and multiple. Only two behavioral states were observed: traveling and socialization. There was significant association between the type of whistle and behavior: whistles of medium complexity (ascending-descending were preferred during traveling and significantly avoided during socialization. Furthermore, whistles emitted during socialization were longer, of broader bandwidth, and spanning over lower frequencies than those emitted during traveling. The variation of whistles according to surface behavior confirms that they have a communicational value. Future research should focus on the causes and consequences of whistle emission to elucidate their referential function.

  10. Where's That Dolphin?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kovacs, Carolyn; Curran, Mary Carla; Cox, Tara

    2013-01-01

    In this article , the authors describe an activity in which students in Savannah, Georgia, use handheld GPS devices to record the sightings of bottlenose dolphins, examine spatial data from five pairs of dolphins in the study, and then form hypotheses about the spatial patterns they observe. In the process, they learn not only about the ecology of…

  11. Investigation of the potential for vascular bubble formation in a repetitively diving dolphin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Houser, D S; Dankiewicz-Talmadge, L A; Stockard, T K; Ponganis, P J

    2010-01-01

    The production of venous gas emboli (VGE) resulting from altered dive behavior is postulated as contributing to the stranding of beaked whales exposed to mid-frequency active sonar. To test whether nitrogen gas uptake during repetitive breath-hold diving is sufficient for asymptomatic VGE formation in odontocetes, a bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus Montagu) was trained to perform 10-12 serial dives with 60 s surface intervals to depths of 30, 50, 70 or 100 m. The dolphin remained at the bottom depth for 90 s on each dive. Doppler and/or two-dimensional imaging ultrasound did not detect VGE in the portal and brachiocephalic veins following a dive series. Van Slyke analyses of serial, post-dive blood samples drawn from the fluke yielded blood nitrogen partial pressure (P(N(2))) values that were negligibly different from control samples. Mean heart rate (HR; +/-1 s.d.) recorded during diving was 50+/-3 beats min(-1) and was not significantly different between the 50, 70 and 100 m dive sessions. The absence of VGE and elevated blood P(N(2)) during post-dive periods do not support the hypothesis that N(2) supersaturation during repetitive dives contributes to VGE formation in the dolphin. The diving HR pattern and the presumed rapid N(2) washout during the surface-interval tachycardia probably minimized N(2) accumulation in the blood during dive sessions. PMID:20008362

  12. Diabetes and the metabolic syndrome: possibilities of a new breath test in a dolphin model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    CristinaElizabethDavis

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Diabetes type-2 and the metabolic syndrome are prevalent in epidemic proportions and result in significant co-morbid disease. Limitations in understanding of dietary effects and cholesterol metabolism exist. Current methods to assess diabetes are essential, though many are invasive; for example, blood glucose and lipid monitoring require regular finger sticks and blood draws. A novel method to study these diseases may be non-invasive breath testing of exhaled compounds. Currently, acetone and lipid peroxidation products have been seen in small scale studies, though other compounds may be significant. As Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus have been proposed as a good model for human diabetes, applications of dietary manipulations and breath testing in this population may shed important light on how to design human clinical studies. In addition, ongoing studies indicate that breath testing in dolphins is feasible, humane, and yields relevant metabolites. By studying the metabolic and cholesterol responses of dolphins to dietary modifications, researchers may gain insight into human diabetes, improve the design of costly human clinical trials, and potentially discover biomarkers for non-invasive breath monitoring.

  13. Site-specific assessments of the abundance of three inshore dolphin species to inform conservation and management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander Mark Brown

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Assessing the abundance of wildlife populations is essential to their effective conservation and management. Concerns have been raised over the vulnerability of tropical inshore dolphins in waters off northern Australia to anthropogenic impacts on local populations, yet a lack of abundance data precludes assessment of their conservation status and the management of threats. Using small vessels as cost-effective research platforms, photo-identification surveys and capture-recapture models were applied to provide the first quantitative abundance data for Australian snubfin (Orcaella heinsohni, Australian humpback (Sousa sahulensis, and Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus at five sites in the Kimberley region of north-western Australia. The abundance of each species was highly variable between different sites, likely reflecting species-specific habitat preferences. Within the c. 130 km2 study sites, the estimated abundance of most species was ≤ 60 individuals (excluding calves, and fewer than 20 humpback dolphins were identified at each site in any one 3-5 week sampling period. However, larger estimates of c. 130 snubfin and c. 160 bottlenose dolphins were obtained at two different sites. Several local populations showed evidence of site fidelity, particularly snubfin dolphins. By implementing a standardized, multi-site approach, data on local populations were provided within a broader, regional context, and indicated that each species is patchily distributed in the region. This highlights the need for site-specific baseline data collection using appropriate survey techniques to quantitatively assess the potential impacts of threatening activities to local populations. These findings further illustrate the need to gain a greater understanding of known and potential threats to inshore dolphin populations, their relative impacts, and to mitigate where necessary. In particular, the level of interactions with inshore gillnet fisheries

  14. An assessment of the effectiveness of high definition cameras as remote monitoring tools for dolphin ecology studies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Estênio Guimarães Paiva

    Full Text Available Research involving marine mammals often requires costly field programs. This paper assessed whether the benefits of using cameras outweighs the implications of having personnel performing marine mammal detection in the field. The efficacy of video and still cameras to detect Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus in the Fremantle Harbour (Western Australia was evaluated, with consideration on how environmental conditions affect detectability. The cameras were set on a tower in the Fremantle Port channel and videos were perused at 1.75 times the normal speed. Images from the cameras were used to estimate position of dolphins at the water's surface. Dolphin detections ranged from 5.6 m to 463.3 m for the video camera, and from 10.8 m to 347.8 m for the still camera. Detection range showed to be satisfactory when compared to distances at which dolphins would be detected by field observers. The relative effect of environmental conditions on detectability was considered by fitting a Generalised Estimation Equations (GEEs model with Beaufort, level of glare and their interactions as predictors and a temporal auto-correlation structure. The best fit model indicated level of glare had an effect, with more intense periods of glare corresponding to lower occurrences of observed dolphins. However this effect was not large (-0.264 and the parameter estimate was associated with a large standard error (0.113. The limited field of view was the main restraint in that cameras can be only applied to detections of animals observed rather than counts of individuals. However, the use of cameras was effective for long term monitoring of occurrence of dolphins, outweighing the costs and reducing the health and safety risks to field personal. This study showed that cameras could be effectively implemented onshore for research such as studying changes in habitat use in response to development and construction activities.

  15. 76 FR 35856 - Incidental Taking of Marine Mammals; Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to the Explosive Removal...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-06-20

    ..., 2008 (73 FR 34875), and remain in effect through July 19, 2013. For detailed information on this action... during EROS activities are bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), Atlantic spotted dolphins (Stenella frontalis), pantropical spotted dolphins (Stenella attenuata), Clymene dolphins (Stenella clymene),...

  16. 77 FR 45341 - Incidental Taking of Marine Mammals; Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to the Explosive Removal...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-07-31

    ..., 2008 (73 FR 34875), and remain in effect through July 19, 2013. For detailed information on this action... during EROS activities are bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), Atlantic spotted dolphins (Stenella frontalis), pantropical spotted dolphins (Stenella attenuata), Clymene dolphins (Stenella clymene),...

  17. 75 FR 54851 - Incidental Taking of Marine Mammals; Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to the Explosive Removal...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-09-09

    ..., 2008 (73 FR 34875), and remain in effect through July 19, 2013. For detailed information on this action... during EROS activities are bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), Atlantic spotted dolphins (Stenella frontalis), pantropical spotted dolphins (Stenella attenuata), Clymene dolphins (Stenella clymene),...

  18. 77 FR 39485 - Incidental Taking of Marine Mammals; Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to the Explosive Removal...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-07-03

    ..., 2008 (73 FR 34875), and remain in effect through July 19, 2013. For detailed information on this action... during EROS activities are bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), Atlantic spotted dolphins (Stenella frontalis), pantropical spotted dolphins (Stenella attenuata), Clymene dolphins (Stenella clymene),...

  19. 75 FR 31423 - Incidental Taking of Marine Mammals; Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to the Explosive Removal...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-06-03

    ..., 2008 (73 FR 34875), and remain in effect through July 19, 2013. For detailed information on this action... during EROS activities are bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), Atlantic spotted dolphins (Stenella frontalis), pantropical spotted dolphins (Stenella attenuata), Clymene dolphins (Stenella clymene),...

  20. 78 FR 13865 - Incidental Taking of Marine Mammals; Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to the Explosive Removal...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-03-01

    ..., 2008 (73 FR 34875), and remain in effect through July 19, 2013. For detailed information on this action... during EROS activities are bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), Atlantic spotted dolphins (Stenella frontalis), pantropical spotted dolphins (Stenella attenuata), Clymene dolphins (Stenella clymene),...

  1. 77 FR 16539 - Incidental Taking of Marine Mammals; Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to the Explosive Removal...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-03-21

    ..., 2008 (73 FR 34875), and remain in effect through July 19, 2013. For detailed information on this action... during EROS activities are bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), Atlantic spotted dolphins (Stenella frontalis), pantropical spotted dolphins (Stenella attenuata), Clymene dolphins (Stenella clymene),...

  2. 75 FR 28566 - Incidental Taking of Marine Mammals; Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to the Explosive Removal...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-05-21

    ..., 2008 (73 FR 34875), and remain in effect through July 19, 2013. For detailed information on this action... during EROS activities are bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), Atlantic spotted dolphins (Stenella frontalis), pantropical spotted dolphins (Stenella attenuata), Clymene dolphins (Stenella clymene),...

  3. 78 FR 22517 - Incidental Taking of Marine Mammals; Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to the Explosive Removal...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-04-16

    ..., 2008 (73 FR 34875), and remain in effect through July 19, 2013. For detailed information on this action... during EROS activities are bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), Atlantic spotted dolphins (Stenella frontalis), pantropical spotted dolphins (Stenella attenuata), Clymene dolphins (Stenella clymene),...

  4. 77 FR 10481 - Incidental Taking of Marine Mammals; Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to the Explosive Removal...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-02-22

    ..., 2008 (73 FR 34875), and remain in effect through July 19, 2013. For detailed information on this action... during EROS activities are bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), Atlantic spotted dolphins (Stenella frontalis), pantropical spotted dolphins (Stenella attenuata), Clymene dolphins (Stenella clymene),...

  5. Optimization of blood collection card method/enzyme-linked immunoassay for monitoring exposure of bottlenose dolphin to brevetoxin-producing red tides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maucher, Jennifer M; Briggs, Lyn; Podmore, Colleen; Ramsdell, John S

    2007-01-15

    Blood collection cards have been successfully used as a tool to monitor brevetoxin (PbTx) exposure in several species, including fish, mice, and rats. Previous methanolic methods used for extracting brevetoxin from blood collection cards have shown dolphin blood to have matrix difficulties in several biological assays. To better biomonitor protected marine mammal species in the Florida area, which is historically prone to unusual mortality events caused by brevetoxin exposure, we have modified the previous extraction method to consistently recover brevetoxin with a known efficiency from dolphin blood collection card samples with minimal matrix interference. A combination of phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) with 6% MeOH and 100% acetonitrile was used to elute blood from the cellulose card and precipitate proteins, respectively. Analysis was performed using a newly developed direct enzyme-linked immunoassay (ELISA), which yields a sample limit of quantification of 1 ng PbTx-3 equiv/mL. This extraction method allowed for linear recovery of PbTx-3 spiked into dolphin blood (1-30 ng/mL) with a consistent recovery rate of 58% and has subsequently been used to monitor brevetoxins in dolphins, as well as sea turtles and manatees, in regions endemic to red tides. In addition, two known metabolites of PbTx-2 were isolated and also found to be detectable using the ELISA. The cysteine conjugate (m/z 1018) and cysteine sulfoxide conjugate (m/z 1034) were found to have linear recoveries of 87% and 66%, respectively. In summary, this method of extracting brevetoxins and their metabolites from blood collection cards, in conjunction with the ELISA detection method, is a simple and reliable way to biomonitor physiologically relevant toxin levels in protected marine animals. PMID:17310722

  6. What Dolphins Want: Animal Intentionality and Tool-Use

    OpenAIRE

    Heflin, Ashley Shew

    2008-01-01

    In this thesis, I argue that at least some animals have the sort of intentionality philosophers traditionally have only ascribed to humans. I argue for this through the examination of tool-use among New Caledonian crows and Bottlenose dolphins. New Caledonian crows demonstrate advanced tool-manufacture and standardization, while Bottlenose dolphins use social learning to a much greater degree than other animals. These two case studies fit nicely with many of the non-linguistic accounts of int...

  7. Contrasted accumulation patterns of persistent organic pollutants and mercury in sympatric tropical dolphins from the south-western Indian Ocean.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dirtu, Alin C; Malarvannan, Govindan; Das, Krishna; Dulau-Drouot, Violaine; Kiszka, Jeremy J; Lepoint, Gilles; Mongin, Philippe; Covaci, Adrian

    2016-04-01

    Due to their high trophic position and long life span, small cetaceans are considered as suitable bioindicators to monitor the presence of contaminants in marine ecosystems. Here, we document the contamination with persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and total mercury (T-Hg) of spinner (Stenella longirostris, n =21) and Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus, n=32) sampled from the coastal waters of La Réunion (south-western Indian Ocean). In addition, seven co-occurring teleost fish species were sampled and analyzed as well. Blubber samples from living dolphins and muscle from teleosts were analyzed for polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), DDT and metabolites (DDTs), chlordanes (CHLs), hexachlorocyclohexanes (HCHs), hexachlorobenzene (HCB), and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs). Methoxylated PBDEs (MeO-PBDEs), reported as having a natural origin, were also analyzed. T-Hg levels were measured in blubber and skin biopsies of the two dolphin species. Stable isotopes δ(13)C and δ(15)N values were determined in skin of the dolphins and in the muscle of teleosts. For PCBs, HCHs and T-Hg, concentrations were significantly higher in T. aduncus than in S. longirostris. For other POP levels, intra-species variability was high. MeO-PBDEs were the dominant compounds (55% of the total POPs) in S. longirostris, while PCBs dominated (50% contribution) in T. aduncus. Other contaminants showed similar profiles between the two species. Given the different patterns of POPs and T-Hg contamination and the δ(15)N values observed among analyzed teleosts, dietary and foraging habitat preferences most likely explain the contrasted contaminant profiles observed in the two dolphin species. Levels of each class of contaminants were significantly higher in males than females. Despite their spatial and temporal overlap in the waters of La Réunion, S. longirostris and T. aduncus are differently exposed to contaminant accumulation. PMID:26775007

  8. Chlorinated pesticides in the bodies of dolphins of the French Mediterranean coastal environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emmanuel Wafo

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available The concentrations of organochlorinated pesticides including lindane, heptachlor, aldrin, heptachlor-epoxide, endosulfan I, dieldrin,and endrin were determinated in striped dolphins (Stenella coeruleoalba (n = 26, and 2 bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncates (n = 2,stranded on the French Mediterranean coasts. Studies are carried out on the lung, the muscle, the kidney, the liver, and the blubber. The concentrationsof all the analysed compounds were detected to variable levels in each tissue and organ. In blubber, dieldrin is generally the mostabundant coumpound (215.3 ± 290.3 ng g-1 lw, followed by endrin (207.7 ± 217.5 ng g-1 lw, heptachlor-epoxid (106.6 ± 107.1 ng g-1 lw, endosulfanI (46.6 ± 32.8 ng g-1 lw, lindane (16.6 ± 12.1 ng g-1 lw, aldrin (11.9 ± 8.4 ng g-1 lw and heptachlor (6.7 ± 4.2 ng g-1 lw. These valuesare comparable to those previously obtained by other authors during the years 1990.

  9. Reliability of 2D ultrasound measurements of testis size in dolphins taken under voluntary behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuen, Queeny W H; Ying, Michael T C; Brook, Fiona M; Kinoshita, Reimi E

    2009-06-01

    This study was undertaken to evaluate the reliability of two-dimensional (2D) ultrasound in measuring testis size in dolphins, in vivo, with the subject presenting for examination under voluntary or trained behaviour. The testes of five bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) were measured once by two operators to test inter-operator variability (reproducibility) and repeatedly measured by the same operator to test intra-operator variability (repeatability). Ultrasound examinations for each test were conducted on the same day to avoid measurement variability due to time difference. The evaluation of reproducibility and repeatability were conducted on separate days. In the ultrasound examination, the length, circumference, depth and width of both testes of the animal were measured. To prevent bias, measurements were not communicated between the operators on-site and repeated measurements were masked. Results showed that both reproducibility and repeatability of all the testis measurements were high (>90%). Overall, measurement variability of the technique was found to be of a satisfactory level. Ultrasound is a useful imaging tool for routine long-term monitoring of the testes in this species of animals. Sources of error due to movements as a result of the subject being in the water during examinations were inevitable and must be taken into account. PMID:19171415

  10. Dolphin prey availability and calorific value in an estuarine and coastal environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shannon Marie McCluskey

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Prey density has long been associated with prey profitability for a predator, but prey quality has seldom been quantified. We assessed the potential prey availability and calorific value for Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus in an estuarine and coastal environment of temperate south-western Australia. Fish were sampled using three methods across three regions (Estuary, Bay and Ocean in the study area using a 21.5 m beach seine, multi-mesh gillnet, and fish traps. The total biomass and numbers of all species and those of potential dolphin prey were determined in austral summers and winters between 2007 and 2010. The calorific value of 19 species was determined by bomb calorimetry. The aim of the research was to evaluate the significance of prey availability in explaining the higher abundance of dolphins in the region in summer versus winter across years. A higher abundance of prey was captured in the summer (mean of two summer seasons ± 1 SE = 12,080 ± 160 than in the winter (mean of two winter seasons = 7,358 ± 343 using the same number of gear sets in each season and year. In contrast, a higher biomass of potential dolphin prey, of higher energy content, were captured during winters than summers, when fewer dolphins are present in the area. Variability was significant between season and region for the gillnet (p < 0.01, and seine (p < 0.01. The interaction of season and region was also significant for the calorific content captured by the traps (p < 0.03, and between the seasons for biomass of the trap catch (p < 0.02. The dolphin mother and calf pairs that remain in the Estuary and Bay year round may be sustained by the higher quality, and generally larger, if lesser abundant, prey in the winter months. Furthermore, factors such as predator avoidance and mating opportunities are likely to influence patterns of local dolphin abundance. This study provides insights into the complex dynamics of predator – prey interactions

  11. Auditory brainstem response in dolphins.

    OpenAIRE

    Ridgway, S. H.; Bullock, T H; Carder, D.A.; Seeley, R L; Woods, D.; Galambos, R

    1981-01-01

    We recorded the auditory brainstem response (ABR) in four dolphins (Tursiops truncatus and Delphinus delphis). The ABR evoked by clicks consists of seven waves within 10 msec; two waves often contain dual peaks. The main waves can be identified with those of humans and laboratory mammals; in spite of a much longer path, the latencies of the peaks are almost identical to those of the rat. The dolphin ABR waves increase in latency as the intensity of a sound decreases by only 4 microseconds/dec...

  12. Protocols for conducting dolphin capture-release health assessment studies

    OpenAIRE

    Fair, Patricia A.; Jeffrey D. Adams; Zolman, Eric; McCulloch, Stephen D.; Goldstein, Juli D.; Murdoch, M. Elizabeth; Varela, Rene; Hansen, Larry; Townsend, Forrest; Kucklick, John; Bryan, Colleen; Christopher, Steven; Pugh, Rebecca; Bossart, Gregory D.

    2006-01-01

    Marine mammals, such as dolphins, can serve as key indicator species in coastal areas by reflecting the effects of natural and anthropogenic stressors. As such they are often considered sentinels of environmental and ecosystem health (Bossart 2006; Wells et al. 2004; Fair and Becker 2000). The bottlenose dolphin is an apex predator and a key component of many estuarine environments in the southeastern United States (Woodward-Clyde Consultants 1994; SCDNR 2005). Health assessments of dolphins ...

  13. Hearing Loss in Stranded Odontocete Dolphins and Whales

    OpenAIRE

    Mann, David; Hill-Cook, Mandy; Manire, Charles; Greenhow, Danielle; Montie, Eric; Powell, Jessica; Wells, Randall; Bauer, Gordon; Cunningham-Smith, Petra; Lingenfelser, Robert; DiGiovanni, Robert; Stone, Abigale; Brodsky, Micah; Stevens, Robert; Kieffer, George

    2010-01-01

    The causes of dolphin and whale stranding can often be difficult to determine. Because toothed whales rely on echolocation for orientation and feeding, hearing deficits could lead to stranding. We report on the results of auditory evoked potential measurements from eight species of odontocete cetaceans that were found stranded or severely entangled in fishing gear during the period 2004 through 2009. Approximately 57% of the bottlenose dolphins and 36% of the rough-toothed dolphins had signif...

  14. Spatial and Temporal Variations in the Occurrence and Foraging Activity of Coastal Dolphins in Menai Bay, Zanzibar, Tanzania.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew J Temple

    Full Text Available Understanding temporal patterns in distribution, occurrence and behaviour is vital for the effective conservation of cetaceans. This study used cetacean click detectors (C-PODs to investigate spatial and temporal variation in occurrence and foraging activity of the Indo-Pacific bottlenose (Tursiops aduncus and Indian Ocean humpback (Sousa plumbea dolphins resident in the Menai Bay Conservation Area (MBCA, Zanzibar, Tanzania. Occurrence was measured using detection positive minutes. Inter-click intervals were used to identify terminal buzz vocalisations, allowing for analysis of foraging activity. Data were analysed in relation to spatial (location and temporal (monsoon season, diel phase and tidal phase variables. Results showed significantly increased occurrence and foraging activity of dolphins in southern areas and during hours of darkness. Higher occurrence at night was not explained by diel variation in echolocation rate and so were considered representative of occurrence patterns. Both tidal phase and monsoon season influenced occurrence but results varied among sites, with no general patterns found. Foraging activity was greatest during hours of darkness, High water and Flood tidal phases. Comparisons of echolocation data among sites suggested differences in the broadband click spectra of MBCA dolphins, possibly indicative of species differences. These dolphin populations are threatened by unsustainable fisheries bycatch and tourism activities. The spatial and temporal patterns identified in this study have implications for future conservation and management actions with regards to these two threats. Further, the results indicate future potential for using passive acoustics to identify and monitor the occurrence of these two species in areas where they co-exist.

  15. Spatial and Temporal Variations in the Occurrence and Foraging Activity of Coastal Dolphins in Menai Bay, Zanzibar, Tanzania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Temple, Andrew J; Tregenza, Nick; Amir, Omar A; Jiddawi, Narriman; Berggren, Per

    2016-01-01

    Understanding temporal patterns in distribution, occurrence and behaviour is vital for the effective conservation of cetaceans. This study used cetacean click detectors (C-PODs) to investigate spatial and temporal variation in occurrence and foraging activity of the Indo-Pacific bottlenose (Tursiops aduncus) and Indian Ocean humpback (Sousa plumbea) dolphins resident in the Menai Bay Conservation Area (MBCA), Zanzibar, Tanzania. Occurrence was measured using detection positive minutes. Inter-click intervals were used to identify terminal buzz vocalisations, allowing for analysis of foraging activity. Data were analysed in relation to spatial (location) and temporal (monsoon season, diel phase and tidal phase) variables. Results showed significantly increased occurrence and foraging activity of dolphins in southern areas and during hours of darkness. Higher occurrence at night was not explained by diel variation in echolocation rate and so were considered representative of occurrence patterns. Both tidal phase and monsoon season influenced occurrence but results varied among sites, with no general patterns found. Foraging activity was greatest during hours of darkness, High water and Flood tidal phases. Comparisons of echolocation data among sites suggested differences in the broadband click spectra of MBCA dolphins, possibly indicative of species differences. These dolphin populations are threatened by unsustainable fisheries bycatch and tourism activities. The spatial and temporal patterns identified in this study have implications for future conservation and management actions with regards to these two threats. Further, the results indicate future potential for using passive acoustics to identify and monitor the occurrence of these two species in areas where they co-exist. PMID:26934473

  16. The encoding of individual identity in dolphin signature whistles: how much information is needed?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arik Kershenbaum

    Full Text Available Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus produce many vocalisations, including whistles that are unique to the individual producing them. Such "signature whistles" play a role in individual recognition and maintaining group integrity. Previous work has shown that humans can successfully group the spectrographic representations of signature whistles according to the individual dolphins that produced them. However, attempts at using mathematical algorithms to perform a similar task have been less successful. A greater understanding of the encoding of identity information in signature whistles is important for assessing similarity of whistles and thus social influences on the development of these learned calls. We re-examined 400 signature whistles from 20 individual dolphins used in a previous study, and tested the performance of new mathematical algorithms. We compared the measure used in the original study (correlation matrix of evenly sampled frequency measurements to one used in several previous studies (similarity matrix of time-warped whistles, and to a new algorithm based on the Parsons code, used in music retrieval databases. The Parsons code records the direction of frequency change at each time step, and is effective at capturing human perception of music. We analysed similarity matrices from each of these three techniques, as well as a random control, by unsupervised clustering using three separate techniques: k-means clustering, hierarchical clustering, and an adaptive resonance theory neural network. For each of the three clustering techniques, a seven-level Parsons algorithm provided better clustering than the correlation and dynamic time warping algorithms, and was closer to the near-perfect visual categorisations of human judges. Thus, the Parsons code captures much of the individual identity information present in signature whistles, and may prove useful in studies requiring quantification of whistle similarity.

  17. Group size and composition of Tursiops truncatus (Cetacea: Delphinidae in a coastal insular habitat off southeastern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liliane Lodi

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the present study was to describe the size and composition of groups of common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus in the Cagarras Archipelago (23°01’S, 43°12’W, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil based on six years of observation (2004 and 2006 to 2010. The group size (n = 51 ranged between three and 30 individuals (mean = 13.7 ± 7.1, and the frequency distribution of group size showed modes at six individuals and 19 individuals. The largest average group size occurred in 2004 (mean 21.4 ± 3.3 and the smallest in 2008 (mean 4.4 ± 0.8. The number of individuals/group decreased over the years and this decrease could be correlated with habitat quality. The average number of immature individuals (neonates, calves and juveniles, expressed as a proportion of the total group size, varied between 0.31 (2006 and 0.4 (2010. This proportion did not vary significantly among years. These results suggest that the Cagarras Archipelago should be considered critical habitat for the survival and /or population growth of T. truncatus in southeastern Brazil.

  18. Increased Dietary Intake of Saturated Fatty Acid Heptadecanoic Acid (C17:0 Associated with Decreasing Ferritin and Alleviated Metabolic Syndrome in Dolphins.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephanie K Venn-Watson

    Full Text Available Similar to humans, bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus can develop metabolic syndrome and associated high ferritin. While fish and fish-based fatty acids may protect against metabolic syndrome in humans, findings have been inconsistent. To assess potential protective factors against metabolic syndrome related to fish diets, fatty acids were compared between two dolphin populations with higher (n = 30, Group A and lower (n = 19, Group B mean insulin (11 ± 12 and 2 ± 5 μIU/ml, respectively; P < 0.0001 and their dietary fish. In addition to higher insulin, triglycerides, and ferritin, Group A had lower percent serum heptadecanoic acid (C17:0 compared to Group B (0.3 ± 0.1 and 1.3 ± 0.4%, respectively; P < 0.0001. Using multivariate stepwise regression, higher percent serum C17:0, a saturated fat found in dairy fat, rye, and some fish, was an independent predictor of lower insulin in dolphins. Capelin, a common dietary fish for Group A, had no detectable C17:0, while pinfish and mullet, common in Group B's diet, had C17:0 (41 and 67 mg/100g, respectively. When a modified diet adding 25% pinfish and/or mullet was fed to six Group A dolphins over 24 weeks (increasing the average daily dietary C17:0 intake from 400 to 1700 mg, C17:0 serum levels increased, high ferritin decreased, and blood-based metabolic syndrome indices normalized toward reference levels. These effects were not found in four reference dolphins. Further, higher total serum C17:0 was an independent and linear predictor of lower ferritin in dolphins in Group B dolphins. Among off the shelf dairy products tested, butter had the highest C17:0 (423mg/100g; nonfat dairy products had no detectable C17:0. We hypothesize that humans' movement away from diets with potentially beneficial saturated fatty acid C17:0, including whole fat dairy products, could be a contributor to widespread low C17:0 levels, higher ferritin, and metabolic syndrome.

  19. DOLPHIN ECHOLOCATION

    OpenAIRE

    Dubrovsky, N.

    1992-01-01

    Latest achievments in understanding of mechanisms underlying dolphin echolocation are discussed. Main attention is drawn to dolphin detection and recognition in different acoustic conditions. Adaptation of echolocation signal parameters to changing ambient noise and reverberation are also considered. The results on target discrimination by size, shape and material composition are discussed with emphasis to main cues used by the dolphin.

  20. 77 FR 25966 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Three Marine Geophysical Surveys in...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-05-02

    ...: Characterize the evolution and state of hydration of the Juan de Fuca plate at the Cascadia subduction zone...); and the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) because of these species' rare and/or extralimital... Common bottlenose dolphin.... Rare Coastal, shelf, \\12\\ 1,006 NL 0 deep. Striped dolphin Rare...

  1. Recent diversification of a marine genus (Tursiops spp.) tracks habitat preference and environmental change.

    OpenAIRE

    Moura, A.E.; Nielsen, S.C.A.; Vilstrup, J. T.; Moreno-Mayar, J V; Gilbert, M T P; Gray, H.(CERN, Geneva, Switzerland); Natoli, A.; Möller, L.; Hoelzel, A R

    2013-01-01

    Understanding the evolution of diversity and the resulting systematics in marine systems is confounded by the lack of clear boundaries in oceanic habitats, especially for highly mobile species like marine mammals. Dolphin populations and sibling species often show differentiation between coastal and offshore habitats, similar to the pelagic/littoral or benthic differentiation seen for some species of fish. Here we test the hypothesis that lineages within the polytypic genus Tursiops track pas...

  2. Dolphin genome provides evidence for adaptive evolution of nervous system genes and a molecular rate slowdown

    OpenAIRE

    McGowen, Michael R.; Lawrence I. Grossman; Wildman, Derek E

    2012-01-01

    Cetaceans (dolphins and whales) have undergone a radical transformation from the original mammalian bodyplan. In addition, some cetaceans have evolved large brains and complex cognitive capacities. We compared approximately 10 000 protein-coding genes culled from the bottlenose dolphin genome with nine other genomes to reveal molecular correlates of the remarkable phenotypic features of these aquatic mammals. Evolutionary analyses demonstrated that the overall synonymous substitution rate in ...

  3. Initial evidence of dolphin takes in the Niger Delta region and a review of Nigerian cetaceans. Scientific Committee document SC/62/SM1, June 2010, Agadir, Morocco

    OpenAIRE

    Uwagbae, M.; Van Waerebeek, K.

    2010-01-01

    An interview survey among artisanal fishermen from Brass Island, Niger Delta, in 2008-2009 revealed, for the first time, regular takes of delphinids in Nigerian coastal waters. Three fishermen at Imbikiri, Brass Island, were identified as dedicated 'dolphin hunters'. Evidence is difficult to obtain but one video footage authenticated the landing of a live common bottlenose dolphin. Fraser's dolphin is suggested to occur offshore (probable sighting) but no other documented sightings of odontoc...

  4. Dolphin insula reflects minicolumnar organization of mammalian isocortex

    OpenAIRE

    Casanova, Manuel F.; Trippe, Juan; Tillquist, Christopher R; Switala, Andrew E.

    2010-01-01

    The brain of the bottlenose dolphin exhibits patterns of isocortical parcellation and cytoarchitecture distinct from those seen in primates, yet cell clusters in anterior insula are comparable in scale to module-like cell arrangements found throughout isocortex in other placental mammalian species with long divergent evolutionary histories. This similarity may be due to common ancestry, or to convergence as a result of selective constraints on organization of connections within such modules. ...

  5. Hearing loss in stranded odontocete dolphins and whales.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Mann

    Full Text Available The causes of dolphin and whale stranding can often be difficult to determine. Because toothed whales rely on echolocation for orientation and feeding, hearing deficits could lead to stranding. We report on the results of auditory evoked potential measurements from eight species of odontocete cetaceans that were found stranded or severely entangled in fishing gear during the period 2004 through 2009. Approximately 57% of the bottlenose dolphins and 36% of the rough-toothed dolphins had significant hearing deficits with a reduction in sensitivity equivalent to severe (70-90 dB or profound (>90 dB hearing loss in humans. The only stranded short-finned pilot whale examined had profound hearing loss. No impairments were detected in seven Risso's dolphins from three different stranding events, two pygmy killer whales, one Atlantic spotted dolphin, one spinner dolphin, or a juvenile Gervais' beaked whale. Hearing impairment could play a significant role in some cetacean stranding events, and the hearing of all cetaceans in rehabilitation should be tested.

  6. Bottlenose dolphin at-sea density off California

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Office of National Marine Sanctuary Program (ONMS) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the...

  7. Acoustic Behaviour of Bottlenose Dolphins and Pilot Whales

    OpenAIRE

    Jensen, Frants Havmand

    2011-01-01

    Here I summarize the most important findings of my PhD thesis. My dissertation consists of 9 chapters: An introduction, 3 peer-reviewed papers (2 published, 1 accepted), 4 manuscripts prepared for submission, and a progress report of an ongoing study. The introduction serves as a broad background and review for the topics addressed in the subsequent chapters, with discussions of these chapters where appropriate. In this thesis, I have undertaken a series of acoustic studies on two species of ...

  8. Vocal copying of individually distinctive signature whistles in bottlenose dolphins

    OpenAIRE

    King, Stephanie Laura; Sayigh, Laela; Wells, Randall; Fellner, Wendi; Janik, Vincent

    2013-01-01

    Vocal learning is relatively common in birds but less so in mammals. Sexual selection and individual or group recognition have been identified as major forces in its evolution. While important in the development of vocal displays, vocal learning also allows signal copying in social interactions. Such copying can function in addressing or labelling selected conspecifics. Most examples of addressing in non-humans come from bird song, where matching occurs in an aggressive context. However, in o...

  9. Acoustic Behaviour of Bottlenose Dolphins and Pilot Whales

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Frants Havmand

    2011-01-01

    negatively affects the production of communication signals. This results in lower amplitude, shorter calls at depth despite an increased distance to their social group at the surface. I show that calling ceases during the deepest part of the foraging dives, but resumes during the ascent phase, allowing...... of sight of surface observers. These species differ in the acoustic habitats they dwell in, as well as in group structure and foraging ecology. The overall aim of this thesis has been to address, in a comparative fashion, how these two species behave acoustically in the wild, and how they have adapted...... below the surface, underscoring the need for measuring biosonar parameters in the habitat where they are actually used for foraging. Concurrent with investigations on biosonar properties, I investigated the acoustic communication signals of both species. Toothed whales communicate using several types...

  10. Metabolite Content Profiling of Bottlenose Dolphin Exhaled Breath

    OpenAIRE

    Alexander A Aksenov; Yeates, Laura; Pasamontes, Alberto; Siebe, Craig; Zrodnikov, Yuriy; Simmons, Jason; McCartney, Mitchell M.; Deplanque, Jean-Pierre; Wells, Randall S; Davis, Cristina E.

    2014-01-01

    Changing ocean health and the potential impact on marine mammal health are gaining global attention. Direct health assessments of wild marine mammals, however, is inherently difficult. Breath analysis metabolomics is a very attractive assessment tool due to its noninvasive nature, but it is analytically challenging. It has never been attempted in cetaceans for comprehensive metabolite profiling. We have developed a method to reproducibly sample breath from small cetaceans, specifically Atlant...

  11. Why do dolphins carry sponges?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mann, Janet; Sargeant, Brooke L; Watson-Capps, Jana J; Gibson, Quincy A; Heithaus, Michael R; Connor, Richard C; Patterson, Eric

    2008-01-01

    Tool use is rare in wild animals, but of widespread interest because of its relationship to animal cognition, social learning and culture. Despite such attention, quantifying the costs and benefits of tool use has been difficult, largely because if tool use occurs, all population members typically exhibit the behavior. In Shark Bay, Australia, only a subset of the bottlenose dolphin population uses marine sponges as tools, providing an opportunity to assess both proximate and ultimate costs and benefits and document patterns of transmission. We compared sponge-carrying (sponger) females to non-sponge-carrying (non-sponger) females and show that spongers were more solitary, spent more time in deep water channel habitats, dived for longer durations, and devoted more time to foraging than non-spongers; and, even with these potential proximate costs, calving success of sponger females was not significantly different from non-spongers. We also show a clear female-bias in the ontogeny of sponging. With a solitary lifestyle, specialization, and high foraging demands, spongers used tools more than any non-human animal. We suggest that the ecological, social, and developmental mechanisms involved likely (1) help explain the high intrapopulation variation in female behaviour, (2) indicate tradeoffs (e.g., time allocation) between ecological and social factors and, (3) constrain the spread of this innovation to primarily vertical transmission. PMID:19066625

  12. Why do dolphins carry sponges?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janet Mann

    Full Text Available Tool use is rare in wild animals, but of widespread interest because of its relationship to animal cognition, social learning and culture. Despite such attention, quantifying the costs and benefits of tool use has been difficult, largely because if tool use occurs, all population members typically exhibit the behavior. In Shark Bay, Australia, only a subset of the bottlenose dolphin population uses marine sponges as tools, providing an opportunity to assess both proximate and ultimate costs and benefits and document patterns of transmission. We compared sponge-carrying (sponger females to non-sponge-carrying (non-sponger females and show that spongers were more solitary, spent more time in deep water channel habitats, dived for longer durations, and devoted more time to foraging than non-spongers; and, even with these potential proximate costs, calving success of sponger females was not significantly different from non-spongers. We also show a clear female-bias in the ontogeny of sponging. With a solitary lifestyle, specialization, and high foraging demands, spongers used tools more than any non-human animal. We suggest that the ecological, social, and developmental mechanisms involved likely (1 help explain the high intrapopulation variation in female behaviour, (2 indicate tradeoffs (e.g., time allocation between ecological and social factors and, (3 constrain the spread of this innovation to primarily vertical transmission.

  13. A dolphin peripheral blood leukocyte cDNA microarray for studies of immune function and stress reactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mancia, Annalaura; Lundqvist, Mats L; Romano, Tracy A; Peden-Adams, Margie M; Fair, Patricia A; Kindy, Mark S; Ellis, Blake C; Gattoni-Celli, Sebastiano; McKillen, David J; Trent, Harold F; Chen, Yian Ann; Almeida, Jonas S; Gross, Paul S; Chapman, Robert W; Warr, Gregory W

    2007-01-01

    A microarray focused on stress response and immune function genes of the bottlenosed dolphin has been developed. Random expressed sequence tags (ESTs) were isolated and sequenced from two dolphin peripheral blood leukocyte (PBL) cDNA libraries biased towards T- and B-cell gene expression by stimulation with IL-2 and LPS, respectively. A total of 2784 clones were sequenced and contig analysis yielded 1343 unigenes (archived and annotated at ). In addition, 52 dolphin genes known to be important in innate and adaptive immune function and stress responses of terrestrial mammals were specifically targeted, cloned and added to the unigene collection. The set of dolphin sequences printed on a cDNA microarray comprised the 1343 unigenes, the 52 targeted genes and 2305 randomly selected (but unsequenced) EST clones. This set was printed in duplicate spots, side by side, and in two replicates per slide, such that the total number of features per microarray slide was 19,200, including controls. The dolphin arrays were validated and transcriptomic profiles were generated using PBL from a wild dolphin, a captive dolphin and dolphin skin cells. The results demonstrate that the array is a reproducible and informative tool for assessing differential gene expression in dolphin PBL and in other tissues. PMID:17084893

  14. Sequence analysis of dolphin ferritin H and L subunits and possible iron-dependent translational control of dolphin ferritin gene

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sasaki Yukako

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Iron-storage protein, ferritin plays a central role in iron metabolism. Ferritin has dual function to store iron and segregate iron for protection of iron-catalyzed reactive oxygen species. Tissue ferritin is composed of two kinds of subunits (H: heavy chain or heart-type subunit; L: light chain or liver-type subunit. Ferritin gene expression is controlled at translational level in iron-dependent manner or at transcriptional level in iron-independent manner. However, sequencing analysis of marine mammalian ferritin subunits has not yet been performed fully. The purpose of this study is to reveal cDNA-derived amino acid sequences of cetacean ferritin H and L subunits, and demonstrate the possibility of expression of these subunits, especially H subunit, by iron. Methods Sequence analyses of cetacean ferritin H and L subunits were performed by direct sequencing of polymerase chain reaction (PCR fragments from cDNAs generated via reverse transcription-PCR of leukocyte total RNA prepared from blood samples of six different dolphin species (Pseudorca crassidens, Lagenorhynchus obliquidens, Grampus griseus, Globicephala macrorhynchus, Tursiops truncatus, and Delphinapterus leucas. The putative iron-responsive element sequence in the 5'-untranslated region of the six different dolphin species was revealed by direct sequencing of PCR fragments obtained using leukocyte genomic DNA. Results Dolphin H and L subunits consist of 182 and 174 amino acids, respectively, and amino acid sequence identities of ferritin subunits among these dolphins are highly conserved (H: 99–100%, (99→98 ; L: 98–100%. The conserved 28 bp IRE sequence was located -144 bp upstream from the initiation codon in the six different dolphin species. Conclusion These results indicate that six different dolphin species have conserved ferritin sequences, and suggest that these genes are iron-dependently expressed.

  15. Dynamics of biosonar signals in free-swimming and stationary dolphins: The role of source levels on the characteristics of the signals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Au, Whitlow W L; Martin, Stephen W; Moore, Patrick W; Branstetter, Brian; Copeland, Adrienne M

    2016-03-01

    The biosonar signals of two free-swimming Atlantic bottlenose dolphins performing a complex sonar search for a bottom target in San Diego Bay were compared with the biosonar signals of a dolphin performing a target discrimination task in a net pen in the same bay. A bite-plate device carried by the free-swimming dolphins supported a hydrophone that extended directly in front of the dolphin. A biosonar measuring tool attached to the bite plate measured the outgoing biosonar signals while the dolphins conducted sonar searches. Each of the free-swimming dolphins used different biosonar search strategy in solving the problem and the dolphins' biosonar signals reflect the difference in strategy. The dolphin in the pen stationed in a hoop while echolocating on a target 6 m away and reported if the indentation on a spherical target was directed toward it. The signals were parameterized by determining the peak-to-peak source levels, source energy flux density, peak frequency, center frequency, root-mean-square (rms) bandwidth, rms duration, and the Q of the signals. Some parameters were similar for the free-swimming and stationary dolphins while some were significantly different, suggesting biosonar signals used by free-swimming animals may be different than signals used by dolphins in a pen. PMID:27036275

  16. Social networks reveal cultural behaviour in tool-using [corrected] dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mann, Janet; Stanton, Margaret A; Patterson, Eric M; Bienenstock, Elisa J; Singh, Lisa O

    2012-01-01

    Animal tool use is of inherent interest given its relationship to intelligence, innovation and cultural behaviour. Here we investigate whether Shark Bay bottlenose dolphins that use marine sponges as hunting tools (spongers) are culturally distinct from other dolphins in the population based on the criteria that sponging is both socially learned and distinguishes between groups. We use social network analysis to determine social preferences among 36 spongers and 69 non-spongers sampled over a 22-year period while controlling for location, sex and matrilineal relatedness. Homophily (the tendency to associate with similar others) based on tool-using status was evident in every analysis, although maternal kinship, sex and location also contributed to social preference. Female spongers were more cliquish and preferentially associated with other spongers over non-spongers. Like humans who preferentially associate with others who share their subculture, tool-using dolphins prefer others like themselves, strongly suggesting that sponge tool-use is a cultural behaviour. PMID:22864573

  17. Behavioural evidence of magnetoreception in dolphins: detection of experimental magnetic fields.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kremers, Dorothee; López Marulanda, Juliana; Hausberger, Martine; Lemasson, Alban

    2014-11-01

    Magnetoreception, meaning the perception of magnetic fields, is supposed to play an important role for orientation/navigation in some terrestrial and aquatic species. Although some spatial observations of free-ranging cetaceans' migration routes and stranding sites led to the assumption that cetaceans may be sensitive to the geomagnetic field, experimental evidence is lacking. Here, we tested the spontaneous response of six captive bottlenose dolphins to the presentation of two magnetized and demagnetized controlled devices while they were swimming freely. Dolphins approached the device with shorter latency when it contained a strongly magnetized neodymium block compared to a control demagnetized block that was identical in form and density and therefore undistinguishable with echolocation. We conclude that dolphins are able to discriminate the two stimuli on the basis of their magnetic properties, a prerequisite for magnetoreception-based navigation. PMID:25267469

  18. Douglas RD-2 Dolphin

    Science.gov (United States)

    1940-01-01

    Douglas RD-2 Dolphin: Originally purchased with the presumed use as a Presidential aircraft, this Douglas RD-2 was turned over to the NACA in December 1939 without ever fulfilling its intended role. The Dolphin was a type familiar to the NACA, who were testing a Army version of the Douglas amphibian, an OA-4V with a nosewheel.

  19. Nearfield and farfield measurements of dolphin echolocation beam patterns: No evidence of focusing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finneran, James J; Mulsow, Jason; Branstetter, Brian; Moore, Patrick; Houser, Dorian S

    2016-08-01

    The potential for bottlenose dolphins to actively focus their biosonar transmissions was examined by measuring emitted clicks in four dolphins using horizontal, planar hydrophone arrays. Two hydrophone configurations were used: a rectangular array with hydrophones 0.2 to 2 m from the dolphins and a polar array with hydrophones 0.5 to 5 m from the dolphins. The biosonar task was a target change detection utilizing physical targets at ranges from 1.3 to 6.3 m with all subjects and "phantom" targets at simulated ranges from 2.5 to 20 m with two subjects. To provide a basis for evaluating the experimental data, sound fields radiated from flat and focused circular pistons were mathematically simulated using transient excitation functions similar to dolphin clicks. The array measurements showed no evidence that the dolphins adaptively focused their click emissions; axial amplitudes and iso-amplitude contours matched the pattern of the simulation results for flat transducers and showed a single region of maximum amplitude, beyond which spherical spreading loss was approximated. PMID:27586761

  20. Abundance and distribution of Tursiops truncatus in the Western Mediterranean Sea: an assessment towards the Marine Strategy Framework Directive requirements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lauriano, Giancarlo; Pierantonio, Nino; Donovan, Greg; Panigada, Simone

    2014-09-01

    The Mediterranean Sea common bottlenose dolphin population has been assessed as Vulnerable according to the IUCN Red List Criteria. The species is also included in several International Agreements, European Union Regulations and Directives. Amongst them, a strict protection and identification of special conservation areas are requested by the EU Habitats Directive. Despite direct takes, by-catch, chemical and acoustic pollution, and prey depletion, general habitat degradation and fragmentation have been indicated as detrimental for the species, the degree to which these threats pose population risk is still largely unknown. At present it is thus not possible to depict the actual status of the population and to assess prospective trends. To address this gap in the current knowledge, line transect distance sampling aerial surveys were conducted in a wide portion of the Western Mediterranean Sea between the summer of 2010 and winter 2011. A total of 165 parallel transects equally spaced at 15 km were designed providing homogeneous coverage probability. Overall, 21,090 km were flown on effort and 16 bottlenose dolphin sightings were recorded and used for the analysis. The surface abundance and density estimates resulted in 1676 animals (CV = 38.25; 95% CI = 804-3492) with a density of 0.005 (CV = 38.25%). These results represent the first ever estimates for the common bottlenose dolphin over a wide portion of the Western Mediterranean Sea Subregion, with the potential to be useful baseline data to inform conservation. Specifically, they could be used as indicators under the Marine Strategy Framework Directive requirements, in conjunction with other study methods. PMID:24784442

  1. Shared Reproductive State Enhances Female Associations in Dolphins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Female bottle nose dolphins (genus Tursiops) usually associate at moderate level with other females within social clusters called bands or cliques. It has been suggested that reproductive state may play the predominant role in determining associations within female T. truncatus bands. Here, we test the hypothesis that reproductive state correlates with associations of female Indo-Pacific bottle nose dolphins (T. aduncus). We found that females in similar reproductive state, which included females from late pregnancy to the first year of their calves' life or females from early pregnancy to their calves' newborn period, had higher-association coefficients with each other than they did with females in different reproductive states (females with older calves or without calves). This was observed both within and across social clusters suggesting that reproductive state, at least for pregnant females and those with young calves, plays an important role in determining who to associate with. However, a female's most frequent associate was not always with another in similar reproductive state. We suggest that several factors, including reproductive state, may be of importance in determining associations of female bottle nose dolphins

  2. Recent Diversification of a Marine Genus (Tursiops spp.) Tracks Habitat Preference and Environmental Change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Moura, Andre E.; Nielsen, Sandra Cathrine Abel; Vilstrup, Julia T;

    2013-01-01

    Understanding the evolution of diversity and the resulting systematics in marine systems is confounded by the lack of clear boundaries in oceanic habitats, especially for highly mobile species like marine mammals. Dolphin populations and sibling species often show differentiation between coastal...... and offshore habitats, similar to the pelagic/littoral or benthic differentiation seen for some species of fish. Here we test the hypothesis that lineages within the polytypic genus Tursiops track past changes in the environment reflecting ecological drivers of evolution facilitated by habitat release. We used...... habitats. Radiation in pelagic environments was relatively recent, and was likely followed by a return to coastal habitat in some regions. The timing of some nodes defining different ecotypes within the genus clustered near the two most recent interglacial transitions. A signal for an increase...

  3. Evolution of river dolphins.

    OpenAIRE

    Hamilton, H; Caballero, S.; Collins, A. G.; Brownell, R. L.

    2001-01-01

    The world's river dolphins (Inia, Pontoporia, Lipotes and Platanista) are among the least known and most endangered of all cetaceans. The four extant genera inhabit geographically disjunct river systems and exhibit highly modified morphologies, leading many cetologists to regard river dolphins as an unnatural group. Numerous arrangements have been proposed for their phylogenetic relationships to one another and to other odontocete cetaceans. These alternative views strongly affect the biogeog...

  4. Buzzing during biosonar-based interception of prey in the delphinids Tursiops truncatus and Pseudorca crassidens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wisniewska, Danuta M; Johnson, Mark; Nachtigall, Paul E; Madsen, Peter T

    2014-12-15

    Echolocating bats and toothed whales probe their environment with ultrasonic sound pulses, using returning echoes to navigate and find prey in a process that appears to have resulted from a remarkable convergence of the two taxa. Here, we report the first detailed quantification of echolocation behaviour during prey capture in the most studied delphinid species, a false killer whale and a bottlenose dolphin. Using acoustic DTAGs, we demonstrate that just prior to prey interception these delphinids change their acoustic gaze dramatically by reducing inter-click intervals and output >10-fold in a high repetition rate, low output buzz. Buzz click rates of 250-500 Hz for large but agile animals suggest that sampling rates during capture are scaled with the whale's manoeuvrability. These observations support the growing notion that fast sonar sampling accompanied by a low output level is critical for high rate feedback to inform motor patterns during prey interception in all echolocating toothed whales. PMID:25394631

  5. Multiple populations of pantropical spotted dolphins in Hawaiian waters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Courbis, Sarah; Baird, Robin W; Cipriano, Frank; Duffield, Deborah

    2014-01-01

    Understanding gene flow and dispersal patterns is important for predicting effects of natural events and anthropogenic activities on animal populations. In Hawaii, most species of odontocetes are managed as single populations. Recent exceptions include false killer whales, spinner dolphins, and common bottlenose dolphins, for which studies have shown fidelity to individual islands or groups of islands. Our study focused on pantropical spotted dolphins. We analyzed mitochondrial control region and 11 microsatellite loci from 101 individuals from 4 areas: Hawaii, Maui/Lanai, Oahu, and Kauai/Niihau. We examined F ST, F' ST, R ST, Jost's D, and ΦST and used TESS to estimate number of populations and assignment probabilities. Our results support genetic differentiation among Hawaii, Maui/Lanai, and Oahu and suggest that pantropical spotted dolphins near Kauai/Niihau are likely transient and in low numbers. Between island regions, F ST for microsatellites ranged from 0.016 to 0.045 and for mtDNA, from 0.011 to 0.282. F ' ST, ranged from 0.098 to 0.262 for microsatellites and 0.019 to 0.415 for mtDNA. R ST and ΦST showed similar results to F ST for microsatellites and mtDNA respectively, and Jost's D fell between F ST and F ' ST. TESS supported 3 populations, and greatest mean assignment probability by island region ranged from 0.50 to 0.72. The private alleles method indicated migration rates among regions from 1.49 to 3.45, and effective population size of the island of Hawaii was estimated to be 220. There was no strong evidence to support sex-biased dispersal or group fidelity. Considering this study in the larger context of other odontocete population studies and studies of connectivity, we suggest genetic differentiation may be mediated by behavior adapted to differing habitat types and niches. PMID:25124812

  6. Risk Functions of Dolphins and Sea Lions Exposed to Sonar Signals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Houser, Dorian S; Martin, Steven W; Finneran, James J

    2016-01-01

    Acoustic dose-response functions have been recommended as a means of predicting behavioral impacts on marine mammals from anthropogenic noise exposure. Thirty bottlenose dolphins and fifteen sea lions participated in a controlled exposure study to explore dose-response relationships to the received level of a simulated sonar signal. Both species showed an increase in the probability of response and in the severity of response with increased received levels. Differences in species sensitivity were noted in habituation and the impact of age on responsiveness. PMID:26610994

  7. Ségrégation écologique déterminée par des traceurs chimiques et estimation de la contamination de cinq cétacés odontocètes du nord-ouest de la pénisule ibérique

    OpenAIRE

    Mendez Fernandez, Paula,

    2012-01-01

    The first objective of this PhD was to determine the degree of ecological segregation between five sympatric species of toothed whales (i.e. common dolphin Delphinus delphis, harbour porpoise Phocoena phocoena, bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus, striped dolphin Stenella coeruleoalba and long finned pilot whale Globicephala melas) inhabiting a restricted and highly productive area, the North West Iberian Peninsula (NWIP). To this end, chemical parameters analyses were used as an “alternati...

  8. Ecological segregation inferred using chemical tracers and contamination assessment of five toothed whales in the Northwest Iberian Peninsula

    OpenAIRE

    Méndez Fernandez, Paula

    2012-01-01

    Tese de doutoramento em Ciências (ramo de conhecimento em Biologia) The first objective of this PhD was to determine the degree of ecological segregation between five sympatric species of toothed whales (i.e. common dolphin Delphinus delphis, harbour porpoise Phocoena phocoena, bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus, striped dolphin Stenella coeruleoalba and long finned pilot whale Globicephala melas) inhabiting a restricted and highly productive area, the North West Iberian Pen...

  9. Varamientos de mamíferos marinos en la costa continental ecuatoriana período 1987 - 1995.

    OpenAIRE

    Chiluiza, D.; Aguirre, W.; Félix, F.; Haase, B.

    1998-01-01

    Between 1987 and 1995, 93 strandings of marine mammals were recorded along the ecuadorian continental coast, including one mass stranding of 56. The strandings involved 12 species of cetaceans (10 Odontoceti and 2 Mysticeti) and one species of pinniped. The Odontoceti were represented by: bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus (n=30), sperm whale Physeter macrocephalus (n=25), Pacific spotted dolphin Stenella attenuata (n=7), striped dolphin Stenella coeruleoalba (n=2), false killer whale Pseu...

  10. Use of skin and blubber tissues of small cetaceans to assess the trace element content of internal organs

    OpenAIRE

    Aubail, Aurore; Méndez-Fernandez, Paula; Bustamante, Paco; Churlaud, Carine; Ferreira, M; Vingada, José; Caurant, Florence

    2013-01-01

    International audience In order to evaluate the use of biopsy samples as non-destructive tool for assessing trace element concentrations in small cetaceans, the concentrations of 14 trace elements were determined in skin, blubber, liver and kidneys of four species of small cetaceans (i.e. common dolphin Delphinus delphis, harbour porpoise Phocoena phocoena, bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus and striped dolphin Stenella coeruleolba), stranded and/or by-caught along the NE Atlantic Ocean...

  11. Marine mammal health: Organochlorines in blubber, blood and milk of Tursiops truncatus

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Reddy, M.L.; Ridgway, S.H. [NCCOSC, San Diego, CA (United States). RDTE Division

    1995-12-31

    Marine mammals are potentially vulnerable organisms for the effects of hazardous man-made chemicals. Organochlorines (OCs) are suspected of causing reproductive failure and immunosuppression which may result in increased susceptibility to infectious disease. High levels of OCs have been found in victims of mass die offs of cetaceans world-wide. To determine baseline values of these organochlorine contaminants found in healthy reproductive dolphins, the authors collected samples of blood, blubber and milk from a population of Tursiops truncatus maintained by the US Navy. These animals are ideal for study because of the availability of relevant biological data which is often lacking in data from wild animals. The Navy dolphins are trained for medical behaviors like blood and milk collection. These behaviors allow them to collect data under controlled conditions preempting errors that occur when collecting similar data on dead and/or wild animals. Using gas chromatography and mass spectrometry (GC/MS) the authors have quantified 10 to 25 PCBs using congener-specific analysis and 19 chlorinated pesticides from microsamples of blubber, blood and milk collected from these animals. The authors also analyzed the fish in the diets of the dolphins. Serial sample collection of milk has allowed us to track the transfer of OCs over the course of lactation. They were also able to correlate OC levels found in blubber, blood and milk. This database should reveal baseline levels relating environmental toxins and marine mammal health to provide a potentially sensitive indicator of pollution and disease in the natural ocean environment and furnish an unparalleled historical pathway toward understanding the effects and consequences of these persistent contaminants and their impact on the marine ecosystem.

  12. Echolocation signals of wild dolphins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Au, W. W. L.

    2004-07-01

    Most of our understanding of dolphin echolocation has come from studies of captive dolphins performing various echolocation tasks. Recently, measurements of echolocation signals in the wild have expanded our understanding of the characteristics of these signals in a natural setting. Measuring undistorted dolphin echolocation signals with free swimming dolphins in the field can be a challenging task. A four hydrophone array arranged in a symmetrical star pattern was used to measure the echolocation signals of four species of dolphins in the wild. Echolocation signals of the following dolphins have been measured with the symmetrical star array: white-beaked dolphins in Iceland, Atlantic spotted dolphins in the Bahamas, killer whales in British Columbia, and dusky dolphins in New Zealand. There are many common features in the echolocation signals of the different species. Most of the signals had spectra that were bimodal: two peaks, one at low frequencies and another about an octave higher in frequency. The source level of the sonar transmission varies as a function of 20log R, suggesting a form of time-varying gain but on the transmitting end of the sonar process rather than the receiving end. The results of the field work call into question the issue of whether the signals used by captive dolphins may be shaped by the task they are required to perform rather than what they would do more naturally.

  13. Resolving the trophic relations of cryptic species: an example using stable isotope analysis of dolphin teeth.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kylie Owen

    Full Text Available Understanding the foraging ecology and diet of animals can play a crucial role in conservation of a species. This is particularly true where species are cryptic and coexist in environments where observing feeding behaviour directly is difficult. Here we present the first information on the foraging ecology of a recently identified species of dolphin (Southern Australian bottlenose dolphin (SABD and comparisons to the common bottlenose dolphin (CBD in Victoria, Australia, using stable isotope analysis of teeth. Stable isotope signatures differed significantly between SABD and CBD for both δ(13C (-14.4‰ vs. -15.5‰ respectively and δ(15N (15.9‰ vs. 15.0‰ respectively, suggesting that the two species forage in different areas and consume different prey. This finding supports genetic and morphological data indicating that SABD are distinct from CBD. In Victoria, the SABD is divided into two distinct populations, one in the large drowned river system of Port Phillip Bay and the other in a series of coastal lakes and lagoons called the Gippsland Lakes. Within the SABD species, population differences were apparent. The Port Phillip Bay population displayed a significantly higher δ(15N than the Gippsland Lakes population (17.0‰ vs. 15.5‰, suggesting that the Port Phillip Bay population may feed at a higher trophic level--a result which is supported by analysis of local food chains. Important future work is required to further understand the foraging ecology and diet of this newly described, endemic, and potentially endangered species of dolphin.

  14. Comparative genomics reveals conservation of filaggrin and loss of caspase-14 in dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strasser, Bettina; Mlitz, Veronika; Fischer, Heinz; Tschachler, Erwin; Eckhart, Leopold

    2015-05-01

    The expression of filaggrin and its stepwise proteolytic degradation are critical events in the terminal differentiation of epidermal keratinocytes and in the formation of the skin barrier to the environment. Here, we investigated whether the evolutionary transition from a terrestrial to a fully aquatic lifestyle of cetaceans, that is dolphins and whales, has been associated with changes in genes encoding filaggrin and proteins involved in the processing of filaggrin. We used comparative genomics, PCRs and re-sequencing of gene segments to screen for the presence and integrity of genes coding for filaggrin and proteases implicated in the maturation of (pro)filaggrin. Filaggrin has been conserved in dolphins (bottlenose dolphin, orca and baiji) but has been lost in whales (sperm whale and minke whale). All other S100 fused-type genes have been lost in cetaceans. Among filaggrin-processing proteases, aspartic peptidase retroviral-like 1 (ASPRV1), also known as saspase, has been conserved, whereas caspase-14 has been lost in all cetaceans investigated. In conclusion, our results suggest that filaggrin is dispensable for the acquisition of fully aquatic lifestyles of whales, whereas it appears to confer an evolutionary advantage to dolphins. The discordant evolution of filaggrin, saspase and caspase-14 in cetaceans indicates that the biological roles of these proteins are not strictly interdependent. PMID:25739514

  15. The interplay between social networks and culture: theoretically and among whales and dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cantor, Mauricio; Whitehead, Hal

    2013-05-19

    Culture is increasingly being understood as a driver of mammalian phenotypes. Defined as group-specific behaviour transmitted by social learning, culture is shaped by social structure. However, culture can itself affect social structure if individuals preferentially interact with others whose behaviour is similar, or cultural symbols are used to mark groups. Using network formalism, this interplay can be depicted by the coevolution of nodes and edges together with the coevolution of network topology and transmission patterns. We review attempts to model the links between the spread, persistence and diversity of culture and the network topology of non-human societies. We illustrate these processes using cetaceans. The spread of socially learned begging behaviour within a population of bottlenose dolphins followed the topology of the social network, as did the evolution of the song of the humpback whale between breeding areas. In three bottlenose dolphin populations, individuals preferentially associated with animals using the same socially learned foraging behaviour. Homogeneous behaviour within the tight, nearly permanent social structures of the large matrilineal whales seems to result from transmission bias, with cultural symbols marking social structures. We recommend the integration of studies of culture and society in species for which social learning is an important determinant of behaviour. PMID:23569288

  16. Douglas OA-4A Dolphin

    Science.gov (United States)

    1938-01-01

    Douglas OA-4A Dolphin: This twin-engine Douglas OA-4A Dolphin was unusual in comparison with other OA-4s in that it employed a nose wheel instead of a tail wheel during its NACA testing at Langley. Here is is seen in the NACA hangar in September 1938.

  17. Cetacean strandings along the coast of Izmir Bay, Turkey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Guclusoy, H.; Veryeri, N.; Cirik, S.

    2004-01-01

    The present paper provides information on the stranding of cetaceans in Izmir Bay, Aegean Sea, between 1992 and 2004. The data were collected opportunistically during sightings and stranding data collection for Monk Seals. A total of 12 cetaceans, namely Bottle-nosed Dolphin, Tursiops truncatus (n=6

  18. Complete amino acid sequence of the myoglobin from the Pacific spotted dolphin, Stenella attenuata graffmani.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, B N; Wang, C C; Dwulet, F E; Lehman, L D; Meuth, J L; Bogardt, R A; Gurd, F R

    1979-04-25

    The complete amino acid sequence of the major component myoglobin from the Pacific spotted dolphin, Stenella attenuata graffmani, was determined by the automated Edman degradation of several large peptides obtained by specific cleavage of the protein. The acetimidated apomyoglobin was selectively cleaved at its two methionyl residues with cyanogen bromide and at its three arginyl residues by trypsin. By subjecting four of these peptides and the apomyoglobin to automated Edman degradation, over 80% of the primary structure of the protein was obtained. The remainder of the covalent structure was determined by the sequence analysis of peptides that resulted from further digestion of the central cyanogen bromide fragment. This fragment was cleaved at its glutamyl residues with staphylococcal protease and its lysyl residues with trypsin. The action of trypsin was restricted to the lysyl residues by chemical modification of the single arginyl residue of the fragment with 1,2-cyclohexanedione. The primary structure of this myoglobin proved to be identical with that from the Atlantic bottlenosed dolphin and Pacific common dolphin but differs from the myoglobins of the killer whale and pilot whale at two positions. The above sequence identities and differences reflect the close taxonomic relationship of these five species of Cetacea. PMID:454657

  19. Using a binaural biomimetic array to identify bottom objects ensonified by echolocating dolphins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heiweg, D.A.; Moore, P.W.; Martin, S.W.; Dankiewicz, L.A.

    2006-01-01

    The development of a unique dolphin biomimetic sonar produced data that were used to study signal processing methods for object identification. Echoes from four metallic objects proud on the bottom, and a substrate-only condition, were generated by bottlenose dolphins trained to ensonify the targets in very shallow water. Using the two-element ('binaural') receive array, object echo spectra were collected and submitted for identification to four neural network architectures. Identification accuracy was evaluated over two receive array configurations, and five signal processing schemes. The four neural networks included backpropagation, learning vector quantization, genetic learning and probabilistic network architectures. The processing schemes included four methods that capitalized on the binaural data, plus a monaural benchmark process. All the schemes resulted in above-chance identification accuracy when applied to learning vector quantization and backpropagation. Beam-forming or concatenation of spectra from both receive elements outperformed the monaural benchmark, with higher sensitivity and lower bias. Ultimately, best object identification performance was achieved by the learning vector quantization network supplied with beam-formed data. The advantages of multi-element signal processing for object identification are clearly demonstrated in this development of a first-ever dolphin biomimetic sonar. ?? 2006 IOP Publishing Ltd.

  20. Vaginal calculi in the dolphin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sawyer, J E; Walker, W A

    1977-10-01

    Examination of the reproductive tract of a mature spotted dolphin, Stenella attenuata , revealed 13 vaginal calculi, composed primarily of calcium phosphate compounds. Vaginal calculi also were found in two mature Lagenorhynchus obliquidens and in six mature Delphinus delphis . PMID:24228951

  1. The exploitation of small cetaceans in Coastal Peru

    OpenAIRE

    Read, A J; Van Waerebeek, K.; Reyes, J.C.; McKinnon, J.S.; Lehman, L.C.

    1988-01-01

    Several species of small cetaceans are captured by fishermen in Peruvian coastal waters and used for human consumption. A large directed fishery exists for one species, the dusky dolphin Lagenorhynchus obscurus. In addition, two other species, the Burmeister's porpoise Phocoena spinipinnis and bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus, are commonly taken in both directed fisheries and incidentally to other fishing operations. To examine the exploitation of these species in detail, we monitored th...

  2. Total number and volume of Von Economo neurons in the cerebral cortex of cetaceans

    OpenAIRE

    Butti, Camilla; Sherwood, Chet C.; Hakeem, Atiya Y.; Allman, John M.; Hof, Patrick R

    2009-01-01

    Von Economo neurons (VENs) are a type of large, layer V spindle-shaped neurons that were previously described in humans, great apes, elephants, and some large-brained cetaceans. Here we report the presence of Von Economo neurons in the anterior cingulate (ACC), anterior insular (AI), and frontopolar (FP) cortices of small odontocetes, including the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), the Risso's dolphin (Grampus griseus), and the beluga whale (Delphinapterus leucas). The total number and...

  3. Delfínovití (Delphinidae) - chování a využití v zoorehabilitaci

    OpenAIRE

    Johánková, Klára

    2014-01-01

    This thesis discusses an interesting aspects of life of the family Delphinidae. It is focused on the informations about attributes, abilities and behaviour of the Delphinidae family, especially of a common bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), which is the most commonly breed dolphin species at aquariums and it is the dominant participant in dolphinotherapy. In introduction, this thesis is dedicated to the behaviour of cetaceans. First, the taxonomical inclusion and basic division of ce...

  4. Enchanting and enchanted dolphins. An analysis of human/dolphin encounters.

    OpenAIRE

    Servais, Véronique

    2005-01-01

    In occidental countries, the figure of the dolphin is permeated with love. Not only do people love dolphins, but the dolphins' anthropophilia belongs to their natural history as well : they rescue men at sea, play in the bow waves of boats, and sometime develop enduring friendships with humans. People who have encountered dolphins in the open sea regularly speak about "falling in love" or feeling "pure love" from the dolphin ; others report telepathy, trance or mystic revelations. The emotion...

  5. Observational Learning in Wild and Captive Dolphins

    OpenAIRE

    Yeater, Deirdre B.; Kuczaj II, Stan A.

    2010-01-01

    Many non-human species imitate the behavior of others, and dolphins seem particularly adept at this form of observational learning. Evidence for observational learning in wild dolphins is rare, given the difficulty of observing individual wild animals in sufficient detail to eliminate other possible explanations of purported imitation. Consequently, much of the evidence supporting observational learning in dolphins has involved animals in captive settings. This research suggests that dolphins...

  6. Dolphin Morbillivirus Epizootic Resurgence, Mediterranean Sea

    OpenAIRE

    Raga, Juan-Antonio; Banyard, Ashley; Domingo, Mariano; Corteyn, Mandy; Van Bressem, Marie-Françoise; Fernández, Mercedes; Aznar, Francisco-Javier; Barrett, Thomas

    2008-01-01

    In July 2007, >100 striped dolphins, Stenella coeruleoalba, were found dead along the coast of the Spanish Mediterranean. Of 10 dolphins tested, 7 were positive for a virus strain closely related to the dolphin morbillivirus that was isolated during a previous epizootic in 1990.

  7. 77 FR 45268 - Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to Commercial Fishing Operations; Bottlenose Dolphin Take...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-07-31

    ...), this final rule implements an amendment to the BDTRP (71 FR 24776). The BDTRP was originally published on April 26, 2006, and amended on December 19, 2008 (73 FR 77531). Details regarding the development and justification of this final rule were provided in the preamble of the proposed rule (77 FR...

  8. Genome-wide scans for candidate genes involved in the aquatic adaptation of dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Yan-Bo; Zhou, Wei-Ping; Liu, He-Qun; Irwin, David M; Shen, Yong-Yi; Zhang, Ya-Ping

    2013-01-01

    Since their divergence from the terrestrial artiodactyls, cetaceans have fully adapted to an aquatic lifestyle, which represents one of the most dramatic transformations in mammalian evolutionary history. Numerous morphological and physiological characters of cetaceans have been acquired in response to this drastic habitat transition, such as thickened blubber, echolocation, and ability to hold their breath for a long period of time. However, knowledge about the molecular basis underlying these adaptations is still limited. The sequence of the genome of Tursiops truncates provides an opportunity for a comparative genomic analyses to examine the molecular adaptation of this species. Here, we constructed 11,838 high-quality orthologous gene alignments culled from the dolphin and four other terrestrial mammalian genomes and screened for positive selection occurring in the dolphin lineage. In total, 368 (3.1%) of the genes were identified as having undergone positive selection by the branch-site model. Functional characterization of these genes showed that they are significantly enriched in the categories of lipid transport and localization, ATPase activity, sense perception of sound, and muscle contraction, areas that are potentially related to cetacean adaptations. In contrast, we did not find a similar pattern in the cow, a closely related species. We resequenced some of the positively selected sites (PSSs), within the positively selected genes, and showed that most of our identified PSSs (50/52) could be replicated. The results from this study should have important implications for our understanding of cetacean evolution and their adaptations to the aquatic environment. PMID:23246795

  9. An Interview with a Dolphin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brook, Kathy; Keilty, Jennifer

    1993-01-01

    A fabricated conversation between two humans and a dolphin at Marineland illustrates man's relationship to nature and the impact that human actions have on living creatures and the environment, and stresses developing a deeper understanding and value for the natural world and consideration of the universality of continued human error and…

  10. Historical and current records of aquarium cetaceans in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Peijun; Sun, Ni; Yao, Zhiping; Zhang, Xianfeng

    2012-01-01

    The number of cetaceans housed in aquariums in China is increasing. Detailed information on the historical and current population status has not been reported, despite its importance for successful breeding and population management. Questionnaires were conducted between December 2006 and May 2009, and the information was used to construct studbooks. Our survey showed that 10 species had been introduced to aquariums since 1978, including 26 (with 15 in the current population) finless porpoises (Neophocaena phocaenoides), 5 (5) false killer whales (Pseudorca crassidens), 94 (80) common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), 48 (30) Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus), 36 (32) beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas), 10 (10) pantropical spotted dolphins (Stenella attenuata), 8 (8) Risso's dolphins (Grampus griseus), 2 (2) short-finned pilot whales (Globicephala macrorhynchus), 2 (2) Pacific white-sided dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens), and 5 (0) baiji dolphins (Lipotes vexillifer). The number of cetaceans has increased markedly in the past 32 years, especially since 1995. Currently, 184 individuals are under human care throughout China, a number larger than any other country with an International Species Information System membership. In addition, the Annual Survival Rates of bottlenose dolphins (0.959) and beluga whales (0.968) were found higher than those reported previously (0.93-0.951 and 0.94-0.954, respectively). PMID:21674602

  11. The hydrodynamics of dolphin drafting

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weihs Daniel

    2004-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Drafting in cetaceans is defined as the transfer of forces between individuals without actual physical contact between them. This behavior has long been surmised to explain how young dolphin calves keep up with their rapidly moving mothers. It has recently been observed that a significant number of calves become permanently separated from their mothers during chases by tuna vessels. A study of the hydrodynamics of drafting, initiated in the hope of understanding the mechanisms causing the separation of mothers and calves during fishing-related activities, is reported here. Results Quantitative results are shown for the forces and moments around a pair of unequally sized dolphin-like slender bodies. These include two major effects. First, the so-called Bernoulli suction, which stems from the fact that the local pressure drops in areas of high speed, results in an attractive force between mother and calf. Second is the displacement effect, in which the motion of the mother causes the water in front to move forwards and radially outwards, and water behind the body to move forwards to replace the animal's mass. Thus, the calf can gain a 'free ride' in the forward-moving areas. Utilizing these effects, the neonate can gain up to 90% of the thrust needed to move alongside the mother at speeds of up to 2.4 m/sec. A comparison with observations of eastern spinner dolphins (Stenella longirostris is presented, showing savings of up to 60% in the thrust that calves require if they are to keep up with their mothers. Conclusions A theoretical analysis, backed by observations of free-swimming dolphin schools, indicates that hydrodynamic interactions with mothers play an important role in enabling dolphin calves to keep up with rapidly moving adult school members.

  12. Lacaziosis-like disease in Tursiops truncatus from Brazil: a histopathological and immunohistochemical approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sacristán, Carlos; Réssio, Rodrigo Albergaria; Castilho, Pedro; Fernandes, Natália; Costa-Silva, Samira; Esperón, Fernando; Daura-Jorge, Fábio Gonçalves; Groch, Kátia R; Kolesnikovas, Cristiane K M; Marigo, Juliana; Ott, Paulo Henrique; Oliveira, Larissa Rosa; Sánchez-Sarmiento, Angélica María; Simões-Lopes, Paulo C; Catão-Dias, José Luiz

    2016-01-13

    Cetacean lacaziosis-like disease or lobomycosis-like disease (LLD) is a chronic skin condition caused by a non-cultivable yeast of the order Onygenales, which also includes Lacazia loboi, as well as Paracoccidioides brasiliensis and P. lutzii, respectively responsible for lacaziosis and paracoccidioidomycosis in humans. Complete identification and phylogenetic classification of the LLD etiological agent still needs to be elucidated, but preliminary phylogenetic analyses have shown a closer relationship of the LLD agent to Paracoccidioides spp. than to L. loboi. Cases of LLD in South American cetaceans based on photographic identification have been reported; however, to date, only 3 histologically confirmed cases of LLD have been described. We evaluated multiple tissue samples from 4 Tursiops truncatus stranded in the states of Santa Catarina (n = 3) and Rio Grande do Sul (n = 1), southern Brazil. Macroscopically, all animals presented lesions consistent with LLD. Hematoxylin-eosin, periodic acid-Schiff, Grocott's methenamine silver, and Mayer's mucicarmin stains were used for histological evaluation. Microscopically, numerous refractile yeasts (4-9 µm in diameter) were observed in skin samples (4/4), and for the first time in dolphins, also in a skeletal muscle abscess (1/4). Immunohistochemistry using anti-P. brasiliensis glycoprotein gp43 as a primary antibody, which is known to cross-react with L. loboi and the LLD agent, was performed and results were positive in all 4 cases. We describe 3 new cases of LLD in cetaceans based on histopathology and immunohistochemistry. This is the first report of LLD in the muscle of cetaceans. PMID:26758656

  13. Dolphin-Assisted Therapy: Claims versus Evidence

    OpenAIRE

    Britta L. Fiksdal; Daniel Houlihan; Barnes, Aaron C.

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to review and critique studies that have been conducted on dolphin-assisted therapy for children with various disorders. Studies have been released claiming swimming with dolphins is therapeutic and beneficial for children with autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, physical disabilities, and other psychological disorders. The majority of the studies conducted supporting the effectiveness of dolphin-assisted therapy have been found to have major methodo...

  14. PCB pollution continues to impact populations of orcas and other dolphins in European waters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jepson, Paul D.; Deaville, Rob; Barber, Jonathan L.; Aguilar, Àlex; Borrell, Asunción; Murphy, Sinéad; Barry, Jon; Brownlow, Andrew; Barnett, James; Berrow, Simon; Cunningham, Andrew A.; Davison, Nicholas J.; Ten Doeschate, Mariel; Esteban, Ruth; Ferreira, Marisa; Foote, Andrew D.; Genov, Tilen; Giménez, Joan; Loveridge, Jan; Llavona, Ángela; Martin, Vidal; Maxwell, David L.; Papachlimitzou, Alexandra; Penrose, Rod; Perkins, Matthew W.; Smith, Brian; de Stephanis, Renaud; Tregenza, Nick; Verborgh, Philippe; Fernandez, Antonio; Law, Robin J.

    2016-01-01

    Organochlorine (OC) pesticides and the more persistent polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) have well-established dose-dependent toxicities to birds, fish and mammals in experimental studies, but the actual impact of OC pollutants on European marine top predators remains unknown. Here we show that several cetacean species have very high mean blubber PCB concentrations likely to cause population declines and suppress population recovery. In a large pan-European meta-analysis of stranded (n = 929) or biopsied (n = 152) cetaceans, three out of four species:- striped dolphins (SDs), bottlenose dolphins (BNDs) and killer whales (KWs) had mean PCB levels that markedly exceeded all known marine mammal PCB toxicity thresholds. Some locations (e.g. western Mediterranean Sea, south-west Iberian Peninsula) are global PCB “hotspots” for marine mammals. Blubber PCB concentrations initially declined following a mid-1980s EU ban, but have since stabilised in UK harbour porpoises and SDs in the western Mediterranean Sea. Some small or declining populations of BNDs and KWs in the NE Atlantic were associated with low recruitment, consistent with PCB-induced reproductive toxicity. Despite regulations and mitigation measures to reduce PCB pollution, their biomagnification in marine food webs continues to cause severe impacts among cetacean top predators in European seas.

  15. Bubbles in live-stranded dolphins

    OpenAIRE

    Dennison, S; Moore, M J; Fahlman, A.; Moore, K.; Sharp, S.; Harry, C. T.; Hoppe, J.; NIEMEYER, M.; Lentell, B.; Wells, R. S.

    2011-01-01

    Bubbles in supersaturated tissues and blood occur in beaked whales stranded near sonar exercises, and post-mortem in dolphins bycaught at depth and then hauled to the surface. To evaluate live dolphins for bubbles, liver, kidneys, eyes and blubber–muscle interface of live-stranded and capture-release dolphins were scanned with B-mode ultrasound. Gas was identified in kidneys of 21 of 22 live-stranded dolphins and in the hepatic portal vasculature of 2 of 22. Nine then died or were euthanized ...

  16. A Study of a Mechanical Swimming Dolphin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fang, Lilly; Maass, Daniel; Leftwich, Megan; Smits, Alexander

    2007-11-01

    A one-third scale dolphin model was constructed to investigate dolphin swimming hydrodynamics. Design and construction of the model were achieved using body coordinate data from the common dolphin (Delphinus delphis) to ensure geometric similarity. The front two-thirds of the model are rigid and stationary, while an external mechanism drives the rear third. This motion mimics the kinematics of dolphin swimming. Planar laser induced florescence (PLIF) and particle image velocimetry (PIV) are used to study the hydrodynamics of the wake and to develop a vortex skeleton model.

  17. Sexually Frustrated Dolphin Sparks Alert

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    余采菊

    2002-01-01

    孔夫子的“饮食男女”一说,看来已经超出了人类的范畴。文章涉及的dolphin(海豚)简直令人难以置信!特别是以下一句: When dolphins get sexually excited,they try to isolate a swimmer,normallyfemale.They do this by circling around the individual and gradually move themaway from the beach,boat or crowd of people. 译文:当海豚处于性激动时,它们会孤立一个游泳者,通常是女性。它们围绕个别的游泳者打圈,慢慢地将这些人从海滩上、船上或是人群中引开去。

  18. Interpreting spotted dolphin age distributions

    OpenAIRE

    Barlow, Jay; Hohn, Aleta A.

    1984-01-01

    Previous work has determined the age distribution from a sample of spotted dolphins (Stenella attenuata) killed in the eastern Pacific tuna purse-seine fishery. In this paper we examine the usefulness of this age distribution for estimating natural mortality rates. The observed age distribution has a deficiency of individuals from 5-15 years and cannot represent a stable age distribution. Sampling bias and errors in age interpretation are examined as possible causes of the "dip" in the obs...

  19. 50 CFR 216.91 - Dolphin-safe labeling standards.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 7 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Dolphin-safe labeling standards. 216.91... MAMMALS Dolphin Safe Tuna Labeling § 216.91 Dolphin-safe labeling standards. (a) It is a violation of... include on the label of those products the term “dolphin-safe” or any other term or symbol that claims...

  20. Evoked potential measurement of the masked hearing threshold of a Pacific white-sided dolphin (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Au, Whitlow W. L.; Jeanette, Thomas; Western, A.; Rameriz, Kenneth M.

    2003-04-01

    The masked hearing threshold of a Pacific white-sided dolphin (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens) was determined by measuring the animal's auditory brainstem response (ABR). The dolphin was trained to wear surface-contact electrodes embedded in suction cups and to swim into a hoop centered at 1 m below the water surface facing a sound projector 5 m away. Broadband transient signals with center frequencies of 8, 16, 32, 64, 80, and 100 kHz were used as the stimuli. ABR signals were measured by digitizing the electrode signals in 32 point blocks at a sampling rate of 20 kHz. Five hundred blocks were averaged in order to obtain an ABR. The response latency for suprathreshold threshold signals was approximately 1.9 ms with the highest peak-to-peak ABR amplitude of approximately 2.8 uV occurring for a signal frequency of 64 kHz. The spectrum of the ABR signal was similar to that of Tursiops truncatus, with a major peak at 1120 Hz and a secondary peak at 664 Hz. Threshold was determined by progressively reducing the amplitude of the stimulus until an evoked potential could not be detected. The energy signal-to-noise ratio within an integration window at threshold varied between 1 and 8 dB.

  1. Kraniometrija dobrog dupina (Tursiops truncatus) iz Jadranskoga mora.

    OpenAIRE

    Đuras, Martina; Divac Brnić, Dušica; Gomerčić, Tomislav; Galov, Ana

    2014-01-01

    Dobri dupin (Tursiops truncatus) pripadnik je reda kitova (Cetacea) koji nastanjuje gotovo sva mora svijeta i čija se morfologija značajno razlikuje između populacija. Jedna ugrožena i zakonom zaštićena populacija dobrog dupina nastanjuje i Jadransko more. U ovom radu morfometrijski je obrađeno 95 lubanja odraslih dobrih dupina (47 ženki i 43 mužjaka, 5 nepoznatog spola) podrijetlom od dobrih dupina uginulih od 1990. do 2011. u hrvatskom dijelu Jadranskoga mora. Na svakoj lubanji izmjerene su...

  2. Review of lobomycosis and lobomycosis-like disease (LLD) in Cetacea from South America. Scientific Committee document SC/60/DW13, International Whaling Commission, June 2008, Santiago, Chile

    OpenAIRE

    Siciliano, S.; Van Bressem, M.-F.; Moreno, I.B.; Ott, P.H.; Tavares, M.; Flores, P.A.C.; Flach, L.; Reyes, J C; M. Echegaray; Santos, M.C.O.; Viddi, F.; Crespo, E.A.; Klaich, M.J.; Félix, F; Sanino, G.P.

    2008-01-01

    Caused by a yeast-like organism known as Lacazia loboi, Lobomycosis (or lacaziosis) naturally affects humans, common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncates) inhabiting coastal waters from southern Brazil to Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic coast of Florida, as well as botos-cinza (Sotalia guianensis). These species are usually found in coastal waters, subject to runoff provided by large rivers and a considerable burden of associated contaminants. Histological and morphological studies demonstrate...

  3. Bubbles in live-stranded dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dennison, S; Moore, M J; Fahlman, A; Moore, K; Sharp, S; Harry, C T; Hoppe, J; Niemeyer, M; Lentell, B; Wells, R S

    2012-04-01

    Bubbles in supersaturated tissues and blood occur in beaked whales stranded near sonar exercises, and post-mortem in dolphins bycaught at depth and then hauled to the surface. To evaluate live dolphins for bubbles, liver, kidneys, eyes and blubber-muscle interface of live-stranded and capture-release dolphins were scanned with B-mode ultrasound. Gas was identified in kidneys of 21 of 22 live-stranded dolphins and in the hepatic portal vasculature of 2 of 22. Nine then died or were euthanized and bubble presence corroborated by computer tomography and necropsy, 13 were released of which all but two did not re-strand. Bubbles were not detected in 20 live wild dolphins examined during health assessments in shallow water. Off-gassing of supersaturated blood and tissues was the most probable origin for the gas bubbles. In contrast to marine mammals repeatedly diving in the wild, stranded animals are unable to recompress by diving, and thus may retain bubbles. Since the majority of beached dolphins released did not re-strand it also suggests that minor bubble formation is tolerated and will not lead to clinically significant decompression sickness. PMID:21993505

  4. Dolphin shows and interaction programs: benefits for conservation education?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, L J; Zeigler-Hill, V; Mellen, J; Koeppel, J; Greer, T; Kuczaj, S

    2013-01-01

    Dolphin shows and dolphin interaction programs are two types of education programs within zoological institutions used to educate visitors about dolphins and the marine environment. The current study examined the short- and long-term effects of these programs on visitors' conservation-related knowledge, attitude, and behavior. Participants of both dolphin shows and interaction programs demonstrated a significant short-term increase in knowledge, attitudes, and behavioral intentions. Three months following the experience, participants of both dolphin shows and interaction programs retained the knowledge learned during their experience and reported engaging in more conservation-related behaviors. Additionally, the number of dolphin shows attended in the past was a significant predictor of recent conservation-related behavior suggesting that repetition of these types of experiences may be important in inspiring people to conservation action. These results suggest that both dolphin shows and dolphin interaction programs can be an important part of a conservation education program for visitors of zoological facilities. PMID:22622768

  5. Dolphin morbillivirus infection in different parts of the Mediterranean Sea

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    M.F. van Bressem; I.K.G. Visser (Ilona); R.L. de Swart (Rik); C. Örvell; L. Stanzani; E. Androukaki (Eugenia); K. Siakavara; A.D.M.E. Osterhaus (Albert)

    1993-01-01

    textabstractMorbillivirus were isolated from Mediterranean striped dolphins (Stenella coeruleoalba) dying along the coasts of Italy and Greece in 1991. They were antigenically identical to the morbilliviruses isolated from striped dolphins in Spain in 1990.

  6. Recognition and Discrimination of Human Actions Across the Senses of Echolocation and Vision in the Bottlenose Dolphin: Evidence for Dolphin Cross-modal Integration of Dynamic Information

    OpenAIRE

    Kuczaj, Stan; Solangi,, Moby; Hoffland,, Tim; Romagnoli, Marci

    2008-01-01

    The ability of cetaceans to explore and interpret their world via echolocation has receivedconsiderable attention during recent years, and the resulting body of work has revealed asophisticated cetacean echolocation system. In addition, a number of recent studies suggest thatdolphins can relate information that they receive from vision with information that they obtainfrom echolocation when this information concerns stationary objects. However, the present studyis the first test of the cetace...

  7. Ecology of Chilean dolphins and Peale's dolphins at Isla Chiloe, southern Chile

    OpenAIRE

    Heinrich, Sonja

    2006-01-01

    Information on the ecology of sympatric species provides important insights into how different animals interact with their environment, with each other, and how they differ in their susceptibility to threats to their survival. In this study habitat use and population ecology of Chilean dolphins (Cephalorhynchus eutropia) and sympatric Peale's dolphins (Lagenorhynchus australis) were investigated in the Chiloe Archipelago in southern Chile from 2001 to 2004. Distribution data collected during ...

  8. 76 FR 51943 - Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; International Dolphin Conservation Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-08-19

    ...; International Dolphin Conservation Program AGENCY: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA... (NOAA) collects information to implement the International Dolphin Conservation Program Act (Act). The... ] nations in the International Dolphin Conservation Program that would otherwise be under embargo. The...

  9. Audiogram of a striped dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kastelein, R.A.; Hagedoorn, M.; Au, W.W.L.; Haan, de D.

    2003-01-01

    The underwater hearing sensitivity of a striped dolphin was measured in a pool using standard psycho-acoustic techniques. The go/no-go response paradigm and up¿down staircase psychometric method were used. Auditory sensitivity was measured by using 12 narrow-band frequency-modulated signals having c

  10. Novel Atlantic bottlenose dolphin parainfluenza virus TtPIV-1 clusters with bovine PIV-3 genotype B strains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parainfluenza virus 3 (PIV-3) is a common viral infection not only in humans, but many other species. Serological evidence suggests that nearly 100% of children in the United States have been infected with PIV-3 by five years of age. Similarly, in cattle PIV-3 is commonly associated with bovine re...

  11. Fluorescent microbead-based immunoassay for anti-Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae antibody detection in cetaceans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melero, Mar; Giménez-Lirola, Luis G; Rubio-Guerri, Consuelo; Crespo-Picazo, José Luis; Sierra, Eva; García-Párraga, Daniel; García-Peña, Francisco Javier; Arbelo, Manuel; Álvaro, Teresa; Valls, Mónica; Sánchez-Vizcaíno, José Manuel

    2016-01-13

    A fluorescent microbead-based immunoassay (FMIA) for detection of anti-Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae antibodies in pigs was adapted for use in cetaceans. The FMIA was validated and adjusted using serum samples from 10 vaccinated captive bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus collected between 1 and 13 mo after immunization. The technique was then used to analyze specimens from 15 free-ranging cetaceans stranded alive on the Valencian Mediterranean coast between 2006 and 2014: 11 striped dolphins Stenella coeruleoalba, 3 Risso's dolphins Grampus griseus and 1 bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus. One of these wild animals was confirmed to have died from E. rhusiopathiae septicemia, but no anti-E. rhusiopathiae antibodies were detected in its serum, pericardial fluid or milk samples. Another free-ranging individual, which lacked any signs or lesions that might be indicative of E. rhusiopathiae infection, showed high fluorescence intensity similar to that measured in captive dolphins at 6-13 mo after vaccination. These results suggest that this animal underwent an E. rhusiopathiae infection several months before stranding. The findings in the present study suggest that FMIA can be useful for detecting anti-E. rhusiopathiae antibodies in cetaceans, and its application to free-ranging animals is particularly interesting because of the great value of these specimens. Furthermore, the FMIA can be multiplexed to allow the determination of up to 100 analytes per sample in a single well, thereby reducing the cost, time and sample volume needed. PMID:26758657

  12. A Law of Word Meaning in Dolphin Whistle Types

    OpenAIRE

    Brenda McCowan; Ramon Ferrer-i-Cancho

    2009-01-01

    We show that dolphin whistle types tend to be used in specific behavioral contexts, which is consistent with the hypothesis that dolphin whistle have some sort of “meaning”. Besides, in some cases, it can be shown that the behavioral context in which a whistle tends to occur or not occur is shared by different individuals, which is consistent with the hypothesis that dolphins are communicating through whistles. Furthermore, we show that the number of behavioral contexts significantly associat...

  13. Neural network modeling of a dolphin's sonar discrimination capabilities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Lars Nonboe; René Rasmussen, A; Au, WWL;

    1994-01-01

    The capability of an echo-locating dolphin to discriminate differences in the wall thickness of cylinders was previously modeled by a counterpropagation neural network using only spectral information of the echoes [W. W. L. Au, J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 95, 2728–2735 (1994)]. In this study, both time and...... frequency information were used to model the dolphin discrimination capabilities. Echoes from the same cylinders were digitized using a broadband simulated dolphin sonar signal with the transducer mounted on the dolphin's pen. The echoes were filtered by a bank of continuous constant-Q digital filters and...

  14. Adaptive evolution of the Hox gene family for development in bats and dolphins.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lu Liang

    Full Text Available Bats and cetaceans (i.e., whales, dolphins, porpoises are two kinds of mammals with unique locomotive styles and occupy novel niches. Bats are the only mammals capable of sustained flight in the sky, while cetaceans have returned to the aquatic environment and are specialized for swimming. Associated with these novel adaptations to their environment, various development changes have occurred to their body plans and associated structures. Given the importance of Hox genes in many aspects of embryonic development, we conducted an analysis of the coding regions of all Hox gene family members from bats (represented by Pteropus vampyrus, Pteropus alecto, Myotis lucifugus and Myotis davidii and cetaceans (represented by Tursiops truncatus for adaptive evolution using the available draft genome sequences. Differences in the selective pressures acting on many Hox genes in bats and cetaceans were found compared to other mammals. Positive selection, however, was not found to act on any of the Hox genes in the common ancestor of bats and only upon Hoxb9 in cetaceans. PCR amplification data from additional bat and cetacean species, and application of the branch-site test 2, showed that the Hoxb2 gene within bats had significant evidence of positive selection. Thus, our study, with genomic and newly sequenced Hox genes, identifies two candidate Hox genes that may be closely linked with developmental changes in bats and cetaceans, such as those associated with the pancreatic, neuronal, thymus shape and forelimb. In addition, the difference in our results from the genome-wide scan and newly sequenced data reveals that great care must be taken in interpreting results from draft genome data from a limited number of species, and deep genetic sampling of a particular clade is a powerful tool for generating complementary data to address this limitation.

  15. Adaptive evolution of the Hox gene family for development in bats and dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Lu; Shen, Yong-Yi; Pan, Xiao-Wei; Zhou, Tai-Cheng; Yang, Chao; Irwin, David M; Zhang, Ya-Ping

    2013-01-01

    Bats and cetaceans (i.e., whales, dolphins, porpoises) are two kinds of mammals with unique locomotive styles and occupy novel niches. Bats are the only mammals capable of sustained flight in the sky, while cetaceans have returned to the aquatic environment and are specialized for swimming. Associated with these novel adaptations to their environment, various development changes have occurred to their body plans and associated structures. Given the importance of Hox genes in many aspects of embryonic development, we conducted an analysis of the coding regions of all Hox gene family members from bats (represented by Pteropus vampyrus, Pteropus alecto, Myotis lucifugus and Myotis davidii) and cetaceans (represented by Tursiops truncatus) for adaptive evolution using the available draft genome sequences. Differences in the selective pressures acting on many Hox genes in bats and cetaceans were found compared to other mammals. Positive selection, however, was not found to act on any of the Hox genes in the common ancestor of bats and only upon Hoxb9 in cetaceans. PCR amplification data from additional bat and cetacean species, and application of the branch-site test 2, showed that the Hoxb2 gene within bats had significant evidence of positive selection. Thus, our study, with genomic and newly sequenced Hox genes, identifies two candidate Hox genes that may be closely linked with developmental changes in bats and cetaceans, such as those associated with the pancreatic, neuronal, thymus shape and forelimb. In addition, the difference in our results from the genome-wide scan and newly sequenced data reveals that great care must be taken in interpreting results from draft genome data from a limited number of species, and deep genetic sampling of a particular clade is a powerful tool for generating complementary data to address this limitation. PMID:23825528

  16. First indications that northern bottlenose whales are sensitive to behavioural disturbance from anthropogenic noise

    OpenAIRE

    Miller, Patrick J. O.; Kvadsheim, Petter Helgevold; Lam, Frans-Peter A.; Tyack, Peter L.; Curé, Charlotte; DeRuiter, Stacy; Kleivane, Lars; Sivle, Lise Doksæter; van IJsselmuide, Sander P; Visser, Fleur; Wensveen, Paul J.; von Benda-Beckmann, Alexander M.; López, L Martin; Narazaki, T.; Hooker, S

    2015-01-01

    Although northern bottlenose whales were the most heavily hunted beaked whale, we have little information about this species in its remote habitat of the North Atlantic Ocean. Underwater anthropogenic noise and disruption of their natural habitat may be major threats, given the sensitivity of other beaked whales to such noise disturbance. We attached dataloggers to 13 northern bottlenose whales and compared their natural sounds and movements to those of one individual exposed to escalating le...

  17. Observations of vaginal calculi in dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodhouse, C D; Rennie, C J

    1991-07-01

    Vaginal calculi have been described from the common (Delphinus delphis), Pacific white-sided (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens) and spotted (Stenella attenuata) dolphins. We describe additional calculi found in six sexually mature D. delphis from southern California. Three calculi were large (ca. 7 x 5 cm), exhibited concentric layer crystallization, and were unique from previously published descriptions. One calculus described previously and one in our sample appeared to be a fetal skeleton and skull respectively. Using CAT scans of a first trimester northern right whale dolphin (Lissodelphis borealis) and of a near term Delphinus delphis, we discuss the potential origin and development of vaginal calculi through analysis of ossification in embryonic delphinids. We hypothesize that the calculi represented spontaneous incomplete abortion with retention of part or all of the fetus in the distal reproductive tract. The form of the calculus relates to the degree of skeletal development at the time of fetal death. Calculi from a pregnant dolphin provided one measure of residence time. PMID:1920661

  18. Enron and Totalfina enter the Dolphin project

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The UAE Offsets Group Office (UOG), responsible for developing alliances between the private sector of the United Arab Emirates and international companies, announced on 1. March that a strategic partnership has been established with Enron and TotalFina Elf for implementation of the Dolphin Project, one of the largest world-wide integrated initiatives in the energy sector. The First objective of this partnership, the life of which has been fixed at 25 years, will be to develop the Dolphin infrastructure through a new gas pipeline with a capacity of 85 million cu.m of gas per day, linking Qatar to Abu Dhabi and the Sultanate of Oman. This initial phase will be based on the development of activities all along the gas line. The Project Development Agreement (PDA) concluded by the UOG, Enron and Elf also includes the exploitation of other opportunities in the Gulf countries and the region. The UOG will hold a majority share of 51% in this partnership, the remaining 49% being shared equally between Enron and Elf. Construction work on the gas pipeline and the various installations upstream of Qatar should be quickly put in hand. A series of preliminary agreements concluded with the government authorities of Qatar, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Oman and Pakistan, relating to the procurement and sale of gas, has enabled the implementation of the geographical and political organisation necessary to realize the Dolphin Project. (author)

  19. 50 CFR 216.95 - Official mark for “Dolphin-safe” tuna products.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 7 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Official mark for âDolphin-safeâ tuna... AND IMPORTING OF MARINE MAMMALS Dolphin Safe Tuna Labeling § 216.95 Official mark for “Dolphin-safe... Department of Commerce that may be used to label tuna products that meet the “dolphin-safe” standards...

  20. Dolphin QiQi Is Gone, but Research Will Continue

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Guo Haiyan

    2002-01-01

    @@ The world's only captive Yangtze River dolphin, QiQi,died on July 14 at the Wuhan-based Institute of Hydrobiology (IHB) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS). At age of about 25, well advanced in years for a freshwater dolphin, his death is considered as a natural one.

  1. 'Eavesdropping' in wild rough-toothed dolphins (Steno bredanensis)?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Götz, Thomas; Verfuss, Ursula Katharina; Schnitzler, Hans-Ulrich

    2006-03-22

    Several authors suggest that dolphins use information obtained by eavesdropping on echoes from sonar signals of conspecifics, but there is little evidence that this strategy is used by dolphins in the wild. Travelling rough-toothed dolphins (Steno bredanensis) either exhibit asynchronous movements or an extremely synchronized swimming behaviour in tight formations, which we expect to facilitate eavesdropping. Therefore, we determined, whether either one or more dolphins were echolocating in subgroups that were travelling with asynchronous and synchronized movements. Since, the number of recording sequences in which more than one animal produced sonar signals was significantly lower during synchronized travel, we conclude that the other members of a subgroup might get information on targets ahead by eavesdropping. Synchronized swimming in tight formations might be an energetic adaptation for travelling in a pelagic dolphin species that facilitates eavesdropping. PMID:17148311

  2. Dams and river dolphins: Can they co-exist?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dam construction is one of many ways that humans have modified river-dolphin habitats. It is suggested that physiographic and hydrologic complexity plays an important role in making rivers suitable for dolphins. If this hypothesis is true, then it can be assumed that dams and other artificial obstructions degrade dolphin habitat insofar as they reduce such complexity. This paper identifies some of the impacts that dams, barrages, and dikes might have on dolphins. Research is needed at project sites, both before and after construction, to document impacts. Specially designed ''swimways'' may allow upstream and downstream passage by dolphins and thus mitigate at least one of the adverse effects of dam projects, namely population fragmentation, but such measures aimed at benefiting single species are no substitute for protecting ecosystems. 30 refs

  3. Humpback Dolphin (Genus Sousa) Behavioural Responses to Human Activities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piwetz, Sarah; Lundquist, David; Würsig, Bernd

    2015-01-01

    Humpback dolphins (genus Sousa) use shallow, near-shore waters throughout their range. This coastal distribution makes them vulnerable to recreational and commercial disturbances, especially near heavily populated and industrialized areas. Most research focusing on Sousa and human activities has emphasized direct impacts and threats, involving injury and death, with relatively little focus on indirect effects on dolphins, such as changes in behaviour that may lead to deleterious effects. Understanding behaviour is important in resolving human-wildlife conflict and is an important component of conservation. This chapter gives an overview of animal behavioural responses to human activity with examples from diverse taxa; reviews the scientific literature on behavioural responses of humpback dolphins to human activity throughout their range, including marine vessel traffic, dolphin tourism, cetacean-fishery interactions, noise pollution, and habitat alteration; and highlights information and data gaps for future humpback dolphin research to better inform behaviour-based management decisions that contribute to conservation efforts. PMID:26555621

  4. Accumulation and distribution of organochlorines (PCBs and DDTs) in various organs of Stenella coeruleoalba and a Tursiops truncatus from Mediterranean littoral environment (France).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wafo, Emmanuel; Sarrazin, Luc; Diana, Catherine; Dhermain, Frank; Schembri, Thérèse; Lagadec, Véronique; Pecchia, Magali; Rebouillon, Pierre

    2005-09-15

    The objective of the present study is to determine the levels of contamination by PCBs, DDT and its metabolites in dolphins failed on the coasts of the Mediterranean sea. Samples are represented by six Stenella coeruleoalba and a Tursiops truncatus collected in 2000 and 2003. The studies are achieved on the blubber, the heart, the liver, the kidney, the muscle and the lung. The concentrations of PCBs and DDT are very high in all tissues and organs analyzed. For the PCBs, the concentrations vary between 43,838 and 110,343 microg/kg lipid basis in the blubber, 601 and 39444 microg/kg dried weight in the liver, 1375 and 34512 microg/kg dried weight in the muscle, 3151 and 17082 microg/kg dried weight in the heart, 674 and 12365 microg/kg dried weight in the kidney and finally between 648 and 4118 microg/kg dried weight in the lung. These values are comparable to those previously obtained in our laboratory and by other authors during the years 1990 on the Mediterranean environment. Significant differences in concentrations are noted in tissues and organs, neither according to the age, nor according to the gender. In all the analyzed samples, the contents in PCBs are higher than those of DDT. The average ratios of pp'-DDE/SigmaDDT are close to 0.6 which shows the metabolization of these compounds along the years. The examination of the profiles of congeners shows that the hexachlorinated molecules are dominating in all tissues and organs which supposes the different animals were especially exposed to Pyralen-type compounds of transformer (Dp6). PMID:16162318

  5. THE MARINE MAMMAL FAUNA OF POTENTIAL OTEC SITES IN THE GULF OF MEXICO AND HAWAII

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Payne, S.F.

    1979-05-01

    Twenty-seven marine mammal species have been recorded for the Gulf of Mexico, including 7 Mysticetes or baleen whales, 17 Odontocetes or toothed whales, 1 Sirenian (manatee), and 1 or 2 Pinnipeds or seals. The most common species in the Gulf is Tursiops truncatus, the bottlenosed dolphin, an inshore species. Offshore, Stenella plagiodon, the spotted dolphin, is fairly common. Most other species are recorded from very few sightings or strandings. None of the endangered species is common in potential OTEC sites in the Gulf of Mexico. Twenty-two marine mammals may occur in Hawaii; 2 Mystecetes, 19 Odonotocetes, and the endemic monk seal. The monk seal (Monachus schauinslandi), an endangered species, lives in the extreme northwestern island chain away from potential OTEC sites. Among the most common cetaceans in Hawaii is the endangered humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae). Stenella longirostris, the spinner dolphin; and Tursiops sp., the bottlenosed dolphin are also fairly common. The baleen whales feed on zooplankton during the summer in polar waters, and are migratory, while the toothed whales feed mainly on fish and squid, and are found in temperate or tropical regions year-round. The manatee is vegetarian and the pinnipeds are fish- or squid-eaters. Environmental effects of OTEC which may affect mammals are: toxic effects of biocide release or ammonia spill, biostimulating effects of seawater redistribution, oil spills, or effects of the physical presence of OTEC plants.

  6. An echolocation visualization and interface system for dolphin research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amundin, Mats; Starkhammar, Josefin; Evander, Mikael; Almqvist, Monica; Lindström, Kjell; Persson, Hans W

    2008-02-01

    The present study describes the development and testing of a tool for dolphin research. This tool was able to visualize the dolphin echolocation signals as well as function as an acoustically operated "touch screen." The system consisted of a matrix of hydrophones attached to a semitransparent screen, which was lowered in front of an underwater acrylic panel in a dolphin pool. When a dolphin aimed its sonar beam at the screen, the hydrophones measured the received sound pressure levels. These hydrophone signals were then transferred to a computer where they were translated into a video image that corresponds to the dynamic sound pressure variations in the sonar beam and the location of the beam axis. There was a continuous projection of the image back onto the hydrophone matrix screen, giving the dolphin an immediate visual feedback to its sonar output. The system offers a whole new experimental methodology in dolphin research and since it is software-based, many different kinds of scientific questions can be addressed. The results were promising and motivate further development of the system and studies of sonar and cognitive abilities of dolphins. PMID:18247918

  7. RESEARCH PROSPECTIVES FOR DOLPHIN MORTALITIES IN NORTH AMERICA

    Science.gov (United States)

    The Second Gulf Breeze Symposium sponsored by EPA's Center for Marine and Estuarine Disease Research focused on scientific research related to dolphin mortalities. uring the symposium, four groups were formed to discuss and evaluate current scientific information, research strate...

  8. Bayesian analysis of the Hector’s Dolphin data

    OpenAIRE

    King, R; Brooks, S.P.

    2004-01-01

    In recent years there have been increasing concerns for many wildlife populations, due to decreasing population trends. This has led to the introduction of management schemes to increase the survival rates and hence the population size of many species of animals. We concentrate on a particular dolphin population situated off the coast of New Zealand, and investigate whether the introduction of a fishing gill net ban was effective in decreasing dolphin mortality. We undertake a Bayesian analys...

  9. Blind river dolphin: first side-swimming cetacean.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herald, E S; Brownell, R L; Frye, F L; Morris, E J; Evans, W E; Scott, A B

    1969-12-12

    The blind river dolphin (Platanista gangetica), first written about by Pliny the Elder in A.D. 72, was found (10 November 1968) to be the first known side-swimming cetacean. The rudimentary eye lacks the lens, but anatomical evidence suggests that the eye may serve as a light sensor. The underwater sound emissions of this species, although similar to those of the Amazon River dolphin (Inia geoffrensis), appear to be produced constantly. PMID:5350341

  10. Deep-diving behaviour of the northern bottlenose whale, Hyperoodon ampullatus (Cetacea: Ziphiidae)

    OpenAIRE

    Hooker, S. K.; Baird, R W

    1999-01-01

    Using suction-cup attached time–depth recorder/VHF radio tags, we have obtained the first diving data on northern bottlenose whales (Hyperoodon ampullatus), the first such data on any species within the family Ziphiidae. Two deployments in 1997 on northern bottlenose whales in a submarine canyon off Nova Scotia demonstrated their exceptional diving ability, with dives approximately every 80 min to over 800 m (maximum 1453 m), and up to 70 min in duration. Sonar traces of non-tagged, diving bo...

  11. 78 FR 25530 - Requested Administrative Waiver of the Coastwise Trade Laws: Vessel BLUE DOLPHIN; Invitation for...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-05-01

    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Maritime Administration Requested Administrative Waiver of the Coastwise Trade Laws: Vessel BLUE DOLPHIN... of the vessel BLUE DOLPHIN is: Intended Commercial Use Of Vessel: ``Skippered daysailing in...

  12. ‘Eavesdropping’ in wild rough-toothed dolphins (Steno bredanensis)?

    OpenAIRE

    Götz, Thomas; Verfuß, Ursula Katharina; Schnitzler, Hans-Ulrich

    2005-01-01

    Several authors suggest that dolphins use information obtained by eavesdropping on echoes from sonar signals of conspecifics, but there is little evidence that this strategy is used by dolphins in the wild. Travelling rough-toothed dolphins (Steno bredanensis) either exhibit asynchronous movements or an extremely synchronized swimming behaviour in tight formations, which we expect to facilitate eavesdropping. Therefore, we determined, whether either one or more dolphins were echolocating in s...

  13. How Studies of Wild and Captive Dolphins Contribute to our Understanding of Individual Differences and Personality

    OpenAIRE

    Highfill, Lauren E.; Kuczaj II, Stan A.

    2010-01-01

    The study of individual differences in animals and humans has flourished in recent years. This work has revealed personality traits in a wide range of species, including dolphins. However, there are few systematic studies of dolphin personality despite many reasons to assume that personality plays an important role in dolphin behavior. Dolphins live in complex societies and demonstrate a broad and diverse behavioral repertoire, which allows for the possibility of consistent individual differe...

  14. ALTERNATIF PERENCANAAN MOORING DOLPHIN PELABUHAN KHUSUS BATU BARA PT. SEMEN TONASA PANGKEP

    OpenAIRE

    Abadi, Yusri

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRAK Mooring dolphin adalah bagian yang sangat penting dan tidak terpisahkan pada konstruksi pelabuhan ataupun dermaga. Mooring dolphin memiliki berbagai macam jenis dan bentuk. Mooring dolphin berfungsi sebagai alat untuk menambat kapal yang berlabuh pada pelabuhan atau dermaga tersebut agar tidak bergeser jauh dari pelabuhan pada saat menerima gaya. Sehingga dengan demikian mooring dolphin yang terdiri dari tiga bagian utama yaitu, bollard, poer, dan tiang pancang yang direncanakan ...

  15. Soundscape Ecology of Hawaiian Spinner Dolphin Resting Bays

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heenehan, Heather Leigh

    Sound is a key sensory modality for Hawaiian spinner dolphins. Like many other marine animals, these dolphins rely on sound and their acoustic environment for many aspects of their daily lives, making it is essential to understand soundscape in areas that are critical to their survival. Hawaiian spinner dolphins rest during the day in shallow coastal areas and forage offshore at night. In my dissertation I focus on the soundscape of the bays where Hawaiian spinner dolphins rest taking a soundscape ecology approach. I primarily relied on passive acoustic monitoring using four DSG-Ocean acoustic loggers in four Hawaiian spinner dolphin resting bays on the Kona Coast of Hawai'i Island. 30-second recordings were made every four minutes in each of the bays for 20 to 27 months between January 8, 2011 and March 30, 2013. I also utilized concomitant vessel-based visual surveys in the four bays to provide context for these recordings. In my first chapter I used the contributions of the dolphins to the soundscape to monitor presence in the bays and found the degree of presence varied greatly from less than 40% to nearly 90% of days monitored with dolphins present. Having established these bays as important to the animals, in my second chapter I explored the many components of their resting bay soundscape and evaluated the influence of natural and human events on the soundscape. I characterized the overall soundscape in each of the four bays, used the tsunami event of March 2011 to approximate a natural soundscape and identified all loud daytime outliers. Overall, sound levels were consistently louder at night and quieter during the daytime due to the sounds from snapping shrimp. In fact, peak Hawaiian spinner dolphin resting time co-occurs with the quietest part of the day. However, I also found that humans drastically alter this daytime soundscape with sound from offshore aquaculture, vessel sound and military mid-frequency active sonar. During one recorded mid

  16. Use of skin and blubber tissues of small cetaceans to assess the trace element content of internal organs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aubail, A; Méndez-Fernandez, P; Bustamante, P; Churlaud, C; Ferreira, M; Vingada, J V; Caurant, F

    2013-11-15

    In order to evaluate the use of biopsy samples as non-destructive tool for assessing trace element concentrations in small cetaceans, the concentrations of 14 trace elements were determined in skin, blubber, liver and kidneys of four species of small cetaceans (i.e. common dolphin Delphinus delphis, harbour porpoise Phocoena phocoena, bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus and striped dolphin Stenella coeruleolba), stranded and/or by-caught along the NE Atlantic Ocean coast between 2001 and 2008. Only Cu, Fe, Hg, Mn, Ni and Zn were above the detection limit of the instruments and showed recoveries satisfactory enough to be interpreted. Among these trace elements, Hg was the only one showing a significant correlation between concentrations in and those in liver and kidneys. In consequence skin and blubber can only be used as non-invasive monitoring tissues to investigate Hg bioaccumulation in internal tissues for cetacean populations. PMID:24064373

  17. Skin biopsy of Mediterranean cetaceans for the investigation of interspecies susceptibility to xenobiotic contaminants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fossi, M C; Marsili, L; Neri, G; Casini, S; Bearzi, G; Politi, E; Zanardelli, M; Panigada, S

    2000-01-01

    Various studies on Mediterranean cetaceans have revealed bioaccumulation of contaminants such as organochlorines (OCs) and heavy metals. The susceptibility of these animals to organic pollutants and the relationship between bioaccumulation and population decline (as in the case of Delphinus delphis) are unexplored fields. In this study, we used a non-destructive approach (skin biopsy) to explore OC bioaccumulation processes and mixed-function oxidase activity (BPMO) in four species of cetaceans: striped dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba), bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), common dolphin (D. delphis) and fin whale (Balaenoptera physalus). Significant differences in BPMO induction and OC levels were found between odontocetes and mysticetes, the former having mixed-function oxidase activities four times higher than the latter, binding with levels of OCs one order of magnitude higher in odontocetes. A significant correlation (P tool for assessing ecotoxicological risk to Mediterranean marine mammals species. PMID:11460743

  18. Dolphin Therapy: The Playful Way to Work toward the Next Step

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wermer, Maaike

    2008-01-01

    More than 400 children with a physical and/or mental challenge visit the Curacao Dolphin Therapy and Research Center (CDTC) for dolphin-assisted therapy every year. Dolphin therapy appears to be the right approach for many children. With the help of these special and very social animals, it is easier to make contact with the children. It motivates…

  19. Instrumenting free-swimming dolphins echolocating in open water

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Stephen W.; Phillips, Michael; Bauer, Eric J.; Moore, Patrick W.; Houser, Dorian S.

    2005-04-01

    Dolphins within the Navy Marine Mammal Program use echolocation to effectively locate underwater mines. They currently outperform manmade systems at similar tasks, particularly in cluttered environments and on buried targets. In hopes of improving manmade mine-hunting sonar systems, two instrumentation packages were developed to monitor free-swimming dolphin motion and echolocation during open-water target detection tasks. The biosonar measurement tool (BMT) is carried by a dolphin and monitors underwater position and attitude while simultaneously recording echolocation clicks and returning echoes through high-gain binaural receivers. The instrumented mine simulator (IMS) is a modified bottom target that monitors echolocation signals arriving at the target during ensonification. Dolphin subjects were trained to carry the BMT in open-bay bottom-object target searches in which the IMS could serve as a bottom object. The instrumentation provides detailed data that reveal hereto-unavailable information on the search strategies of free-swimming dolphins conducting open-water, bottom-object search tasks with echolocation. .

  20. Dolphin Research Makes Breakthrough in Hong Kong

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    杜茂束

    2000-01-01

    海豚的人工繁殖是一个世界级的难题。困难在于:Dolphins in generalhave very irregular ovarian (卵巢)cycles,making artificial insemination verydifficult. 攻克此难题的重要意义在于: With AI,it can perhaps lead to the reduction of animals taken from the wildinto captive facilities to increase their genetic variance.So wild populations may not be interfered with. 这里的AI是artificial insemination(人工受孕)的首字母缩略。英语词汇的创新组合何等自由!AI己经是许多词组的缩略表达,且收入了词典,现在有冒出一个新含义!此外,本文反复出现了facilities,不能把它理解为“设备”等。facilities=供特定用处的场所。本文指海豚饲养中心。

  1. First record of a white rough-toothed dolphin (Steno bredanensis) off West Africa including notes on rough-toothed dolphin surface behaviour

    OpenAIRE

    Boer, de, F.R.

    2010-01-01

    In June 2009, a white rough-toothed dolphin (Steno bredanensis) calf was photographed in a group of at least 50 dolphins in the southern Gulf of Guinea, 95 nauticol miles off the Gabon coast (01°45'S 007°29'E), West Africa. Reports of unusually pigmented cetaceans are infrequent and this record represents the first of an all-white rough-toothed dolphin. Furthermore, there is little documentation concerning rough-toothed dolphins and this note contributes to the knowledge of this species in tr...

  2. STRATEGI KOMUNIKASI PEMASARAN EKOWISATA PADA DESTINASI WISATA DOLPHIN HUNTING LOVINA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ni Luh Putu Agustini Karta

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this research is to find the right marketing communications strategy for Ecotourism’s Destinations, (Dolphin Hunting Lovina, to be sustainable. Design methodology used is a marketing communication approach by adopting the concept of basic elements of the theory of marketing communication, the shift towards integrated marketing approach marketing communications, and public organizational challenges in creating brand awareness. Qualitative research and in-depth interviews carried out to some competent resource. The findings generated that image creation and brand awareness of Dolphin Hunting Lovina is determined by the  organization’s marketing communications and internal audiences

  3. Comparing Object Play in Captive and Wild Dolphins

    OpenAIRE

    Greene, Whitney E.; Melillo-Sweeting, Kelly; Dudzinski, Kathleen M.

    2011-01-01

    Examining the role of play as related to individual and group social development is important to understanding a species. The purpose of our study was to examine whether there is a difference in the frequency of object play exhibited by dolphins from two groups – one captive and one wild. Data were collected with underwater video, with resulting videos event sampled for bouts of play involving various objects used by dolphins. From 159 hr of video data, roughly 102 min featured object play: 7...

  4. Learning in human-dolphin interactions at zoological facilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sweeney, Diane L.

    This research aimed to better understand learning in zoological settings, particularly learning about marine mammals, by investigating the research question, what do people learn through interacting with dolphins in zoological facilities? Sociocultural situated learning theory, specifically a Community of Practice (CoP) model of learning (Lave & Wenger, 1991), was the theoretical framework. The CoP model allowed for diversity of knowledge, interest, motivations, and goals that existed among the community of animal enthusiasts at three commercial zoological facilities, and also for peripheral to more central types of participation. I collected data through interviews of spectators, visitors, and trainers (n=51), observations (n=16), and an online questionnaire of past-visitors (n=933). Data were coded, categorized, and analyzed based on the National Science Foundation's (Friedman, 2008) and the National Research Council's (2009) frameworks for informal science education. Five principal findings answered the research question. First, all participants gained new knowledge within three broad categories: (a) dolphin physiology and natural history, (b) care and training of dolphins, and (c) conservation. Second, all participants constructed personal meanings by connecting the activity to experiences, beliefs, and practices outside the interaction context. Almost all participants made associations with conservation. Third, most participants shifted their attitudes and gained a sense of personal agency about beginning or increasing stewardship actions. Fourth, visitors learned interspecies etiquette skills; trainers learned skills in dolphin training and management, people management, and teaching. Fifth, visitors had long-lasting memories of the experience that occurred eight months to 18 years in the past. Popular cultural ideas about dolphins and the ways the dolphins were represented influenced visitors' expectations and the types of learning. Potential physical

  5. Computational Modeling of the Dolphin Kick in Competitive Swimming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loebbeck, A.; Mark, R.; Bhanot, G.

    2005-11-01

    Numerical simulations are being used to study the fluid dynamics of the dolphin kick in competitive swimming. This stroke is performed underwater after starts and turns and involves an undulatory motion of the body. Highly detailed laser body scans of elite swimmers are used and the kinematics of the dolphin kick is recreated from videos of Olympic level swimmers. We employ a parallelized immersed boundary method to simulate the flow associated with this stroke in all its complexity. The simulations provide a first of its kind glimpse of the fluid and vortex dynamics associated with this stroke and hydrodynamic force computations allow us to gain a better understanding of the thrust producing mechanisms.

  6. Echolocation in sympatric Peale's dolphins (Lagenorhynchus australis) and Commerson's dolphins (Cephalorhynchus commersonii) producing narrow-bandhigh-frequency clicks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kyhn, Line Anker; Jensen, Frants Havmand; Beedholm, Kristian;

    2010-01-01

    -element hydrophone array from wild Peale's (Lagenorhynchus australis) and Commerson's (Cephalorhynchus commersonii) dolphins off the Falkland Islands. The centroid frequency was different between Commerson's (133±2kHz) and Peale's (129±3kHz) dolphins. The r.m.s. bandwidth was 12±3kHz for both species. The source...... level was higher for Peale's dolphin (185±6dB re 1 uPa p.-p.) than for Commerson's(177±5 dB re 1 uPa p.-p.). The mean directivity indexes were 25dB for both species. The relatively low source levels in combination with the high directivity index may be an adaptation to reduce clutter when foraging in...

  7. Dolphin Morbillivirus Infection in a Captive Harbor Seal (Phoca vitulina)

    OpenAIRE

    Mazzariol, Sandro; Peletto, Simone; Mondin, Alessandra; Centelleghe, Cinzia; Di Guardo, Giovanni; Di Francesco, Cristina Esmeralda; Casalone, Cristina; Acutis, Pier Luigi

    2013-01-01

    During the second morbillivirus epidemic (2007 to 2011) in cetaceans along the Italian coastline, dolphin morbillivirus (DMV) was detected by molecular analyses in a captive harbor seal (Phoca vitulina), with pathological findings consistent with morbillivirus infection. This report confirms interspecies DMV transmission from cetaceans to pinnipeds.

  8. Placentation in dolphins from the Amazon River Basin

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    da Silva, Vera M F; Carter, Anthony M; Ambrosio, Carlos E;

    2007-01-01

    A recent reassessment of the phylogenetic affinities of cetaceans makes it timely to compare their placentation with that of the artiodactyls. We studied the placentae of two sympatric species of dolphin from the Amazon River Basin, representing two distinct families. The umbilical cord branched to...

  9. Characterization of morbilliviruses isolated from dolphins and porpoises in Europe.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    I.K.G. Visser (Ilona); A.D.M.E. Osterhaus (Albert); M.F. van Bressem; R.L. de Swart (Rik); M.W.G. van de Bildt (Marco); H.W. Vos (Helma); R.W.J. van der Heijden (Roger); J.T. Saliki; C. Örvell; P. Kitching; T. Kuiken (Thijs); T. Barrett (Thomas)

    1993-01-01

    textabstractA previously unidentified morbillivirus was isolated from two harbour porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) that had died in the Dutch Waddensea (North Sea) in 1990. This porpoise morbillivirus (PMV) and a dolphin morbillivirus (DMV), which had recently caused a heavy mortality in Mediterranean

  10. Assistive Technology and Dolphin Therapy: A Wonderful Combination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Eli; Thomasson, Gretchen

    2008-01-01

    Madison is a four-year-old child who was born with cerebral palsy and cortical vision impairment. As a result, she has limited use of her extremities and is just starting to walk with assistance. She is predominately non-verbal, with the exception of a few words. This article describes how Island Dolphin Care (IDC), a nonprofit agency in Key…

  11. The span of correlations in dolphin whistle sequences

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Long-range correlations are found in symbolic sequences from human language, music and DNA. Determining the span of correlations in dolphin whistle sequences is crucial for shedding light on their communicative complexity. Dolphin whistles share various statistical properties with human words, i.e. Zipf's law for word frequencies (namely that the probability of the ith most frequent word of a text is about i−α) and a parallel of the tendency of more frequent words to have more meanings. The finding of Zipf's law for word frequencies in dolphin whistles has been the topic of an intense debate on its implications. One of the major arguments against the relevance of Zipf's law in dolphin whistles is that it is not possible to distinguish the outcome of a die-rolling experiment from that of a linguistic or communicative source producing Zipf's law for word frequencies. Here we show that statistically significant whistle–whistle correlations extend back to the second previous whistle in the sequence, using a global randomization test, and to the fourth previous whistle, using a local randomization test. None of these correlations are expected by a die-rolling experiment and other simple explanations of Zipf's law for word frequencies, such as Simon's model, that produce sequences of unpredictable elements

  12. Dolphins Who Blow Bubbles: Anthropological Machines and Native Informants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    C. Lord

    2011-01-01

    "Dolphins Who Blow Bubbles: Anthropological Machines and Native Informants" engages a reading between an Oscar winning and now ‘cult’ activist film The Cove (Louise Psihoyos 2009) and classical texts on the human-animal threshold. Giorgio Agamben’s The Open (2002) and Jacques Derrida’s "The Animal t

  13. How much effort is enough? The power of citizen science to monitor trends in coastal cetacean species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C.B. Embling

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Citizen scientists provide a cost-effective means of carrying out broad scale, long-term monitoring of the environment while fostering earth stewardship. In this study we investigate how much effort is required by citizen scientists to detect trends in the occurrence of a protected population of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus. We analyse the WDC citizen science shore-based data collected over nine years (2005–2013 between April to October from within and in the vicinity of a Special Area of Conservation (SAC for bottlenose dolphins in the Moray Firth, Scotland. Watches comprised a continuous 10 minute scan of the survey area in an hour. During peak season, around 5 watches per day were required to detect annual or between-site trends of 50% in dolphin occurrence in locations where dolphins were sighted reliably (0.1 sightings per hour. Less effort was required at higher sightings rates, and it was not possible to statistically detect trends of <30%. This study highlights the importance of power analysis in designing citizen science programmes and demonstrates their effectiveness in carrying out long term shore-based monitoring of coastal cetacean species, providing a cost-effective early warning system for changes in the marine environment.

  14. Conservation ecology and phylogenetics of the Indus River dolphin (Platanista gangetica minor)

    OpenAIRE

    Braulik, Gillian T.

    2012-01-01

    The historical range of the Indus River dolphin has declined by 80% since the 19th century and has been fragmented into 17 river sections by construction of irrigation barrages. Dolphin sighting and interview surveys showed that river dolphins persist in six river sections, have been extirpated from ten, and are of unknown status in the remaining section. Logistic regression and survival modelling showed that low dry season river discharge was the primary factor responsible for...

  15. Pesca associada entre golfinhos e aves marinhas Feeding associations between dolphin and sea birds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emygdio L. A. Monteiro-Filho

    1992-01-01

    Full Text Available Along ten years of study of a common dolphin from the brazilian coast, Sotalia brasiliensis Van Beneden, 1874, I could see some occasions of feeding associations of this dolphin with five species of birds, Sula leucogaster (Boddaert, 1783, Fregata magnificens Mathews, 1914, Sterna hirundinacea Lesson, 1831, Larus dominicanus Lichtenstein, 1823 and Phalacrocorax olivaceus Humboldt, 1895. The commonest association observed was between the dolphin and S. leucogaster, and in all the associations was characterized the commensalism, with advantaged to the birds.

  16. Behavioral alterations in the gray dolphin Sotalia guianensis (Gervais, 1953) caused by sea traffi

    OpenAIRE

    Francielli Cristine Cunha Melo; Anderson Luis do Valle

    2006-01-01

    Behavioral responses by Sotalia guianensis dolphins in the presence of touristic sea traffic in the bay of Curral, Pipa-RN, Brazil, were measured. The dolphins changed their behavior when boats were closer than 100 meters. The main behavioral alterations were that the dolphins remained submerged for longer and that they formed a more cohesive group as the boats came closer. Although we concluded that the approach of the boats changed the dolphins’ behavioral pattern, we do not know what aspec...

  17. Pesca associada entre golfinhos e aves marinhas Feeding associations between dolphin and sea birds

    OpenAIRE

    Emygdio L. A. Monteiro-Filho

    1992-01-01

    Along ten years of study of a common dolphin from the brazilian coast, Sotalia brasiliensis Van Beneden, 1874, I could see some occasions of feeding associations of this dolphin with five species of birds, Sula leucogaster (Boddaert, 1783), Fregata magnificens Mathews, 1914, Sterna hirundinacea Lesson, 1831, Larus dominicanus Lichtenstein, 1823 and Phalacrocorax olivaceus Humboldt, 1895. The commonest association observed was between the dolphin and S. leucogaster, and in all the associations...

  18. First record of the Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins (Sousa chinensis) southwest of Hainan Island, China

    OpenAIRE

    Li, Songhai; Lin, Mingli; Xu, Xiao; Xing, Luru; Zhang, Peijun; Gozlan, Rodolphe E.; Huang, Shiang-Lin; WANG, DING

    2016-01-01

    International audience Background: Populations of Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins (Sousa chinensis) in China were known to be distributed from the Beibu Gulf near the border with Vietnam to the mouth of the Yangtze River. According to existing studies, the waters around Hainan Island, China, were not considered to be part of the humpback dolphins' distribution. Results: In 2014, for the first time, we recorded humpback dolphins in waters southwest of Hainan Island. Conclusions: This record ...

  19. Serological evidence of Toxoplasma gondii infection in captive marine mammals in Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarado-Esquivel, C; Sánchez-Okrucky, R; Dubey, J P

    2012-03-23

    Toxoplasma gondii infection in marine mammals is important because they are considered as a sentinel for contamination of seas with T. gondii oocysts, and toxoplasmosis causes mortality in these animals, particularly sea otters. Serological evidence of T. gondii infection was determined in 75 captive marine mammals from four facilities in southern and central geographical regions in Mexico using the modified agglutination test (MAT). Antibodies (MAT, 1:25 or higher) to T. gondii were found in 55 (87.3%) of 63 Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus truncatus), 3 of 3 Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus gillii), 2 of 4 California sea lions (Zalophus californianus), but not in 3 West Indian manatees (Trichechus manatus), and 2 Patagonian sea lions (Otaria flavescens). Seropositive marine mammals were found in all 4 (100%) facilities sampled. All marine mammals were healthy and there has not been any case of clinical toxoplasmosis in the facilities sampled for at least the last 15 years. The seroprevalence of T. gondii infection in marine mammals of the same species did not vary significantly with respect to sex and age. This is the first report on the detection of antibodies to T. gondii in marine mammals in Mexico. PMID:21944844

  20. Parasites of cetaceans stranded on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira, J B; Morales, J A; González-Barrientos, R C; Hernández-Gamboa, J; Hernández-Mora, G

    2011-12-15

    Information regarding parasitic fauna of cetaceans from Costa Rica is provided for the first time. A total of 25 stranded dolphins and whales were examined between 2001 and 2009, including striped dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba) (n=19), pantropical spotted dolphin (S. attenuata) (n=2), spinner dolphin (S. longirostris) (n=1), bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) (n=1), dwarf sperm whale (Kogia sima) (n=1) and Cuvier's beaked whale (Ziphius cavirostris) (n=1). Pathological findings associated with the parasites are also presented. In the most representative dolphin species, S. coeruleoalba, the prevalence of parasites was 89.5%; moreover, all examined specimens of S. attenuata, S. longirostris, T. truncatus and Z. cavirostris presented parasites. No parasites were recovered from K. sima. Fourteen helminth taxa were identified, including six species of cestodes (Strobilocephalus triangularis, Tetrabothrius forsteri, Trigonocotyle sp., Phyllobothrium delphini, Monorygma grimaldi, Tetraphyllidea gen. sp. plerocercoid), four digeneans (Nasitrema globicephalae, Brachycladium palliatum, B. pacificum and Oschmarinella albamarina) and four nematodes (Anisakis spp., Halocercus lagenorhynchi, Halocercus sp. and Crassicauda anthonyi). A commensal crustacean, Xenobalanus globicipitis, was also identified. All identified parasites representing new geographic records for the Pacific coast of Central America and new host records are presented. Parasitological information is valuable for conservation of cetaceans in Pacific coast of Costa Rica. PMID:21665367

  1. Tactile Contact Exchanges Between Dolphins: Self-rubbing versus Inter-individual Contact in Three Species from Three Geographies

    OpenAIRE

    Dudzinski, Kathleen M.; Gregg, Justin; Melillo-Sweeting, Kelly; Seay, Briana; Levengood, Alexis; Kuczaj II, Stan A.

    2012-01-01

    Self-rubbing and social-rubbing (pectoral fin contact between dolphin pairs) were compared for observations conducted on three dolphin study groups: wild dolphin groups in The Bahamas and around Mikura Island, Japan, and a third group of captive dolphins at the Roatan Institute of Marine Sciences, Roatan, Honduras. A primary aim of this research was to determine whether self-rubbing and social pectoral fin rubbing served overlapping functions. Self-rubbing rates were nearly identical between ...

  2. Birds and dolphins flock to turn basin in feeding frenzy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2000-01-01

    A dolphin glides through the water looking for fish in the turn basin, which is located east of the Vehicle Assembly Building and next to the crawlerway. Dolphins inhabit the waters, known as the Indian River Lagoon, around Kennedy Space Center, along with many different species of oceanic and lagoon fish and shellfish. Mosquito Lagoon to the north, Banana River and Creek to the south and the Indian River to the west make up a special type of estuary called a lagoon, a body of water separated from the ocean by barrier islands, with limited exchange with the ocean through inlets. The Indian River Lagoon has one of the most diverse bird populations anywhere in America. Also, nearly one-third of the nation's manatee population lives here or migrates through the lagoon seasonally. The lagoon varies in width from .5 mile to 5 miles and averages only 3 feet in depth.

  3. Simulations of dolphin kick swimming using smoothed particle hydrodynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Raymond C Z; Cleary, Paul W; Mason, Bruce R

    2012-06-01

    In competitive human swimming the submerged dolphin kick stroke (underwater undulatory swimming) is utilized after dives and turns. The optimal dolphin kick has a balance between minimizing drag and maximizing thrust while also minimizing the physical exertion required of the swimmer. In this study laser scans of athletes are used to provide realistic swimmer geometries in a single anatomical pose. These are rigged and animated to closely match side-on video footage. Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics (SPH) fluid simulations are performed to evaluate variants of this swimming stroke technique. This computational approach provides full temporal and spatial information about the flow moving around the deforming swimmer model. The effects of changes in ankle flexibility and stroke frequency are investigated through a parametric study. The results suggest that the net streamwise force on the swimmer is relatively insensitive to ankle flexibility but is strongly dependent on kick frequency. PMID:21840077

  4. Propulsive efficiency of the underwater dolphin kick in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Loebbecke, Alfred; Mittal, Rajat; Fish, Frank; Mark, Russell

    2009-05-01

    Three-dimensional fully unsteady computational fluid dynamic simulations of five Olympic-level swimmers performing the underwater dolphin kick are used to estimate the swimmer's propulsive efficiencies. These estimates are compared with those of a cetacean performing the dolphin kick. The geometries of the swimmers and the cetacean are based on laser and CT scans, respectively, and the stroke kinematics is based on underwater video footage. The simulations indicate that the propulsive efficiency for human swimmers varies over a relatively wide range from about 11% to 29%. The efficiency of the cetacean is found to be about 56%, which is significantly higher than the human swimmers. The computed efficiency is found not to correlate with either the slender body theory or with the Strouhal number. PMID:19388788

  5. STRATEGI KOMUNIKASI PEMASARAN EKOWISATA PADA DESTINASI WISATA DOLPHIN HUNTING LOVINA

    OpenAIRE

    Ni Luh Putu Agustini Karta; I Ketut Putra Suarthana

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this research is to find the right marketing communications strategy for Ecotourism’s Destinations, (Dolphin Hunting Lovina), to be sustainable. Design methodology used is a marketing communication approach by adopting the concept of basic elements of the theory of marketing communication, the shift towards integrated marketing approach marketing communications, and public organizational challenges in creating brand awareness. Qualitative research and in-depth interviews carrie...

  6. Habitat use by a freshwater dolphin in the low-water season

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braulik, Gill T.; Reichert, Albert P.; Ehsan, Tahir; Khan, Samiullah; Northridge, Simon P.; Alexander, Jason S.; Garstang, Richard

    2012-01-01

    1. Many river dolphin populations are most vulnerable during the low-water season when habitat is limited. Indus River dolphin habitat selection in the dry season was investigated using Generalized Linear Models of dolphin distribution and abundance in relation to physical features of river geomorphology and channel geometry in cross-section. 2. Dolphins selected locations in the river with significantly greater mean depth, maximum depth, cross-sectional area, and hydraulic radius, and significantly narrower river width and a lower degree of braiding than areas where dolphins were absent. They were also recorded with higher frequency at river constrictions and at confluences. 3. Channel cross-sectional area was the most important factor affecting dolphin presence and abundance, with the area of water below 1 m in depth exerting the greatest influence. Indus dolphins avoided channels with small cross-sectional area (2), presumably owing to the risk of entrapment and reduced foraging opportunities. 4. Channel geometry had a greater ability to explain dolphin distribution than river geomorphology; however, both analyses indicated similar types of habitat selection. The dolphin–habitat relationships identified in the river geomorphology analysis were scale-dependent, indicating that dolphin distribution is driven by the occurrence of discrete small-scale features, such as confluences and constrictions, as well as by broader-scale habitat complexes. 5. There are numerous plans to impound or extract more water from the Indus River system. If low-water season flows are allowed to decrease further, the amount of deeper habitat will decline, there may be insufficient patches of suitable habitat to support the dolphin population through the low-water season, and dolphins may become isolated within deeper river sections, unable or unwilling to traverse through shallows between favourable patches of habitat.

  7. Stomach Content of a Juvenile Bolivian River Dolphin (Inia geoffrensis boliviensis) from the Upper Madeira Basin, Bolivia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aliaga-Rossel, E.; Beerman, A.S.; Sarmiento, J.

    2010-01-01

    The article presents a study about the stomach content of a juvenile Bolivian river dolphin (Inia geoffrensis boliviensis), an endemic subspecies of the Amazon River dolphin, found in the upper Madeira River basin in Bolivia. The study finds that the stomach of Bolivian river dolphin contained a mix

  8. 50 CFR 216.92 - Dolphin-safe requirements for tuna harvested in the ETP by large purse seine vessels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 7 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Dolphin-safe requirements for tuna... MAMMALS REGULATIONS GOVERNING THE TAKING AND IMPORTING OF MARINE MAMMALS Dolphin Safe Tuna Labeling § 216.92 Dolphin-safe requirements for tuna harvested in the ETP by large purse seine vessels. (a)...

  9. Heart development in the spotted dolphin (Stenella attenuata).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sedmera, David; Misek, Ivan; Klima, Milan; Thompson, Robert P

    2003-08-01

    Marine mammals show many deviations from typical mammalian characteristics due to their high degree of specialization to the aquatic environment. In Cetaceans, some of the features of limbs and dentition resemble very ancestral patterns. In some species, hearts with a clearly bifid apex (a feature normally present during mammalian embryogenesis prior to completion of ventricular septation) have been described. However, there is a scant amount of data regarding heart development in Cetaceans, and it is not clear whether the bifid apex is the rule or the exception. We examined samples from a unique collection of embryonic dolphin specimens macroscopically and histologically to learn more about normal cardiac development in the spotted dolphin. It was found that during the dolphin's 280 days of gestation, the heart completes septation at about 35 days. However, substantial trabecular compaction, which normally occurs in chicks, mice, and humans at around that time period, was delayed until day 60, when coronary circulation became established. At that time, the apex still appeared bifid, similarly to early fetal mouse or rat hearts. By day 80, however, the heart gained a compacted, characteristic shape, with a single apex. It thus appears that the bifid apex in the adult Cetacean heart is probably particular to certain species, and its significance remains unclear. PMID:12845705

  10. Use of immunofluorescence technique in cultured fibroblasts from Mediterranean cetaceans as new "in vitro" tool to investigate effects of environmental contaminants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsili, Letizia; Casini, Silvia; Bucalossi, Daniela; Porcelloni, Serena; Maltese, Silvia; Fossi, Maria Cristina

    2008-07-01

    The aim of the present study was to propose the immunofluorescence technique in cultured fibroblasts from Mediterranean cetaceans as a new "in vitro" tool to explore the susceptibility of these marine mammals to different xenobiotic compounds. The cell lines were cultured from integument biopsies of free-ranging and stranded cetaceans (dead within 12h). Using the indirect immunofluorescence assay, we detected endogenous proteins induced by different contaminants. Here we present the method used for qualitative and quantitative evaluation of cytochromes P450 (CYP1A1 and CYP2B) induced by some POPs (DDTs and PCBs) and emerging contaminants (PBDEs) in fibroblast cell cultures of striped dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba) and bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus). Immunofluorescence was quantified with a specially designed Olympus macro, DetectIntZ. A major result was the possibility of using this "in vitro" assay to quantify induction of endogenous proteins. PMID:18396327

  11. Assessing the Impact of Bycatch on Dolphin Populations: The Case of the Common Dolphin in the Eastern North Atlantic

    OpenAIRE

    Laura Mannocci; Willy Dabin; Emmanuelle Augeraud-Véron; Jean-François Dupuy; Christophe Barbraud; Vincent Ridoux

    2012-01-01

    Fisheries interactions have been implicated in the decline of many marine vertebrates worldwide. In the eastern North Atlantic, at least 1000 common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) are bycaught each year, particularly in pelagic pair-trawls. We have assessed the resulting impact of bycatch on this population using a demographic modeling approach. We relied on a sample of females stranded along the French Atlantic and western Channel coasts. Strandings represent an extensive source of demographic...

  12. Predictive modeling of spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris resting habitat in the main Hawaiian Islands.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lesley H Thorne

    Full Text Available Predictive habitat models can provide critical information that is necessary in many conservation applications. Using Maximum Entropy modeling, we characterized habitat relationships and generated spatial predictions of spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris resting habitat in the main Hawaiian Islands. Spinner dolphins in Hawai'i exhibit predictable daily movements, using inshore bays as resting habitat during daylight hours and foraging in offshore waters at night. There are growing concerns regarding the effects of human activities on spinner dolphins resting in coastal areas. However, the environmental factors that define suitable resting habitat remain unclear and must be assessed and quantified in order to properly address interactions between humans and spinner dolphins. We used a series of dolphin sightings from recent surveys in the main Hawaiian Islands and a suite of environmental variables hypothesized as being important to resting habitat to model spinner dolphin resting habitat. The model performed well in predicting resting habitat and indicated that proximity to deep water foraging areas, depth, the proportion of bays with shallow depths, and rugosity were important predictors of spinner dolphin habitat. Predicted locations of suitable spinner dolphin resting habitat provided in this study indicate areas where future survey efforts should be focused and highlight potential areas of conflict with human activities. This study provides an example of a presence-only habitat model used to inform the management of a species for which patterns of habitat availability are poorly understood.

  13. Dolphin-Assisted Therapy as a Verbal Operant Condition for Children with Autism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terrasi, Renee Marie

    2007-01-01

    This study examined the effects of Dolphin-Assisted Therapy (DAT) as a reinforcer for verbal operant production in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Three children who attended a dolphin therapy program participated in this single subject research study. Baseline data was collected for each child via a video tape provided by parents and…

  14. Mediterranean Fin Whales (Balaenoptera physalus) Threatened by Dolphin MorbilliVirus

    OpenAIRE

    Mazzariol, Sandro; Centelleghe, Cinzia; Beffagna, Giorgia; Povinelli, Michele; Terracciano, Giuliana; Cocumelli, Cristiano; Pintore, Antonio; Denurra, Daniele; Casalone, Cristina; Pautasso, Alessandra; Di Francesco, Cristina Esmeralda; Di Guardo, Giovanni

    2016-01-01

    During 2011–2013, dolphin morbillivirus was molecularly identified in 4 stranded fin whales from the Mediterranean Sea. Nucleoprotein, phosphoprotein, and hemagglutinin gene sequences of the identified strain were highly homologous with those of a morbillivirus that caused a 2006–2007 epidemic in the Mediterranean. Dolphin morbillivirus represents a serious threat for fin whales.

  15. Dolphin-Assisted Therapy for Children with Special Needs: A Pilot Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dilts, Rachel; Trompisch, Norbert; Bergquist, Timothy M.

    2011-01-01

    Dolphin-assisted therapy (DAT), as a part of animal-assisted therapy and complementary and alternative medicine, yields several positive results. This study intended to add to DAT effectiveness research while using a standardized assessment. In the Ukraine, a DAT program called DolphinSwim agreed to take part in research with 37 voluntary…

  16. The spatial context of free-ranging Hawaiian spinner dolphins (Stenella longirostris) producing acoustic signals

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lammers, MO; Schotten, M; Au, WWL

    2006-01-01

    To improve our understanding of how dolphins use acoustic signals in the wild, a three-hydrophone towed array was used to investigate the spatial occurrence of Hawaiian spinner dolphins (Stenella longirostris) relative to each other as they produced whistles, burst pulses, and echolocation clicks. G

  17. Mediterranean Fin Whales (Balaenoptera physalus) Threatened by Dolphin MorbilliVirus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mazzariol, Sandro; Centelleghe, Cinzia; Beffagna, Giorgia; Povinelli, Michele; Terracciano, Giuliana; Cocumelli, Cristiano; Pintore, Antonio; Denurra, Daniele; Casalone, Cristina; Pautasso, Alessandra; Di Francesco, Cristina Esmeralda; Di Guardo, Giovanni

    2016-02-01

    During 2011-2013, dolphin morbillivirus was molecularly identified in 4 stranded fin whales from the Mediterranean Sea. Nucleoprotein, phosphoprotein, and hemagglutinin gene sequences of the identified strain were highly homologous with those of a morbillivirus that caused a 2006-2007 epidemic in the Mediterranean. Dolphin morbillivirus represents a serious threat for fin whales. PMID:26812485

  18. Biosonar, diving and movements of two tagged white-beaked dolphin in Icelandic waters

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, M.H.; Akamatsu, T.; Teilmann, J.;

    2013-01-01

    registered 162 dives. The dolphin dove to a maximum depth of 45 m, which is about the depth of the bay in which the dolphin was swimming. Two basic types of dives were identified; U-shaped and V-shaped dives. The dolphin used more time in U-shaped dives, more clicks and sonar signals with shorter click...... intervals compared to those it used in V-shaped dives. The dolphin was in acoustic contact with other dolphins about five hours after it was released and stayed with these for the rest of the tagging time. Possible foraging attempts were found based on the reduction of click intervals from about 100 ms to 2......-3 ms, which suggests a prey capture attempt. We found 19 punitive prey capture attempts and of these 53 % occurred at the maximum dive depth. This suggests that more than half of the possible prey capture events occurred at or near the sea bed....

  19. Severity of Expert-Identified Behavioural Responses of Humpback Whale, Minke Whale, and Northern Bottlenose Whale to Naval Sonar

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sivle, L.D.; Kvadsheim, P.H.; Cure, C.; Isojunno, S.; Wensveen, P.J.; Lam, F.P.A.; Visser, F.; Kleivane, L.; Tyack, P.L.; Harris, C.M.; Miller, P.J.O.

    2015-01-01

    Controlled exposure experiments using 1 to2 kHz sonar signals were conducted with 11 humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae), one minke whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata), and one northern bottlenose whale (Hyperoodon ampullatus) during three field trials from 2011 to 2013. Ship approaches without

  20. Common dolphin (Delphinus delphis bycatch in New Zealand commercial trawl fisheries.

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    Finlay N Thompson

    Full Text Available Marine mammals are regularly reported as bycatch in commercial and artisanal fisheries, but data are often insufficient to allow assessment of these incidental mortalities. Observer coverage of the mackerel trawl fishery in New Zealand waters between 1995 and 2011 allowed evaluation of common dolphin Delphinus delphis bycatch on the North Island west coast, where this species is the most frequently caught cetacean. Observer data were used to develop a statistical model to estimate total captures and explore covariates related to captures. A two-stage Bayesian hurdle model was used, with a logistic generalised linear model predicting whether any common dolphin captures occurred on a given tow of the net, and a zero-truncated Poisson distribution to estimate the number of dolphin captures, given that there was a capture event. Over the 16-year study period, there were 119 common dolphin captures reported on 4299 observed tows. Capture events frequently involved more than one individual, with a maximum of nine common dolphin observed caught in a single tow. There was a peak of 141 estimated common dolphin captures (95% c.i.: 56 to 276; 6.27 captures per 100 tows in 2002-03, following the marked expansion in annual effort in this fishery to over 2000 tows. Subsequently, the number of captures fluctuated although fishing effort remained relatively high. Of the observed capture events, 60% were during trawls where the top of the net (headline was <40 m below the surface, and the model determined that this covariate best explained common dolphin captures. Increasing headline depth by 21 m would halve the probability of a dolphin capture event on a tow. While lack of abundance data prevents assessment of the impact of these mortalities on the local common dolphin population, a clear recommendation from this study is the increasing of headline depth to reduce common dolphin captures.