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Sample records for dolphin lagenorhynchus albirostris

  1. Is dolphin morbillivirus virulent for white-beaked dolphins (Lagenorhynchus albirostris)?

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Elk, C E; van de Bildt, M W G; Jauniaux, T; Hiemstra, S; van Run, P R W A; Foster, G; Meerbeek, J; Osterhaus, A D M E; Kuiken, T

    2014-11-01

    The virulence of morbilliviruses for toothed whales (odontocetes) appears to differ according to host species. In 4 species of odontocetes, morbilliviruses are highly virulent, causing large-scale epizootics with high mortality. In 8 other species of odontocetes, including white-beaked dolphins (Lagenorhynchus albirostris), morbilliviruses have been found as an incidental infection. In these species, the virulence of morbilliviruses is not clear. Therefore, the admission of 2 white-beaked dolphins with morbillivirus infection into a rehabilitation center provided a unique opportunity to investigate the virulence of morbillivirus in this species. By phylogenetic analysis, the morbilliviruses in both animals were identified as a dolphin morbillivirus (DMV) most closely related to that detected in a white-beaked dolphin in Germany in 2007. Both animals were examined clinically and pathologically. Case No. 1 had a chronic neural DMV infection, characterized by polioencephalitis in the cerebrum and morbillivirus antigen expression limited to neurons and glial cells. Surprisingly, no nervous signs were observed in this animal during the 6 months before death. Case No. 2 had a subacute systemic DMV infection, characterized by interstitial pneumonia, leucopenia, lymphoid depletion, and DMV antigen expression in mononuclear cells and syncytia in the lung and in mononuclear cells in multiple lymphoid organs. Cause of death was not attributed to DMV infection in either animal. DMV was not detected in 2 contemporaneously stranded white-beaked dolphins. Stranding rate did not increase in the region. These results suggest that DMV is not highly virulent for white-beaked dolphins.

  2. Bilateral Directional Asymmetry of the Appendicular Skeleton of the White-Beaked Dolphin (Lagenorhynchus albirostris)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Galatius, Anders

    2006-01-01

    Bilateral directional asymmetry of the lengths and diameters of the scapula, humerus, radius, and ulna were analyzed on a sample of 38 white-beaked dolphins (Lagenorhynchus albirostris) from Danish waters. The levels of asymmetry were consistent between the sexes and between physically mature...... of lateralized use of the flippers in the white-beaked dolphin and possibly other delphinid and cetacean species. Although some evidence exists for flipper preference in the baleen humpback whale (Megaptera novaengliae) and turning preferences in other species, this needs to be confirmed through further...

  3. Occurrence of vertebral osteophytosis in a museum sample of white-beaked dolphins (Lagenorhynchus albirostris) from Danish waters

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Galatius, Anders; Sonne, Christian; Kinze, Carl Christian

    2009-01-01

    The occurrence of pathologic new bone formation in the vertebral column was studied in 46 skeletons of the white-beaked dolphin (Lagenorhynchus albirostris) stranded in Denmark between 1903 and 2002 and held in the collections of the Zoological Museum, University of Copenhagen. New bone formation...

  4. On the occurrence of spondylosis deformans in white-beaked dolphins Lagenorhynchus albirostris (Gray, 1846) stranded on the Dutch coast

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kompanje, E.J.O.

    1995-01-01

    Fourty-three skeletons of Lagenorhynchus albirostris were examined for the occurrence of pathological changes in the vertebral column. In comparison, 83 skeletons of Phocoena phocoena and 18 of Tursiops truncatus were studied. The pathogenesis of spondylosis deformans is discussed.

  5. Is Dolphin Morbillivirus Virulent for White-Beaked Dolphins (Lagenorhynchus albirostris)?

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    van Elk, C. E; van de Bildt, M. W. G; Jauniaux, T; Hiemstra, S; van Run, P. R. W. A; Foster, G; Meerbeek, J; Osterhaus, A. D. M. E; Kuiken, T

    2014-01-01

    .... Therefore, the admission of 2 white-beaked dolphins with morbillivirus infection into a rehabilitation center provided a unique opportunity to investigate the virulence of morbillivirus in this species...

  6. Behavioral Responses by Icelandic White-Beaked Dolphins (Lagenorhynchus albirostris) to Playback Sounds

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Marianne; Atem, Ana; Miller, Lee A.

    2016-01-01

    warn of using sounds to determine hearing thresholds of wild marine mammals since their auditory sensitivity is so acute they could possibly react to distortions of the test signal and not to the intended frequency. These results clearly show, like those of earlier studies, that sounds can induce...... a response and a change in the natural behavior of a marine mammal—in this case, wild white-beaked dolphins....

  7. Fishing for food : feeding ecology of harbour porpoises Phocoena phocoena and white-beaked dolphins Lagenorhynchus albirostris in Dutch waters

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jansen, O.E.

    2013-01-01

    Harbour porpoises and white-beaked dolphins are the most common small cetaceans in the North Sea and Dutch coastal waters. The distribution and relative abundance of harbour porpoises and white-beaked dolphins from the Dutch coastal waters has changed significantly over the past decades. This thesis

  8. Fishing for food : feeding ecology of harbour porpoises Phocoena phocoena and white-beaked dolphins Lagenorhynchus albirostris in Dutch waters

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jansen, O.E.

    2013-01-01

    Harbour porpoises and white-beaked dolphins are the most common small cetaceans in the North Sea and Dutch coastal waters. The distribution and relative abundance of harbour porpoises and white-beaked dolphins from the Dutch coastal waters has changed significantly over the past decades. This thesis

  9. Reproduction of dusky dolphins, Lagenorhynchus obscurus, from coastal Peru

    OpenAIRE

    1994-01-01

    We examined the reproductive biology of 522 female and 330 male dusky dolphins, Lagenorhynchus obscurus, killed in Peruvian coastal fisheries between 1985 and 1990. Most births occurred in late winter (August, September, and October), although a few newborns were collected as late as February. Growth rate of fetuses was 0.261 cm/day; young were born at a mean length of 91 cm and mass of 9.6 kg. Gestation lasted for 12.9 months, followed by 12.0 months of lactation and a resting period of 3.7 ...

  10. Behavioral responses by Icelandic White-Beaked Dolphins (Lagenorhynchus albirostris) to playback sounds

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Marianne H.; Atem, Ana; Miller, Lee A.

    2016-01-01

    ) circling the array, (2) turning around and approaching the camera, (3)underwater tail slapping, (4)emitting bubbles, (5)turning their belly towards the set-up, (6) emitting pulse-bursts towards the loudspeaker, (7) an increase in swim speed, (8) a change in swim direction, and (9) jumping. A total of 157...

  11. Pathology in skeletons of Peale's dolphin Lagenorhynchus australis from southern South America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    San Martín, Analía A; Macnie, Silvina V; Goodall, R Natalie P; Boy, Claudia C

    2016-06-15

    Peale's dolphin Lagenorhynchus australis is frequently seen off the coast of southern South America, where it feeds among coastal kelp beds and occasionally strands. We searched for macroscopic evidence of skeletal lesions in 78 specimens of Peale's dolphin from 2 museum collections, which contain almost all of the species' skeletons known in collections worldwide. Thirty-two specimens (41%) had some type of osteological abnormalities. In 21 cases (66%), congenital deformations were the most predominant abnormality found. Acquired lesions included (1) induced trauma: abnormal curvature (n=5 specimens) and fractures (n=2); (2) infectious diseases: spondylo-osteomyelitis (n=3); and (3) degenerative diseases: exostoses (n=8) and spondylosis deformans (n=4). It is noteworthy that all of these animals died incidentally in gillnet entanglement and were presumably healthy at the time of death. The effect that different osseous lesions may have on an animal's quality of life may depend on the area of the spine affected and the number of vertebrae involved.

  12. Behavioural responses of dusky dolphin groups (Lagenorhynchus obscurus to tour vessels off Kaikoura, New Zealand.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Lundquist

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Commercial viewing and swimming with dusky dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obscurus near Kaikoura, New Zealand began in the late 1980s and researchers have previously described changes in vocalisation, aerial behaviour, and group spacing in the presence of vessels. This study was conducted to assess the current effects that tourism has on the activity budget of dusky dolphins to provide wildlife managers with information for current decision-making and facilitate development of quantitative criteria for management of this industry in the future. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: First-order time discrete Markov chain models were used to assess changes in the behavioural state of dusky dolphin pods targeted by tour vessels. Log-linear analysis was conducted on behavioural state transitions to determine whether the likelihood of dolphins moving from one behavioural state to another changed based on natural and anthropogenic factors. The best-fitting model determined by Akaike Information Criteria values included season, time of day, and vessel presence within 300 m. Interactions with vessels reduced the proportion of time dolphins spent resting in spring and summer and increased time spent milling in all seasons except autumn. Dolphins spent more time socialising in spring and summer, when conception occurs and calves are born, and the proportion of time spent resting was highest in summer. Resting decreased and traveling increased in the afternoon. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Responses to tour vessel traffic are similar to those described for dusky dolphins elsewhere. Disturbance linked to vessels may interrupt social interactions, carry energetic costs, or otherwise affect individual fitness. Research is needed to determine if increased milling is a result of acoustic masking of communication due to vessel noise, and to establish levels at which changes to behavioural budgets of dusky dolphins are likely to cause long-term harm. Threshold

  13. Effect of breath-hold on blood gas analysis in captive Pacific white-sided dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terasawa, Fumio; Ohizumi, Hiroshi; Ohshita, Isao

    2010-09-01

    The effect of a breath-hold on blood gas was evaluated in captive Pacific white-sided dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens). Serial blood collections were performed from a vessel on the ventral surface of the flukes during breath-hold. In total, 178 blood samples were taken from three dolphins for five trials in each animal. During a breath-hold, partial pressure of oxygen (Po₂) decreased from 152.5 to 21.8 mmHg and partial pressure of carbon dioxide (Po₂) conversely increased from 31.8 to 83.6 mmHg. The range of pH was 7.54 to 7.25, suggesting drastic change from alkalemia to acidemia. These wide ranges of blood gas imply a considerable change of oxygen affinity caused by the Bohr effect during breath-hold, which enable effective uptake and distribution of oxygen to metabolizing tissues.

  14. Occurrence of vertebral osteophytosis in a museum sample of white-beaked dolphins (Lagenorhynchus albirostris) from Danish waters

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Galatius, Anders; Sonne, Christian; Kinze, Carl Christian

    2009-01-01

    was evident in 18 (72%) of 25 physically mature specimens and in one of 21 physically immature specimens. This pattern of occurrence is consistent with spondylosis deformans, which is caused by degeneration of the intervertebral disk. In general, females seemed to be more susceptible, exhibiting a higher...... formation leading to blocks of fused vertebrae had not necessarily impaired the body condition of afflicted specimens. However, age determinations conducted on the sample revealed that none of the most severe cases occurred among the oldest animals, implying that these severe cases may cause premature...

  15. Helicobacter cetorum infection in striped dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba), Atlantic white-sided dolphin (Lagenorhynchus acutus), and short-beaked common dolphin (Delphinus delphus) from the southwest coast of England.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davison, Nicholas J; Barnett, James E F; Koylass, Mark; Whatmore, Adrian M; Perkins, Matthew W; Deaville, Robert C; Jepson, Paul D

    2014-07-01

    Helicobacter infection in cetaceans was first reported from the US in 2000 when the isolation of a novel Helicobacter species was described from two Atlantic white-sided dolphins (Lagenorhynchus acutus). Since then, Helicobacter species have been demonstrated in cetaceans and pinnipeds from around the world. Since 1990, the Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency Polwhele, Truro, has been involved in the UK Cetacean Strandings Investigation Programme to establish the cause of death of cetacean species stranded along the coast of Cornwall, England. We describe the isolation of Helicobacter cetorum in a striped dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba) and evidence of H. cetorum infection in cetaceans from European waters.

  16. Saksenaea vasiformis and Apophysomyces elegans zygomycotic infections in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), a killer whale (Orcinus orca), and pacific white-sided dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robeck, T R; Dalton, L M

    2002-12-01

    During a 10-yr period, a killer whale (Orcinus orca), two Pacific white-sided dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens), and two bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), all housed at SeaWorld of Texas from 1991 to 2001, were infected with fungi from the class Zygomycetes. In four out of five cases, the fungi were identified as either Saksenaea vasiformis or Apophysomyces elegans. All fungi in the class Zygomycetes aggressively invade the vascular system. Death occurred within 23 days after the initial clinical signs. The primary site of infection involved the s.c. tissue and skeletal musculature. In one case, infection originated in the placenta and uterus of a periparturient animal. All cases exhibited systemic spread of the organisms, including two to the central nervous system. The fifth and most recent case, a bottlenose dolphin, was treated with liposomal nystatin, an antifungal formulation with reduced nephrotoxicity. This animal initially responded to therapy; however, 14 days after cessation of therapy, fungal growth reoccurred. Thus, the animal was euthanatized 39 days after the initial clinical signs. This drug represents a promising treatment option if combined with early disease detection and aggressive tissue resection.

  17. Records of Dusky Dolphins, Lagenorhynchus obscurus (Gray, 1828) in the eastern South Pacific

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Waerebeek, van Koen

    1992-01-01

    Fourty-seven authenticated locality records of the dusky dolphin along the west coast of South America are presented, based on original data, museum specimens and the literature. Confirmed distribution limits are Chimbote (09°05’S) in north—central Peru and Isla Treble (55°07’S 71°02’W), Magallanes,

  18. Lectin binding pattern of gastric mucosa of pacific white-sided dolphin, Lagenorhynchus obliquidens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimokawa, Tetsuya; Doihara, Takuya; Makara, Manami; Miyawaki, Kyoji; Nabeka, Hiroaki; Wakisaka, Hiroyuki; Kobayashi, Naoto; Matsuda, Seiji

    2012-02-01

    The stomach of the Pacific white-sided dolphin is divided into three parts: forestomach, proper gastric gland portion, and pyloric chamber. The histological features of the dolphin stomach are similar to those of terrestrial mammal stomachs, although the distribution of glycoconjugates in mucosal cells of the dolphin stomach is unknown. To learn about glycoconjugates in cetacean gastric mucosa, the glycoconjugate distribution in the mucous epithelium of the Pacific white-sided dolphin was studied using 21 lectins. Among the lectins tested, GSL-I and DBA specifically labelled the superficial layer of the forestomach epithelium. GSL-I, SBA, RCA-I, VVA, GSL-II, DSL, LEL, STL, s-WGA, WGA, PNA, and Jacalin labelled the luminal surface of the chief cells in the proper gastric gland. GSL-I, SBA, RCA-I, DSL, LEL, STL, s-WGA, PNA, and LCA labelled tubular structures in the cytoplasm of parietal cells. The surface portion of the pits in the pyloric chamber strongly reacted with RCA-I, GSL-II, WGA, PNA, LCA, PHA-L, and UEA-I, whereas the neck portion reacted weakly. Although lining one tubular portion, individual secretory cells in the pyloric gland displayed a heterogeneous reaction. This is the first report on the lectin histochemistry of a cetacean stomach and reveals GSL-I and DBA as specific marker lectins for the cornified stratified squamous epithelium cells of the Pacific white-sided dolphin. The stomachs of cetaceans and terrestrial mammals have similar histological features and mucous glycoconjugate content.

  19. Phylogeography and population dynamics of the white-sided dolphin (Lagenorhynchus acutus) in the North Atlantic

    KAUST Repository

    Banguera-Hinestroza, E.

    2014-02-27

    Highly mobile species in the marine environment may be expected to show little differentiation at the population level, but this is often not the case. Instead cryptic population structure is common, and effective conservation will require an understanding of how these patterns evolve. Here we present an assessment from both sides of the North Atlantic of differentiation among populations of a dolphin species that inhabits mainly pelagic waters, the Atlantic white-sided dolphin. We compare eleven putative populations in the western and eastern North Atlantic at mtDNA and microsatellite DNA loci and find reduced nucleotide diversity and signals for historical bottlenecks and post-bottleneck expansions in all regions. We calculate expansion times to have occurred during the early Holocene, following the last glacial maximum (LGM). We find evidence for connectivity among populations from either side of the North Atlantic, and differentiation between putative populations in the far northeast compared with all other areas sampled. Some data suggest the possibility of separate refugia during the LGM explaining this pattern, although ongoing ecological processes may also be a factor. We discuss the implications for developing effective programs of conservation and management in the context of ongoing anthropogenic impact. © 2014 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht.

  20. Multi-locus phylogeography of the dusky dolphin (Lagenorhynchus obscurus: passive dispersal via the west-wind drift or response to prey species and climate change?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Würsig Bernd

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The dusky dolphin (Lagenorhynchus obscurus is distributed along temperate, coastal regions of New Zealand, South Africa, Argentina, and Peru where it feeds on schooling anchovy, sardines, and other small fishes and squid tightly associated with temperate ocean sea surface temperatures. Previous studies have suggested that the dusky dolphin dispersed in the Southern Hemisphere eastward from Peru via a linear, temperate dispersal corridor provided by the circumpolar west-wind drift. With new mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequence data, we propose an alternative phylogeographic history for the dusky dolphin that was structured by paleoceanographic conditions that repeatedly altered the distribution of its temperate prey species during the Plio-Pleistocene. Results In contrast to the west-wind drift hypothesis, phylogenetic analyses support a Pacific/Indian Ocean origin, with a relatively early and continued isolation of Peru from other regions. Dispersal of the dusky dolphin into the Atlantic is correlated with the history of anchovy populations, including multiple migrations from New Zealand to South Africa. Additionally, the cooling of the Eastern Equatorial Pacific led to the divergence of anchovy populations, which in turn explains the north-south equatorial transgression of L. obliquidens and the subsequent divergence of L. obscurus in the Southern Hemisphere. Conclusion Overall, our study fails to support the west-wind drift hypothesis. Instead, our data indicate that changes in primary productivity and related abundance of prey played a key role in shaping the phylogeography of the dusky dolphin, with periods of ocean change coincident with important events in the history of this temperate dolphin species. Moderate, short-term changes in sea surface temperatures and current systems have a powerful effect on anchovy populations; thus, it is not infeasible that repeated fluctuations in anchovy populations continue to play

  1. 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.

  2. Biosonar, diving and movements of two tagged white-beaked dolphin in Icelandic waters

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Marianne H.; Akamatsu, Tomonari; Teilmann, Jonas

    2013-01-01

    For the first time bio-logging tags were attached to free-ranging white-beaked dolphins, Lagenorhynchus albirostris. A satellite tag was attached to one animal while an acoustic A-tag, a time-depth recorder and a VHF transmitter complex was attached to a second dolphin with a suction cup....... The satellite tag transmitted for 201 days, during which time the dolphin stayed in the coastal waters of western Iceland. The acoustic tag complex was on the second animal for 13 hours and 40 minutes and provided the first insight in echolocation behaviour of a free-ranging white-beaked dolphin. The tag...... 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...

  3. White-beaked dolphins trapped in the ice and eaten by polar bears

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jon Aars

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Polar bears (Ursus maritimus depend on sea ice, where they hunt ice-associated seals. However, they are opportunistic predators and scavengers with a long list of known prey species. Here we report from a small fjord in Svalbard, Norwegian High Arctic, a sighting of an adult male polar bear preying on two white-beaked dolphins (Lagenorhynchus albirostris on 23 April 2014. This is the first record of this species as polar bear prey. White-beaked dolphins are frequent visitors to Svalbard waters in summer, but have not previously been reported this far north in early spring. We suggest they were trapped in the ice after strong northerly winds the days before, and possibly killed when forced to surface for air at a small opening in the ice. The bear had consumed most parts of one dolphin. When observed he was in the process of covering the mostly intact second dolphin with snow. Such caching behaviour is generally considered untypical of polar bears. During the following ice-free summer and autumn, at least seven different white-beaked dolphin carcasses were observed in or near the same area. We suggest, based on the area and the degree to which these dolphins had decayed, that they were likely from the same pod and also suffered death due to entrapment in the ice in April. At least six different polar bears were seen scavenging on the carcasses.

  4. Delphinid systematics and biogeography with a focus on the current genus Lagenorhynchus: Multiple pathways for antitropical and trans-oceanic radiation

    KAUST Repository

    Banguera Hinestroza, Eulalia

    2014-11-01

    The six species currently classified within the genus Lagenorhynchus exhibit a pattern of antitropical distribution common among marine taxa. In spite of their morphological similarities they are now considered an artificial grouping, and include both recent and the oldest representatives of the Delphinidae radiation. They are, therefore, a good model for studying questions about the evolutionary processes that have driven dolphin speciation, dispersion and distribution. Here we used two different approaches. First we constructed a multigenic phylogeny with a minimum amount of missing data (based on 9 genes, 11,030 bp, using the 6 species of the genus and their closest relatives) to infer their relationships. Second, we built a supermatrix phylogeny (based on 33 species and 27 genes) to test the effect of taxon sampling on the phylogeny of the genus, to provide inference on biogeographic history, and provide inference on the main events shaping the dispersion and radiation of delphinids. Our analyses suggested an early evolutionary history of marine dolphins in the North Atlantic Ocean and revealed multiple pathways of migration and radiation, probably guided by paleoceanographic changes during the Miocene and Pliocene. L. acutus and L albirostris likely shared a common ancestor that arose in the North Atlantic around the Middle Miocene, predating the radiation of subfamilies Delphininae, Globicephalinae and Lissodelphininae. (C) 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. A genomewide catalogue of single nucleotide polymorphisms in white-beaked and Atlantic white-sided dolphins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fernández, R.; Schubert, M.; Vargas-Velázquez, A. M.

    2015-01-01

    -beaked (Lagenorhynchus albirostris) and 43 Atlantic white-sided dolphins (L. acutus) gathered throughout their north-east Atlantic distribution range. Both species are at a high risk of being negatively affected by climate change. Here, we provide a resource of 38 240 RAD-tags and 52 981 nuclear SNPs shared between both...... species. We have estimated overall higher levels of nucleotide diversity in white-sided (π = 0.0492 ± 0.0006%) than in white-beaked dolphins (π = 0.0300 ± 0.0004%). White-sided dolphins sampled in the Faroe Islands, belonging to two pods (N = 7 and N = 11), showed similar levels of diversity (π = 0...... of genetic clusters among our sample set, we obtained an estimate of two to four clusters, corresponding to both species and possibly, two further clusters within each species. A higher diversity and lower population structuring was encountered in white-sided dolphins from the north-east Atlantic, in line...

  6. Vertebral column deformities in white-beaked dolphins from the eastern North Atlantic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertulli, Chiara G; Galatius, Anders; Kinze, Carl C; Rasmussen, Marianne H; Deaville, Rob; Jepson, Paul; Vedder, Elisabeth J; Sánchez Contreras, Guillermo J; Sabin, Richard C; Watson, Alastair

    2015-09-17

    Five white-beaked dolphins Lagenorhynchus albirostris with outwardly vertebral kyphosis, kyphoscoliosis or lordosis were identified during a photo-identification survey of over 400 individuals (2002-2013) in Faxaflói and Skjálfandi Bays, Iceland. In addition, 3 stranding reports from Denmark, The Netherlands and the UK were analysed, providing both external observation and post mortem details of axial deviations of the vertebral column in this species. Two of the free-ranging cases and 2 of the stranded specimens appeared to have an acquired disease, either as a direct result of trauma, or indirectly from trauma/wound and subsequent infection and bony proliferation, although we were unable to specifically identify the causes. Our data represent a starting point to understand vertebral column deformations and their implications in white-beaked dolphins from the eastern North Atlantic. We recommend for future necropsy cases to conduct macro- and microscopic evaluation of muscle from both sides of the deformed region, in order to assess chronic or acute conditions related to the vertebral deformations and cause of death.

  7. Feeding at a high pitch: Source parameters of narrow band,high-frequency clicks from echolocating off-shore hourglassdolphins and coastal Hector's dolphins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kyhn, Line Anker; Tougaard, Jakob; Jensen, Frants Havmand

    2009-01-01

    (Lagenorhynchus cruciger) and Hector's dolphins (Cephalorhynchus hectori ) were made in the Drake Passage between Tierra del Fuego and the Antarctic Peninsular and Banks Peninsular Akaroa Harbour, New Zealand with a four element hydrophone array. Analysis of source parameters shows that both species produce...

  8. Effects of tour boats on dolphin activity examined with sensitivity analysis of Markov chains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dans, Silvana Laura; Degrati, Mariana; Pedraza, Susana Noemí; Crespo, Enrique Alberto

    2012-08-01

    In Patagonia, Argentina, watching dolphins, especially dusky dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obscurus), is a new tourist activity. Feeding time decreases and time to return to feeding after feeding is abandoned and time it takes a group of dolphins to feed increase in the presence of boats. Such effects on feeding behavior may exert energetic costs on dolphins and thus reduce an individual's survival and reproductive capacity or maybe associated with shifts in distribution. We sought to predict which behavioral changes modify the activity pattern of dolphins the most. We modeled behavioral sequences of dusky dolphins with Markov chains. We calculated transition probabilities from one activity to another and arranged them in a stochastic matrix model. The proportion of time dolphins dedicated to a given activity (activity budget) and the time it took a dolphin to resume that activity after it had been abandoned (recurrence time) were calculated. We used a sensitivity analysis of Markov chains to calculate the sensitivity of the time budget and the activity-resumption time to changes in behavioral transition probabilities. Feeding-time budget was most sensitive to changes in the probability of dolphins switching from traveling to feeding behavior and of maintaining feeding behavior. Thus, an increase in these probabilities would be associated with the largest reduction in the time dedicated to feeding. A reduction in the probability of changing from traveling to feeding would also be associated with the largest increases in the time it takes dolphins to resume feeding. To approach dolphins when they are traveling would not affect behavior less because presence of the boat may keep dolphins from returning to feeding. Our results may help operators of dolphin-watching vessels minimize negative effects on dolphins.

  9. Spatial Models of Abundance and Habitat Preferences of Commerson’s and Peale’s Dolphin in Southern Patagonian Waters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dellabianca, Natalia A.; Pierce, Graham J.; Raya Rey, Andrea; Scioscia, Gabriela; Miller, David L.; Torres, Mónica A.; Paso Viola, M. Natalia; Schiavini, Adrián C. M.

    2016-01-01

    Commerson’s dolphins (Cephalorhynchus c. commersonii) and Peale’s dolphins (Lagenorhynchus australis) are two of the most common species of cetaceans in the coastal waters of southwest South Atlantic Ocean. Both species are listed as Data Deficient by the IUCN, mainly due to the lack of information about population sizes and trends. The goal of this study was to build spatially explicit models for the abundance of both species in relation to environmental variables using data collected during eight scientific cruises along the Patagonian shelf. Spatial models were constructed using generalized additive models. In total, 88 schools (212 individuals) of Commerson’s dolphin and 134 schools (465 individuals) of Peale’s dolphin were recorded in 8,535 km surveyed. Commerson’s dolphin was found less than 60 km from shore; whereas Peale’s dolphins occurred over a wider range of distances from the coast, the number of animals sighted usually being larger near or far from the coast. Fitted models indicate overall abundances of approximately 22,000 Commerson’s dolphins and 20,000 Peale’s dolphins in the total area studied. This work provides the first large-scale abundance estimate for Peale’s dolphin in the Atlantic Ocean and an update of population size for Commerson’s dolphin. Additionally, our results contribute to baseline data on suitable habitat conditions for both species in southern Patagonia, which is essential for the implementation of adequate conservation measures. PMID:27783627

  10. Dolphin underwater bait-balling behaviors in relation to group and prey ball sizes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaughn-Hirshorn, Robin L; Muzi, Elisa; Richardson, Jessica L; Fox, Gabriella J; Hansen, Lauren N; Salley, Alyce M; Dudzinski, Kathleen M; Würsig, Bernd

    2013-09-01

    We characterized dusky dolphin (Lagenorhynchus obscurus) feeding behaviors recorded on underwater video, and related behaviors to variation in prey ball sizes, dolphin group sizes, and study site (Argentina versus New Zealand, NZ). Herding behaviors most often involved dolphins swimming around the side or under prey balls, but dolphins in Argentina more often swam under prey balls (48% of passes) than did dolphins in NZ (34% of passes). This result may have been due to differences in group sizes between sites, since groups are larger in Argentina. Additionally, in NZ, group size was positively correlated with proportion of passes that occurred under prey balls (pdolphins in Argentina more often swam through prey balls (8% of attempts) than did dolphins in NZ (4% of attempts). This result may have been due to differences in prey ball sizes between sites, since dolphins fed on larger prey balls in Argentina (>74m(2)) than in NZ (maximum 33m(2)). Additionally, in NZ, dolphins were more likely to swim through prey balls to capture fish when they fed on larger prey balls (p=0.025).

  11. Environmental Niche Overlap between Common and Dusky Dolphins in North Patagonia, Argentina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Svendsen, Guillermo Martín; Romero, María Alejandra; Williams, Gabriela Noemí; Gagliardini, Domingo Antonio; Crespo, Enrique Alberto; Dans, Silvana Laura; González, Raúl Alberto

    2015-01-01

    Research on the ecology of sympatric dolphins has increased worldwide in recent decades. However, many dolphin associations such as that between common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) and dusky dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obscurus) are poorly understood. The present study was conducted in the San Matías Gulf (SMG) ecosystem (North Patagonia, Argentina) where a high diet overlap among both species was found. The main objective of the present work was to explore the niche overlap of common and dusky dolphins in the habitat and temporal dimensions. The specific aims were (a) to evaluate the habitat use strategies of both species through a comparison of their group attributes (social composition, size and activity), and (b) to evaluate their habitat preferences and habitat overlap through Environmental Niche modeling considering two oceanographic seasons. To accomplish these aims, we used a historic database of opportunistic and systematic records collected from 1983 to 2011. Common and dusky dolphins exhibited similar patterns of group size (from less than 10 to more than 100 individuals), activity (both species use the area to feed, nurse, and copulate), and composition (adults, juveniles, and mothers with calves were observed for both species). Also, both species were observed travelling and feeding in mixed-species groups. Specific overlap indices were higher for common dolphins than for dusky dolphins, but all indices were low, suggesting that they are mainly segregated in the habitat dimension. In the case of common dolphins, the best habitats were located in the northwest of the gulf far from the coast. In the warm season they prefer areas with temperate sea surface and in the cold season they prefer areas with relatively high variability of sea surface temperature. Meanwhile, dusky dolphins prefer areas with steep slopes close to the coast in the southwestern sector of the gulf in both seasons. PMID:26091542

  12. Environmental Niche Overlap between Common and Dusky Dolphins in North Patagonia, Argentina.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guillermo Martín Svendsen

    Full Text Available Research on the ecology of sympatric dolphins has increased worldwide in recent decades. However, many dolphin associations such as that between common dolphins (Delphinus delphis and dusky dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obscurus are poorly understood. The present study was conducted in the San Matías Gulf (SMG ecosystem (North Patagonia, Argentina where a high diet overlap among both species was found. The main objective of the present work was to explore the niche overlap of common and dusky dolphins in the habitat and temporal dimensions. The specific aims were (a to evaluate the habitat use strategies of both species through a comparison of their group attributes (social composition, size and activity, and (b to evaluate their habitat preferences and habitat overlap through Environmental Niche modeling considering two oceanographic seasons. To accomplish these aims, we used a historic database of opportunistic and systematic records collected from 1983 to 2011. Common and dusky dolphins exhibited similar patterns of group size (from less than 10 to more than 100 individuals, activity (both species use the area to feed, nurse, and copulate, and composition (adults, juveniles, and mothers with calves were observed for both species. Also, both species were observed travelling and feeding in mixed-species groups. Specific overlap indices were higher for common dolphins than for dusky dolphins, but all indices were low, suggesting that they are mainly segregated in the habitat dimension. In the case of common dolphins, the best habitats were located in the northwest of the gulf far from the coast. In the warm season they prefer areas with temperate sea surface and in the cold season they prefer areas with relatively high variability of sea surface temperature. Meanwhile, dusky dolphins prefer areas with steep slopes close to the coast in the southwestern sector of the gulf in both seasons.

  13. 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

    An increasing number of smaller odontocetes have recently been shown to produce stereotyped narrow-band high-frequency (NBHF) echolocation clicks. Click source parameters of NBHF clicks are very similar, and it is unclear whether the sonars of individual NBHF species are adapted to specific...

  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. Characterizing dusky dolphin sounds from Argentina and New Zealand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaughn-Hirshorn, Robin L; Hodge, Kristin B; Würsig, Bernd; Sappenfield, Rebecca H; Lammers, Marc O; Dudzinski, Kathleen M

    2012-07-01

    Dusky dolphin (Lagenorhynchus obscurus) acoustic sounds were characterized by analyzing narrowband recordings [0-16 kHz in New Zealand (NZ) and 0-24 kHz in Argentina], and sounds in broadband recordings (0-200 kHz) were compared to their counterparts in down-sampled narrowband recordings (0-16 kHz). The most robust similarity between sounds present in broadband recordings and their counterparts in the down-sampled narrowband recordings was inter-click interval (ICI); ICI was therefore primarily used to characterize click sounds in narrowband recordings. In NZ and Argentina, distribution of ICIs was a continuum, although the distribution of ICIs in NZ had a somewhat bimodal tendency. In NZ, sounds that had smaller mean ICIs were more likely to have constant ICIs, and less likely to have increasing or decreasing ICIs. Similar to some other delphinids, dusky dolphins may use single, short duration sounds that have a constant ICI and closely spaced clicks for communication. No whistles were documented at either study site. Temporally structured sequences of burst pulses (i.e., sounds with ICI < about 10 ms) also occurred at both study sites, and these sequences contained 2-14 burst pulses that appeared closely matched aurally and in spectrograms and waveforms.

  16. 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.

  17. 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…

  18. Why do Dolphins Play?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stan A. Kuczaj

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Play is an important aspect of dolphin life, perhaps even an essential one. Play provides opportunities for dolphin calves to practice and perfect locomotor skills, including those involved in foraging and mating strategies and behaviors. Play also allows dolphin calves to learn important social skills and acquire information about the characteristics and predispositions of members of their social group, particularly their peers. In addition to helping dolphin calves learn how to behave, play also provides valuable opportunities for them to learn how to think. The ability to create and control play contexts enables dolphins to create novel experiences for themselves and their playmates under relatively safe conditions. The behavioral variability and individual creativity that characterize dolphin play yield ample opportunities for individual cognitive development as well as social learning, and sometimes result in innovations that are reproduced by other members of the group. Although adults sometimes produce innovative play, calves are the primary source of such innovations. Calves are also more likely to imitate novel play behaviors than are adults, and so calves contribute significantly to both the creation and transmission of novel play behaviors within a group. Not unexpectedly, then, the complexity of dolphin play increases with the involvement of peers. As a result, the opportunity to observe and/or interact with other dolphin calves enhances the effects of play on the acquisition and maintenance of flexible problem solving skills, the emergence and strengthening of social and communicative competencies, and the establishment of social relationships. It seems that play may have evolved to help young dolphins learn to adapt to novel situations in both their physical and social worlds, the beneficial result being a set of abilities that increases the likelihood that an individual survives and reproduces.

  19. 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…

  20. Dolphin swarm algorithm

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Tian-qi WU; Min YAO; Jian-hua YANG

    2016-01-01

    By adopting the distributed problem-solving strategy, swarm intelligence algorithms have been successfully applied to many optimization problems that are difficult to deal with using traditional methods. At present, there are many well-implemented algorithms, such as particle swarm optimization, genetic algorithm, artificial bee colony algorithm, and ant colony optimization. These algorithms have already shown favorable performances. However, with the objects becoming increasingly complex, it is becoming gradually more difficult for these algorithms to meet human’s demand in terms of accuracy and time. Designing a new algorithm to seek better solutions for optimization problems is becoming increasingly essential. Dolphins have many noteworthy biological characteristics and living habits such as echolocation, information exchanges, cooperation, and division of labor. Combining these biological characteristics and living habits with swarm intelligence and bringing them into optimization prob-lems, we propose a brand new algorithm named the ‘dolphin swarm algorithm’ in this paper. We also provide the definitions of the algorithm and specific descriptions of the four pivotal phases in the algorithm, which are the search phase, call phase, reception phase, and predation phase. Ten benchmark functions with different properties are tested using the dolphin swarm algorithm, particle swarm optimization, genetic algorithm, and artificial bee colony algorithm. The convergence rates and benchmark func-tion results of these four algorithms are compared to testify the effect of the dolphin swarm algorithm. The results show that in most cases, the dolphin swarm algorithm performs better. The dolphin swarm algorithm possesses some great features, such as first-slow-then-fast convergence, periodic convergence, local-optimum-free, and no specific demand on benchmark functions. Moreover, the dolphin swarm algorithm is particularly appropriate to optimization problems, with more

  1. How Dolphins Call

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    马加芬

    2007-01-01

    <正>与人类一样,海豚能通过声音相互称呼"名字"。A high-pitched"wee-o-wee-o-wee-o-wee"whistle might not soundlike much to you,but it6s exactly how a dolphin might introduce itself.Because sight is limited in the ocean,dolphins create individual"name"calls to communicate their whereabouts to friends and families.But it6snot as simple as just recognizing a voice,

  2. 半圈养条件下白唇鹿行为时间分配及活动规律的研究%Time Budget and Behaviour Pattern of Cervus Albirostris in Captivity

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    何利军; 丁由中; 王小明; 夏述忠

    2001-01-01

    From March to April,1998,the authors studied the time budget andbehaviour patterns of Cervus albirostris in Shanghai Wild Animal Park.We analyzed the results from 23 days′observation for different sex and weather were analyzed.Cervus albirostris spent about 50% daytime in resting,and 40% daytime in feeding.Resting behaviour was presented from 8∶00 to 17∶00.The female spent more resting time than the male(p<0.05)in fine days.The female spent less standing time than the male in rainy days(p<0.01).Cervus albirostris spent more standing time in fine days than in rainy days(p<0.05 for the male,p<0.01 for the female).

  3. The Promise of Dolphin-Assisted Therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKinney, Alexis; Dustin, Dan; Wolff, Robert

    2001-01-01

    Describes how people with disabilities can benefit from working and playing in the water with dolphins, focusing on the many positive benefits of dolphin-assisted therapy and discussing several hypotheses about why dolphin-assisted therapy is so effective. The article describes two dolphin-assisted therapy programs and presents contact information…

  4. Can dolphins heal by ultrasound?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brensing, Karsten; Linke, Katrin; Todt, Dietmar

    2003-11-07

    In recent years, dolphin-assisted therapy has become very popular and an increasing number of facilities offer therapy programs with dolphins worldwide. To this date, there are no studies concerning the behavior of dolphins during these therapies. As a result of speculations that the echolocation of dolphins may play an important role for the success of the therapy and the high publicity of this in the media, people pay much more for dolphin-assisted than for other animal-assisted therapy programs. Based on publications in medicine, we will show that ultrasound emitted by dolphins could have an effect on biological tissue under some circumstances; such as sufficient intensity, repeated application over several days or weeks and a certain application duration per session. We recorded 83 sessions at the "Dolphins Plus", a fenced area with ocean water in the Florida Keys. Our observations demonstrate that only one out of five observed dolphins behave significantly differently towards patients compared to other humans and that the duration of the observed close contacts did not meet the requirements for common ultrasound therapies.

  5. 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.

  6. Body and self in dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herman, Louis M

    2012-03-01

    In keeping with recent views of consciousness of self as represented in the body in action, empirical studies are reviewed that demonstrate a bottlenose dolphin's (Tursiops truncatus) conscious awareness of its own body and body parts, implying a representational "body image" system. Additional work reviewed demonstrates an advanced capability of dolphins for motor imitation of self-produced behaviors and of behaviors of others, including imitation of human actions, supporting hypotheses that dolphins have a sense of agency and ownership of their actions and may implicitly attribute those levels of self-awareness to others. Possibly, a mirror-neuron system, or its functional equivalent to that described in monkeys and humans, may mediate both self-awareness and awareness of others.

  7. Sightings of atlantic white-sided dolphins Lagenorhynchus acutus near the south-eastern limit of the known range in the North-East Atlantic

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leopold, M.F.; Couperus, A.S.

    1995-01-01

    Verslag van een aantal waarnemingen van witflankdolfijnen ten westen van Bretagne. Een waarneming van vele honderden van deze dolfijnen op 47 graden 44' noorderbreedte is opvallend, omdat hier ongeveer de zuidgrens van het bekende verspreidingsgebied loopt

  8. 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…

  9. 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.

  10. Dolphin-Assisted Therapy: Claims versus Evidence

    OpenAIRE

    Fiksdal, Britta L.; 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...

  11. 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.

  12. 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。

  13. 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...

  14. 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…

  15. Line transects, environmental data and GIS: Cetacean distribution, habitat and prey selection along the Barents Sea shelf edge

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mette Skern-Mauritzen

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Cetacean observations obtained during sighting surveys for abundance estimation can also be used to investigate cetacean habitat and prey selection, the principal processes underlying cetacean distributions. In this paper, we investigate habitat and prey selection of minke (Balaenoptera acutorostrata, fin (B. physalus and sperm (Physeter macrocephalus whales and Lagenorhynchus (Atlantic white-sided L. acutus and white-beaked L. albirostris dolphins observed along predetermined cruise tracks along the Barents Sea shelf edge in 2000, 2001 and 2002. The observations were combined with simultaneously collected data on habitat (depth, sea surface temperature, and temperature gradients and prey (plankton, 0-group fish, capelin and herring distributions in a GeographicInformation System (GIS to investigate habitat and prey selection. Minke whales were associated with cold waters and herring, and capelin in years with low herring abundance. Fin whales were mainly associated with northern cold and deep waters, as well as capelin, 0-group fish and plankton. Lagenorhynchus dolphins were associated with capelin. Finally, sperm whales were associated with deep waters and 0-group fish. Sperm whales were probably indirectly attracted to 0-group fish through preying on predatory fish such as Sebastes spp. and the squid Gonatus spp. The cetacean species responded differently to annual variation in habitat and prey distributions. Minke and fin whale distributions and abundances remained similar between years within the study area, suggestingthat these species are generalists responding to environmental changes by switching between prey species. Conversely, Lagenorhynchus dolphins shifted northwards, likely due to tracking the shifting capelin distributions. The results are discussed in light of how such cetacean habitat and cetacean prey relationships can be valuable for the proper assessment of population sizes and trends, both through guiding the design of

  16. Environmental impact assessment. Investigation of marine mammals in relation to the establishment of a marine wind farm on Horns Reef

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2000-02-15

    Elsamproject has decided to carry out an environmental impact assessment with the aim to investigate whether the establishment of a marine wind farm on Horns Reef may impact on breeding and non-breeding marine mammals, particularly harbour porpoise Phocoena phocoena and common seal Phoca vitulina. The marine mammals of the northern part of the German Bight can be characterised by a regular occurrence of harbour porpoise and common seal throughout the year, an irregular occurrence of grey seal Halichoerus grypus and white-beaked dolphin Lagenorhynchus albirostris and rare occurrences of white-sided dolphin Lagenorhynchus acutus, minke whale Balaenoptera acutorostrata, sperm whale Physeter macrocephalus, long-finned pilot whale Globicephala melas and killer whale Orcinus orca. The environment impact assessment therefore focuses on the evaluation of the possible effects on harbour porpoise and common seal. The investigation constitutes the first phase of a before-after-control-impact (BACI) analysis of the occurrence of harbour porpoise before, during and after the construction of the wind farm. (au)

  17. Coexistence of fisheries with river dolphin conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelkar, Nachiket; Krishnaswamy, Jagdish; Choudhary, Sunil; Sutaria, Dipani

    2010-08-01

    Freshwater biodiversity conservation is generally perceived to conflict with human use and extraction (e.g., fisheries). Overexploited fisheries upset the balance between local economic needs and endangered species' conservation. We investigated resource competition between fisheries and Ganges river dolphins (Platanista gangetica gangetica) in a human-dominated river system in India to assess the potential for their coexistence. We surveyed a 65-km stretch of the lower Ganga River to assess habitat use by dolphins (encounter rates) and fishing activity (habitat preferences of fishers, intensity of net and boat use). Dolphin abundance in the main channel increased from 179 (SE 7) (mid dry season) to 270 (SE 8) (peak dry season), probably as a result of immigration from upstream tributaries. Dolphins preferred river channels with muddy, rocky substrates, and deep midchannel waters. These areas overlapped considerably with fishing areas. Sites with 2-6 boats/km (moderately fished) were more preferred by dolphins than sites with 8-55 boats/km (heavily fished). Estimated spatial (85%) and prey-resource overlap (75%) between fisheries and dolphins (chiefly predators of small fish) suggests a high level of competition between the two groups. A decrease in abundance of larger fish, indicated by the fact that small fish comprised 74% of the total caught, may have intensified the present competition. Dolphins seem resilient to changes in fish community structure and may persist in overfished rivers. Regulated fishing in dolphin hotspots and maintenance of adequate dry season flows can sustain dolphins in tributaries and reduce competition in the main river. Fish-stock restoration and management, effective monitoring, curbing destructive fishing practices, secure tenure rights, and provision of alternative livelihoods for fishers may help reconcile conservation and local needs in overexploited river systems.

  18. Covert underwater acoustic communication using dolphin sounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Songzuo; Qiao, Gang; Ismail, Asim

    2013-04-01

    In November 2012, an experiment demonstrating biological mimicry method for covert underwater acoustic communication (UAC) was conducted at Lianhua Lake in Heilongjiang China. Dolphin whistles were used for synchronization while dolphin clicks were used as information carrier. The time interval between dolphin clicks conveys the information bits. Channel estimates were obtained with matching pursuit (MP) algorithm, which is useful for sparse channel estimation. Adaptive RAKE Equalization was employed at the receiver. Bit error rates were less than 10(-4) with 37 bits per second data rate in the lake trial.

  19. Culture in whales and dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rendell, L; Whitehead, H

    2001-04-01

    Studies of animal culture have not normally included a consideration of cetaceans. However, with several long-term field studies now maturing, this situation should change. Animal culture is generally studied by either investigating transmission mechanisms experimentally, or observing patterns of behavioural variation in wild populations that cannot be explained by either genetic or environmental factors. Taking this second, ethnographic, approach, there is good evidence for cultural transmission in several cetacean species. However, only the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops) has been shown experimentally to possess sophisticated social learning abilities, including vocal and motor imitation; other species have not been studied. There is observational evidence for imitation and teaching in killer whales. For cetaceans and other large, wide-ranging animals, excessive reliance on experimental data for evidence of culture is not productive; we favour the ethnographic approach. The complex and stable vocal and behavioural cultures of sympatric groups of killer whales (Orcinus orca) appear to have no parallel outside humans, and represent an independent evolution of cultural faculties. The wide movements of cetaceans, the greater variability of the marine environment over large temporal scales relative to that on land, and the stable matrilineal social groups of some species are potentially important factors in the evolution of cetacean culture. There have been suggestions of gene-culture coevolution in cetaceans, and culture may be implicated in some unusual behavioural and life-history traits of whales and dolphins. We hope to stimulate discussion and research on culture in these animals.

  20. Dolphin-Assisted Therapy: Claims versus Evidence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Britta L. Fiksdal

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available 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 methodological concerns making it impossible to draw valid conclusions. Readers will be informed of the history of, theory behind, and variations of dolphin-assisted therapy along with a review and critique of studies published which purportedly support its use.

  1. 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 Florida....

  2. 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 nearshore...

  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

    2012-04-07

    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.

  4. Post-epizootic chronic dolphin morbillivirus infection in Mediterranean striped dolphins Stenella coeruleoalba.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soto, Sara; Alba, Ana; Ganges, Llilianne; Vidal, Enric; Raga, Juan Antonio; Alegre, Ferrán; González, Beatriz; Medina, Pascual; Zorrilla, Irene; Martínez, Jorge; Marco, Alberto; Pérez, Mónica; Pérez, Blanca; Pérez de Vargas Mesas, Ana; Martínez Valverde, Rosa; Domingo, Mariano

    2011-10-06

    Dolphin morbillivirus (DMV) has caused 2 epizootics with high mortality rates on the Spanish Mediterranean coast, in 1990 and 2006-07, mainly affecting striped dolphins Stenella coeruleoalba. Following the first epizootic unusual DMV infections affecting only the central nervous system of striped dolphins were found, with histological features similar to subacute sclerosing panencephalitis and old dog encephalitis, the chronic latent localised infections caused by defective forms of measles virus and canine distemper virus, respectively. Between 2008 and 2010, monitoring by microscopic and immunohistochemical (IHC) studies of 118 striped dolphins stranded along Catalonia, the Valencia Region and Andalusia showed similar localised DMV nervous system infections in 25.0, 28.6 and 27.4% of cases, respectively, with no significant differences among regions or sex. The body length of DMV-infected dolphins was statistically greater than that of non-infected dolphins (196.5 vs. 160.5 cm; p dolphins with positive IHC-DMV had positive PCR results. All 6 cases were positive with the 78 bp RT-PCR. These findings contraindicate the use of the 429 bp RT-PCR protocol based on the P gene to detect this specific form of DMV. DMV localised nervous infection constitutes the most relevant single cause of stranding and death in Mediterranean striped dolphins in the years following a DMV epizootic, and it might even overwhelm the effects of the epizootic itself, at least in 2007.

  5. Dolphin Morbillivirus: a lethal but valuable infection model

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Di Guardo, Giovanni; Mazzariol, Sandro

    2013-01-01

    Dolphin Morbillivirus (DMV), which has caused at least four epidemics in the Western Mediterranean during the last 20-25 years, may dramatically impact the health and conservation of striped dolphins...

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

    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...

  10. Dolphin changes in whistle structure with watercraft activity depends on their behavioral state.

    Science.gov (United States)

    May-Collado, Laura J; Quiñones-Lebrón, Shakira G

    2014-04-01

    Dolphins rely on whistles to identify each other and to receive and convey information about their environment. Although capable of adjusting these signals with changing environments, there is little information on how dolphins acoustically respond to different watercraft activities and if this response depends on dolphin behavioral state. Bottlenose dolphin whistles were recorded in the presence of research and dolphin-watching boats. Dolphins emitted lower frequency and longer whistles when interacting with dolphin-watching boats, particularly during foraging activities. This study suggests that dolphin-watching boat traffic significantly hinders dolphin communication during important behavioral states.

  11. Mitogenomic phylogenetic analyses of the Delphinidae with an emphasis on the Globicephalinae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    de Stephanis Renaud

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Previous DNA-based phylogenetic studies of the Delphinidae family suggest it has undergone rapid diversification, as characterised by unresolved and poorly supported taxonomic relationships (polytomies for some of the species within this group. Using an increased amount of sequence data we test between alternative hypotheses of soft polytomies caused by rapid speciation, slow evolutionary rate and/or insufficient sequence data, and hard polytomies caused by simultaneous speciation within this family. Combining the mitogenome sequences of five new and 12 previously published species within the Delphinidae, we used Bayesian and maximum-likelihood methods to estimate the phylogeny from partitioned and unpartitioned mitogenome sequences. Further ad hoc tests were then conducted to estimate the support for alternative topologies. Results We found high support for all the relationships within our reconstructed phylogenies, and topologies were consistent between the Bayesian and maximum-likelihood trees inferred from partitioned and unpartitioned data. Resolved relationships included the placement of the killer whale (Orcinus orca as sister taxon to the rest of the Globicephalinae subfamily, placement of the Risso's dolphin (Grampus griseus within the Globicephalinae subfamily, removal of the white-beaked dolphin (Lagenorhynchus albirostris from the Delphininae subfamily and the placement of the rough-toothed dolphin (Steno bredanensis as sister taxon to the rest of the Delphininae subfamily rather than within the Globicephalinae subfamily. The additional testing of alternative topologies allowed us to reject all other putative relationships, with the exception that we were unable to reject the hypothesis that the relationship between L. albirostris and the Globicephalinae and Delphininae subfamilies was polytomic. Conclusion Despite their rapid diversification, the increased sequence data yielded by mitogenomes enables the

  12. 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...

  13. 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...

  14. Location of an acoustic window in dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popov, V V; Supin, A Y

    1990-01-15

    Auditory brainstem responses (ABR) to sound clicks from sources in different positions were recorded in dolphins Inia geoffrensis. The position of the acoustic window was determined by measurement of acoustic delays. The acoustic window was found to lie close to the auditory meatus and the bulla rather than on the lower jaw.

  15. Cutaneous Granulomas in Dolphins Caused by Novel Uncultivated Paracoccidioides brasiliensis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vilela, Raquel; Bossart, Gregory D.; St. Leger, Judy A.; Dalton, Leslie M.; Reif, John S.; Schaefer, Adam M.; McCarthy, Peter J.; Fair, Patricia A.

    2016-01-01

    Cutaneous granulomas in dolphins were believed to be caused by Lacazia loboi, which also causes a similar disease in humans. This hypothesis was recently challenged by reports that fungal DNA sequences from dolphins grouped this pathogen with Paracoccidioides brasiliensis. We conducted phylogenetic analysis of fungi from 6 bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) with cutaneous granulomas and chains of yeast cells in infected tissues. Kex gene sequences of P. brasiliensis from dolphins showed 100% homology with sequences from cultivated P. brasiliensis, 73% with those of L. loboi, and 93% with those of P. lutzii. Parsimony analysis placed DNA sequences from dolphins within a cluster with human P. brasiliensis strains. This cluster was the sister taxon to P. lutzii and L. loboi. Our molecular data support previous findings and suggest that a novel uncultivated strain of P. brasiliensis restricted to cutaneous lesions in dolphins is probably the cause of lacaziosis/lobomycosis, herein referred to as paracoccidioidomycosis ceti. PMID:27869614

  16. The dolphin cochlear nucleus: topography, histology and functional implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malkemper, E P; Oelschläger, H H A; Huggenberger, S

    2012-02-01

    Despite the outstanding auditory capabilities of dolphins, there is only limited information available on the cytology of the auditory brain stem nuclei in these animals. Here, we investigated the cochlear nuclei (CN) of five brains of common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) and La Plata dolphins (Pontoporia blainvillei) using cell and fiber stain microslide series representing the three main anatomical planes. In general, the CN in dolphins comprise the same set of subnuclei as in other mammals. However, the volume ratio of the dorsal cochlear nucleus (DCN) in relation to the ventral cochlear nucleus (VCN) of dolphins represents a minimum among the mammals examined so far. Because, for example, in cats the DCN is necessary for reflexive orientation of the head and pinnae towards a sound source, the massive restrictions in head movability in dolphins and the absence of outer ears may be correlated with the reduction of the DCN. Moreover, the same set of main neuron types were found in the dolphin CN as in other mammals, including octopus and multipolar cells. Because the latter two types of neurons are thought to be involved in the recognition of complex sounds, including speech, we suggest that, in dolphins, they may be involved in the processing of their communication signals. Comparison of the toothed whale species studied here revealed that large spherical cells were present in the La Plata dolphin but absent in the common dolphin. These neurons are known to be engaged in the processing of low-frequency sounds in terrestrial mammals. Accordingly, in the common dolphin, the absence of large spherical cells seems to be correlated with a shift of its auditory spectrum into the high-frequency range above 20 kHz. The existence of large spherical cells in the VCN of the La Plata dolphin, however, is enigmatic asthis species uses frequencies around 130 kHz.

  17. Prion search and cellular prion protein expression in stranded dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Guardo, G; Cocumelli, C; Meoli, R; Barbaro, K; Terracciano, G; Di Francesco, C E; Mazzariol, S; Eleni, C

    2012-01-01

    The recent description of a prion disease (PD) case in a free-ranging bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) prompted us to carry out an extensive search for the disease-associated isoform (PrPSc) of the cellular prion protein (PrPC) in the brain and in a range of lymphoid tissues from 23 striped dolphins (Stenella coeruleoalba), 5 bottlenose dolphins and 2 Risso s dolphins (Grampus griseus) found stranded between 2007 and 2012 along the Italian coastline. Three striped dolphins and one bottlenose dolphin showed microscopic lesions of encephalitis, with no evidence of spongiform brain lesions being detected in any of the 30 free-ranging cetaceans investigated herein. Nevertheless, we could still observe a prominent PrPC immunoreactivity in the brain as well as in lymphoid tissues from these dolphins. Although immunohistochemical and Western blot investigations yielded negative results for PrPSc deposition in all tissues from the dolphins under study, the reported occurrence of a spontaneous PD case in a wild dolphin is an intriguing issue and a matter of concern for both prion biology and intra/inter-species transmissibility, as well as for cetacean conservation medicine.

  18. Intestinal helminth fauna of bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus and common dolphin Delphinus delphis from the western Mediterranean.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quiñones, Ruth; Giovannini, Anna; Raga, J Antonio; Fernández, Mercedes

    2013-06-01

    We report on the intestinal helminth fauna of 15 bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus and 6 short-beaked common dolphins Delphinus delphis from the western Mediterranean. Eight helminth species were found in bottlenose dolphin, i.e., the digeneans Synthesium tursionis, Brachycladium atlanticum, and Pholeter gastrophilus, the nematode Anisakis sp., and the cestodes Tetrabothrius forsteri, Diphyllobothrium sp., Strobilocephalus triangularis, and tetraphyllidean plerocercoids. Brachycladium atlanticum, S. triangularis , and tetraphyllidean plerocercoids are new host records. No T. forsteri had previously been reported in Mediterranean bottlenose dolphins. Three species of helminths were recorded in the common dolphin, i.e., the digenean Synthesium delamurei (which was a new host record), and the cestodes T. forsteri and tetraphyllidean plerocercoids. The intestinal helminth communities of bottlenose and common dolphins are depauperate, similar to that of other cetacean species, but those from bottlenose dolphins harbored a higher number of helminth species. This study supports the notion that oceanic cetaceans, such as common dolphins, have a comparatively poorer helminth fauna than that of neritic species, such as bottlenose dolphins, because the likelihood of parasite recruitment is decreased.

  19. An evaluation of marine traffic on the Chinese white dolphins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, C.

    2016-12-01

    The proposed third runway reclamation project of Hong Kong airport will soon impact the surrounding population of Chinese white dolphins. According to the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), the size of the reclamation will be 650 hectares of land located to the north of the current airport platform. All of the necessary works will be conducted via the surrounding marine areas. During the construction period the dredging and reclamation activities will increase the risk of dolphins colliding with this extra marine traffic especially since this construction site is less than one kilometre away from the dolphin marine park of Sha Chau & Lung Kwu Chau. Furthermore, after the construction of the third runway, there will be a re-routing of Skypier Ferries and other high speed boats through this area. The dolphins will undoubtedly be disturbed. The increase in vessel traffic during the construction project will also generate sounds that may interfere with echolocation systems that dolphins rely on to navigate and fish. This further impact can be measured using underwater hydrophones that can record the boat noise as well as the dolphin clicks. The latter determines the presence or absence of dolphins. From this the impact of noise on dolphin populations can be determined by simply determining if the dolphins stay around during periods of high levels of underwater noise. The data presented is the result of several years of collection. A clear understanding of the conjunction of noises from the dolphins and marine traffic patterns for different times of the day will help determine the impact and offer the chance to change marine traffic patterns thus minimizing the adverse impact on the iconic Hong Kong white dolphins.

  20. Biochemical and Anatomical Characteristics of Dolphin Muscles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1984-01-01

    Nekooi, J. Durivage, and C. E. Blanco ) of the University of California, Los Angeles, for their excellent quantitative work in anatomical, biochemi...cal, and histochemical analyses of the dolphin’s musculo -tendonous system. J. E. Haun for providing constant support and guidance in areas of project...potential of these animals by examining the anatomical and biochemical characteristics of the musculo - tendonous systems involved with swimming. Strickler

  1. 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...

  2. Lobomycosis: risk of zoonotic transmission from dolphins to humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reif, John S; Schaefer, Adam M; Bossart, Gregory D

    2013-10-01

    Lobomycosis, a fungal disease of the skin and subcutaneous tissues caused by Lacazia loboi, is sometimes referred to as a zoonotic disease because it affects only specific delphinidae and humans; however, the evidence that it can be transferred directly to humans from dolphins is weak. Dolphins have also been postulated to be responsible for an apparent geographic expansion of the disease in humans. Morphological and molecular differences between the human and dolphin organisms, differences in geographic distribution of the diseases between dolphins and humans, the existence of only a single documented case of presumed zoonotic transmission, and anecdotal evidence of lack of transmission to humans following accidental inoculation of tissue from infected dolphins do not support the hypothesis that dolphins infected with L. loboi represent a zoonotic hazard for humans. In addition, the lack of human cases in communities adjacent to coastal estuaries with a high prevalence of lobomycosis in dolphins, such as the Indian River Lagoon in Florida (IRL), suggests that direct or indirect transmission of L. loboi from dolphins to humans occurs rarely, if at all. Nonetheless, attention to personal hygiene and general principals of infection control are always appropriate when handling tissues from an animal with a presumptive diagnosis of a mycotic or fungal disease.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Serologic response in bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus infected with Brucella sp. using a dolphin-specific indirect ELISA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meegan, Jenny; Dunn, J Lawrence; Venn-Watson, Stephanie K; Smith, Cynthia R; Sidor, Inga; Jensen, Eric D; Van Bonn, William G; Pugh, Roberta; Ficht, Thomas; Adams, L Garry; Nielsen, Klaus; Romano, Tracy A

    2012-12-03

    Marine-origin Brucella infections and serologic evidence of exposure have been documented in multiple cetacean species. A dolphin-specific indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was developed to screen bottlenose dolphin sera for anti-Brucella antibodies. A total of 131 serum samples collected over a 2 to 18 yr period from 6 bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus with confirmed Brucella infections were analyzed for the presence and magnitude of antibody titers against marine-origin Brucella to compare individual antibody responses to various disease manifestations. Additionally, an epidemiologic serologic survey of a managed population of 64 bottlenose dolphins was performed to evaluate for the presence of antibodies and to determine whether there were any clinical pathology predictors for exposure or infection. The serologic results revealed that the dolphins with Brucella-associated abortions were seronegative for 7 to 18 yr until after the abortion and maintained positive titers for several years, with 2 of 3 animals returning to seronegative status. In contrast, the dolphins with Brucella-associated pulmonary or bone lesions maintained persistent positive titers for 2 to 18 yr. The population serosurvey revealed no significant differences in antibody levels among males and females, and dolphins between the ages of 17 and 25 yr were 6.8 times more likely to be Brucella antibody positive compared to those that were younger or older. Seropositive dolphins did not have significant inflammation compared to seronegative dolphins but were more likely to have higher levels of aspartate aminotransferase and gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase. Among 16 dolphins that tested seropositive, 13 (81.3%) had previously been seropositive for at least 3 to 5 yr.

  6. Immune dysfunction in Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) with lobomycosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reif, John S; Peden-Adams, Margie M; Romano, Tracy A; Rice, Charles D; Fair, Patricia A; Bossart, Gregory D

    2009-03-01

    Lobomycosis (Lacaziosis) occurs only in humans and dolphins under natural conditions. We evaluated the immune status of eight dolphins with lobomycosis and 40 healthy dolphins from the Indian River Lagoon (IRL), Florida. Lobomycosis cases had multiple abnormalities in their immunologic parameters when compared to healthy dolphins. The absolute number of circulating lymphocytes and serum albumin concentration were reduced (P<0.05) while the segmented neutrophils, alpha 1, total beta, total gamma and total globulins were increased (P<0.05). Although innate immunity was relatively intact and phagocytosis and natural killer cell activity were not affected, the plasma lysozyme concentrations were elevated in dolphins with lobomycosis (P<0.05). Adaptive immunity was depressed with statistically significant decreases found in the absolute numbers of CD4(+) helper T cells and CD19(+) and CD21(+) B cells. The ratios of CD2(+) T cells to CD4(+) cells and CD2(+) to CD21(+) cells were increased (P=0.05 and P<0.05, respectively) and the numbers of lymphocytes expressing MHC class II molecules was decreased in dolphins with lobomycosis (P<0.05). Lymphocyte proliferation was reduced in response to stimulation with lipopolysaccharide and concanavalin A (P<0.05). Antibody titers to Erysipelas rhusiopathiae, a common marine micro-organism, were decreased (P<0.05). In summary, dolphins with lobomycosis exhibit significant impairment in adaptive immunity.

  7. 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.

  8. Consciousness in dolphins? A review of recent evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harley, Heidi E

    2013-06-01

    For millennia, dolphins have intrigued humans. Scientific study has confirmed that bottlenose dolphins are large-brained, highly social mammals with an extended developmental period, flexible cognitive capacities, and powerful acoustic abilities including a sophisticated echolocation system. These findings have led some to ask if dolphins experience aspects of consciousness. Recent investigations targeting self-recognition/self-awareness and metacognition, constructs tied to consciousness on some accounts, have analyzed the dolphin's ability to recognize itself in a mirror or on a video as well as to monitor its own knowledge in a perceptual categorization task. The current article reviews this work with dolphins and grapples with some of the challenges in designing, conducting, and interpreting these studies as well as with general issues related to studying consciousness in animals. The existing evidence does not provide a convincing case for consciousness in dolphins. For productive scientific work on consciousness in dolphins (and other animals including humans), we need clearer characterizations of consciousness, better methods for studying it, and appropriate paradigms for interpreting outcomes. A current focus on metamemory in animals offers promise for future discovery in this area.

  9. Stable isotopes differentiate bottlenose dolphins off west-central Florida

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barros, Nélio B.; Ostrom, P. H.; Stricker, Craig A.; Wells, R.S.

    2010-01-01

    Distinguishing discrete population units among continuously distributed coastal small cetaceans is challenging and crucial to conservation. We evaluated the utility of stable isotopes in assessing group membership in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) off west-central Florida by analyzing carbon, nitrogen, and sulfur isotope values (δ13C, δ15N, and δ34S) of tooth collagen from stranded dolphins. Individuals derived from three putative general population units: Sarasota Bay (SB), nearshore Gulf of Mexico (GULF), and offshore waters (OFF). Animals of known history (SB) served to ground truth the approach against animals of unknown history from the Gulf of Mexico (GULF, OFF). Dolphin groups differed significantly for each isotope. Average δ13C values from SB dolphins (−10.6‰) utilizing sea grass ecosystems differed from those of GULF (−11.9‰) and OFF (−11.9‰). Average δ15N values of GULF (12.7‰) and OFF (13.2‰) were higher than those of SB dolphins (11.9‰), consistent with differences in prey trophic levels. δ34S values showed definitive differences among SB (7.1‰), GULF (11.3‰), and OFF (16.5‰) dolphins. This is the first application of isotopes to population assignment of bottlenose dolphins in the Gulf of Mexico and results suggest that isotopes may provide a powerful tool in the conservation of small cetaceans.

  10. The Dolphin in the Mirror - A Familiar Face?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dibble, Dianna Samuelson; Van Alstyne, Kaitlin Katie; Rohr, Jim; Ridgway, Sam

    2017-01-01

    We suggest how a basic physics problem becomes much richer when researchers of various disciplines converse. Our discussion explores Snell's window from the perspective of what a dolphin might see. An aperture, Snell's window, allows light to travel through the air-water interface. Outside this window, there is total reflection from under the water-air interface. Dolphins see through the aperture to follow our movements above the water's surface. When dolphins look outside the window, can they see their own reflections from under the water-air interface?

  11. Bayesian analysis of the Hector’s Dolphin data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    King, R.

    2004-06-01

    Full Text Available 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 analysis of the data, in which we quantitatively compare the different competing biological hypotheses, determining the effect of the sanctuary upon the dolphin population.

  12. Postmortem evidence of interactions of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) with other dolphin species in south-west England.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnett, J; Davison, N; Deaville, R; Monies, R; Loveridge, J; Tregenza, N; Jepson, P D

    2009-10-10

    Reports of violent interactions between bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) and harbour porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) in the coastal waters of the UK are well documented. Examination of stranded cetaceans by the Cornwall Wildlife Trust Marine Strandings Network and the UK Cetacean Strandings Investigation Programme has indicated that seven animals, of four other species, found stranded in south-west England, had pathology consistent with bottlenose dolphin interaction, including two juvenile and two adult common dolphins (Delphinus delphis), one juvenile pilot whale (Globicephala melas), one juvenile Risso's dolphin (Grampus griseus) and one adult striped dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba). Although recorded traumatic lesions were often not as severe as those found in harbour porpoises, it is probable that the interactions did contribute to stranding and/or death in all four of the juvenile animals examined. Furthermore, analysis of photographs taken before establishment of the Marine Strandings Network revealed rake (teeth) marks consistent with bottlenose dolphin interaction on one stranded common dolphin in 1992. A number of causes have been suggested for these interactions in harbour porpoises stranded in the UK and it is possible that any combination of these factors may also be implicated in the cases described in this report.

  13. Electroreception in the Guiana dolphin (Sotalia guianensis).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Czech-Damal, Nicole U; Liebschner, Alexander; Miersch, Lars; Klauer, Gertrud; Hanke, Frederike D; Marshall, Christopher; Dehnhardt, Guido; Hanke, Wolf

    2012-02-22

    Passive electroreception is a widespread sense in fishes and amphibians, but in mammals this sensory ability has previously only been shown in monotremes. While the electroreceptors in fish and amphibians evolved from mechanosensory lateral line organs, those of monotremes are based on cutaneous glands innervated by trigeminal nerves. Electroreceptors evolved from other structures or in other taxa were unknown to date. Here we show that the hairless vibrissal crypts on the rostrum of the Guiana dolphin (Sotalia guianensis), structures originally associated with the mammalian whiskers, serve as electroreceptors. Histological investigations revealed that the vibrissal crypts possess a well-innervated ampullary structure reminiscent of ampullary electroreceptors in other species. Psychophysical experiments with a male Guiana dolphin determined a sensory detection threshold for weak electric fields of 4.6 µV cm(-1), which is comparable to the sensitivity of electroreceptors in platypuses. Our results show that electroreceptors can evolve from a mechanosensory organ that nearly all mammals possess and suggest the discovery of this kind of electroreception in more species, especially those with an aquatic or semi-aquatic lifestyle.

  14. Guyana dolphins (Sotalia guianensis) from Costa Rica emit whistles that vary with surface behaviors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    May-Collado, Laura J

    2013-10-01

    Guyana dolphins show remarkable intraspecific whistle variation. This variation has been largely explained in terms of distance among populations; however, other factors such as behavior may also be important. A broadband recording system recorded the whistles of Guyana dolphins under three behavioral states. A discriminant analysis found that during social and travel events, dolphins emit whistles with high delta and minimum frequency, respectively. Whistle duration was also important in discriminating behaviors. This study indicates that behavior is an important factor contributing to whistle variation of Guyana dolphins. Understanding how dolphin whistles vary with behavioral context will advance our understanding of dolphin communication and enable appropriate comparative studies.

  15. Functional Imaging of Dolphin Brain Metabolism and Blood Flow

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Ridgway, Sam; Finneran, James; Carder, Don; Keogh, Mandy; Van Bonn, William; Smith, Cynthia; Scadeng, Miriam; Dubowitz, David; Mattrey, Robert; Hoh, Carl

    2006-01-01

    This report documents the first use of magnetic resonance images (MRls) of living dolphins to register functional brain scans, allowing for the exploration of potential mechanisms of unihemispheric sleep...

  16. Functional imaging of dolphin brain metabolism and blood flow

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Ridgway, Sam; Houser, Dorian; Finneran, James; Carder, Don; Keogh, Mandy; Van Bonn, William; Smith, Cynthia; Scadeng, Miriam; Dubowitz, David; Mattrey, Robert; Hoh, Carl

    2006-01-01

    This report documents the first use of magnetic resonance images (MRIs) of living dolphins to register functional brain scans, allowing for the exploration of potential mechanisms of unihemispheric sleep...

  17. 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...

  18. 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.

  19. Sound variation and function in captive Commerson's dolphins (Cephalorhynchus commersonii).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshida, Yayoi M; Morisaka, Tadamichi; Sakai, Mai; Iwasaki, Mari; Wakabayashi, Ikuo; Seko, Atsushi; Kasamatsu, Masahiko; Akamatsu, Tomonari; Kohshima, Shiro

    2014-10-01

    Commerson's dolphin (Cephalorhynchus commersonii), one of the smallest dolphin species, has been reported to produce only narrow-band high-frequency (NBHF) clicks and no whistles. To clarify their sound repertoire and examine the function of each type, we analysed the sounds and behaviour of captive Commerson's dolphins in Toba Aquarium, Japan. All recorded sounds were NBHF clicks with peak frequency >110kHz. The recorded click-trains were categorised into four types based on the changing pattern of their Inter-click intervals (ICI): Decreasing type, with continuously decreasing ICI during the last part of the train; Increasing type, with continuously increasing ICI during the last part; Fluctuating type, with fluctuating ICI; and Burst-pulse type, with very short and constant ICI. The frequency of the Decreasing type increased when approaching an object newly introduced to the tank, suggesting that the sound is used for echolocation on approach. The Burst-pulse type suddenly increased in front of the object and was often oriented towards it, suggesting that it was used for echolocation in close proximity to the object. In contrast, the Increasing type was rarely recorded during approach, but increased when a dolphin approached another dolphin. The Increasing and Burst-pulse types also increased when dolphins began social behaviours. These results suggest that some NBHF clicks have functions other than echolocation, such as communication.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. Unihemispheric slow-wave sleep in the Amazonian dolphin, Inia geoffrensis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mukhametov, L M

    1987-08-18

    An electroencephalographic study of sleep in Amazonian dolphins, Inia geoffrensis, revealed that unihemispheric slow-wave sleep is the dominant sleep type in this species, as in the other two dolphin species that were studied earlier.

  3. 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...

  4. 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...

  5. 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

  6. Biosonar, diving and movements of two tagged white-beaked dolphin in Icelandic waters

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Marianne H.; Akamatsu, Tomonari; Teilmann, Jonas;

    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...

  7. 77 FR 45268 - Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to Commercial Fishing Operations; Bottlenose Dolphin Take...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-07-31

    ... Incidental to Commercial Fishing Operations; Bottlenose Dolphin Take Reduction Plan AGENCY: National Marine... Dolphin Take Reduction Plan (BDTRP) and its implementing regulations by permanently continuing nighttime... November 1 through April 30. Members of the Bottlenose Dolphin Take Reduction Team (Team) recommended...

  8. Dolphins can maintain vigilant behavior through echolocation for 15 days without interruption or cognitive impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Branstetter, Brian K; Finneran, James J; Fletcher, Elizabeth A; Weisman, Brian C; Ridgway, Sam H

    2012-01-01

    In dolphins, natural selection has developed unihemispheric sleep where alternating hemispheres of their brain stay awake. This allows dolphins to maintain consciousness in response to respiratory demands of the ocean. Unihemispheric sleep may also allow dolphins to maintain vigilant states over long periods of time. Because of the relatively poor visibility in the ocean, dolphins use echolocation to interrogate their environment. During echolocation, dolphin produce clicks and listen to returning echoes to determine the location and identity of objects. The extent to which individual dolphins are able to maintain continuous vigilance through this active sense is unknown. Here we show that dolphins may continuously echolocate and accurately report the presence of targets for at least 15 days without interruption. During a total of three sessions, each lasting five days, two dolphins maintained echolocation behaviors while successfully detecting and reporting targets. Overall performance was between 75 to 86% correct for one dolphin and 97 to 99% correct for a second dolphin. Both animals demonstrated diel patterns in echolocation behavior. A 15-day testing session with one dolphin resulted in near perfect performance with no significant decrement over time. Our results demonstrate that dolphins can continuously monitor their environment and maintain long-term vigilant behavior through echolocation.

  9. 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…

  10. 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…

  11. Dolphins can maintain vigilant behavior through echolocation for 15 days without interruption or cognitive impairment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian K Branstetter

    Full Text Available In dolphins, natural selection has developed unihemispheric sleep where alternating hemispheres of their brain stay awake. This allows dolphins to maintain consciousness in response to respiratory demands of the ocean. Unihemispheric sleep may also allow dolphins to maintain vigilant states over long periods of time. Because of the relatively poor visibility in the ocean, dolphins use echolocation to interrogate their environment. During echolocation, dolphin produce clicks and listen to returning echoes to determine the location and identity of objects. The extent to which individual dolphins are able to maintain continuous vigilance through this active sense is unknown. Here we show that dolphins may continuously echolocate and accurately report the presence of targets for at least 15 days without interruption. During a total of three sessions, each lasting five days, two dolphins maintained echolocation behaviors while successfully detecting and reporting targets. Overall performance was between 75 to 86% correct for one dolphin and 97 to 99% correct for a second dolphin. Both animals demonstrated diel patterns in echolocation behavior. A 15-day testing session with one dolphin resulted in near perfect performance with no significant decrement over time. Our results demonstrate that dolphins can continuously monitor their environment and maintain long-term vigilant behavior through echolocation.

  12. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luisa eSartori

    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.

  14. Cross-sectional anatomy, computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging of the head of common dolphin (Delphinus delphis) and striped dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alonso-Farré, J M; Gonzalo-Orden, M; Barreiro-Vázquez, J D; Barreiro-Lois, A; André, M; Morell, M; Llarena-Reino, M; Monreal-Pawlowsky, T; Degollada, E

    2015-02-01

    Computed tomography (CT) and low-field magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) were used to scan seven by-caught dolphin cadavers, belonging to two species: four common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) and three striped dolphins (Stenella coeruleoalba). CT and MRI were obtained with the animals in ventral recumbency. After the imaging procedures, six dolphins were frozen at -20°C and sliced in the same position they were examined. Not only CT and MRI scans, but also cross sections of the heads were obtained in three body planes: transverse (slices of 1 cm thickness) in three dolphins, sagittal (5 cm thickness) in two dolphins and dorsal (5 cm thickness) in two dolphins. Relevant anatomical structures were identified and labelled on each cross section, obtaining a comprehensive bi-dimensional topographical anatomy guide of the main features of the common and the striped dolphin head. Furthermore, the anatomical cross sections were compared with their corresponding CT and MRI images, allowing an imaging identification of most of the anatomical features. CT scans produced an excellent definition of the bony and air-filled structures, while MRI allowed us to successfully identify most of the soft tissue structures in the dolphin's head. This paper provides a detailed anatomical description of the head structures of common and striped dolphins and compares anatomical cross sections with CT and MRI scans, becoming a reference guide for the interpretation of imaging studies.

  15. 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.

  16. Bottlenose dolphins exchange signature whistles when meeting at sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quick, Nicola J; Janik, Vincent M

    2012-07-01

    The bottlenose dolphin, Tursiops truncatus, is one of very few animals that, through vocal learning, can invent novel acoustic signals and copy whistles of conspecifics. Furthermore, receivers can extract identity information from the invented part of whistles. In captivity, dolphins use such signature whistles while separated from the rest of their group. However, little is known about how they use them at sea. If signature whistles are the main vehicle to transmit identity information, then dolphins should exchange these whistles in contexts where groups or individuals join. We used passive acoustic localization during focal boat follows to observe signature whistle use in the wild. We found that stereotypic whistle exchanges occurred primarily when groups of dolphins met and joined at sea. A sequence analysis verified that most of the whistles used during joins were signature whistles. Whistle matching or copying was not observed in any of the joins. The data show that signature whistle exchanges are a significant part of a greeting sequence that allows dolphins to identify conspecifics when encountering them in the wild.

  17. Learning from nature: bottlenose dolphin care and husbandry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wells, Randall S

    2009-11-01

    The world's longest-running study of a wild dolphin population, operated by the Chicago Zoological Society since 1989, has focused on the multi-generational resident community of about 160 bottlenose dolphins in Sarasota Bay, Florida, since 1970. Observational and capture-release research on the biology, behavior, life history, ecology, and health of individually identifiable bay residents of up to 59 years of age and spanning five generations has helped to inform collection managers at the Brookfield Zoo and partner institutions. Age, sex, and genetic compositions of colonies at cooperating institutions have been based on observations of social structure and genetic paternity testing in Sarasota Bay to optimize breeding success. Breeding success, including calf survivorship, is evaluated relative to individual wild dolphin reproductive histories, spanning as many as nine calves and four decades. Individual rearing patterns for wild dolphins provide guidance for determining how long to keep mothers and calves together, and help to define the next steps in the calves' social development. Health assessments provide data on expected ranges of blood, milk and urine values, morphometrics, and body condition relative to age, sex, and reproductive condition. Calf growth can be compared with wild values. Target weights and blubber thicknesses for specific age and sex classes in specified water temperatures are available for wild dolphins, and caloric intakes can be adjusted accordingly to meet the targets. A strength of the program is the ability to monitor individuals throughout their lives, and to be able to define individual ranges of variability through ontogenetic stages.

  18. Lacaziosis in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in the Indian River Lagoon, Florida, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durden, Wendy Noke; St Leger, Judy; Stolen, Megan; Mazza, Teresa; Londono, Catalina

    2009-07-01

    The objective of this study was to document the presence of the fungal granulomatous skin disease lacaziosis in stranded Indian River Lagoon (IRL) bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). From 1 January 2007 through 31 December 2007, stranded dolphins from the northern part of the IRL were thoroughly examined, and appropriate tissue samples were collected. The intralesional fungal agent (Lacazia loboi) was identified histologically in three bottlenose dolphins. Histologically, lacaziosis has been previously documented in IRL dolphins inhabiting the southern portion of the lagoon. Our findings suggest that the disease occurs throughout the lagoon. Enhanced monitoring of the prevalence of lacaziosis in dolphins throughout the IRL is needed to assess changes in population health.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Simon J; Tyne, Julian A; Kobryn, Halina T; Bejder, Lars; Pollock, Kenneth H; Loneragan, Neil R

    2014-01-01

    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 size

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Richard F; Bulski, Karrie; Adams, Jeffrey D; Peden-Adams, Margie; Bossart, Gregory D; King, Lydia; Fair, Patricia A

    2013-12-15

    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.

  1. Dolphin natures, human virtues: MacIntyre and ethical naturalism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glackin, Shane Nicholas

    2008-09-01

    Can biological facts explain human morality? Aristotelian 'virtue' ethics has traditionally assumed so. In recent years Alasdair MacIntyre has reintroduced a form of Aristotle's 'metaphysical biology' into his ethics. He argues that the ethological study of dependence and rationality in other species--dolphins in particular--sheds light on how those same traits in the typical lives of humans give rise to the moral virtues. However, some goal-oriented dolphin behaviour appears both dependent and rational in the precise manner which impresses MacIntyre, yet anything but ethically 'virtuous'. More damningly, dolphin ethologists consistently refuse to evaluate such behaviour in the manner MacIntyre claims is appropriate to moral judgement. In light of this, I argue that virtues--insofar as they name a biological or ethological category--do not name a morally significant one.

  2. Bacterial infection in an Irrawaddy dolphin (Orcaella brevirostris).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Jin Hai; Xia, Zhao Fei

    2013-03-01

    One pregnant captive Irrawaddy dolphin (Orcaella brevirostris), with a body length of 225 cm, was found dead on 8 June 2009. The dolphin was anorexic and circling at the bottom of the pool before death. Laboratory tests revealed an increased leukocyte count and decreased platelet count; increased erythrocyte sedimentation rate; and slightly decreased red blood cell count, hemoglobin, and hematocrit. Alkaline phosphatase, creatinine, and glucose were significantly decreased. Moreover, uric acid and alanine aminotransferase and aspartate aminotransferase levels were elevated. A 57-cm fetus was recovered. The respiratory system, intestinal mucosa, mesentery and mesenteric lymph nodes, and spleen were congested and hemorrhagic. The heart, liver, and kidney appeared normal. Klebsiella spp. and Staphylococcus aureus were identified in the amniotic fluid. This is the first case report of bacterial infection in an Irrawaddy dolphin.

  3. Humpback Dolphins: A Brief Introduction to the Genus Sousa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jefferson, Thomas A; Curry, Barbara E

    2015-01-01

    The delphinid genus Sousa has recently undergone a major revision, and currently contains four species, the Atlantic humpback (Sousa teuszii), Indian Ocean humpback (Sousa plumbea), Indo-Pacific humpback (Sousa chinensis), and Australian humpback (Sousa sahulensis) dolphins. Recent molecular evidence suggests that humpback dolphins in the Bay of Bengal may comprise a fifth species. These moderate-sized dolphin species are found in shallow (dolphins feed mostly on small fishes, and sometimes shrimps; occur for the most part in small groups (mostly 12 or less); have limited nearshore movements; and in most parts of their range exhibit a fission/fusion type of social organization. Major threats that affect all the species are entanglement in fishing gear, and habitat degradation/destruction from various forms of coastal development. Impacts from vessel traffic (including behavioural disturbance and displacement, as well as mortality and morbidity from collisions with vessels) appear to be significant in most areas. Several other threats are apparently significant only in particular parts of the range of some species (e.g. high levels of organochlorine contaminants affecting Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins in Hong Kong). Direct hunting only occurs in limited areas and primarily on a small scale. Conservation actions so far have been limited, with most populations receiving little study and almost no management attention. Much more work is needed on humpback dolphin population status, threats, and how the major threats can be reduced or eliminated. Extinction risks for the four species and some populations are preliminarily re-assessed using the IUCN Red List criteria in the current volume. The results suggest that all four species in the genus are threatened at some level (suggested Red List status ranges from Vulnerable for S. chinensis and S. sahulensis to Critically Endangered for S. teuszii).

  4. LIVER ULTRASONOGRAPHY IN DOLPHINS: USE OF ULTRASONOGRAPHY TO ESTABLISH A TECHNIQUE FOR HEPATOBILIARY IMAGING AND TO EVALUATE METABOLIC DISEASE-ASSOCIATED LIVER CHANGES IN BOTTLENOSE DOLPHINS (TURSIOPS TRUNCATUS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seitz, Kelsey E; Smith, Cynthia R; Marks, Stanley L; Venn-Watson, Stephanie K; Ivančić, Marina

    2016-12-01

    The objective of this study was to establish a comprehensive technique for ultrasound examination of the dolphin hepatobiliary system and apply this technique to 30 dolphins to determine what, if any, sonographic changes are associated with blood-based indicators of metabolic syndrome (insulin greater than 14 μIU/ml or glucose greater than 112 mg/dl) and iron overload (transferrin saturation greater than 65%). A prospective study of individuals in a cross-sectional population with and without elevated postprandial insulin levels was performed. Twenty-nine bottlenose dolphins ( Tursiops truncatus ) in a managed collection were included in the final data analysis. An in-water ultrasound technique was developed that included detailed analysis of the liver and pancreas. Dolphins with hyperinsulinemia concentrations had larger livers compared with dolphins with nonelevated concentrations. Using stepwise, multivariate regression including blood-based indicators of metabolic syndrome in dolphins, glucose was the best predictor of and had a positive linear association with liver size (P = 0.007, R(2) = 0.24). Bottlenose dolphins are susceptible to metabolic syndrome and associated complications that affect the liver, including fatty liver disease and iron overload. This study facilitated the establishment of a technique for a rapid, diagnostic, and noninvasive ultrasonographic evaluation of the dolphin liver. In addition, the study identified ultrasound-detectable hepatic changes associated primarily with elevated glucose concentration in dolphins. Future investigations will strive to detail the pathophysiological mechanisms for these changes.

  5. Acute Poisoning with Methadone (Dolphin (Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Georgy A. Livanov

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Most publications report on the use of methadone as a medication, however an increase of the illegal use of methadone has been demonstrated worldwide over the recent years, thus increasing the number of hospitalizations due to acute poisoning with this synthetic opioid. The aim of the present review was to summarize current data on the mechanisms of toxicity, selective toxicity, toxicokinetics and toxicodynamics of methadone (Dolphin. The involvement of CNS, respiratory, cardiovascular and urinary systems in acute poisoning with methadone was dis- cussed. The practice of use of methadone in many countries as a medicine for the replacement therapy for opiate addicts was analyzed. In addition, it was suggested that the results of the use of naloxone antidote therapy in acute opioid poisoning do not always clearly demonstrate its sufficient efficacy. Ways to improve of the intensive therapy of severe acute poisoning by methadone were substantiated; in addition to general critical care methods, treatment with a complex metabolic antihypoxant cytoflavin should be considered. 

  6. 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。

  7. Why Dolphins are not Aquatic Apes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Louise Barrett

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available The Social Brain (or Social Intelligence hypothesis is a very influential theory that ties brain size and, by extension, cognitive ability to the demands of obligate and intense sociality. Initially developed to explain primate brain size evolution, the Social Brain hypothesis has since been applied to a diverse array of other social taxa, both mammalian and avian; its origins as a primate-based hypothesis (especially as articulated by Humphrey, 1976, however, mean that it retains a heavily anthropocentric tinge. This colors the way in which other species are viewed, and their cognitive abilities tested, despite fundamental differences in many aspects of bodily morphology, brain anatomy and behavior. The delphinids are a case in point and, in this review, we demonstrate how the anthropocentric origins of the Social Brain hypothesis have pushed us toward a view of the delphinids as a species of ‗aquatic ape‘. We suggest that a more ecological, embodied/embedded, view of dolphin behavior and psychology undercuts such a view, and will provide a more satisfactory assessment of the natural intelligence the delphinids display.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. A new dolphin species, the Burrunan Dolphin Tursiops australis sp. nov., endemic to southern Australian coastal waters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charlton-Robb, Kate; Gershwin, Lisa-ann; Thompson, Ross; Austin, Jeremy; Owen, Kylie; McKechnie, Stephen

    2011-01-01

    Small coastal dolphins endemic to south-eastern Australia have variously been assigned to described species Tursiops truncatus, T. aduncus or T. maugeanus; however the specific affinities of these animals is controversial and have recently been questioned. Historically 'the southern Australian Tursiops' was identified as unique and was formally named Tursiops maugeanus but was later synonymised with T. truncatus. Morphologically, these coastal dolphins share some characters with both aforementioned recognised Tursiops species, but they also possess unique characters not found in either. Recent mtDNA and microsatellite genetic evidence indicates deep evolutionary divergence between this dolphin and the two currently recognised Tursiops species. However, in accordance with the recommendations of the Workshop on Cetacean Systematics, and the Unified Species Concept the use of molecular evidence alone is inadequate for describing new species. Here we describe the macro-morphological, colouration and cranial characters of these animals, assess the available and new genetic data, and conclude that multiple lines of evidence clearly indicate a new species of dolphin. We demonstrate that the syntype material of T. maugeanus comprises two different species, one of which is the historical 'southern form of Tursiops' most similar to T. truncatus, and the other is representative of the new species and requires formal classification. These dolphins are here described as Tursiops australis sp. nov., with the common name of 'Burrunan Dolphin' following Australian aboriginal narrative. The recognition of T. australis sp. nov. is particularly significant given the endemism of this new species to a small geographic region of southern and south-eastern Australia, where only two small resident populations in close proximity to a major urban and agricultural centre are known, giving them a high conservation value and making them susceptible to numerous anthropogenic threats.

  12. A new dolphin species, the Burrunan Dolphin Tursiops australis sp. nov., endemic to southern Australian coastal waters.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kate Charlton-Robb

    Full Text Available Small coastal dolphins endemic to south-eastern Australia have variously been assigned to described species Tursiops truncatus, T. aduncus or T. maugeanus; however the specific affinities of these animals is controversial and have recently been questioned. Historically 'the southern Australian Tursiops' was identified as unique and was formally named Tursiops maugeanus but was later synonymised with T. truncatus. Morphologically, these coastal dolphins share some characters with both aforementioned recognised Tursiops species, but they also possess unique characters not found in either. Recent mtDNA and microsatellite genetic evidence indicates deep evolutionary divergence between this dolphin and the two currently recognised Tursiops species. However, in accordance with the recommendations of the Workshop on Cetacean Systematics, and the Unified Species Concept the use of molecular evidence alone is inadequate for describing new species. Here we describe the macro-morphological, colouration and cranial characters of these animals, assess the available and new genetic data, and conclude that multiple lines of evidence clearly indicate a new species of dolphin. We demonstrate that the syntype material of T. maugeanus comprises two different species, one of which is the historical 'southern form of Tursiops' most similar to T. truncatus, and the other is representative of the new species and requires formal classification. These dolphins are here described as Tursiops australis sp. nov., with the common name of 'Burrunan Dolphin' following Australian aboriginal narrative. The recognition of T. australis sp. nov. is particularly significant given the endemism of this new species to a small geographic region of southern and south-eastern Australia, where only two small resident populations in close proximity to a major urban and agricultural centre are known, giving them a high conservation value and making them susceptible to numerous anthropogenic

  13. Low Density of Top Predators (Seabirds and Marine Mammals in the High Arctic Pack Ice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claude R. Joiris

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The at-sea distribution of top predators, seabirds and marine mammals, was determined in the high Arctic pack ice on board the icebreaker RV Polarstern in July to September 2014. In total, 1,620 transect counts were realised, lasting 30 min each. The five most numerous seabird species represented 74% of the total of 15,150 individuals registered: kittiwake Rissa tridactyla, fulmar Fulmarus glacialis, puffin Fratercula arctica, Ross’s gull Rhodostethia rosea, and little auk Alle alle. Eight cetacean species were tallied for a total of 330 individuals, mainly white-beaked dolphin Lagenorhynchus albirostris and fin whale Balaenoptera physalus. Five pinniped species were represented by a total of 55 individuals and the polar bear Ursus maritimus was represented by 12 individuals. Four main geographical zones were identified: from Tromsø to the outer marginal ice zone (OMIZ, the Arctic pack ice (close pack ice, CPI, the end of Lomonosov Ridge off Siberia, and the route off Siberia and northern Norway. Important differences were detected between zones, both in species composition and in individual abundance. Low numbers of species and high proportion of individuals for some of them can be considered to reflect very low biodiversity. Numbers encountered in zones 2 to 4 were very low in comparison with other European Arctic seas. The observed differences showed strong patterns.

  14. Clinicoimmunopathologic findings in Atlantic bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus with positive Chlamydiaceae antibody titers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bossart, Gregory D; Romano, Tracy A; Peden-Adams, Margie M; Schaefer, Adam; McCulloch, Stephen; Goldstein, Juli D; Rice, Charles D; Fair, Patricia A; Cray, Carolyn; Reif, John S

    2014-02-04

    Sera from free-ranging Atlantic bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus inhabiting the Indian River Lagoon (IRL), Florida, and coastal waters of Charleston (CHS), South Carolina, USA, were tested for antibodies to Chlamydiaceae as part of a multidisciplinary study of individual and population health. A suite of clinicoimmunopathologic variables was evaluated in Chlamydiaceae-seropositive dolphins (n = 43) and seronegative healthy dolphins (n = 83). Fibrinogen, lactate dehydrogenase, amylase, and absolute numbers of neutrophils, lymphocytes, and basophils were significantly higher, and serum bicarbonate, total alpha globulin, and alpha-2 globulin were significantly lower in dolphins with positive Chlamydiaceae titers compared with seronegative healthy dolphins. Several differences in markers of innate and adaptive immunity were also found. Concanavalin A-induced T lymphocyte proliferation, lipopolysaccharide-induced B lymphocyte proliferation, and granulocytic phagocytosis were significantly lower, and absolute numbers of mature CD 21 B lymphocytes, natural killer cell activity and lysozyme concentration were significantly higher in dolphins with positive Chlamydiaceae antibody titers compared to seronegative healthy dolphins. Additionally, dolphins with positive Chlamydiaceae antibody titers had significant increases in ELISA antibody titers to Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae. These data suggest that Chlamydiaceae infection may produce subclinical clinicoimmunopathologic perturbations that impact health. Any potential subclinical health impacts are important for the IRL and CHS dolphin populations, as past studies have indicated that both dolphin populations are affected by other complex infectious and neoplastic diseases, often associated with immunologic perturbations and anthropogenic contaminants.

  15. Clinicoimmunopathologic findings in Atlantic bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus with positive cetacean morbillivirus antibody titers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bossart, Gregory D; Romano, Tracy A; Peden-Adams, Margie M; Schaefer, Adam; McCulloch, Stephen; Goldstein, Juli D; Rice, Charles D; Saliki, Jeremiah T; Fair, Patricia A; Reif, John S

    2011-12-06

    Sera from free-ranging Atlantic bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus inhabiting the Indian River Lagoon (IRL), Florida were tested for antibodies to cetacean morbilliviruses from 2003 to 2007 as part of a multidisciplinary study of individual and population health. A suite of clinicoimmunopathologic variables were evaluated in morbillivirus-seropositive dolphins (n = 14) and seronegative healthy dolphins (n = 49). Several important differences were found. Serum alkaline phosphatase, creatine phosphokinase, chloride, albumin and albumin/globulin ratios were significantly lower in seropositive dolphins. Innate immunity appeared to be upregulated with significant increases in lysozyme concentration and marginally significant increases in monocytic phagocytosis. Adaptive immunity was also impacted in dolphins with positive morbillivirus antibody titers. Mitogen-induced T lymphocyte proliferation responses were significantly reduced in dolphins with positive morbillivirus antibody titers, and marginally significant decreases were found for absolute numbers of CD4+ lymphocytes. The findings suggest impairment of cell-mediated adaptive immunity, similar to the immunologic pattern reported with acute morbillivirus infection in other species. In contrast, dolphins with positive morbillivirus antibody titers appeared to have at least a partially upregulated humoral immune response with significantly higher levels of gamma globulins than healthy dolphins, which may represent an antibody response to morbillivirus infection or other pathogens. These data suggest that subclinical dolphin morbillivirus infection in IRL dolphins may produce clinicoimmunopathologic perturbations that impact overall health.

  16. Behavior of dusky dolphins foraging on the deep-scattering layer in Kaikoura Canyon, New Zealand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benoit-Bird, Kelly; Wursig, Bernd; McFadden, Cynthia

    2003-04-01

    Little is known of foraging habits of sound-scattering layer consumers. A 200-kHz echosounder was used to survey dusky dolphins and the sound-scattering layer in winter 2002, in Kaikoura Canyon, New Zealand. Visual observations of dolphin surfacings occurred 84% of the time that dolphins were acoustically detected, confirming identifications from the acoustic data. Dusky dolphins were within the layer at 2000 h (about 1.5 h after dusk), within 125 m of the surface. As the layer rose to within 30 m of the surface at 0100 h, the observed depth of dolphins decreased presumably as the dolphins followed the vertical migration of their prey. The mean depth of dolphins was within the scattering layer except when the top of the layer was deeper than 125 m. Dusky dolphins often forage within large groups. Acoustically identified subgroups of coordinated animals ranged from 1 to 5 dolphins. Subgroup size varied with time of night, minimum depth of the scattering layer, and the variance of the food resource. The largest subgroups occurred when the scattering layer was closest to the surface, and when the layer was most heterogeneous. Time, depth of layer, and layer variance contributed significantly to predicting foraging dusky dolphin subgroup size.

  17. Dolphins Who Blow Bubbles: Anthropological Machines and Native Informants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lord, C.

    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

  18. 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…

  19. ISOLATION OF TOXOPLASMA GONDII FROM BOTTLENOSE DOLPHINS (TURSIOPS TRUNCATUS)

    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. In previous serological surveys > 90% of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the coasts of Florida, South Carolina, and California had antib...

  20. Dolphins Who Blow Bubbles: Anthropological Machines and Native Informants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lord, C.

    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

  1. Identification and Expression Profiles of microRNA in Dolphin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Segawa, Takao; Kobayashi, Yuki; Inamoto, Satoko; Suzuki, Miwa; Endoh, Tomoko; Itou, Takuya

    2016-02-01

    Recently, microRNAs (miRNAs) are focused on the role of biomarker because they are stable in serum and plasma, and some of them express in the specific organs and increase with the organ injury. Thus miRNAs may be very useful as biomarkers for monitoring the health and condition of dolphins and for detecting disorders in aquariums. Here, a small RNA library was made from dolphin lung, liver and spleen, and miRNA expression patterns were then determined for 15 different tissues. We identified 62 conserved miRNA homologs in the dolphin small RNA library and found high expression miRNAs in specific tissues: miR-125b and miR-221 were highly expressed in brain, miR-23b in heart, miR-199a and miR-223 in lung, and miR-122-5p in liver. Some of these tissue-enriched miRNAs may be useful as specific and sensitive diagnostic blood biomarkers for organ injury in dolphins.

  2. 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...

  3. Dolphins and African apes: comparisons of sympatric socio-ecology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bearzi, M.; Stanford, C.B.

    2007-01-01

    Dolphins and African apes are distantly related mammalian taxa that exhibit striking convergences in their socioecology. In both cetaceans and African apes, two or more closely related species sometimes occur in sympatry. However, detailed reviews of the ways in which sympatric associations of dolph

  4. Dolphins Who Blow Bubbles: Anthropological Machines and Native Informants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lord, C.

    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

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. First record of a white rough-toothed dolphin (Steno bredanensis) off West Africa including notes on rough-toothed dolphin surface behaviour

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boer, de M.N.

    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

  8. First record of a white rough-toothed dolphin (Steno bredanensis) off West Africa including notes on rough-toothed dolphin surface behaviour

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boer, de M.N.

    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 repr

  9. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cynthia Rowe Smith

    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.

  11. [Contact with dolphins as a method of rehabilitation of children with enuresis at health resorts].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lukina, L N

    2001-01-01

    The system of non-drug correction of the functional status of children with enuresis was studied by using specially trained dolphins. Guidelines and the functional units of a health-promoting complex were elaborated. The use of dolphin therapy caused a positive clinical effect in the examinees, particularly in preschool children, the efficiency of whose rehabilitation was twice higher than that in children from other age groups. The findings strongly favour the specific nature of conditioning procedures involving dolphins.

  12. The Effect of Touching a Dolphin on the EEG Slow Waves hi Children

    OpenAIRE

    HOMMA Ayako:筆頭著者; Hara, Hideki; MATSUZAKI Kumiko; SASAKI Miki; MASAOKA Yuri; Homma, Ikuo

    2011-01-01

    Among animal-facilitated therapies, dolphin-facilitated therapy has been shown to beneficially affect human behavior, emotion and speech ability. We recently showed that touching a dolphin reduced the respiratory rate and state anxiety in healthy children. In this study, we collected electroencephalographic data (EEG), widely used for examining various brain functions, before and after touching dolphins. We examined the relationship between EEG power spectra and individual trait anxiety score...

  13. Decline in relative abundance of bottlenose dolphins exposed to long-term disturbance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bejder, Lars; Samuels, Amy; Whitehead, Hal; Gales, Nick; Mann, Janet; Connor, Richard; Heithaus, Mike; Watson-Capps, Jana; Flaherty, Cindy; Krützen, Michael

    2006-12-01

    Studies evaluating effects of human activity on wildlife typically emphasize short-term behavioral responses from which it is difficult to infer biological significance or formulate plans to mitigate harmful impacts. Based on decades of detailed behavioral records, we evaluated long-term impacts of vessel activity on bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops sp.) in Shark Bay, Australia. We compared dolphin abundance within adjacent 36-km2 tourism and control sites, over three consecutive 4.5-year periods wherein research activity was relatively constant but tourism levels increased from zero, to one, to two dolphin-watching operators. A nonlinear logistic model demonstrated that there was no difference in dolphin abundance between periods with no tourism and periods in which one operator offered tours. As the number of tour operators increased to two, there was a significant average decline in dolphin abundance (14.9%; 95% CI=-20.8 to -8.23), approximating a decline of one per seven individuals. Concurrently, within the control site, the average increase in dolphin abundance was not significant (8.5%; 95% CI=-4.0 to +16.7). Given the substantially greater presence and proximity of tour vessels to dolphins relative to research vessels, tour-vessel activity contributed more to declining dolphin numbers within the tourism site than research vessels. Although this trend may not jeopardize the large, genetically diverse dolphin population of Shark Bay, the decline is unlikely to be sustainable for local dolphin tourism. A similar decline would be devastating for small, closed, resident, or endangered cetacean populations. The substantial effect of tour vessels on dolphin abundance in a region of low-level tourism calls into question the presumption that dolphin-watching tourism is benign.

  14. 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.

  15. Variation in external morphology of resident bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in Bahia San Antonio, Patagonia, Argentina.

    OpenAIRE

    Vermeulen, Els; Cammareri, Alejandro

    2010-01-01

    Two geographic variations of bottlenose dolphins were described in Argentina (Bastida & Rodriguez, 2003); bottlenose dolphins characterized by their triangular dorsal fin shape (coast of the province of Buenos Aires), and bottlenose dolphins characterized by their falcate dorsal fin shape (coast of the province of Chubut). It was stated that `their clear difference would indicate that both geographic forms are isolated¿ (Bastida & Rodriguez, 2003 p.137). A photo-identification study carrie...

  16. Measurement of hydrodynamic force generation by swimming dolphins using bubble DPIV.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fish, Frank E; Legac, Paul; Williams, Terrie M; Wei, Timothy

    2014-01-15

    Attempts to measure the propulsive forces produced by swimming dolphins have been limited. Previous uses of computational hydrodynamic models and gliding experiments have provided estimates of thrust production by dolphins, but these were indirect tests that relied on various assumptions. The thrust produced by two actively swimming bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) was directly measured using digital particle image velocimetry (DPIV). For dolphins swimming in a large outdoor pool, the DPIV method used illuminated microbubbles that were generated in a narrow sheet from a finely porous hose and a compressed air source. The movement of the bubbles was tracked with a high-speed video camera. Dolphins swam at speeds of 0.7 to 3.4 m s(-1) within the bubble sheet oriented along the midsagittal plane of the animal. The wake of the dolphin was visualized as the microbubbles were displaced because of the action of the propulsive flukes and jet flow. The oscillations of the dolphin flukes were shown to generate strong vortices in the wake. Thrust production was measured from the vortex strength through the Kutta-Joukowski theorem of aerodynamics. The dolphins generated up to 700 N during small amplitude swimming and up to 1468 N during large amplitude starts. The results of this study demonstrated that bubble DPIV can be used effectively to measure the thrust produced by large-bodied dolphins.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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...... longer than a few body lengths of the dolphin. Source level estimates drop with reducing range between the echolocating dolphins and the target as a function of 17 log(R). This may indicate either (1) an active form of time-varying gain in the biosonar independent of click intervals or (2) a bias...

  20. Humpback Dolphins (Genus Sousa) in India: An Overview of Status and Conservation Issues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutaria, Dipani; Panicker, Divya; Jog, Ketki; Sule, Mihir; Muralidharan, Rahul; Bopardikar, Isha

    2015-01-01

    This chapter aims to collate recent work done by different research teams along the Indian coast and presents research plans for the conservation and management of the genus Sousa in Indian waters. Humpback dolphins are the most common nearshore cetaceans found along the Indian coast. The taxonomy is confused, but two or more species of humpback dolphins may be present in India. Dedicated research on humpback dolphins and other cetaceans has been initiated only in the past few years and vast gaps in the ecology and conservation of the genus from the region remain. Dedicated and opportunistic research indicates that humpback dolphin presence is continuous along the west coast of India, owing to the contiguous favourable habitat of shallow nearshore waters, while along the east coast humpback dolphins are apparently found in pockets. Humpback dolphins are also the most numerous in incidental catch records from the coast, owing to the large overlap in space use with nearshore fisheries like small gillnets, trawls, shore seines and purse seines. Along many coastal sites, humpback dolphins are known to cause damage and depredation of fish catch of certain fishing gears, making them unpopular. At the same time, many fishers along the west coast have developed local dolphin-watching programmes as an alternate source of livelihood, providing positive impetus for conservation. However, research on the long-term effects of dolphin watching and its management is required. Some recommendations for more effective management of this species are made.

  1. 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.

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

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Luís, Ana Rita; 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...

  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.

  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.

  5. Monitoring underwater explosions in the habitat of resident bottlenose dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    dos Santos, Manuel E; Couchinho, Miguel N; Rita Luís, Ana; Gonçalves, Emanuel J

    2010-12-01

    Maintenance work on the harbor of Setúbal, in Portugal, required the removal of a 14-m deep rocky outcrop at the ship maneuver area, using about 35 kg of Gelamonite, a nitroglycerin-based high-explosive. This important harbor is located in the Sado estuary, a biologically rich environment and an important feeding area for a resident community of bottlenose dolphins. Using different safe range calculation models, a mitigation and monitoring plan was developed that minimized the risks of these underwater explosions for the dolphins. At our monitoring station, at 2 km from the demolition site, acoustic pressure levels in excess of 170 dB re 1 μPa (root-mean-square) were measured. Samples of dead fish collected at the site were indicative of shock trauma from the blasts.

  6. Acoustic Behaviour of Bottlenose Dolphins and Pilot Whales

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Frants Havmand

    2011-01-01

    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 toothed whales, the bottlenose dolphin and the short-finned pilot whale. The bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops sp.......) is one of the best known toothed whales due to studies in captivity over the last 50 years. In contrast, the short-finned pilot whale (Globicephala macrorhynchus) is a larger, deep-diving toothed whale that has been studied rather little, in part because their deep-diving ecology regularly takes them out...... their vocal behaviour and sound production to their different ecological niches and habitats. Toothed whales find and capture prey using a sophisticated biosonar system. Little is known about how toothed whales use their biosonar during a complex three-dimensional task of locating and capturing prey...

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. The Metabolic Cost of Click Production in Bottlenose Dolphins

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-09-30

    analysis continued through May 2014 with subsequent post-trial calibration of the instruments and metabolic baseline. APPROACH The metabolic ... metabolism , relative to baseline, for each individual trial. The results of this analysis are depicted in Figs. 3B and 4B. For both dolphins, the...period is the mass-specific metabolic rate during the submerged click production bout in ml O2 min-1 kg-1 and cEFD is the cumulative energy flux

  11. Training Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) for Artificial Insemination

    Science.gov (United States)

    1988-07-01

    TURSIOPS TRUNCATUS) FOR ARTIFICIAL INSEMINATION 12. PERSONAL AUTHOR(S) K. V. Keller, Jr. 1a. TYPE OF REPORT 13b. TIME COVERED 14. DATE OF REPORT IlYai. WMt...ATLANTIC BOTTLENOSE DOLPHINS (Tursiops truncatus) FOR ARTIFICIAL INSEMINATION Karl V. Keller Naval Ocean Systems Center, Hawaii Laboratory Kailua, HI 96734...INTRODUCTION The Naval Ocean Systems Center, Hawaii Laboratory, for the past eight years has maintained an artificial insemination (AI) program for

  12. High frequency sonar components of normal and hearing impaired dolphins.

    OpenAIRE

    Dye, David C.

    2000-01-01

    Approved for public release, distribution is unlimited A data acquisition device was constructed and tested to obtain toothed whale (Bottlenose Dolphin and Beluga Whale) sonar signals and digitally store them to a PC hard drive. The device had the capability of capturing sonar signals by means of a two-hydrophone array, and a digital video camera in a submersible housing. Cooperation with marine biologists at SSC San Diego enabled the sampling of three animals performing echolocation tasks...

  13. Cognitive adaptation of sonar gain control in the bottlenose dolphin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kloepper, Laura N; Smith, Adam B; Nachtigall, Paul E; Buck, John R; Simmons, James A; Pacini, Aude F

    2014-01-01

    Echolocating animals adjust the transmit intensity and receive sensitivity of their sonar in order to regulate the sensation level of their echoes; this process is often termed automatic gain control. Gain control is considered not to be under the animal's cognitive control, but previous investigations studied animals ensonifying targets or hydrophone arrays at predictable distances. To test whether animals maintain gain control at a fixed level in uncertain conditions, we measured changes in signal intensity for a bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) detecting a target at three target distances (2.5, 4 and 7 m) in two types of sessions: predictable and unpredictable. Predictable sessions presented the target at a constant distance; unpredictable sessions moved the target randomly between the three target positions. In the predictable sessions the dolphin demonstrated intensity distance compensation, increasing the emitted click intensity as the target distance increased. Additionally, as trials within sessions progressed, the animal adjusted its click intensity even from the first click in a click train, which is consistent with the animal expecting a target at a certain range. In the unpredictable sessions there was no significant difference of intensity with target distance until after the 7th click in a click train. Together, these results demonstrate that the bottlenose dolphin uses learning and expectation for sonar gain control.

  14. Spontaneous prosocial choice by captive bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakahara, Fumio; Komaba, Masayuki; Sato, Ryoichi; Ikeda, Hisako; Komaba, Kumiko; Kawakubo, Akihiro

    2017-02-01

    Dolphins exhibit prosocial behavior across several different contexts. However, only a few experimental studies have investigated the psychological mechanisms underlying this behavior. In this study, we investigated the mechanisms underlying prosociality in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). In the experiments, water shower devices, developed as environmental enrichment items, were used. Two paradigms were used to measure prosociality. The first was the prosocial choice task, involving the subject typically being offered one choice between two options. The first option provided a reward (take a shower) to both the subject and partner (prosocial choice). The second option provided a reward only to the subject (selfish choice). The second paradigm was the giving assistance task, involving the subject being provided a choice between providing instrumental help to the partner (prosocial choice) or doing nothing. It was observed that the subjects chose the prosocial choices in both paradigms. In these experiments, prosocial choices were spontaneously taken without requests from the partners. These results indicated that the dolphins show preference for other-regarding behavior. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Shared Reproductive State Enhances Female Associations in Dolphins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luciana M. Möller

    2008-01-01

    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.

  16. First record of an anomalously colored franciscana dolphin, Pontoporia blainvillei

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MARTA J. CREMER

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available On October 2011, a newborn franciscana dolphin with an anomalously coloration was sighted in Babitonga Bay, southern Brazil. The calf was totally white. Besides the potential mother and newborn, the group also had the presence of another adult, who always was swimming behind the pair. Both adults had the typical coloration of the species, with the back in grayish brown. The group, composed by the white franciscana calf, his pontential mother and one more adult, was reported in five occasions. The group was always in the same area where it was first recorded and showed the same position during swimming. Between first and last sighting of the white calf (113 days the color has not changed. This is the first case of a white franciscana dolphin. This coloration has never been reported despite the high number of dead franciscanas recovered each year along the distribution of the species, resulting from accidental capture in fishing nets. This fact leads us to believe that this is a very rare characteristic for this species. We considered the possibility that this franciscana could be an albino dolphin.

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

    CERN Document Server

    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.

  18. Risso's dolphins alter daily resting pattern in response to whale watching at the Azores

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Visser, Fleur; Hartman, Karin L.; Rood, Ente J. J.; Hendriks, Arthur J. E.; Zult, Daan B.; Wolff, Wim J.; Huisman, Jef; Pierce, Graham J.

    2011-01-01

    P>Behavioral responses of Risso's dolphins (Grampus griseus) to whale watching vessels were studied off Pico Island, Azores. Dolphin behavior was studied from a land-based lookout, enabling observations of groups in the absence and presence of vessels. The number of whale watching vessels showed a c

  19. Risso’s dolphins alter daily resting pattern in response to whale watching at the Azores

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    F. Visser; K.L. Hartman; E.J.J. Rood; A.J.E. Hendriks; D.B. Zult; W.J. Wolff; J. Huisman; G.J. Pierce

    2011-01-01

    Behavioral responses of Risso’s dolphins (Grampus griseus) to whale watching vessels were studied off Pico Island, Azores. Dolphin behavior was studied from a land-based lookout, enabling observations of groups in the absence and presence of vessels. The number of whale watching vessels showed a cle

  20. Examination of Naturally-Exposed Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) for Microsporidia, Cryptosporidium, and Giarda

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) live-captured in coastal South Carolina and Florida as well as dolphins stranded in coastal South Carolina were examined for the presence of Microsporidia, Cryptosporidium, and Giardia. DNA extracted from feces or rectal swabs was amplified by PCR using para...

  1. 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

  2. Dolphin Morbillivirus in a Fin Whale (Balaenoptera physalus) in Denmark, 2016

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jo, Wendy K.; Grilo, Miguel L.; Wohlsein, Peter

    2017-01-01

    We studied the etiology of encephalitis in a fin whale (Balaenoptera physalus) that stranded in 2016 on the coast of Denmark. Dolphin morbillivirus (DMV) was detected in the brain and other organs. Phylogenetics showed close relation to DMV isolated from a striped dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba...

  3. First record of Fraser's dolphin Lagenodelphis hosei for the Dutch Caribbean

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Witte, R.H.; Buurt, van G.; Debrot, A.O.; Bermudez-Villapol, L.A.; Simal, F.

    2012-01-01

    A dead dolphin found on Bonaire in August 2011 is identified as adult Fraser's dolphin Lagenodelphis hosei, a new species for the Dutch Caribbean. A first closer examination showed a collapsed lung, stomach parasite infection and abundant mouth ulceration as indications of its health status. The

  4. First record of Fraser's dolphin Lagenodelphis hosei for the Dutch Caribbean

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Witte, R.H.; Buurt, van G.; Debrot, A.O.; Bermudez-Villapol, L.A.; Simal, F.

    2012-01-01

    A dead dolphin found on Bonaire in August 2011 is identified as adult Fraser's dolphin Lagenodelphis hosei, a new species for the Dutch Caribbean. A first closer examination showed a collapsed lung, stomach parasite infection and abundant mouth ulceration as indications of its health status. The ani

  5. Mediterranean Fin Whales (Balaenoptera physalus) Threatened by Dolphin MorbilliVirus

    Science.gov (United States)

    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. PMID:26812485

  6. Predictive modeling of spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris) resting habitat in the main Hawaiian Islands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thorne, Lesley H; Johnston, David W; Urban, Dean L; Tyne, Julian; Bejder, Lars; Baird, Robin W; Yin, Suzanne; Rickards, Susan H; Deakos, Mark H; Mobley, Joseph R; Pack, Adam A; Chapla Hill, Marie

    2012-01-01

    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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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…

  9. 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…

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Common dolphin (Delphinus delphis bycatch in New Zealand commercial trawl fisheries.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  13. Common dolphin (Delphinus delphis) bycatch in New Zealand commercial trawl fisheries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, Finlay N; Abraham, Edward R; Berkenbusch, Katrin

    2013-01-01

    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 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Organohalogen contaminants and metabolites in cerebrospinal fluid and cerebellum gray matter in short-beaked common dolphins and Atlantic white-sided dolphins from the western North Atlantic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Montie, Eric W., E-mail: emontie@marine.usf.ed [Departments of Biology (EWM and MEH) and Marine Chemistry and Geochemistry (CMR), Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution - WHOI, Woods Hole, MA 02543 (United States); Reddy, Christopher M. [Departments of Biology (EWM and MEH) and Marine Chemistry and Geochemistry (CMR), Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution - WHOI, Woods Hole, MA 02543 (United States); Gebbink, Wouter A. [Wildlife and Landscape Science Directorate, Science and Technology Branch, Environment Canada, National Wildlife Research Centre, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario K1A OH3 (Canada); Touhey, Katie E. [Cape Cod Stranding Network, Buzzards Bay, MA 02542 (United States); Hahn, Mark E. [Departments of Biology (EWM and MEH) and Marine Chemistry and Geochemistry (CMR), Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution - WHOI, Woods Hole, MA 02543 (United States); Letcher, Robert J. [Wildlife and Landscape Science Directorate, Science and Technology Branch, Environment Canada, National Wildlife Research Centre, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario K1A OH3 (Canada)

    2009-08-15

    Concentrations of several congeners and classes of organohalogen contaminants (OHCs) and/or their metabolites, namely organochlorine pesticides (OCs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), hydroxylated-PCBs (OH-PCBs), methylsulfonyl-PCBs (MeSO{sub 2}-PCBs), polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE) flame retardants, and OH-PBDEs, were measured in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of short-beaked common dolphins (n = 2), Atlantic white-sided dolphins (n = 8), and gray seal (n = 1) from the western North Atlantic. In three Atlantic white-sided dolphins, cerebellum gray matter (GM) was also analyzed. The levels of OCs, PCBs, MeSO{sub 2}-PCBs, PBDEs, and OH-PBDEs in cerebellum GM were higher than the concentrations in CSF. 4-OH-2,3,3',4',5-pentachlorobiphenyl (4-OH-CB107) was the only detectable OH-PCB congener present in CSF. The sum (SIGMA) OH-PCBs/SIGMA PCB concentration ratio in CSF was approximately two to three orders of magnitude greater than the ratio in cerebellum GM for dolphins. - Organohalogens and/or metabolites in cerebrospinal fluid and cerebellum gray matter in short-beaked common dolphins, Atlantic white-sided dolphins, and gray seal.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cozzi, Bruno; Roncon, Giulia; Granato, Alberto; Giurisato, Maristella; Castagna, Maura; Peruffo, Antonella; Panin, Mattia; Ballarin, Cristina; Montelli, Stefano; Pirone, Andrea

    2014-01-01

    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 eight 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

  18. 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

  19. Experimental measurement of dolphin thrust generated during a tail stand using DPIV

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Timothy; Fish, Frank; Williams, Terrie; Wu, Vicki; Sherman, Erica; Misfeldt, Mitchel; Ringenberg, Hunter; Rogers, Dylan

    2016-11-01

    The thrust generated by dolphins doing tail stands was measured using DPIV. The technique entailed measuring vortex strength associated with the tail motion and correlating it to above water video sequences showing the amount of the dolphin's body that was being lifted out of the water. The underlying drivers for this research included: i) understanding the physiology, hydrodynamics and efficiency of dolphin locomotion, ii) developing non-invasive measurement techniques for studying marine swimming and iii) quantifying the actual propulsive capabilities of these animals. Two different bottlenose dolphins at the Long Marine Lab at UC-Santa Cruz were used as test subjects. Application of the Kutta-Joukowski Theorem on measured vortex circulations yielded thrust values that were well correlated with estimates of dolphin body weight being supported above water. This demonstrates that the tail motion can be interpreted as a flapping hydrofoil that can generate a sustained thrust roughly equal to the dolphin's weight. Videos of DPIV measurements overlaid with the dolphins will be presented along with thrust/weight data.

  20. Increased number of whistles of bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus, arising from interaction with people.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akiyama, Junko; Ohta, Mitsuaki

    2007-02-01

    The acoustic mode is the most reasonable means for social animals such as dolphins to maintain contact in the underwater habitat, and has been developed since they moved to the sea. This study investigates variations in dolphin vocalizations under the following conditions in a captive environment: 1) before feeding (Pre-feeding), 2) during feeding (Feeding), 3) during free time without the presence of people (Free), 4) during interaction with people located upon a float (Float), 5) during interaction with people in the water (Water). During the experiments, a total of 2642 whistles were extracted from sonogram data using a spectrogram. About 44% of the total whistles were observed during Pre-feeding (1171/2642), and the number recorded during Free, when people were absent, was the smallest. The acoustic contours of dolphin whistles differed in different situations: convex, wave, and trill whistles were made repeatedly during Pre-feeding, thereby being more common at this time than at other times. The situation of Feeding saw an increased number of Upsweeps, which might be related to the use of echolocation. The lower frequencies were recorded during Pre-feeding, reflecting the emotion related to the dolphin's hunger. The results of this study indicate that dolphins increase their vocalization during interaction with people, suggesting that interactions with dolphins provide an effective treatment for human health problems, which is discussed with a reference article in this study. Vocal data obtained during contact with humans might serve as an important index for the dolphin-assisted therapy.

  1. Humpback Dolphins of Western Australia: A Review of Current Knowledge and Recommendations for Future Management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanf, Daniella M; Hunt, Tim; Parra, Guido J

    2016-01-01

    Among the many cetacean species that occupy Australian coastal waters, Australian humpback dolphins, Sousa sahulensis, are one of the most vulnerable to extirpation due to human activities. This review summarises the existing knowledge, presently occurring and planned research projects, and current conservation measures for humpback dolphins in Western Australia (WA). Rapid and wide-scale coastal development along the northern WA coastline has occurred despite a lack of baseline data for inshore dolphins and, therefore, without a precautionary approach to their conservation. The distribution, abundance, habitat use, and population structure of humpback dolphins remain poorly understood. Less than 1% of their inferred distribution has so far been studied to understand local population demography. The sparse data available suggest that WA humpback dolphins occur as localised populations in low numbers within a range of inshore habitats, including both clear and turbid coastal waters. Marine protected areas cover a third of their inferred distribution in WA, but the efficacy of these reserves in protecting local cetacean populations is unknown. There is a pressing need for coordination and collaboration among scientists, government agencies, industry bodies, Traditional Owners, and local community groups to fill in the gaps of information on humpback dolphins in WA. The recently developed strategies and sampling guidelines developed by state and federal governments should serve as a best practise standard for collection of data aimed at assessing the conservation status of humpback dolphins in WA and Australia.

  2. First record of Pantropical spotted dolphins Stenella attenuata in the Yellow Sea, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Fuxing; Wang, Xianyan; Zhang, Qiuxia; Miao, Xing; Zhang, Ting; Zhu, Qian

    2015-07-01

    On October 1, 2009, sixteen dolphins were obtained from fishermen by incidental catching in the Yellow Sea, China. As the dolphins' skin color was ambiguous, morphological parameters were measured, and mitochondrial DNA cytochrome b (Cyt b) gene sequence was studied to identify the species. Morphological characteristics were consistent with Pantropical spotted dolphins, Stenella attenuata. Furthermore, a partial mitochondrial DNA cytochrome b (Cyt b) gene sequence as long as 328-bp was studied by extracting genomic DNA from the skins, and six haplotypes were detected in the sixteen dolphins. By comparing homologous sequences available in GenBank (www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov), all the six haplotypes had maximal genetic similarity with Pantropical spotted dolphin. Eight species of cetacean (whales and dolphins) are now recognised in the Yellow Sea. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first record of Pantropical spotted dolphins from this region. Despite this species being listed as a Grade II National Key Protected Animal since 1988, little is known of its biology in Chinese waters. We recommend remedial research be undertaken to ensure appropriate management.

  3. Anaemia, hypothyroidism and immune suppression associated with polychlorinated biphenyl exposure in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwacke, Lori H; Zolman, Eric S; Balmer, Brian C; De Guise, Sylvain; George, R Clay; Hoguet, Jennifer; Hohn, Aleta A; Kucklick, John R; Lamb, Steve; Levin, Milton; Litz, Jenny A; McFee, Wayne E; Place, Ned J; Townsend, Forrest I; Wells, Randall S; Rowles, Teresa K

    2012-01-01

    Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), persistent chemicals widely used for industrial purposes, have been banned in most parts of the world for decades. Owing to their bioaccumulative nature, PCBs are still found in high concentrations in marine mammals, particularly those that occupy upper trophic positions. While PCB-related health effects have been well-documented in some mammals, studies among dolphins and whales are limited. We conducted health evaluations of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) near a site on the Georgia, United States coast heavily contaminated by Aroclor 1268, an uncommon PCB mixture primarily comprised of octa- through deca-chlorobiphenyl congeners. A high proportion (26%) of sampled dolphins suffered anaemia, a finding previously reported from primate laboratory studies using high doses of a more common PCB mixture, Aroclor 1254. In addition, the dolphins showed reduced thyroid hormone levels and total thyroxine, free thyroxine and triiodothyronine negatively correlated with PCB concentration measured in blubber (p = 0.039, dolphins when compared with previously sampled reference sites, and therefore probably did not contribute to the observed correlations. Our results clearly demonstrate that dolphins are vulnerable to PCB-related toxic effects, at least partially mediated through the endocrine system. The severity of the effects suggests that the PCB mixture to which the Georgia dolphins were exposed has substantial toxic potential and further studies are warranted to elucidate mechanisms and potential impacts on other top-level predators, including humans, who regularly consume fish from the same marine waters.

  4. Observations on Australian Humpback Dolphins (Sousa sahulensis) in Waters of the Pacific Islands and New Guinea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beasley, Isabel; Jedensjö, Maria; Wijaya, Gede Mahendra; Anamiato, Jim; Kahn, Benjamin; Kreb, Danielle

    2016-01-01

    The Australian humpback dolphin, Sousa sahulensis, has recently been described to occur in northern Australian coastal waters. However, its distribution in adjacent waters of the Pacific Islands and New Guinea remains largely unknown. Although there have been few studies conducted on inshore dolphins in these regions, the available information records humpback dolphins primarily from the Kikori Delta in Papua New Guinea, and Bird's Head Seascape in West Papua. Research in southern Papua New Guinea indicates that humpback dolphins are indeed S. sahulensis, based on cranial and external morphometrics, external colouration and the preliminary genetic analysis presented here. A similar situation exists for the Australian snubfin dolphin, Orcaella heinsohni, where it is assumed that the species also occurs along the Sahul Shelf coastal waters of northern Australia and New Guinea. There are anecdotal reports of direct catch of Australian humpback dolphins for use as shark bait, coastal development is increasing, and anthropogenic impacts will continue to escalate as human populations expand into previously uninhabited regions. Future research and management priorities for the Governments of the Pacific Islands and Indonesia will need to focus on inshore dolphins in known regional hotspots, as current bycatch levels appear unsustainable.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Rachel Marie; Kucklick, John R; Balmer, Brian C; Wells, Randall S; Chanton, Jeffrey P; Nowacek, Douglas P

    2012-05-15

    Differences in priority organic pollutants (POPs), analyzed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, and stable isotope ratios (δ(13)C, δ(34)S, and δ(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 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. δ(34)S and δ(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. 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. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Tidal and seasonal influences in dolphin habitat use in a southern Brazilian estuary

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renan Lopes Paitach

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available In this study we describe how franciscana and Guiana dolphin habitat use is influenced by tidal cycles and seasonality in Babitonga Bay. The franciscanas use a greater area in winter and a smaller area in summer, but the extent of the area used did not vary with the tide. Guiana dolphins did not change the extent of the area used within seasons or tides. Franciscanas remained closer to the mouth of the bay and the islands during ebb tide, moving to the inner bay areas and closer to the mainland coast during flood tide. Guiana dolphin used areas closer to the mainland coast during the flood tide. Guiana dolphin patterns of movement do not seem to be related to the tidal current. Franciscanas used sandier areas while Guiana dolphins preferred muddy areas, with some seasonal variation. We suggest that these dolphins modify their distributions based on habitat accessibility and prey availability. This study enhances our knowledge of critical habitat characteristics for franciscana and Guiana dolphins, and these factors should be considered when planning local human activities targeting species conservation.

  7. Genetic diversity of coastal bottlenose dolphins revealed by structurally and functionally diverse hemoglobins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Remington, Nicole; Stevens, Robert D; Wells, Randall S; Holn, Aleta; Dhungana, Suraj; Taboy, Celine H; Crumbliss, Alvin L; Henkens, Robert; Bonaventura, Celia

    2007-08-15

    Studies of structure-function relationships in the respiratory proteins of marine mammals revealed unexpected variations in the number and types of hemoglobins (Hbs) present in coastal bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus. We obtained blood samples from free-ranging coastal bottlenose dolphins as a component of capture-release studies. We found that the oxygen-binding functions of bottlenose dolphin blood are poised between effector-saturated and unsaturated levels, enabling exercise-dependent shifts in oxygen transfer functions. Isolated bottlenose dolphin Hbs showed elevated pH sensitivities (Bohr effects) and appreciably lower oxygen affinities than adult human Hb in the absence of allosteric effectors. These properties may be an adaptive modification that enhances oxygen delivery during diving episodes when oxygen tensions and effector levels are low. The Hbs of individual dolphins showed similar oxygen affinities, responses to effectors, and expression of heme-heme interaction in oxygen binding, but differed in their redox potentials and rates of autoxidation. The heterogeneity suggested by these functional variations in Hbs of individual dolphins was born out by variations in the molecular weights and numbers of their alpha and beta globin chains. Although coastal bottlenose dolphins were expected to have a single type of Hb, the mass differences observed revealed considerable genetic diversity. There were multiple Hb forms in some individuals and differences in Hb patterns among individuals within the same community.

  8. 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.

  9. Vertebral column anomalies in Indo-Pacific and Atlantic humpback dolphins Sousa spp.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weir, Caroline R; Wang, John Y

    2016-08-09

    Conspicuous vertebral column abnormalities in humpback dolphins (genus Sousa) were documented for the first time during 3 photo-identification field studies of small populations in Taiwan, Senegal and Angola. Seven Taiwanese humpback dolphins S. chinensis taiwanensis with vertebral column anomalies (lordosis, kyphosis or scoliosis) were identified, along with 2 possible cases of vertebral osteomyelitis. There was evidence from several individuals photographed over consecutive years that the anomalies became more pronounced with age. Three Atlantic humpback dolphins S. teuszii were observed with axial deviations of the vertebral column (lordosis and kyphosis). Another possible case was identified in a calf, and 2 further animals were photographed with dorsal indents potentially indicative of anomalies. Vertebral column anomalies of humpback dolphins were predominantly evident in the lumbo-caudal region, but one Atlantic humpback dolphin had an anomaly in the cervico-thoracic region. Lordosis and kyphosis occurred simultaneously in several individuals. Apart from the described anomalies, all dolphins appeared in good health and were not obviously underweight or noticeably compromised in swim speed. This study presents the first descriptions of vertebral column anomalies in the genus Sousa. The causative factors for the anomalies were unknown in every case and are potentially diverse. Whether these anomalies result in reduced fitness of individuals or populations merits attention, as both the Taiwanese and Atlantic humpback dolphin are species of high conservation concern.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. Interaural intensity and latency difference in the dolphin's auditory system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popov, V V; Supin AYa

    1991-12-09

    Binaural hearing mechanisms were measured in dolphins (Inia geoffrensis) by recording the auditory nerve evoked response from the body surface. The azimuthal position of a sound source at 10-15 degrees from the longitudinal axis elicited interaural intensity disparity up to 20 dB and interaural latency difference as large as 250 microseconds. The latter was many times greater than the acoustical interaural time delay. This latency difference seems to be caused by the intensity disparity. The latency difference seems to be an effective way of coding of intensity disparity.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Organochlorine pesticides, polychlorinated biphenyls, and polybrominated diphenyl ethers in Irrawaddy dolphins from India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kannan, K; Ramu, K; Kajiwara, N; Sinha, R K; Tanabe, S

    2005-10-01

    The Irrawaddy dolphin (Orcaella brevirostris) is at risk of extinction throughout its range as a result of incidental catches, habitat degradation, and pollution. Populations of Irrawaddy dolphins are constrained by the species' narrow habitat requirement-lagoons, estuaries, rivers, and lakes-and are therefore particularly vulnerable to the effects of human activities. In this study, for the first time, concentrations of organochlorine (OC) pesticides, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) were determined in tissues of Irrawaddy dolphins collected from Chilika Lake, India, to understand the status of contamination. Dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane and its metabolites (DDTs) were the predominant contaminants found in Irrawaddy dolphins; the highest concentration found was 10,000 ng/g lipid weight in blubber. Hexachlorocyclohexanes (HCHs) were the second most prevalent contaminants in dolphin tissues. Concentrations of PCBs, chlordanes, hexachlorobenzene, tris(4-chlorophenyl)methane, and tris(4-chlorophenyl)methanol were in the ranges of few ng/g to few hundreds of ng/g on a lipid-weight basis. In general, concentrations of OC pesticides and PCBs in Irrawaddy dolphins were lower than the concentrations reported for coastal and riverine dolphins collected in Asia. PBDEs were detected in the blubber of Irrawaddy dolphins at concentrations ranging from 0.98 to 18 ng/g lipid weight. BDE congener 47 accounted for 60% to 75% of the total PBDE concentrations. Although these results establish the baseline levels of persistent organic pollutants in Irrawaddy dolphins, efforts should be made to decrease the sources of contamination by DDTs and HCHs in Chilika Lake.

  16. Pulmonary angiomatosis and hemangioma in common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) stranded in Canary Islands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Díaz-Delgado, Josué; Arbelo, Manuel; Sacchini, Simona; Quesada-Canales, Óscar; Andrada, Marisa; Rivero, Miguel; Fernández, Antonio

    2012-08-01

    Vascular tumors and disorders, like angiomatosis, are rarely described in cetacean species. A retrospective histological study was carried out on lung samples from 35 common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) stranded in the Canary Islands coasts looking for morphological vascular changes and likely related causes. Twenty-five out of thirty-five (71%) common dolphins showed focal or multifocal angiomatosis-like lesions. A high association between this type of vascular proliferation and parasitic infestation was observed. In addition, a single pulmonary cavernous hemangioma not previously reported in common dolphins is presented.

  17. 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.

  18. Assessing the impact of bycatch on dolphin populations: the case of the common dolphin in the eastern North Atlantic.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Mannocci

    Full Text Available 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 information to monitor our study population. Necropsy analysis provided an estimate of individual age and reproductive state. Then we estimated effective survivorship (including natural and human-induced mortality, age at first reproduction and pregnancy rates. Reproductive parameters were consistent with literature, but effective survivorship was unexpectedly low. Demographic parameters were then used as inputs in two models. A constant parameter matrix proposed an effective growth rate of -5.5±0.5%, corresponding to the current situation (including bycatch mortality. Subsequently, deterministic projections suggested that the population would be reduced to 20% of its current size in 30 years and would be extinct in 100 years. The demographic invariant model suggested a maximum growth rate of +4.5±0.09%, corresponding to the optimal demographic situation. Then, a risk analysis incorporating Potential Biological Removal (PBR, based on two plausible scenarii for stock structure suggested that bycatch level was unsustainable for the neritic population of the Bay of Biscay under a two-stock scenario. In depth assessment of stock structure and improved observer programs to provide scientifically robust bycatch estimates are needed. Effective conservation measures would be reducing bycatch to less than 50% of the current level in the neritic stock to reach PBR. Our approach provided indicators of the status and trajectory of the common dolphin population in the

  19. Lacaziosis and lacaziosis-like prevalence among wild, common bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus from the west coast of Florida, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burdett Hart, Leslie; Rotstein, Dave S; Wells, Randall S; Bassos-Hull, Kim; Schwacke, Lori H

    2011-05-24

    Lacaziosis (lobomycosis; Lacazia loboi) is a fungal skin disease that naturally occurs only in humans and dolphins. The first reported case of lacaziosis in a bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus occurred in 1970 in Sarasota Bay, Florida, USA, and subsequent photo-ID monitoring of the Sarasota Bay dolphin population has revealed persistence of the disease. The objectives of this study were to estimate lacaziosis prevalence (P) in 2 bottlenose dolphin populations on the west coast of Florida (Sarasota Bay and Charlotte Harbor) and compare disease occurrence to other published estimates of lacaziosis in dolphin populations across the globe. Historic photographic records of dolphins captured and released for health assessment purposes (Sarasota Bay) and photo-ID studies (Charlotte Harbor) were screened for evidence of lesions consistent with lacaziosis. Health assessment data revealed a prevalence of lacaziosis in the Sarasota Bay bottlenose dolphin population between 2 and 3%, and analyses of photo-ID data provided a lacaziosis-like prevalence estimate of 2% for Charlotte Harbor dolphins. With the exception of lacaziosis prevalence estimates for dolphins inhabiting the Indian River Lagoon (P = 0.068; P = 0.12), no statistically significant differences were seen among Sarasota Bay, Charlotte Harbor, and other published estimates. Although lacaziosis is a rare disease among these dolphin populations, studies that assess disease burden among different populations can assist with the surveillance of this zoonotic pathogen.

  20. Gene–culture coevolution in whales and dolphins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitehead, Hal

    2017-01-01

    Whales and dolphins (Cetacea) have excellent social learning skills as well as a long and strong mother–calf bond. These features produce stable cultures, and, in some species, sympatric groups with different cultures. There is evidence and speculation that this cultural transmission of behavior has affected gene distributions. Culture seems to have driven killer whales into distinct ecotypes, which may be incipient species or subspecies. There are ecotype-specific signals of selection in functional genes that correspond to cultural foraging behavior and habitat use by the different ecotypes. The five species of whale with matrilineal social systems have remarkably low diversity of mtDNA. Cultural hitchhiking, the transmission of functionally neutral genes in parallel with selective cultural traits, is a plausible hypothesis for this low diversity, especially in sperm whales. In killer whales the ecotype divisions, together with founding bottlenecks, selection, and cultural hitchhiking, likely explain the low mtDNA diversity. Several cetacean species show habitat-specific distributions of mtDNA haplotypes, probably the result of mother–offspring cultural transmission of migration routes or destinations. In bottlenose dolphins, remarkable small-scale differences in haplotype distribution result from maternal cultural transmission of foraging methods, and large-scale redistributions of sperm whale cultural clans in the Pacific have likely changed mitochondrial genetic geography. With the acceleration of genomics new results should come fast, but understanding gene–culture coevolution will be hampered by the measured pace of research on the socio-cultural side of cetacean biology. PMID:28739936

  1. OpenDolphin: presentation models for compelling user interfaces

    CERN Document Server

    CERN. Geneva

    2014-01-01

    Shared applications run on the server. They still need a display, though, be it on the web or on the desktop. OpenDolphin introduces a shared presentation model to clearly differentiate between "what" to display and "how" to display. The "what" is managed on the server and is independent of the UI technology whereas the "how" can fully exploit the UI capabilities like the ubiquity of the web or the power of the desktop in terms of interactivity, animations, effects, 3D worlds, and local devices. If you run a server-centric architecture and still seek to provide the best possible user experience, then this talk is for you. About the speaker Dierk König (JavaOne Rock Star) works as a fellow for Canoo Engineering AG, Basel, Switzerland. He is a committer to many open-source projects including OpenDolphin, Groovy, Grails, GPars and GroovyFX. He is lead author of the "Groovy in Action" book, which is among ...

  2. Gene-culture coevolution in whales and dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitehead, Hal

    2017-07-24

    Whales and dolphins (Cetacea) have excellent social learning skills as well as a long and strong mother-calf bond. These features produce stable cultures, and, in some species, sympatric groups with different cultures. There is evidence and speculation that this cultural transmission of behavior has affected gene distributions. Culture seems to have driven killer whales into distinct ecotypes, which may be incipient species or subspecies. There are ecotype-specific signals of selection in functional genes that correspond to cultural foraging behavior and habitat use by the different ecotypes. The five species of whale with matrilineal social systems have remarkably low diversity of mtDNA. Cultural hitchhiking, the transmission of functionally neutral genes in parallel with selective cultural traits, is a plausible hypothesis for this low diversity, especially in sperm whales. In killer whales the ecotype divisions, together with founding bottlenecks, selection, and cultural hitchhiking, likely explain the low mtDNA diversity. Several cetacean species show habitat-specific distributions of mtDNA haplotypes, probably the result of mother-offspring cultural transmission of migration routes or destinations. In bottlenose dolphins, remarkable small-scale differences in haplotype distribution result from maternal cultural transmission of foraging methods, and large-scale redistributions of sperm whale cultural clans in the Pacific have likely changed mitochondrial genetic geography. With the acceleration of genomics new results should come fast, but understanding gene-culture coevolution will be hampered by the measured pace of research on the socio-cultural side of cetacean biology.

  3. Prey consumed by Guiana dolphin Sotalia guianensis (Cetacea, Delphinidae and franciscana dolphin Pontoporia blainvillei (Cetacea, Pontoporiidae in an estuarine environment in southern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marta J. Cremer

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available The present study provides information about the diet of sympatric populations of small cetaceans in the Babitonga Bay estuary. This is the first study on the diet of these species in direct sympatry. The stomach contents of seven Guiana dolphins Sotalia guianensis and eight franciscanas Pontoporia blainvillei were analyzed. The prey of both cetaceans was mostly teleost fishes, followed by cephalopods. We identified 13 teleost fishes as part of the diet of the franciscanas, and 20 as part of the diet of Guiana dolphins. Lolliguncula brevis was the only cephalopod recorded, and was the most important prey for both cetaceans. Stellifer rastrifer and Gobionellus oceanicus were also important for franciscana, so as Mugil curema and Micropogonias furnieri were important for Guiana dolphins. Stellifer rastrifer and Cetengraulis edentulus were the fishes with the highest frequency of occurrence for franciscana (50%, while Achirus lineatus, C. edentulus, S. brasiliensis, Cynoscion leiarchus, M. furnieri, M. curema, Diapterus rhombeus, Eugerres brasilianus and G. oceanicus showed 28.6% of frequency of occurrence for Guiana dolphins. Franciscanas captured greater cephalopods than the Guiana dolphins in both total length (z= -3.38; n= 40; p< 0.05 and biomass (z = -2.46; n = 40; p<0.05. All of the prey species identified occur inside the estuary, which represents a safe habitat against predators and food availability, reinforcing the importance of the Babitonga Bay for these cetacean populations.

  4. Dolphin Morbillivirus and Toxoplasma gondii coinfection in a Mediterranean fin whale (Balaenoptera physalus)

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Mazzariol, Sandro; Marcer, Federica; Mignone, Walter; Serracca, Laura; Goria, Mariella; Marsili, Letizia; Di Guardo, Giovanni; Casalone, Cristina

    2012-01-01

    ... by microscopic and molecular methods. Following the detailed necropsy carried out on this whale, molecular analysis revealed, for the first time, the simultaneous presence of a Dolphin Morbillivirus (DMV...

  5. How dolphins see the world: a comparison with chimpanzees and humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomonaga, Masaki; Uwano, Yuka; Saito, Toyoshi

    2014-01-16

    Bottlenose dolphins use auditory (or echoic) information to recognise their environments, and many studies have described their echolocation perception abilities. However, relatively few systematic studies have examined their visual perception. We tested dolphins on a visual-matching task using two-dimensional geometric forms including various features. Based on error patterns, we used multidimensional scaling to analyse perceptual similarities among stimuli. In addition to dolphins, we conducted comparable tests with terrestrial species: chimpanzees were tested on a computer-controlled matching task and humans were tested on a rating task. The overall perceptual similarities among stimuli in dolphins were similar to those in the two species of primates. These results clearly indicate that the visual world is perceived similarly by the three species of mammals, even though each has adapted to a different environment and has differing degrees of dependence on vision.

  6. Systemic herpesvirus and morbillivirus co-infection in a striped dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soto, S; González, B; Willoughby, K; Maley, M; Olvera, A; Kennedy, S; Marco, A; Domingo, M

    2012-01-01

    During 2007 a dolphin morbillivirus epizootic affected the western Mediterranean and several striped dolphins (Stenella coeruleoalba) stranded on the Catalonian coasts. One of those animals had severe lymphoid depletion, necrosis and syncytial formation in lymph nodes and spleen, with large basophilic nuclear inclusions compatible with herpesvirus detected by immunohistochemical and ultrastructural examination. Non-suppurative encephalitis with associated morbillivirus antigen and morbillivirus antigen within alveolar macrophages were also observed. A pan-herpesvirus nested polymerase chain reaction amplified a sequence virtually identical to two cetacean herpesvirus sequences previously identified in systemic infections in an Atlantic Cuvier's beaked whale (Ziphius cavirostris) and in a Mediterranean striped dolphin. The herpesviral infection was probably secondary to the immunosuppression caused by the morbillivirus. To our knowledge, this is the first report of a cetacean co-infected by dolphin morbillivirus and herpesvirus with evidence of lesions attributable to both viruses.

  7. 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...

  8. Feeding and growth in a captive-born bottlenose dolphin Tursiops ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    1991-06-12

    Jun 12, 1991 ... The feeding and growth of a captive-born bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus calf were studied for 30 .... Age determination through tooth sectioning indicated the ..... ineffectual, but is a prerequisite behaviour in later stages.

  9. Observations on inshore and pelagic Dolphins on the South-Eastern Cape coast of South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. S Saayman

    1972-01-01

    Full Text Available The occurrence, size and seaward distribution of schools of inshore and pelagic dolphins is described for three study areas on the south-eastern Cape coast (Algoa Bay; the Tsitsikama Coastal National Park and Plettenberg Bay. Inshore dolphins {Tursiops and Sousa sp. frequented the coastline in relatively small schools whereas pelagic dolphins {Delphinus delphis and Stenella caeruleoalba occurred in very large schools far out to sea. Different ecological zones were used by Sousa for feeding and for social behaviour and maintenance activities. The frequency of occurrence of Sousa at Plettenberg Bay was not affected by seasonal fluctuations in sea surface temperatures. The role of dolphins as predators and their implication in the regulation of the ecosystem of the Tsitsikama Coastal National Park is discussed.

  10. SWFSC/MMTD/ETP: Dolphin-Tuna Tracking Studies (DTTS) 1992-1993

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This research was designed to better understand the nature of the dolphin-tuna bond in the eastern tropical Pacific Ocean. In this study, researchers attempted to...

  11. 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...

  12. Randomised controlled trial of animal facilitated therapy with dolphins in the treatment of depression

    OpenAIRE

    Antonioli, Christian; Reveley, Michael A

    2005-01-01

    Objective To evaluate the effectiveness of animal facilitated therapy with dolphins, controlling for the influence of the natural setting, in the treatment of mild to moderate depression and in the context of the biophilia hypothesis.

  13. 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...

  14. Pathophysiology of Stress in Wild and Managed-Care Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-30

    parameters extending our knowledge and application of such measures. PRESENTATIONS/PUBLICATIONS ABSTRACTS - Oral presentations accepted for 2013...Clinicopathologic findings from Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) exhibiting cytologic evidence of gastric inflammation. Journal of Zoo and

  15. Fatal Asphyxiation in Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the Indian River Lagoon

    OpenAIRE

    Megan Stolen; Judy St Leger; Wendy Noke Durden; Teresa Mazza; Erika Nilson

    2013-01-01

    Multiple single case reports of asphyxiation in dolphins caused by fish lodged in the esophagus exist. However, the significance of this cause of mortality in a single population has not been documented. We performed a retrospective evaluation of pathology records from stranded bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the Indian River Lagoon to evaluate the impact of this cause of death on this population. From 1997 to 2011, asphyxiation due to choking was identified as the cause of deat...

  16. Variability of Hormonal Stress Markers Collected from a Managed Dolphin Population

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-09-30

    the study was to compare immunological profiles of dolphins that were wild (coastal Charleston/Indian River ) and those that were semi- domestic living...REFERENCES Houser, D. S., Yeates, L. C., and Crocker, D. E. (2011). “Cold stress induces an adrenocortical response in bottlenose dolphins ( Tursiops ... truncatus ),” J. Zoo Wild. Med. 42: 565-571. Tomasi, T. E. Utilization rates of thyroid hormones in mammals. Comp. Biochem. Physiol. 100, 503- 516 (1991

  17. Determining the Molecular and Genetic Basis for Diabetes in Navy Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-01-12

    program by evaluating relevant molecules and genes in liver, muscle, and adipose tissue . 3. Test the role of CREB-ZF in modulating hepatic... insulin resistance, and they appear to have a switch that turns a diabetes-like state on and off.1,2 While this metabolic state was initially thought to...be normal for dolphins, recent studies have discovered that dolphins are susceptible to a number of chronic conditions associated with insulin

  18. Variability of Hormonal Stress Markers Collected from a Managed Dolphin Population

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-09-30

    in blubber potentially mean that increased plasma cortisol after administration of ACTH treatment may not elevate plasma cortisol for a sufficient...five bottlenose dolphins. Since abrupt cessation of cortisol treatment has been observed to cause side-effects, dolphin subjects will be weaned off...by stress, which can lead to conditions of both hypo- and hyperthyroidism . Persistent elevated or diminished levels of these hormones are known to

  19. Concurrent exposure of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus to multiple algal toxins in Sarasota Bay, Florida, USA.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael J Twiner

    Full Text Available Sentinel species such as bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus can be impacted by large-scale mortality events due to exposure to marine algal toxins. In the Sarasota Bay region (Gulf of Mexico, Florida, USA, the bottlenose dolphin population is frequently exposed to harmful algal blooms (HABs of Karenia brevis and the neurotoxic brevetoxins (PbTx; BTX produced by this dinoflagellate. Live dolphins sampled during capture-release health assessments performed in this region tested positive for two HAB toxins; brevetoxin and domoic acid (DA. Over a ten-year study period (2000-2009 we have determined that bottlenose dolphins are exposed to brevetoxin and/or DA on a nearly annual basis (i.e., DA: 2004, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009; brevetoxin: 2000, 2004, 2005, 2008, 2009 with 36% of all animals testing positive for brevetoxin (n = 118 and 53% positive for DA (n = 83 with several individuals (14% testing positive for both neurotoxins in at least one tissue/fluid. To date there have been no previously published reports of DA in southwestern Florida marine mammals, however the May 2008 health assessment coincided with a Pseudo-nitzschia pseudodelicatissima bloom that was the likely source of DA observed in seawater and live dolphin samples. Concurrently, both DA and brevetoxin were observed in common prey fish. Although no Pseudo-nitzschia bloom was identified the following year, DA was identified in seawater, fish, sediment, snails, and dolphins. DA concentrations in feces were positively correlated with hematologic parameters including an increase in total white blood cell (p = 0.001 and eosinophil (p<0.001 counts. Our findings demonstrate that dolphins within Sarasota Bay are commonly exposed to two algal toxins, and provide the impetus to further explore the potential long-term impacts on bottlenose dolphin health.

  20. Captive bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus spontaneously using water flow to manipulate objects.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chisato Yamamoto

    Full Text Available Several terrestrial animals and delphinids manipulate objects in a tactile manner, using parts of their bodies, such as their mouths or hands. In this paper, we report that bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus manipulate objects not by direct bodily contact, but by spontaneous water flow. Three of four dolphins at Suma Aqualife Park performed object manipulation with food. The typical sequence of object manipulation consisted of a three step procedure. First, the dolphins released the object from the sides of their mouths while assuming a head-down posture near the floor. They then manipulated the object around their mouths and caught it. Finally, they ceased to engage in their head-down posture and started to swim. When the dolphins moved the object, they used the water current in the pool or moved their head. These results showed that dolphins manipulate objects using movements that do not directly involve contact between a body part and the object. In the event the dolphins dropped the object on the floor, they lifted it by making water flow in one of three methods: opening and closing their mouths repeatedly, moving their heads lengthwise, or making circular head motions. This result suggests that bottlenose dolphins spontaneously change their environment to manipulate objects. The reason why aquatic animals like dolphins do object manipulation by changing their environment but terrestrial animals do not may be that the viscosity of the aquatic environment is much higher than it is in terrestrial environments. This is the first report thus far of any non-human mammal engaging in object manipulation using several methods to change their environment.

  1. Sensory perception in cetaceans: Part II – Promising experimental approaches to study chemoreception in dolphins

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    Dorothee eKremers

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Chemosensory perception in cetaceans remains an intriguing issue as morphological, neuroanatomical and genetic studies draw unclear conclusions, while behavioral data suggest that dolphins may use it for food selection or socio-sexual interactions. Experimental approaches have been scarce due to the practical difficulties of testing chemoreception in wild dolphins. Go/no-go tasks are one elegant way to investigate discrimination abilities; however, they require to train the animals, thus preventing spontaneous responses and hence the expression of preferences. Here, we aimed at testing potential spontaneous responses to chemical stimuli and developed novel procedures. First, we conducted a study to test whether captive dolphins respond to a biologically relevant smell. Therefore, we placed dead fish within an opaque barrel at the border of the pool and counted the number of respirations at proximity as an indicator of investigation. The same dead fishes were presented several times during experiments lasting three consecutive days. From the second day on (i.e. when the odor composition changed, dolphins breathed more often close to the fish-smelling barrel than close to the visually identical but empty control barrel. Second, we conducted a study to test whether dolphins are able to discriminate food flavors. Captive dolphins are commonly provided with ice cubes as a source of enrichment. We took this opportunity to provide ice cubes with different flavors and to compare the reaction to these different flavors as a measure of discrimination. Hence, we used the latency of return to the ice cube begging spot as a measure of discrimination from the previous ice cube flavor. Thus, our method used a non-invasive and easily replicable technique based on the spontaneous begging responses of dolphins toward more or less attractive items bearing biological relevance. The procedures used enabled us to show that dolphins may discriminate odors and flavors

  2. 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.

  3. Population Size of Indo-Pacific Humpback Dolphins (Sousa chinensis at Khanom, Thailand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mullica JAROENSUTASINEE

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins (Sousa chinensis were estimated with the Mark-Recapture Model from a boat-based photo-identification survey at Khanom, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Thailand from July 2008 - June 2009. Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins were encountered at a water depth of 1.1 - 7.5 m, a distance off shore of 21 - 1,021 m and water transparency of 67 - 256 cm. Groups and solitary Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins were sighted 39 times. They were extensively viewed in the coastal zone between Nang Kham bay to Thong Ching bay. There were 34 sightings of groups and five sightings of solitary individuals. A total of 49 individuals were identified and catalogued. There were 33 identified adults, eight juveniles and eight calves. The group size of humpback dolphins varied from 2 - 20 individuals. The group size of adults ranged between 2 - 12 dolphins. The juveniles group size ranged from 0 - 6 dolphins. There were no groups observed consisting solely of juveniles. Groups without juveniles were seen 8 times. The number of calves per group ranged between 0 - 4 individuals. The percentage and number of calves per group were significantly lower than the percentage and number of juveniles. The mean size of groups containing calves was larger than non-calf groups. The estimated abundance of this population from the Jolly-Seber method was 49 individuals.

  4. A multimodal detection model of dolphins to estimate abundance validated by field experiments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akamatsu, Tomonari; Ura, Tamaki; Sugimatsu, Harumi; Bahl, Rajendar; Behera, Sandeep; Panda, Sudarsan; Khan, Muntaz; Kar, S K; Kar, C S; Kimura, Satoko; Sasaki-Yamamoto, Yukiko

    2013-09-01

    Abundance estimation of marine mammals requires matching of detection of an animal or a group of animal by two independent means. A multimodal detection model using visual and acoustic cues (surfacing and phonation) that enables abundance estimation of dolphins is proposed. The method does not require a specific time window to match the cues of both means for applying mark-recapture method. The proposed model was evaluated using data obtained in field observations of Ganges River dolphins and Irrawaddy dolphins, as examples of dispersed and condensed distributions of animals, respectively. The acoustic detection probability was approximately 80%, 20% higher than that of visual detection for both species, regardless of the distribution of the animals in present study sites. The abundance estimates of Ganges River dolphins and Irrawaddy dolphins fairly agreed with the numbers reported in previous monitoring studies. The single animal detection probability was smaller than that of larger cluster size, as predicted by the model and confirmed by field data. However, dense groups of Irrawaddy dolphins showed difference in cluster sizes observed by visual and acoustic methods. Lower detection probability of single clusters of this species seemed to be caused by the clumped distribution of this species.

  5. Clicks, whistles and pulses: Passive and active signal use in dolphin communication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herzing, Denise L.

    2014-12-01

    The search for signals out of noise is a problem not only with radio signals from the sky but in the study of animal communication. Dolphins use multiple modalities to communicate including body postures, touch, vision, and most elaborately sound. Like SETI radio signal searches, dolphin sound analysis includes the detection, recognition, analysis, and interpretation of signals. Dolphins use both passive listening and active production to communicate. Dolphins use three main types of acoustic signals: frequency modulated whistles (narrowband with harmonics), echolocation (broadband clicks) and burst pulsed sounds (packets of closely spaced broadband clicks). Dolphin sound analysis has focused on frequency-modulated whistles, yet the most commonly used signals are burst-pulsed sounds which, due to their graded and overlapping nature and bimodal inter-click interval (ICI) rates are hard to categorize. We will look at: 1) the mechanism of sound production and categories of sound types, 2) sound analysis techniques and information content, and 3) examples of lessons learned in the study of dolphin acoustics. The goal of this paper is to provide perspective on how animal communication studies might provide insight to both passive and active SETI in the larger context of searching for life signatures.

  6. Preliminary investigation of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) for hfe gene-related hemochromatosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, Brianne E; Venn-Watson, Stephanie; Archer, Linda L; Nollens, Hendrik H; Wellehan, James F X

    2014-10-01

    Hemochromatosis (iron storage disease) has been reported in diverse mammals including bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). The primary cause of excessive iron storage in humans is hereditary hemochromatosis. Most human hereditary hemochromatosis cases (up to 90%) are caused by a point mutation in the hfe gene, resulting in a C282Y substitution leading to iron accumulation. To evaluate the possibility of a hereditary hemochromatosis-like genetic predisposition in dolphins, we sequenced the bottlenose dolphin hfe gene, using reverse transcriptase-PCR and hfe primers designed from the dolphin genome, from liver of affected and healthy control dolphins. Sample size included two case animals and five control animals. Although isotype diversity was evident, no coding differences were identified in the hfe gene between any of the animals examined. Because our sample size was small, we cannot exclude the possibility that hemochromatosis in dolphins is due to a coding mutation in the hfe gene. Other potential causes of hemochromatosis, including mutations in different genes, diet, primary liver disease, and insulin resistance, should be evaluated.

  7. Temporally and spatially partitioned behaviours of spinner dolphins: implications for resilience to human disturbance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnston, David W.; Christiansen, Fredrik

    2017-01-01

    Selective forces shape the evolution of wildlife behavioural strategies and influence the spatial and temporal partitioning of behavioural activities to maximize individual fitness. Globally, wildlife is increasingly exposed to human activities which may affect their behavioural activities. The ability of wildlife to compensate for the effects of human activities may have implications for their resilience to disturbance. Resilience theory suggests that behavioural systems which are constrained in their repertoires are less resilient to disturbance than flexible systems. Using behavioural time-series data, we show that spinner dolphins (Stenella longirostris) spatially and temporally partition their behavioural activities on a daily basis. Specifically, spinner dolphins were never observed foraging during daytime, where resting was the predominant activity. Travelling and socializing probabilities were higher in early mornings and late afternoons when dolphins were returning from or preparing for nocturnal feeding trips, respectively. The constrained nature of spinner dolphin behaviours suggests they are less resilient to human disturbance than other cetaceans. These dolphins experience the highest exposure rates to human activities ever reported for any cetaceans. Over the last 30 years human activities have increased significantly in Hawaii, but the spinner dolphins still inhabit these bays. Recent abundance estimates (2011 and 2012) however, are lower than all previous estimates (1979–1981, 1989–1992 and 2003), indicating a possible long-term impact. Quantification of the spatial and temporal partitioning of wildlife behavioural schedules provides critical insight for conservation measures that aim to mitigate the effects of human disturbance. PMID:28280561

  8. Home ranges of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in the Indian River Lagoon, Florida: environmental correlates and implications for management strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mazzoil, Marilyn; Reif, John S; Youngbluth, Marsh; Murdoch, M Elizabeth; Bechdel, Sarah E; Howells, Elisabeth; McCulloch, Stephen D; Hansen, Larry J; Bossart, Gregory D

    2008-09-01

    Photo-identification surveys conducted between 2002 and 2005 were used to determine dolphin home ranges and site fidelity within the Indian River Lagoon (IRL), Florida. The IRL was divided into six segments based on hydrodynamics and geographic features for purposes of characterization. Among the 615 dolphins with identifiable dorsal fins, 339 had > or =6 sightings and were used in segment and linear range analyses. The majority (98%) of dolphins were seen in River). However, the highest density of dolphins was found in segment 2 (North-Central Indian River). Re-sighting rates for dolphins with > or =6 sightings ranged from 2.8 to 8.7 times observed. The mean linear home range varied from 22 to 54 km. Distributional analyses indicated that at least three different dolphin communities exist within the IRL: Mosquito Lagoon, and the North and South Indian River. No statistically significant correlations were found between the total number or density per km(2 )of dolphins and surface water area, salinity, or contaminant loads within segments of the lagoon. These results suggest that dolphins do not selectively avoid areas with relatively unfavorable water quality. IRL dolphins should be studied on smaller spatial scales than currently practiced, and potential anthropogenic impacts should be evaluated based on geographic partitioning.

  9. The structure of a bottlenose dolphin society is coupled to a unique foraging cooperation with artisanal fishermen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daura-Jorge, F G; Cantor, M; Ingram, S N; Lusseau, D; Simões-Lopes, P C

    2012-10-23

    Diverse and localized foraging behaviours have been reported in isolated populations of many animal species around the world. In Laguna, southern Brazil, a subset of resident bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) uses a foraging tactic involving cooperative interactions with local, beach-casting fishermen. We used individual photo-identification data to assess whether cooperative and non-cooperative dolphins were socially segregated. The social structure of the population was found to be a fission-fusion system with few non-random associations, typical for this species. However, association values were greater among cooperative dolphins than among non-cooperative dolphins or between dolphins from different foraging classes. Furthermore, the dolphin social network was divided into three modules, clustering individuals that shared or lacked the cooperative foraging tactic. Space-use patterns were not sufficient to explain this partitioning, indicating a behavioural factor. The segregation of dolphins using different foraging tactics could result from foraging behaviour driving social structure, while the closer association between dolphins engaged in the cooperation could facilitate the transmission and learning of this behavioural trait from conspecifics. This unique case of a dolphin-human interaction represents a valuable opportunity to explore hypotheses on the role of social learning in wild cetaceans.

  10. A characterization of Guyana dolphin (Sotalia guianensis) whistles from Costa Rica: the importance of broadband recording systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    May-Collado, Laura J; Wartzok, Douglas

    2009-02-01

    Knowledge of the whistle structure in Guyana dolphins comes mostly from Brazilian populations where recordings have been made using limited bandwidth systems (18 and 24 kHz). In Brazil, Guyana dolphin whistle frequency span is 1.34-23.89 kHz, but authors have suggested that limits of their recording system may underestimate frequency span. Whistles of Guyana dolphins from Costa Rica were studied using a broadband recording system. How bandwidth limitations affect the understanding of whistle structure and species classification between sympatric dolphin species was evaluated. In addition, whistles were compared to Brazilian populations. Guyana dolphin whistle frequency span was 1.38 up to 48.40 kHz, greater than previously reported. Bandwidth limitations explained 89% of the whistle variation between studies, and increase in bandwidth improved the whistle classification of Guyana dolphins. Whistle duration and minimum frequency were the most important variables in dolphin species classification. Finally, after accounting for differences in recording systems, Costa Rican Guyana dolphins whistled with significantly higher frequency than Brazilian populations, providing evidence for a postulated increase in frequency from south to north. The study concludes that equipment with an upper frequency limit of at least 50 kHz (150 kHz for harmonics) is required to capture the entire whistle repertoire of the Guyana dolphin.

  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. Morbillivirus infection in free-ranging Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the Southeastern United States: seroepidemiologic and pathologic evidence of subclinical infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bossart, Gregory D; Reif, John S; Schaefer, Adam M; Goldstein, Juli; Fair, Patricia A; Saliki, Jeremiah T

    2010-07-14

    From 2003 to 2007, sera (n=234) from free-ranging Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) inhabiting two southeast Atlantic estuarine regions, the Indian River Lagoon (IRL), FL and Charleston, SC (CHS) were tested for antibodies to cetacean morbilliviruses as part of a multidisciplinary study of individual and population health. Positive morbillivirus titers were found on initial capture in 12 of 122 (9.8%) IRL dolphins in the absence of an epizootic. All CHS dolphins were seronegative. Positive fluctuating morbillivirus titers and seroconversion were found in IRL dolphins. Seropositivity was detected in dolphins 8-13 years of age as well as in dolphins that were alive during the 1987-1988 epizootic. During the study period, pathologic and immunohistochemical findings from stranded IRL dolphins (n=14) did not demonstrate typical morbillivirus-associated lesions or the presence of morbillivirus antigen. The findings suggest that morbillivirus infections are occurring in the absence of widespread mortality in IRL dolphins.

  13. Early social networks predict survival in wild bottlenose dolphins.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Margaret A Stanton

    Full Text Available 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, specifically the metric eigenvector centrality, predicted juvenile survival in males. Additionally, male calves that died post-weaning had stronger ties to juvenile males than surviving male calves, suggesting that juvenile males impose fitness costs on their younger counterparts. Our study indicates that selection is acting on social traits early in life and highlights the need to examine the costs and benefits of social bonds during formative life history stages.

  14. Convergent sequence evolution between echolocating bats and dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yang; Cotton, James A; Shen, Bin; Han, Xiuqun; Rossiter, Stephen J; Zhang, Shuyi

    2010-01-26

    Cases of convergent evolution - where different lineages have evolved similar traits independently - are common and have proven central to our understanding of selection. Yet convincing examples of adaptive convergence at the sequence level are exceptionally rare [1]. The motor protein Prestin is expressed in mammalian outer hair cells (OHCs) and is thought to confer high frequency sensitivity and selectivity in the mammalian auditory system [2]. We previously reported that the Prestin gene has undergone sequence convergence among unrelated lineages of echolocating bat [3]. Here we report that this gene has also undergone convergent amino acid substitutions in echolocating dolphins, which group with echolocating bats in a phylogenetic tree of Prestin. Furthermore, we find evidence that these changes were driven by natural selection.

  15. Observations of Dolphin Swimming Speed and Strouhal Number.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1998-04-01

    animals, marine and terrestrial, and it can leap over the masts of large vessels. Aristotle, on dolphin, Historia Animalium The previous passage...to CO o C CD r~ do lp hi qu al s o CD <o o to to r^ o c .... ^^ c o tO CD :j= Ot tI rv a vo E JD 0) u 3> 3 uu o 111 ~ o...34■* c o ■* do lp h Ie 3) . 1o 2 -2 E ® ft "*—’ C w Q HI O i- jQ 0 © © ■ UJ Q. C/3 ng in g nu m o CD £ Q ci 2 i 0

  16. Epidemiology of tattoo skin disease in bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus from the Sado estuary, Portugal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Bressem, Marie-Françoise; Gaspar, Raquel; Aznar, F Javier

    2003-09-24

    We report on the epidemiology of tattoo disease in a community of bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus from the Sado estuary, Portugal. The presence of tattoos (T++) and tattoo-like (T+) lesions was examined in 586 photographic records of 35 dolphins taken from 1994 to 1997. Images were rated into 3 categories: good (GI), average (AI) and poor (PI). Dolphins positive for T++ lesions were observed in 19 GI. Dolphins with T+ lesions were seen in 39 GI, 23 AI and 6 PI. For statistical analysis the dolphins were divided into 2 age classes (immature and adult) and the data grouped into 2 periods (1994-1995 and 1996-1997). Minimum prevalence of T++ lesions in 32 dolphins was 21.9% in 1994-1995 and 15.6% in 1996-1997. Variation in prevalence of tattoo disease between the 2 age classes was examined for each period, excluding animals with T+ lesions or considering them either positive or negative for tattoos. Prevalence of the disease was significantly higher in immature dolphins than in adults during both periods, except in the first one when T+ lesions were considered as true tattoos. Temporal variation in prevalence of tattoo disease was examined in 23 adults. Prevalence was significantly higher in 1994-1995 (39.1%) than in 1996-1997 (17.4%). Differences in the number and quality of pictures did not cause significant biases that could have favoured the detection of lesions between age classes or periods. Minimal persistence of the disease ranged between 3 and 45.5 mo. The lesions converted into light grey marks when healing, but may recur. The presence of very large lesions in 2 adult dolphins affected for years may be related to the contamination of the estuary. The high prevalence of the disease, its long persistence, as well as higher frequency in immature individuals, suggest that it is endemic in bottlenose dolphins from the Sado estuary. The contribution of tattoo disease to the decline of this community should be investigated. Three of the 5 dolphins that died

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

    OpenAIRE

    Griffeth, Richard J; 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...

  18. The Marine Mammal Brain Game: Students Compare the Brains and Behaviors of Dolphins, Sea Lions, and Manatees in This Unique Standards-Based Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demetrikopoulos, Melissa K.; Morris, Lee G.; Fobbs, Archibald J., Jr.; Johnson, John I.

    2005-01-01

    Dolphins, manatees, and sea lions are all aquatic mammals but are not closely related taxonomically. All three species are marine mammals, meaning they spend part or all of their lives in the sea and contiguous bodies of water. Dolphins belong to the taxonomic order Cetacea, which includes whales, dolphins, and porpoises. Manatees (sea cows),…

  19. The Marine Mammal Brain Game: Students Compare the Brains and Behaviors of Dolphins, Sea Lions, and Manatees in This Unique Standards-Based Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demetrikopoulos, Melissa K.; Morris, Lee G.; Fobbs, Archibald J., Jr.; Johnson, John I.

    2005-01-01

    Dolphins, manatees, and sea lions are all aquatic mammals but are not closely related taxonomically. All three species are marine mammals, meaning they spend part or all of their lives in the sea and contiguous bodies of water. Dolphins belong to the taxonomic order Cetacea, which includes whales, dolphins, and porpoises. Manatees (sea cows),…

  20. 76 FR 77996 - Notice of Issuance of Final Air Permits for Eni US Operating Co., Inc. and Port Dolphin Energy, LLC.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-12-15

    ... AGENCY Notice of Issuance of Final Air Permits for Eni US Operating Co., Inc. and Port Dolphin Energy..., the EPA issued a final Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) air permit for Port Dolphin Energy, LLC (Port Dolphin), which was issued and became effective on December 1, 2011. The Eni...

  1. Clinicopathologic findings from Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) with cytologic evidence of gastric inflammation.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-12-01

    As part of the Bottlenose Dolphin Health and Risk Assessment study, blood, gastric, fecal, and blowhole samples were collected from 114 Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in the Indian River Lagoon, Florida (IRL), and from 73 dolphins from the estuarine waters around Charleston, South Carolina (CHS), to assess the presence and degree of cytologic evidence of gastric inflammation from 2003 to 2007. The prevalence of moderate and severe gastric inflammation was 9.6% in the IRL and 11.0% at CHS. A case-control study of 19 dolphins with cytologic evidence of gastric inflammation and 82 with normal cytology from the combined populations was conducted. Blood parameters evaluated included hematology, serum chemistry, serum protein electrophoresis, and stress hormones. Few differences of clinical or statistical significance were found between affected and unaffected dolphins. Serum norepinephrine and cortisol were significantly higher in cases compared to the controls, and aldosterone was marginally higher (P = 0.06) based on eight cases. None of the hematologic, serum chemistry, or serum electrophoresis results were significantly different. Gastric fluid pH was not significantly different between cases and controls. There were no clinically significant aerobic-anaerobic or fungal culture results from gastric contents; bacteria cultured from both groups were considered to represent normal flora. The prevalence of inflammation did not differ by gender. Historically, cytologic evidence of gastric inflammation has constituted a marker of systemic illness in dolphins; however, there was little evidence to indicate systemic illness among affected animals. The data obtained from this study provide a basis for further investigation and evaluation of gastric cytology in wild and managed bottlenose dolphins.

  2. Lacaziosis in bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus along the coastal Atlantic Ocean, Florida, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murdoch, M Elizabeth; Mazzoil, Marilyn; McCulloch, Stephen; Bechdel, Sarah; O'Corry-Crowe, Greg; Bossart, Gregory D; Reif, John S

    2010-10-26

    This study represents the first systematic study of lacaziosis (lobomycosis) in bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus in the Atlantic Ocean along the east-central coast of Florida, USA. Lacaziosis is a chronic infection of the skin caused by the fungus Lacazia loboi, which affects only dolphins and humans. Previous studies have shown a high prevalence (6.8 to 12.0%) of lacaziosis in resident dolphins from the adjacent Indian River Lagoon Estuary (IRL), where the disease is endemic. We examined the prevalence of lacaziosis in this coastal area using photo-identification data collected between 2002 and 2008 to determine the prevalence of lacaziosis in coastal dolphins using photographic methodology shown to have high sensitivity and specificity in prior research. The prevalence of skin lesions compatible with lacaziosis estimated from photographic data was 2.1% (6/284), approximately 3 times lower than that described for the estuarine population using similar methods. To exclude potential bias introduced by differences in study duration and survey effort among areas, an 18 mo period when effort was most equal (January 2006 to June 2007) was chosen for statistical comparison. The prevalence of lacaziosis estimated from photographic data was significantly lower (3.8%: n = 6/160) in the Atlantic Ocean compared to the IRL (12.0%: n = 20/167) (risk ratio = 3.19, 95% CI 1.32 to 7.75, p < 0.01 by chi-square analysis). The lower prevalence of lacaziosis in dolphins found in the Atlantic Ocean and the overall lack of movement of dolphins between these habitats suggests that environmental conditions within the estuary may favor viability of L. loboi, and/or that immune compromise in resident estuarine dolphins is a precursor to the disease.

  3. Seven new dolphin mitochondrial genomes and a time-calibrated phylogeny of whales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiong, Ye; Brandley, Matthew C; Xu, Shixia; Zhou, Kaiya; Yang, Guang

    2009-01-01

    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 masks potentially

  4. Predicting Interactions between Common Dolphins and the Pole-and-Line Tuna Fishery in the Azores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruz, Maria João; Menezes, Gui; Machete, Miguel; Silva, Mónica A.

    2016-01-01

    Common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) are responsible for the large majority of interactions with the pole-and-line tuna fishery in the Azores but the underlying drivers remain poorly understood. In this study we investigate the influence of various environmental and fisheries-related factors in promoting the interaction of common dolphins with this fishery and estimate the resultant catch losses. We analysed 15 years of fishery and cetacean interaction data (1998–2012) collected by observers placed aboard tuna fishing vessels. Dolphins interacted in less than 3% of the fishing events observed during the study period. The probability of dolphin interaction varied significantly between years with no evident trend over time. Generalized additive modeling results suggest that fishing duration, sea surface temperature and prey abundance in the region were the most important factors explaining common dolphin interaction. Dolphin interaction had no impact on the catches of albacore, skipjack and yellowfin tuna but resulted in significantly lower catches of bigeye tuna, with a predicted median annual loss of 13.5% in the number of fish captured. However, impact on bigeye catches varied considerably both by year and fishing area. Our work shows that rates of common dolphin interaction with the pole-and-line tuna fishery in the Azores are low and showed no signs of increase over the study period. Although overall economic impact was low, the interaction may lead to significant losses in some years. These findings emphasize the need for continued monitoring and for further research into the consequences and economic viability of potential mitigation measures. PMID:27851763

  5. 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

  6. Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in blubber of free-ranging bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from two southeast Atlantic estuarine areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fair, Patricia A; Mitchum, Gregory; Hulsey, Thomas C; Adams, Jeff; Zolman, Eric; McFee, Wayne; Wirth, Ed; Bossart, Gregory D

    2007-10-01

    Blubber tissue samples from bottlenose dolphins collected during the summers of 2003 and 2004 were screened for 13 (17, 28, 47, 66, 71, 85, 99, 100, 138, 154, 153, 183, 190) polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) from dolphin populations in the Indian River Lagoon, FL (n = 58) and the Charleston Harbor estuary, SC (n = 53). Within each population, we investigated contaminant levels of PBDEs and the effects of factors including age, sex, the interaction of age and sex, and location. Six PBDE congeners (28, 47, 99, 100, 153, and 154) were routinely detected in all samples using gas chromatography/mass spectometry methods. Significantly higher (p River Lagoon dolphins (X= 1,260 ng/g lipid; range = 195-3,790 ng/g lipid). PBDE 47 was the major congener representing approximately 61% of the SigmaPBDE in both dolphin populations, followed by BDE100, BDE154, BDE99, BDE153, and BDE28, respectively. Significantly higher (p River Lagoon and twelve-fold for Charleston. For Charleston dolphins, the juveniles in addition to the adult males also had significantly higher levels compared to pregnant and adult females. This study establishes baseline levels of PBDEs in bottlenose dolphins for these two areas and is the first assessment of PBDEs in free-ranging dolphins. The levels of PBDEs in Charleston dolphins represent some of the highest measured in marine mammals and warrants further investigation of these emerging, bioaccumulative chemicals and their potential deleterious effects.

  7. Morbillivirus-associated unusual mortality event in South Australian bottlenose dolphins is largest reported for the Southern Hemisphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomo, I.; Bingham, J.; Bastianello, S. S.; Wang, J.; Gibbs, S. E.; Woolford, L.; Dickason, C.; Kelly, D.

    2016-01-01

    Cases of morbillivirus have been recorded in the Southern Hemisphere but have not been linked to significant marine mammal mortality. Post-mortems were conducted on 58 carcasses (44 Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins, two common bottlenose dolphins, 12 short-beaked common dolphins) from South Australia during 2005–2013, including an unusual mortality event (UME) in St Vincent Gulf Bioregion (SVG) during 2013. Diagnostic pathology, circumstance of death, body condition, age and stomach contents were documented for Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins. At least 50 dolphins died during the UME, 41 were Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins and most were young. The UME lasted about seven months and had two peaks, the first being the largest. Effect on the population is unknown. Diagnostic testing for morbillivirus was conducted on 57 carcasses, with evidence for infection in all species during 2011–2013. All tested UME bottlenose dolphins were positive for cetacean morbillivirus (CeMV), and the pathology included interstitial pneumonia, lymphoid depletion and syncytia. Concurrent pathologies, including lung parasite and fungal infections, and severe cutaneous bruising were observed in many dolphins. The event coincided with elevated water temperatures, a diatom bloom and significant fish die-offs. We conclude that the cause for the UME was multifactorial and that CeMV was a major contributor. PMID:28083115

  8. The world's second largest population of humpback dolphins in the waters of Zhanjiang deserves the highest conservation priority.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Xinrong; Song, Jinyuan; Zhang, Zhenhua; Li, Peng; Yang, Guang; Zhou, Kaiya

    2015-01-30

    Chinese white dolphins (Sousa chinensis) inhabiting shallow coastal waters are vulnerable to impacts from human activities in the near shore waters. This study examined the population of Chinese white dolphins occurring off the coast of Zhanjiang in the northern South China Sea. A total of 492 Chinese white dolphins were identified, 176 of which were photographed on more than one occasion. The Zhanjiang Chinese white dolphin population is isolated from populations of conspecifics along the Guangdong coast. It is composed of approximately 1485 individuals (95% CI = 1371-1629; SE = 63.8), with estimates of mean representative range and core area of 168.51 and 44.26 km(2), respectively. The high site fidelity and long-term residence of Chinese white dolphins in the study area are well established. A review of all available data indicates that based on what is currently known, the Zhanjiang Chinese white dolphin population is the second largest of the species and genus in the world. However, the recent industrial boom along the Zhanjiang coast has increased concerns regarding the conservation of the Zhanjiang Chinese white dolphin population. We recommend the designation of a national nature reserve as a most urgent measure for protecting Chinese white dolphins in Zhanjiang waters.

  9. 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.

  10. Reproductive outcome and survival of common bottlenose dolphins sampled in Barataria Bay, Louisiana, USA, following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lane, Suzanne M; Smith, Cynthia R; Mitchell, Jason; Balmer, Brian C; Barry, Kevin P; McDonald, Trent; Mori, Chiharu S; Rosel, Patricia E; Rowles, Teresa K; Speakman, Todd R; Townsend, Forrest I; Tumlin, Mandy C; Wells, Randall S; Zolman, Eric S; Schwacke, Lori H

    2015-11-01

    Common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) inhabit bays, sounds and estuaries across the Gulf of Mexico. Following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, studies were initiated to assess potential effects on these ecologically important apex predators. A previous study reported disease conditions, including lung disease and impaired stress response, for 32 dolphins that were temporarily captured and given health assessments in Barataria Bay, Louisiana, USA. Ten of the sampled dolphins were determined to be pregnant, with expected due dates the following spring or summer. Here, we report findings after 47 months of follow-up monitoring of those sampled dolphins. Only 20% (95% CI: 2.50-55.6%) of the pregnant dolphins produced viable calves, as compared with a previously reported pregnancy success rate of 83% in a reference population. Fifty-seven per cent of pregnant females that did not successfully produce a calf had been previously diagnosed with moderate-severe lung disease. In addition, the estimated annual survival rate of the sampled cohort was low (86.8%, 95% CI: 80.0-92.7%) as compared with survival rates of 95.1% and 96.2% from two other previously studied bottlenose dolphin populations. Our findings confirm low reproductive success and high mortality in dolphins from a heavily oiled estuary when compared with other populations. Follow-up studies are needed to better understand the potential recovery of dolphins in Barataria Bay and, by extension, other Gulf coastal regions impacted by the spill.

  11. Seroprevalence of Toxoplasma gondii in free-living Amazon river dolphins (Inia geoffrensis) from central Amazon, Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toxoplasma gondii is an important pathogen in aquatic mammals and its presence in these animals may indicate water contamination of aquatic environment by oocysts. Serum samples from 95 dolphins from free-living Amazon River dolphins (Inia geoffrensis) from Sustainable Development Reserve Mamirauá (...

  12. 50 CFR 216.46 - U.S. citizens on foreign flag vessels operating under the International Dolphin Conservation...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 7 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false U.S. citizens on foreign flag vessels operating under the International Dolphin Conservation Program. 216.46 Section 216.46 Wildlife and Fisheries....46 U.S. citizens on foreign flag vessels operating under the International Dolphin...

  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. 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

  15. 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

    ... (362.8 mt) carrying capacity in the ETP may be labeled dolphin-safe only if the following requirements...) carrying capacity and presented for import into the United States may be labeled dolphin-safe only if the... seine vessels of greater than 400 st (362.8 mt) carrying capacity and presented for import into...

  16. The importance of bioacoustics for dolphin welfare: Soundscape characterization with implications for management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spence, Heather Ruth

    Sound is the primary sensory modality for dolphins, yet policies mitigating anthropogenic sound exposure are limited in wild populations and even fewer noise policies or guidelines have been developed for governing dolphin welfare under human care. Concerns have been raised that dolphins under human care live in facilities that are too noisy, or are too acoustically sterile. However, these claims have not been evaluated to characterize facility soundscapes, and further, how they compare to wild soundscapes. The soundscape of a wild dolphin habitat off the coast of Quintana, Roo, Mexico was characterized based on Passive Acoustic Monitoring (PAM) recordings over one year. Snapping shrimp were persistent and broadband, following a diel pattern. Fish sound production was pulsed and prominent in low frequencies (100 -- 1000 Hz), and abiotic surface wave action contributed to noise in higher frequencies (15 -- 28 kHz). Boat motors were the main anthropogenic sound source. While sporadic, boat motors were responsible for large spikes in the noise, sometimes exceeding the ambient noise (in the absence of a boat) by 20 dB root-mean-squared sound pressure level, and potentially higher at closer distances. Boat motor sounds can potentially mask cues and communication sounds of dolphins. The soundscapes of four acoustically distinct outdoor dolphin facilities in Quintana Roo, Mexico were also characterized based on PAM, and findings compared with one another and with the measurements from the wild dolphin habitat. Recordings were made for at least 24 hours to encompass the range of daily activities. The four facilities differed in non-dolphin species present (biological sounds), bathymetry complexity, and method of water circulation. It was hypothesized that the greater the biological and physical differences of a pool from the ocean habitat, the greater the acoustic differences would be from the natural environment. Spectral analysis and audio playback revealed that the site

  17. Vitamin blood concentration and vitamin supplementation in bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in European facilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gimmel, Angela Emilia Ricarda; Baumgartner, Katrin; Liesegang, Annette

    2016-09-05

    As fish eaters bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in human care need to receive daily vitamin supplementation, because whole thawed fish lacks certain vitamins. However, the exact concentration of supplementation has not been established and is a matter of discussion. To ensure adequate vitamin supplementation in pets, vitamin blood concentrations are measured. This is not a common practice in dolphins. The objective of the present study was to collect information about vitamin supplementation in bottlenose dolphins and on vitamin blood concentrations of healthy animals in European facilities. In addition, these results were compared with blood levels of wild animals. Conclusions on how to provide bottlenose dolphins in human care with an effective vitamin supplementation will then be drawn. Initially, fish-handling techniques and vitamin supplementation were evaluated by questionnaire, which was sent to 25 European facilities that house bottlenose dolphins. Secondly, blood samples from 57 dolphins living in 10 facilities were taken and sent by mail to a reference laboratory. They were analysed for retinol, thiamine pyrophosphate, cobalamin, calcidiol and tocopherol. The blood concentrations were then correlated with vitamin supplementation, fish handling techniques and pre-existing blood concentrations of free-ranging dolphins. Finally, the data was subjected to a standard analysis of variance techniques (ANOVA) and a linear model analysis. Fish was mainly thawed in a refrigerator. Further, the 95 % confidence interval for retinol blood concentrations was 0.048 to 0.059 mg/l and for tocopherol 17.95 to 20.76 mg/l. These concentrations were 27 and 53 %, respectively, higher than those found in free-ranging animals. In contrast, calcidiol concentrations (143.9-174.7 ng/ml) of the dolphins in human care were lower than in blood found for free-ranging animals. Regarding thiamine pyrophosphate and cobalamin, concentrations ranged between 0.42 and 0.55

  18. Fatal Asphyxiation in Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the Indian River Lagoon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stolen, Megan; St Leger, Judy; Durden, Wendy Noke; Mazza, Teresa; Nilson, Erika

    2013-01-01

    Multiple single case reports of asphyxiation in dolphins caused by fish lodged in the esophagus exist. However, the significance of this cause of mortality in a single population has not been documented. We performed a retrospective evaluation of pathology records from stranded bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the Indian River Lagoon to evaluate the impact of this cause of death on this population. From 1997 to 2011, asphyxiation due to choking was identified as the cause of death in 14 of 350 cases (4%). Sampling of an unrelated but adjacent population over this same period yielded 186 necropsy cases of bottlenose dolphins with no cases of asphyxiation. Asphyxiated animals presented with a fish lodged in the cranial esophagus associated with a dislocated and obstructed or compressed larynx. There was no clear sex predilection. Affected animals included 12 adults and two juveniles. The fish species involved included sheepshead, black chin tilapia and striped mojarra. In five cases, recreational fishing gear was also present. Cetacean choking is related to selection of prey fish species with strong dorsal spines and may be secondarily associated with fish attached to fishing gear. Prey abundance and dolphin behavior may influence these selections. Environmental alterations leading to changes in prey availability or increased interactions with fishing gear may change the significance of fatal choking in dolphin populations.

  19. Fatal Asphyxiation in Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus from the Indian River Lagoon.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Megan Stolen

    Full Text Available Multiple single case reports of asphyxiation in dolphins caused by fish lodged in the esophagus exist. However, the significance of this cause of mortality in a single population has not been documented. We performed a retrospective evaluation of pathology records from stranded bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus from the Indian River Lagoon to evaluate the impact of this cause of death on this population. From 1997 to 2011, asphyxiation due to choking was identified as the cause of death in 14 of 350 cases (4%. Sampling of an unrelated but adjacent population over this same period yielded 186 necropsy cases of bottlenose dolphins with no cases of asphyxiation. Asphyxiated animals presented with a fish lodged in the cranial esophagus associated with a dislocated and obstructed or compressed larynx. There was no clear sex predilection. Affected animals included 12 adults and two juveniles. The fish species involved included sheepshead, black chin tilapia and striped mojarra. In five cases, recreational fishing gear was also present. Cetacean choking is related to selection of prey fish species with strong dorsal spines and may be secondarily associated with fish attached to fishing gear. Prey abundance and dolphin behavior may influence these selections. Environmental alterations leading to changes in prey availability or increased interactions with fishing gear may change the significance of fatal choking in dolphin populations.

  20. The Trophic Significance of the Indo-Pacific Humpback Dolphin, Sousa chinensis, in Western Taiwan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Ching-Wen; Chen, Meng-Hsien; Chou, Lien-Siang; Lin, Hsing-Juh

    2016-01-01

    Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins (Sousa chinensis) have attracted considerable attention due to their critically endangered status and related conservation issues, but their trophic relationships and ecological significance in coastal ecosystems are poorly understood. For instance, this species is noticeably more abundant in the Xin-Huwei River Estuary (Ex) of Western Taiwan than in the nearby Zhuoshui River Estuary (Ez), though it is unclear why the distribution shows such partitioning. To explore this topic, we conducted field surveys seasonally for two years from 2012 to 2013 and constructed Ecopath models of Ex, Ez, and an offshore site (Dm) to compare energy flow within the food webs. Model comparisons showed that the availability of food resources was the main factor influencing the biomass of Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins. Specifically, its more frequent occurrence in Ex can be attributed to greater phytoplankton production and greater biomasses of macroinvertebrates and prey fish than in the other two areas. An increase in fishing activity might decrease the food availability and, consequently, the biomass of the dolphins. Although the decline in the dolphin population would increase the biomass of some prey fish species, local fishermen might not necessarily benefit from the decline due to the concurrent decrease of highly valued crabs and shrimp. Collectively, our work suggests that the Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin is a keystone species in tropical coastal waters of Taiwan, and thereby exhibit a disproportional large ecological impact given their relatively low abundance.

  1. Morphological analysis of the flippers in the Franciscana dolphin, Pontoporia blainvillei, applying X-ray technique.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Del Castillo, Daniela Laura; Panebianco, María Victoria; Negri, María Fernanda; Cappozzo, Humberto Luis

    2014-07-01

    Pectoral flippers of cetaceans function to provide stability and maneuverability during locomotion. Directional asymmetry (DA) is a common feature among odontocete cetaceans, as well as sexual dimorphism (SD). For the first time DA, allometry, physical maturity, and SD of the flipper skeleton--by X-ray technique--of Pontoporia blainvillei were analyzed. The number of carpals, metacarpals, phalanges, and morphometric characters from the humerus, radius, ulna, and digit two were studied in franciscana dolphins from Buenos Aires, Argentina. The number of visible epiphyses and their degree of fusion at the proximal and distal ends of the humerus, radius, and ulna were also analyzed. The flipper skeleton was symmetrical, showing a negative allometric trend, with similar growth patterns in both sexes with the exception of the width of the radius (P ≤ 0.01). SD was found on the number of phalanges of digit two (P ≤ 0.01), ulna and digit two lengths. Females showed a higher relative ulna length and shorter relative digit two length, and the opposite occurred in males (P ≤ 0.01). Epiphyseal fusion pattern proved to be a tool to determine dolphin's age; franciscana dolphins with a mature flipper were, at least, four years old. This study indicates that the flippers of franciscana dolphins are symmetrical; both sexes show a negative allometric trend; SD is observed in radius, ulna, and digit two; and flipper skeleton allows determine the age class of the dolphins.

  2. Spatial and social sexual segregation patterns in indo-pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus.

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    Christine Ann Fury

    Full Text Available Sexual segregation seems to be common in bottlenose dolphins, whereby males and females live in different pods that mix mainly for mating. Male dolphins often use aggressive behaviour to mate with females, while females with calves may have different activity and dietary requirements to males and different susceptibility to predation. We investigated the degree of spatial and social sexual segregation in Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus in a subtropical estuary in Australia. Based on surveys completed over three years, dolphin groups were mostly mixed-sex or female. Mixed-sex groups were found in larger groups in mostly deeper water, whereas, female groups were foraging across all water depths in smaller groups. Aggressive coercive behaviour by males towards females was high, occurring mainly in deeper water, at higher tides, and outside the breeding season. Habitat use by female dolphin groups suggests that shallow tributaries may provide a sanctuary from aggressive males, access to suitable prey items and density for mothers and their calves, or a combination of these factors.

  3. A community split among dolphins: the effect of social relationships on the membership of new communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishita, Miki; Shirakihara, Miki; Amano, Masao

    2015-11-26

    Little is known about community splitting among dolphins because such events are rare in dolphin populations. A case of a community split was confirmed in a population of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) in Japan, where a group of approximately 30 dolphins moved to a new habitat some 60 km from the original habitat. We examined the associations among the dolphins before the community split to determine whether the new community members were already socially different before the split, using 7-year identification data. Before the split, the males in the same community after the split more often associated with each other than they did with those in different community. In contrast, the association patterns among females and between sexes showed no relationships with their post-split community membership. These results indicate that the males of new community were socially different from the other males for a long time before the split, but the females might not have been different. Our findings suggest that at time of the community split, the factors determining the memberships of the subsequent communities are sex-linked. The long-term social relationships among males could be maintained in the subsequent communities.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Accumulation pattern of butyltin compounds in dolphin, tuna, and shark collected from Italian coastal waters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kannan, K; Corsolini, S; Focardi, S; Tanabe, S; Tatsukawa, R

    1996-07-01

    Tributyltin (TBT) and its breakdown products, mono-(MBT) and dibutyltin (DBT) were determined in bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), bluefin tuna (Thunnus thynnus thynnus) and blue shark (Prionace glauca) collected from the Italian coast of the Mediterranean Sea in 1992-1993. Concentrations of total butyltin (BTs) in the liver of dolphin (1,200-2,200 ng/g wet wt) were an order of magnitude higher than in the blubber (48-320 ng/g wet wt). TBT was the predominant butyltin species in the blubber while DBT accounted for an higher proportion in the liver of dolphins. Butyltin concentrations in bluefin tuna were lower than those in dolphins, with TBT highest in the muscle and DBT in the liver. Concentrations of BTs in blue sharks were lower than those in dolphin and tuna, with kidney having the highest concentrations. TBT was the predominant form of butyltin derivatives in all the tissues of shark. Accumulation of butyltin compounds in liver/kidney seems to be associated with the presence of proteins such as glutathione.

  7. How can dolphins recognize fish according to their echoes? A statistical analysis of fish echoes.

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    Yossi Yovel

    Full Text Available Echo-based object classification is a fundamental task of animals that use a biosonar system. Dolphins and porpoises should be able to rely on echoes to discriminate a predator from a prey or to select a desired prey from an undesired object. Many studies have shown that dolphins and porpoises can discriminate between objects according to their echoes. All of these studies however, used unnatural objects that can be easily characterized in human terminologies (e.g., metallic spheres, disks, cylinders. In this work, we collected real fish echoes from many angles of acquisition using a sonar system that mimics the emission properties of dolphins and porpoises. We then tested two alternative statistical approaches in classifying these echoes. Our results suggest that fish species can be classified according to echoes returning from porpoise- and dolphin-like signals. These results suggest how dolphins and porpoises can classify fish based on their echoes and provide some insight as to which features might enable the classification.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Gastrointestinal helminths of Commerson's dolphins Cephalorhynchus commersonii from central Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berón-Vera, B; Pedraza, S N; Raga, J A; Gil de Pertierra, A; Crespo, E A; Alonso, M K; Goodall RNP

    2001-12-05

    The stomachs and intestines of 9 Commerson's dolphins incidentally caught in trawl nets in central Patagonia and 23 stranded on beaches in Tierra del Fuego were surveyed for helminth parasites. A total of 267 individuals belonging to 4 species of parasites (1 nematode, 3 digeneans) were found in the dolphins from the first area: Anisakis sp. (larvae type 1 = A. simplex), Braunina cordiformis, Hadwenius sp. and Pholeter gastrophilus. In the Tierra del Fuego dolphins, 142 specimens belonging to 3 species (2 nematodes, 1 digenean, 1 cestode) were found: A. simplex, Hadwenius sp. and Strobilocephalus triangularis. Only 2 of the helminth species were shared in the 2 study areas, A. simplex and Hadwenius sp., and both were more common in central Patagonia. Among the species, A. simplex was most prevalent and abundant in both study areas. In Tierra del Fuego, adults of A. simplex appeared in only 1 host. Hadwenius sp., P. gastrophilus and S. triangularis are new host records for Commerson's dolphin. Species diversity and species richness were low in both study areas. Helminth communities were more diverse in central Patagonia (t = 1.97, df = 258, p Tierra del Fuego. The results may suggest some differences in habitat use, diet and sex between Commerson's dolphin populations in the 2 study areas.

  11. Monitoring dolphins in an urban marine system: total and effective population size estimates of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins in Moreton Bay, Australia.

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    Ina C Ansmann

    Full Text Available Moreton Bay, Queensland, Australia is an area of high biodiversity and conservation value and home to two sympatric sub-populations of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus. These dolphins live in close proximity to major urban developments. Successful management requires information regarding their abundance. Here, we estimate total and effective population sizes of bottlenose dolphins in Moreton Bay using photo-identification and genetic data collected during boat-based surveys in 2008-2010. Abundance (N was estimated using open population mark-recapture models based on sighting histories of distinctive individuals. Effective population size (Ne was estimated using the linkage disequilibrium method based on nuclear genetic data at 20 microsatellite markers in skin samples, and corrected for bias caused by overlapping generations (Ne c. A total of 174 sightings of dolphin groups were recorded and 365 different individuals identified. Over the whole of Moreton Bay, a population size N of 554 ± 22.2 (SE (95% CI: 510-598 was estimated. The southern bay sub-population was small at an estimated N = 193 ± 6.4 (SE (95% CI: 181-207, while the North sub-population was more numerous, with 446 ± 56 (SE (95% CI: 336-556 individuals. The small estimated effective population size of the southern sub-population (Ne c = 56, 95% CI: 33-128 raises conservation concerns. A power analysis suggested that to reliably detect small (5% declines in size of this population would require substantial survey effort (>4 years of annual mark-recapture surveys at the precision levels achieved here. To ensure that ecological as well as genetic diversity within this population of bottlenose dolphins is preserved, we consider that North and South sub-populations should be treated as separate management units. Systematic surveys over smaller areas holding locally-adapted sub-populations are suggested as an alternative method for increasing ability to detect

  12. Fishes associated with spinner dolphins at Fernando de Noronha Archipelago, tropical Western Atlantic: an update and overview

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    Ivan Sazima

    Full Text Available An update is presented for fish species associated with spinner dolphins at Fernando de Noronha Archipelago, tropical Western Atlantic, providing a general view of their diversity. The associates are mostly reef-dwelling fishes that feed on the dolphin wastes. Twelve species are habitual or occasional plankton-eaters and two species are herbivores that occasionally forage on floating pieces of algae. One species is a strict carnivore, one species is a hitchhiker that forages on a variety of foods including parasites and dead tissue from the dolphins, and one species is a carnivore that joins the dolphin groups to forage on schools of small fishes or squids. We predict that the list of fish associated with spinner dolphins will expand mostly with addition of habitual or occasional plankton-eaters.

  13. Assessment of perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) in plasma of bottlenose dolphins from two southeast US estuarine areas: relationship with age, sex and geographic locations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fair, Patricia A; Houde, Magali; Hulsey, Thomas C; Bossart, Gregory D; Adams, Jeff; Balthis, Len; Muir, Derek C G

    2012-01-01

    Plasma PFCs were measured in 157 bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) sampled from two US southeast Atlantic sites (Charleston (CHS), SC and Indian River Lagoon (IRL), FL) during 2003-2005. ∑PFCs, perfluoroalkyl carboxylates (∑PFCAs), perfluoroalkyl sulfonates (∑PFSAs) and individual compounds were significantly higher in CHS dolphins for all age/sex categories compared to IRL dolphins. Highest ∑PFCs concentrations occurred in CHS juvenile dolphins (2340 ng/g w.w.); significantly higher than found in adults (1570 ng/g w.w. males; 1330 ng/g w.w. females). ∑PFCAs were much greater in CHS dolphins (≈ 21%) compared to IRL dolphins (≈ 7%); ∑PFSAs were 79% in CHS dolphins versus 93% in IRL dolphins. PFOS, the dominant compound, averaged 72% and 84%, respectively, in CHS and IRL dolphins. Decreasing PFC levels occurred with age on the bioaccumulation of PFCs in both sites. These observations suggest PFC accumulation in these two dolphin populations are influenced by site-specific exposures with significantly higher levels in CHS dolphins.

  14. Compliance with regulations by "swim-with-dolphins" operations in Port Phillip Bay, Victoria, Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scarpaci, Carol; Dayanthi, Nugegoda; Corkeron, Peter J

    2003-03-01

    Managing the activities of commercial wildlife viewing tends to involve either restricting the number of industry participants and/or regulating the activities or industry participants. We report on operator compliance with regulations regarding humans swimming with free-ranging bottlenose dolphins ( Tursiops sp.) in Port Phillip Bay, Victoria, Australia. A total of 128 commercial dolphin-swim trips was studied between September 1998 and April 2000. Four permit conditions were investigated: approach type, swim time, time in proximity of dolphins, and presence of "fetal fold" calves. Results demonstrate noncompliance by operators to all of the four permit conditions studied. Compliance with temporal conditions was poorer than with other conditions. When conducting studies on the extent to which tourism affects cetaceans, investigators should consider whether tourist operations comply with existing regulations or guidelines.

  15. Stress response of wild bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) during capture-release health assessment studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fair, Patricia A; Schaefer, Adam M; Romano, Tracy A; Bossart, Gregory D; Lamb, Stephen V; Reif, John S

    2014-09-15

    There is a growing concern about the impacts of stress in marine mammals as they face a greater array of threats. The stress response of free-ranging dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) was examined by measuring their physiologic response to capture and handling. Samples were collected from 168 dolphins during capture-release health assessments 2003-2007 at two study sites: Charleston, SC (CHS) and the Indian River Lagoon, FL (IRL). Adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), cortisol, aldosterone (ALD) and catecholamines (epinephrine (EPI), norepinephrine (NOR), dopamine (DA)), were measured in blood and cortisol in urine. Mean time to collect pre-examination samples after netting the animals was 22min; post-examination samples were taken prior to release (mean 1h 37min). EPI and DA concentrations decreased significantly with increased time to blood sampling. ACTH and cortisol levels increased from the initial capture event to the post-examination sample. EPI concentrations increased significantly with increasing time to the pre-examination sample and decreased significantly with time between the pre- and post-examination sample. Cortisol concentrations increased between the pre- and post-examination in CHS dolphins. Age- and sex-adjusted mean pre-examination values of catecholamines were significantly higher in CHS dolphins; ALD was higher in IRL dolphins. Significant differences related to age or sex included higher NOR concentrations in males; higher ALD and urine cortisol levels in juveniles than adults. Wild dolphins exhibited a typical mammalian response to acute stress of capture and restraint. Further studies that relate hormone levels to biological and health endpoints are warranted.

  16. The orexin system in the enteric nervous system of the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gatta, Claudia; Russo, Finizia; Russolillo, Maria Grazia; Varricchio, Ettore; Paolucci, Marina; Castaldo, Luciana; Lucini, Carla; de Girolamo, Paolo; Cozzi, Bruno; Maruccio, Lucianna

    2014-01-01

    This study provides a general approach to the presence and possible role of orexins and their receptors in the gut (three gastric chambers and intestine) of confined environment bottlenose dolphin. The expression of prepro-orexin, orexin A and B and orexin 1 and 2 receptors were investigated by single immunostaining and western blot analysis. The co-localization of vasoactive intestinal peptide and orexin 1 receptor in the enteric nervous system was examined by double immunostaining. Also, orexin A concentration were measured in plasma samples to assess the possible diurnal variation of the plasma level of peptide in this species. Our results showed that the orexin system is widely distributed in bottlenose dolphin enteric nervous system of the all gastrointestinal tract examined. They are very peculiar and partially differs from that of terrestrial mammals. Orexin peptides and prepro-orexin were expressed in the main stomach, pyloric stomach and proximal intestine; while orexin receptors were expressed in the all examined tracts, with the exception of main stomach where found no evidence of orexin 2 receptor. Co-localization of vasoactive intestinal peptide and orexin 1 receptor were more evident in the pyloric stomach and proximal intestine. These data could suggest a possible role of orexin system on the contractility of bottlenose dolphin gastrointestinal districts. Finally, in agreement with several reports, bottlenose dolphin orexin A plasma level was higher in the morning during fasting. Our results emphasize some common features between bottlenose dolphin and terrestrial mammals. Certainly, further functional investigations may help to better explain the role of the orexin system in the energy balance of bottlenose dolphin and the complex interaction between feeding and digestive physiology.

  17. Social Differentiation in Common Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) that Engage in Human-Related Foraging Behaviors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kovacs, Carolyn J; Perrtree, Robin M; Cox, Tara M

    2017-01-01

    Both natural and human-related foraging strategies by the common bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) have resulted in social segregation in several areas of the world. Bottlenose dolphins near Savannah, Georgia beg at an unprecedented rate and also forage behind commercial shrimp trawlers, providing an opportunity to study the social ramifications of two human-related foraging behaviors within the same group of animals. Dolphins were photo-identified via surveys conducted throughout estuarine waterways around Savannah in the summers of 2009-2011. Mean half-weight indices (HWI) were calculated for each foraging class, and community division by modularity was used to cluster animals based on association indices. Pairs of trawler dolphins had a higher mean HWI (0.20 ± 0.07) than pairs of non-trawler dolphins (0.04 ± 0.02) or mixed pairs (0.02 ± 0.02). In contrast, pairs of beggars, non-beggars, and mixed pairs all had similar means, with HWI between 0.05-0.07. Community division by modularity produced a useful division (0.307) with 6 clusters. Clusters were predominately divided according to trawler status; however, beggars and non-beggars were mixed throughout clusters. Both the mean HWI and social clusters revealed that the social structure of common bottlenose dolphins near Savannah, Georgia was differentiated based on trawler status but not beg status. This finding may indicate that foraging in association with trawlers is a socially learned behavior, while the mechanisms for the propagation of begging are less clear. This study highlights the importance of taking into account the social parameters of a foraging behavior, such as how group size or competition for resources may affect how the behavior spreads. The positive or negative ramifications of homophily may influence whether the behaviors are exhibited by individuals within the same social clusters and should be considered in future studies examining social relationships and foraging behaviors.

  18. The Order of the Dolphin: Origins of SETI

    Science.gov (United States)

    Temming, Maria; Crider, Anthony

    2016-01-01

    In 1961, the National Academy of Sciences organized a meeting on the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI) at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory in Green Bank, West Virginia. The ten scientists who attended, including future SETI icons such as Frank Drake and Carl Sagan, represented a variety of scientific fields. At the conclusion of the meeting, the attendees adopted the moniker "The Order of the Dolphin," in honor of participant John Lilly's work on interspecies communication. Since this seminal meeting, researchers in each of the attendees' fields have contributed in some way to the search for intelligent life. This study investigates the circumstances that led to each attendee's invitation to Green Bank and explores SETI as the legacy of this meeting. We will focus in this talk on the SETI connections of two attendees, astronomer Otto Struve and physicist Philip Morrison, both in regards to their personal contributions to SETI and the influence of their work on subsequent SETI research. Specifically, we will examine proposals by Otto Struve for exoplanet discovery methods, and Philip Morrison for radio searches that laid the groundwork for modern SETI.

  19. Molecular cytogenetic characterization of the Amazon River dolphin Inia geoffrensis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonifácio, Heidi L; da Silva, Vera M F; Martin, Anthony R; Feldberg, Eliana

    2012-09-01

    Classical and molecular cytogenetic (18S rDNA, telomeric sequence, and LINE-1 retrotransposon probes) studies were carried out to contribute to an understanding of the organization of repeated DNA elements in the Amazon River dolphin (boto, Inia geoffrensis). Twenty-seven specimens were examined, each presenting 2n = 44 chromosomes, the karyotype formula 12m + 14sm + 6st + 10t + XX/XY, and fundamental number (FN) = 74. C-positive heterochromatin was observed in terminal and interstitial positions, with the occurrence of polymorphism. Interstitial telomeric sequences were not observed. The nucleolar organizer region (NOR) was located at a single site on a smallest autosomal pair. LINE-1 was preferentially distributed in the euchromatin regions, with the greatest accumulation on the X chromosome. Although the karyotype structure in cetaceans is considered to be conserved, the boto karyotype demonstrated significant variations in its formula, heterochromatin distribution, and the location of the NOR compared to other cetacean species. These results contribute to knowledge of the chromosome organization in boto and to a better understanding of karyoevolution in cetaceans.

  20. Drafting mechanisms between a dolphin mother and calf.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shoele, Kourosh; Zhu, Qiang

    2015-10-01

    We numerically study the drafting mechanisms between a dolphin mother and her calf swimming near the free surface. Formation locomotion between the cetacean mother-calf pair provides a way for the mother to assist the calf in its locomotion. Depending on the age and size of the calf, it swims at neonate, echelon, and infant positions. At each position, the effects of the calf's size, swimming speed, proximity to the free surface and the formation pattern are investigated and the optimal configurations predicted by the model based on the swimming hydrodynamics are compared with previous observations. It is shown that the neonate position is the optimal formation for controlling the separation of the calf, and the echelon position is the most hydrodynamically efficient position in transferring the thrust force from the mother to the calf. The infant position, on the other hand, avoids the energy loss due to wave generation so that it improves the self-propulsion performance of an older calf.

  1. 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

  2. Sonar-induced temporary hearing loss in dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mooney, T Aran; Nachtigall, Paul E; Vlachos, Stephanie

    2009-08-23

    There is increasing concern that human-produced ocean noise is adversely affecting marine mammals, as several recent cetacean mass strandings may have been caused by animals' interactions with naval 'mid-frequency' sonar. However, it has yet to be empirically demonstrated how sonar could induce these strandings or cause physiological effects. In controlled experimental studies, we show that mid-frequency sonar can induce temporary hearing loss in a bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus). Mild-behavioural alterations were also associated with the exposures. The auditory effects were induced only by repeated exposures to intense sonar pings with total sound exposure levels of 214 dB re: 1 microPa(2) s. Data support an increasing energy model to predict temporary noise-induced hearing loss and indicate that odontocete noise exposure effects bear trends similar to terrestrial mammals. Thus, sonar can induce physiological and behavioural effects in at least one species of odontocete; however, exposures must be of prolonged, high sound exposures levels to generate these effects.

  3. Reproductive aspects of male franciscana dolphins (Pontoporia blainvillei) off Argentina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panebianco, María Victoria; Negri, María Fernanda; Cappozzo, Humberto Luis

    2012-03-01

    As the first study to investigate reproductive aspects of male franciscana dolphin -Pontoporia blainvillei - in Argentine waters, the aim of this paper was to assess sexual maturity by using histological and morphometric methods. P. blainvillei was labeled as "Vulnerable" by the IUCN in 2008. The specimens analyzed were either incidentally caught in artisanal fishing nets (n=47) or found stranded on the beach (n=3). Testis weight and testicular index of maturity were reliable indicators of sexual maturity, being their values: MTW: 1.14 ± 0.60-4.49 ± 1.94; IM: 0.03 ± 0.01-0.09 ± 0.03, for immature and mature specimens' respectively. It was found that the hierarchical cluster analysis (HCA) might be appropriate for establishing sexual maturity stage, based on both the body morphometric measurements and age. The values for age, standard length and total weight at attainment sexual maturity were 2.92-3.54 years, 126.19-126.27 cm and 23.47-23.75 kg. Considering the extremely low relative testis weight, the reversed sexual length dimorphism, the absence of secondary sexual characteristics, and the lack of scars from intrasexual combats in males, the hypothesis that sperm competition does not occur in the species, and male combats for accessing female reproductive may be rare for P. blainvillei is reinforced. All these features fit the species within a serial monogamous mating system. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. 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

  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. Effects of the Interaction with Dolphins on Physical and Mental conditions of the Elderly

    OpenAIRE

    アキヤマ, ジュンコ; スギモト, カナコ; オオタ, ミツアキ; Junko, AKIYAMA; Kanako, SUGIMOTO; Mitsuaki, Ohta

    2004-01-01

    The effects of animal-assisted therapy (AAT) on the physical and physiological health of old people have been well known. In general, dogs, cats and small animals have been used at the AAT for seniors. In this study we tried to clarify physical and mental effects of the interactions of old people and dolphins, with ten people aged from 50 to 60. The blood pressure and the heart rate were measured with a hemodynamometer before and after the activity with the dolphins. The psychological test wa...

  7. 时尚轻盈的移动数据终端DOLPHIN6100

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2009-01-01

    2009年7月30日·霍尾韦尔正式发布了一款专门针对亚太应用市场的新型移动数据终端Dolphin6100.成为其广受欢迎的Dolphin家族新成员。Dolphin6100扩展了霍尼韦尔移动终端产品在零售以及其它轻工业环境的应用,

  8. Pulmonary fungal infection caused by Neoscytalidium dimidiatum in a Risso's dolphin (Grampus griseus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elad, Daniel; Morick, Danny; David, Dan; Scheinin, Aviad; Yamin, Gilad; Blum, Shlomo; Goffman, Oz

    2011-05-01

    Neoscytalidium dimidiatum was isolated from two 12-18 cm abscesses in the lung and the mediastinal lymph nodes of a stranded Risso's dolphin (Grampus griseus). Histopathologic examination of samples of these organs revealed the presence of hyphae and sclerotic body-like fungal elements. Photobacterium damselae subsp. damselae was recovered from the dolphin's organs which also were found to contain numerous Monorygma grimaldii cysts. No histopathological signs of morbillivirus infection were seen. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of N. dimidiatum infection in a sea mammal.

  9. Floriceps saccatus plerocerci (Trypanorhyncha, Lacistorhynchidae) as parasites of dolphin fish (Coryphaena hippurus L.) and pompano dolphin (Coryphaena equiselis L.) in western Mediterranean and eastern Atlantic waters. Ecological and biological aspects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carbonell, E; Castro, J J; Massutí, E

    1998-10-01

    A study of the plerocerci of Floriceps saccatus from the abdominal cavity of dolphin fish (Coryphaena hippurus) and pompano dolphin (Coryphaena equiselis) was conducted. In all, 565 dolphin fishes were collected from Majorcan waters (Balearic Islands, western Mediterranean) during 3 summer and autumn seasons (1990, 1991, and 1995). From the Canary Islands (eastern Atlantic), 41 specimens of dolphin fish were caught during 1994 and 49 specimens of pompano dolphin during 1995. Cysts of different shapes and sizes appeared in the conjunctive tissues of the abdomen and viscera, mainly in the liver, gonads, and pancreas. A larva was found inside every cyst examined. Small, medium size, and large larvae were found. The largest larvae correspond to Floriceps saccatus plerocercoids. Stomach contents indicated that crustaceans and fish larvae were the main prey items of juvenile C. hippurus, whereas teleosts and cephalopods were the only food found in adult dolphin fishes. Infection of F. saccatus plerocercoids takes place in preadult dolphin fishes. Prevalence increases as fishes grow and change to a diet of teleosts. Coryphaena equiselis was not infected.

  10. 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 River. The incidence of the disease did not increase during the study period, indicating that the disease is endemic, rather than emerging. In summary, photo-identification is a useful tool to monitor the course of individual and population health for this enigmatic disease.

  11. Retroposon analysis of major cetacean lineages: the monophyly of toothed whales and the paraphyly of river dolphins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nikaido, M; Matsuno, F; Hamilton, H; Brownell, R L; Cao, Y; Ding, W; Zuoyan, Z; Shedlock, A M; Fordyce, R E; Hasegawa, M; Okada, N

    2001-06-19

    SINE (short interspersed element) insertion analysis elucidates contentious aspects in the phylogeny of toothed whales and dolphins (Odontoceti), especially river dolphins. Here, we characterize 25 informative SINEs inserted into unique genomic loci during evolution of odontocetes to construct a cladogram, and determine a total of 2.8 kb per taxon of the flanking sequences of these SINE loci to estimate divergence times among lineages. We demonstrate that: (i) Odontocetes are monophyletic; (ii) Ganges River dolphins, beaked whales, and ocean dolphins diverged (in this order) after sperm whales; (iii) three other river dolphin taxa, namely the Amazon, La Plata, and Yangtze river dolphins, form a monophyletic group with Yangtze River dolphins being the most basal; and (iv) the rapid radiation of extant cetacean lineages occurred some 28-33 million years B.P., in strong accord with the fossil record. The combination of SINE and flanking sequence analysis suggests a topology and set of divergence times for odontocete relationships, offering alternative explanations for several long-standing problems in cetacean evolution.

  12. Guiana dolphins (Sotalia guianensis) as marine ecosystem sentinels: ecotoxicology and emerging diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Moura, Jailson Fulgencio; Hauser-Davis, Rachel Ann; Lemos, Leila; Emin-Lima, Renata; Siciliano, Salvatore

    2014-01-01

    Guiana dolphins (Sotalia guianensis) are small cetaceans that inhabit coastal regions down to a 50 m depth. As a coastally distributed species, they are exposed to a variety of human-induced risks that include passive fishing nets, persistent environmental pollution, and emerging diseases. As a top predatorS. guianensis occupies an important ecological niche in marine ecosystems. However, this niche also exposes this dolphin to extensive biomagnification of marine contaminants that may accumulate and be stored throughout their life of about 30 years.In this paper, we have compiled available data on the Guiana dolphin as regards its exposure to chemical pollutants, pathogenic microbes, infectious diseases, and injuries caused by interactions with passive fishing gears. Our analysis of the data shows that Guiana dolphins are particularly sensitive to environmental changes.Although the major mortal threat to dolphins results from contact with fishing other human-related activities in coastal zones also pose risks and need more attention.Such human-related risks include the presence of persistent toxicants in the marine environment, such as PCBs and PBDEs. Residues of these chemicals have been detected in Guiana dolphin's tissues at similar or higher levels that exist in cetaceans from other known polluted areas. Another risk encountered by this species is the non lethal injuries caused by fishing gear. Several incidents of this sort have occurred along the Brazilian coast with this species. When injuries are produced by interaction with fishing gear, the dorsal fin is the part of the dolphin anatomy that is more affected, commonly causing severe laceration or even total loss.The Guiana dolphins also face risks from infectious diseases. The major ones thus far identified include giardiasis, lobomycosis, toxoplasmosis, skin and skeletal lesions. Many bacterial pathogens from the family Aeromonadaceae and Vibrionaceae have been isolated from Guiana dolphins. Several

  13. Influences of biological variables and geographic location on circulating concentrations of thyroid hormones in wild bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fair, Patricia A; Montie, Eric; Balthis, Len; Reif, John S; Bossart, Gregory D

    2011-11-01

    Thyroid hormones (TH) are key regulators of metabolism and development, yet our understanding of the variability in serum TH concentrations in free-ranging marine mammals is limited. Thus, we examined the interrelationships between TH and age, sex, reproductive status, geographic location, and ocean temperatures in wild bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). Circulating concentrations of TH (total thyroxine (tT(4)), free T(4) (fT(4)), and total triiodothyronine (tT(3))) were determined in a total of 195 dolphins; 80 from the coastal waters of Charleston, South Carolina (CHS) and 115 from the Indian River Lagoon, Florida (IRL). Age had the most influence on circulating TH concentrations in dolphins at both sites with decreasing concentrations (p<0.0001) observed with increasing age for all TH. No significant differences were found between males and non-reproductive females. Geographic location significantly influenced tT(4) and tT(3) concentrations; CHS dolphins had higher concentrations than IRL animals. These TH differences between CHS and IRL dolphins may be attributed to the colder year-round water temperature that CHS dolphins inhabit compared to IRL dolphins and could constitute an adaptive response to their colder environment. Results from this study highlight the importance of establishing reference values for dolphins in different geographic locations to support valid comparisons. This initial assessment provides a foundation of how biological and environmental variables could affect circulating TH in dolphins, which will help to elucidate the impacts of disease, pollution, and climate change on the thyroid hormone system of aquatic mammals.

  14. 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

  15. Likely Age-Related Hearing Loss (Presbycusis) in a Stranded Indo-Pacific Humpback Dolphin (Sousa chinensis).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Songhai; Wang, Ding; Wang, Kexiong; Hoffmann-Kuhnt, Matthias; Fernando, Nimal; Taylor, Elizabeth A; Lin, Wenzhi; Chen, Jialin; Ng, Timothy

    2016-01-01

    The hearing of a stranded Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin (Sousa chinensis) in Zhuhai, China, was measured. The age of this animal was estimated to be ~40 years. The animal's hearing was measured using a noninvasive auditory evoked potential (AEP) method. The results showed that the high-frequency hearing cutoff frequency of the studied dolphin was ~30-40 kHz lower than that of a conspecific younger individual ~13 year old. The lower high-frequency hearing range in the older dolphin was explained as a likely result of age-related hearing loss (presbycusis).

  16. Comparison of Temporal Parameters of Swimming Rescue Elements When Performed Using Dolphin and Flutter Kick with Fins - Didactical Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rejman, Marek; Wiesner, Wojciech; Silakiewicz, Piotr; Klarowicz, Andrzej; Abraldes, J. Arturo

    2012-01-01

    The aim of this study was an analysis of the time required to swim to a victim and tow them back to shore, while perfoming the flutter-kick and the dolphin-kick using fins. It has been hypothesized that using fins while using the dolphin-kick when swimming leads to reduced rescue time. Sixteen lifeguards took part in the study. The main tasks performed by them, were to approach and tow (double armpit) a dummy a distance of 50m while applying either the flutter-kick, or the dolphin-kick with fins. The analysis of the temporal parameters of both techniques of kicking demonstrates that, during the approach to the victim, neither the dolphin (tmean = 32.9s) or the flutter kick (tmean = 33.0s) were significantly faster than the other. However, when used for towing a victim the flutter kick (tmean = 47.1s) was significantly faster when compared to the dolphin-kick (tmean = 52.8s). An assessment of the level of technical skills in competitive swimming, and in approaching and towing the victim, were also conducted. Towing time was significantly correlated with the parameter that linked the temporal and technical dimensions of towing and swimming (difference between flutter kick towing time and dolphin-kick towing time, 100m medley time and the four swimming strokes evaluation). No similar interdependency has been discovered in flutter kick towing time. These findings suggest that the dolphin-kick is a more difficult skill to perform when towing the victim than the flutter-kick. Since the hypothesis stated was not confirmed, postulates were formulated on how to improve dolphin-kick technique with fins, in order to reduce swimming rescue time. Key points The source of reduction of swimming rescue time was researched. Time required to approach and to tow the victim while doing the flutter kick and the dolphin-kick with fins was analyzed. The propulsion generated by dolphin-kick did not make the approach and tow faster than the flutter kick. More difficult skill to realize of

  17. Population Structure of Island-Associated Dolphins: Evidence from Mitochondrial and Microsatellite Markers for Common Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) Around the Main Hawaiian Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-01

    derived from killer whales (Orcinus orca ; Hoelzel et al. 1998a); loci D5 and D12 from beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas; Buchanan et al. 1996); and...M. Dahlheim and S. J. Stern. 1998a. Low genetic variation among killer whales (Orcinus orca ) in the eastern North Pacific and genetic...24 MARINE MAMMAL SCIENCE, VOL. **, NO. **, 2011 Rooney, A. P., D. B.Merritt and J.N.Derr. 1999.Microsatellite diversity in captive bottlenose dolphins

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. Discrimination of Cylinders with Different Wall Thicknesses using Neural Networks and Simulated Dolphin Sonar Signals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Lars Nonboe; Au, Whitlow; Larsen, Jan;

    1999-01-01

    This paper describes a method integrating neural networks into a system for recognizing underwater objects. The system is based on a combination of simulated dolphin sonar signals, simulated auditory filters and artificial neural networks. The system is tested on a cylinder wall thickness...

  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.

  3. Opportunistic feeding behaviour of rough-toothed dolphins Steno bredanensis off Mauritania

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Addink, M.J.; Smeenk, C.

    2001-01-01

    A small group of rough-toothed dolphins Steno bredanensis was observed at the outer edge of the Banc d’Arguin, Mauritania. The animals were feeding opportunistically around a trawling research vessel. Hunting behaviour and mother-calf interactions are described

  4. New polymorphic tetranucleotide microsatellites improve scoring accuracy in the bottlenose dolphin Tursiops aduncus

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nater, Alexander; Kopps, Anna M.; Kruetzen, Michael

    2009-01-01

    We isolated and characterized 19 novel tetranucleotide microsatellite markers in the Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) in order to improve genotyping accuracy in applications like large-scale population-wide paternity and relatedness assessments. One hundred T. aduncus from Shark Ba

  5. Sensory perception in cetaceans: Part I – Current knowledge about dolphin senses as a representative species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dorothee eKremers

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available A large part of the literature on sensory perception and behavior in dolphins is devoted to its well-developed vocal and echolocation abilities. In this review, we aim to augment current knowledge by examining the literature on dolphins’ entire Merkwelt (which refers to everything a subject perceives, creating a crucial part of the subject’s Umwelt. We will show that despite extensive knowledge on audition, aspects such as context relatedness, the social function of vocalizations or socio-sexual recognition, remain poorly understood. Therefore, we propose areas for further lines of investigation. Recent studies have shown that the sensory world of dolphins might well be much more diverse than initially thought. Indeed, although underwater and aerial visual systems differ in dolphins, they have both been shown to be important. Much debated electro- and magnetoreception appear to be functional senses according to recent studies. Finally, another neglected area is chemoreception. We will summarize neuroanatomical and physiological data on olfaction and taste, as well as corresponding behavioral evidence. Taken together, we will identify a number of technical and conceptual reasons for why chemosensory data appear contradictory, which is much debated in the literature. In summary, this article aims to provide both an overview of the current knowledge on dolphin perception, but also offer a basis for further discussion and potential new lines of research.

  6. PFOS and PFOSA in Bottlenose Dolphins: An Investigation into Two Unusual Mortality Epizootics (WDA)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Along the Atlantic coast of the United States during 1987 and 1988, bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) suffered one of this country's largest marine mammal mass mortality events. An estimated 50% of all near-shore bottlenose died during this short period. Two years later a ...

  7. Assessing Knowledge, Attitudes, and Behavior toward Charismatic Megafauna: The Case of Dolphins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barney, Erin C.; Mintzes, Joel J.; Yen, Chiung-Fen

    2005-01-01

    Using concept maps, a Kellert-type (S. R. Kellert, 1985) inventory, and self-report behavioral items, this cross-age study assessed public knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors toward bottlenose dolphins. Results suggest that this important megafaunal species is poorly understood by the public at large, and that negative "utilitarian" attitudes and…

  8. Discriminating between the vocalizations of Indo-Pacific humpback and Australian snubfin dolphins in Queensland, Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berg Soto, Alvaro; Marsh, Helene; Everingham, Yvette; Smith, Joshua N; Parra, Guido J; Noad, Michael

    2014-08-01

    Australian snubfin and Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins co-occur throughout most of their range in coastal waters of tropical Australia. Little is known of their ecology or acoustic repertoires. Vocalizations from humpback and snubfin dolphins were recorded in two locations along the Queensland coast during 2008 and 2010 to describe their vocalizations and evaluate the acoustic differences between these two species. Broad vocalization types were categorized qualitatively. Both species produced click trains burst pulses and whistles. Principal component analysis of the nine acoustic variables extracted from the whistles produced nine principal components that were input into discriminant function analyses to classify 96% of humpback dolphin whistles and about 78% of snubfin dolphin calls correctly. Results indicate clear acoustic differences between the vocal whistle repertoires of these two species. A stepwise routine identified two principal components as significantly distinguishable between whistles of each species: frequency parameters and frequency trend ratio. The capacity to identify these species using acoustic monitoring techniques has the potential to provide information on presence/absence, habitat use and relative abundance for each species.

  9. Beak deviations in the skull of Franciscana dolphins Pontoporia blainvillei from Argentina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Denuncio, Pablo; Panebianco, M Victoria; Del Castillo, Daniela; Rodríguez, Diego; Cappozzo, H Luis; Bastida, Ricardo

    2016-06-15

    The Franciscana dolphin Pontoporia blainvillei is characterized by a long rostrum, a feature that is shared with the families formerly classified as river dolphins (Pontoporiidae, Platanistidae, Iniidae, Lipotidae). Although there are occasional reports on the existence of beak deformations, very little published information exists describing this process. The object of the present study was to describe and quantify the beak anomalies of Franciscana dolphins from the coastal waters of Argentina. Of 239 skulls analyzed 12% showed beak deviations (BD), affecting the premaxillary-maxillary and dentary bones to different extents. The occurrence of BD in the dentary bone represented 58%, whereas premaxillary-maxillary BDs were observed in 14% of the studied specimens, while the complete rostrum (dentary, premaxillary and maxillary) was affected in 28% of the skulls. Dorsoventral axis BD was more frequent than lateral BD (48 and 38%, respectively), and double BD was only observed in the dentary bone. Most of the BD observed in this study could be classified as mild/moderate, and we assume that it did not affect the feeding activities of individuals; however, 2 specimens (dolphin in different ways. A more detailed and thorough study of these cranial anomalies is necessary.

  10. PFOS and PFOSA in Bottlenose Dolphins: An Investigation into Two High Mortality Epizootics (NRMMSTSN2009)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Along the Atlantic coast of the United States during 1987 and 1988, bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) suffered one of this country's largest marine mammal mass mortality events. An estimated 50% of all near-shore bottlenose died during this short period. Two years later a ...

  11. PFOS and PFOSA in Bottlenose Dolphins: An Investigation into Two Unusually High Mortality Events

    Science.gov (United States)

    Along the Atlantic coast of the United States during 1987 and 1988, bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) suffered one of this country's largest marine mammal mass mortality events. An estimated 50% of all near-shore bottlenose died during this short period. Two years later a ...

  12. 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.

  13. PFOS and PFOSA in Bottlenose Dolphins: An Investigation into Two Unusually High Mortality Epizootics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Along the Atlantic coast of the United States during 1987 and 1988, bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) suffered one of this country's largest marine mammal mass mortality events. An estimated 50% of all near-shore bottlenose died during this short period. Two years later a ...

  14. The Maui's Dolphin Challenge: Lessons from a School-Based Litter Reduction Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Townrow, Carly S.; Laurence, Nick; Blythe, Charlotte; Long, Jenny; Harré, Niki

    2016-01-01

    The Maui's Dolphin Challenge was a litter reduction project that was run twice at a secondary school in Aotearoa New Zealand. The project drew on a theoretical framework encompassing four psycho-social principles: values, embodied learning, efficacy, and perceived social norms. It challenged students to reduce the litter at the school by offering…

  15. Metals as chemical tracers to discriminate ecological populations of threatened Franciscana dolphins (Pontoporia blainvillei) from Argentina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romero, M B; Polizzi, P; Chiodi, L; Robles, A; Das, K; Gerpe, M

    2017-02-01

    Franciscana dolphins are the most impacted small cetacean in the Southwestern Atlantic Ocean, classified as Vulnerable A3d by IUCN. Essential (Fe, Mo, Mn, Cr, Ni, Co) and non-essential (Ag, Pb, Sn) trace elements (TEs) were measured in liver, kidney, and brain samples of by-catch Franciscana dolphins that were living in estuarine (n = 21) and marine (n = 21) habitats (1) to assess whether TEs posed a threat and (2) to evaluate the suitability of TEs for discriminating ecological populations of this species in Argentinean waters. Essential TEs showed little variation in tissues from both groups in agreement with levels reported for other cetaceans and suggesting that these concentrations correspond to normal physiological levels. Non-essential TEs were higher in estuarine juveniles and adults dolphins than in marine specimens. These results suggest anthropogenic sources associated with estuarine area and that Franciscana dolphins are good sentinels of the impact of the environment. The difference in the concentrations of TEs beetwen ecological populations appeared to be related to distinct exposures in both geographical areas, and it is suggested that Ag and Sn concentrations in adults are good chemical tracers of anthropogenic input of TEs. These results provide additional information for improved management and regulatory policy.

  16. 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.

  17. Variability of Hormonal Stress Markers Collected from a Managed Dolphin Population

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-30

    the population is a good system from which to determine baseline hormonal variations. Signficant differences in thyroid hormones by season and year...dolphins (Tursiops truncatus),” J. Zoo Wild. Med. 42: 565-571. Tomasi, T. E. Utilization rates of thyroid hormones in mammals. Comp. Biochem. Physiol

  18. Lobomycosis in Man and Lobomycosis-like Disease in Bottlenose Dolphin, Venezuela

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bermudez, Luis; Van Bressem, Marie-Françoise; Reyes-Jaimes, Oscar; Sayegh, Alejandro J.

    2009-01-01

    We report 1 case of lobomycosis caused by Lacazia loboi in a fisherman and 1 case of lobomycosis-like disease in a bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) along the coast of Venezuela. These findings suggest that the marine environment is a likely habitat for L. loboi and a reservoir for infection. PMID:19751598

  19. Conflicts between river dolphins (Cetacea: Odontoceti and fisheries in the Central Amazon: a path toward tragedy?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luiz Cláudio Pinto de Sá Alves

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Dolphin interactions with fishermen have increased significantly and pose potential risks to the boto, Inia geoffrensis (Blainville, 1817, and the tucuxi, Sotalia fluviatilis (Gervais & Deville, 1853. The main objective of the present paper was to describe the existing conflicts between river dolphins and fishermen in the municipality of Manacapuru region. Sixteen fishermen were interviewed in Manacapuru, state of Amazonas, Brazil who described a situation of ongoing conflict that may be unsustainable. Two merchants from Manacapuru made unconfirmed reports on a boto carcass trade. Data collection for this study occurred between April 20th and April 25th, 2009, but the first author had been conducting research on river dolphins and fisheries in Manacapuru and nearby cities since the beginning of 2008, in order to gain the trust of the fishermen interviewed. The hunting and deliberate killing of the species is probably more threatening to botos than their incidental capture in fishing gears in the Manacapuru region. This practice may result from the fact that dolphins are prone to damaging fishing equipment, and stealing (and possibly damaging fish from the nets. They are portrayed negatively in numerous myths and superstitions of traditional Amazonian folklore, making them extremely undesired or even hated, seen as pests, and used in the piracatinga, Calophysus macropterus (Lichtenstein, 1819 fishery as bait. For tucuxis, incidental capture still represents the major threat to their conservation in the region evaluated here.

  20. Rehabilitation of Platanista gangetica (Lebeck, 1801) as the valid scientific name of the Ganges dolphin

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kinze, C.C.

    2000-01-01

    The Dutch scientist Heinrich Julius Lebeck’s description of the Ganges dolphin is, based on a deduced latest date of publication 24 August 1801, given priority over William Roxburgh’s account of the same species, for which no precise date could be established. Although very similar to the work of

  1. New polymorphic tetranucleotide microsatellites improve scoring accuracy in the bottlenose dolphin Tursiops aduncus

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nater, Alexander; Kopps, Anna M.; Kruetzen, Michael

    We isolated and characterized 19 novel tetranucleotide microsatellite markers in the Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) in order to improve genotyping accuracy in applications like large-scale population-wide paternity and relatedness assessments. One hundred T. aduncus from Shark

  2. Electrophysiological study of interaural sound intensity difference in the dolphin Inia geoffrensis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Supin AYa; Popov, V V; Klishin, V O

    1991-09-15

    A wave observed in the auditory brainstem responses (ABR), sensitive to the side of sound presentation, is described in a dolphin (Inia geoffrensis). Dependence of the wave threshold on location of the sound source showed that the interaural intensity difference was more than 20 dB.

  3. Variability of Hormonal Stress Markers Collected from a Managed Dolphin Population

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-09-30

    under managed care are from the Georgia Aquarium and the Navy Marine Mammal Program. Ten of the dolphins used in Task 1 of the current study (PI...Jolla, CA 92037 phone: (858) 546-7090 email: Nick.Kellar@noaa.gov Tracy Romano Mystic Aquarium and Institute for Exploration Mystic, CT

  4. Whales, Dolphins, and Porpoises of the Western North Atlantic: A Guide to Their Identification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leatherwood, Stephen; And Others

    This field guide is designed to permit observers to identify the cetaceans (whales, dolphins, and porpoises) they see in western North Atlantic, including the Caribbean Sea, the Gulf of Mexico, and the coastal waters of the United States and Canada. The animals described are not grouped by scientific relationships but by similarities in appearance…

  5. Hearing abilities and sound reception of broadband sounds in an adult Risso's dolphin (Grampus griseus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mooney, T Aran; Yang, Wei-Cheng; Yu, Hsin-Yi; Ketten, Darlene R; Jen, I-Fan

    2015-08-01

    While odontocetes do not have an external pinna that guides sound to the middle ear, they are considered to receive sound through specialized regions of the head and lower jaw. Yet odontocetes differ in the shape of the lower jaw suggesting that hearing pathways may vary between species, potentially influencing hearing directionality and noise impacts. This work measured the audiogram and received sensitivity of a Risso's dolphin (Grampus griseus) in an effort to comparatively examine how this species receives sound. Jaw hearing thresholds were lowest (most sensitive) at two locations along the anterior, midline region of the lower jaw (the lower jaw tip and anterior part of the throat). Responses were similarly low along a more posterior region of the lower mandible, considered the area of best hearing in bottlenose dolphins. Left- and right-side differences were also noted suggesting possible left-right asymmetries in sound reception or differences in ear sensitivities. The results indicate best hearing pathways may vary between the Risso's dolphin and other odontocetes measured. This animal received sound well, supporting a proposed throat pathway. For Risso's dolphins in particular, good ventral hearing would support their acoustic ecology by facilitating echo-detection from their proposed downward oriented echolocation beam.

  6. Dolphin Morbillivirus Associated with a Mass Stranding of Sperm Whales, Italy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Centelleghe, Cinzia; Di Provvido, Andrea; Di Renzo, Ludovica; Cardeti, Giusy; Cersini, Antonella; Fichi, Gianluca; Petrella, Antonio; Di Francesco, Cristina Esmeralda; Mignone, Walter; Casalone, Cristina; Di Guardo, Giovanni

    2017-01-01

    In September 2014, seven sperm whales were stranded along Italy’s Adriatic coastline. Postmortem investigations on 3 female adult whales and 1 male fetus carried by the largest female revealed molecular and immunohistochemical evidence of dolphin morbillivirus infection. A possible role of the virus in the stranding event was considered. PMID:27983493

  7. How to Make a Dolphin: Molecular Signature of Positive Selection in Cetacean Genome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariana F Nery

    Full Text Available Cetaceans are unique in being the only mammals completely adapted to an aquatic environment. This adaptation has required complex changes and sometimes a complete restructuring of physiology, behavior and morphology. Identifying genes that have been subjected to selection pressure during cetacean evolution would greatly enhance our knowledge of the ways in which genetic variation in this mammalian order has been shaped by natural selection. Here, we performed a genome-wide scan for positive selection in the dolphin lineage. We employed models of codon substitution that account for variation of selective pressure over branches on the tree and across sites in a sequence. We analyzed 7,859 nuclear-coding ortholog genes and using a series of likelihood ratio tests (LRTs, we identified 376 genes (4.8% with molecular signatures of positive selection in the dolphin lineage. We used the cow as the sister group and compared estimates of selection in the cetacean genome to this using the same methods. This allowed us to define which genes have been exclusively under positive selection in the dolphin lineage. The enrichment analysis found that the identified positively selected genes are significantly over-represented for three exclusive functional categories only in the dolphin lineage: segment specification, mesoderm development and system development. Of particular interest for cetacean adaptation to an aquatic life are the following GeneOntology targets under positive selection: genes related to kidney, heart, lung, eye, ear and nervous system development.

  8. Cetacean morbillivirus in coastal Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins, Western Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-04-01

    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.

  9. Cross-reactivity of human and bovine antibodies in striped dolphin paraffin wax-embedded tissues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaber, J R; Fernández, A; Herráez, P; Espinosa de los Monteros, A; Ramírez, G A; García, P M; Fernández, T; Arbelo, M; Pérez, J

    2003-11-15

    This study evaluates the cross-reactivity of seven anti-human and one anti-bovine antibodies in formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded tissue samples of liver and mesenteric lymph nodes of 13 striped dolphins (Stenella coeruleoalba). Four antibodies (CD3, IgG, lysozyme and S100 protein) reacted with striped dolphin lymph nodes in a similar pattern to that observed in the species of origin. The anti-human MHC class II mAb reacted strongly with macrophages and dendritic-like cells of striped dolphins, whereas a small number of lymphocytes were labelled with this antibody. These antibodies were used to study the immunophenotype of the inflammatory infiltrated in non-specific chronic reactive hepatitis (eight cases) and chronic parasite cholangitis (two cases) and normal liver (three cases) of striped dolphins. Non-specific chronic reactive hepatitis was composed of inflammatory infiltration of CD3+ T lymphocytes and IgG+ plasma cells in portal spaces and hepatic sinusoids. Lymphonodular aggregates observed in chronic parasitic cholangitis showed a cellular distribution similar to that found in lymph node cortex, including the presence of S100+ and MHC class II+ dendritic-like cells in lymphoid follicles and interfollicular areas. This result suggests that those inflammatory infiltrates are highly organised to enhance antigen presentation to B and T cells.

  10. 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

  11. Rehabilitation of Platanista gangetica (Lebeck, 1801) as the valid scientific name of the Ganges dolphin

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kinze, C.C.

    2000-01-01

    The Dutch scientist Heinrich Julius Lebeck’s description of the Ganges dolphin is, based on a deduced latest date of publication 24 August 1801, given priority over William Roxburgh’s account of the same species, for which no precise date could be established. Although very similar to the work of Ro

  12. Opportunistic feeding behaviour of rough-toothed dolphins Steno bredanensis off Mauritania

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Addink, M.J.; Smeenk, C.

    2001-01-01

    A small group of rough-toothed dolphins Steno bredanensis was observed at the outer edge of the Banc d’Arguin, Mauritania. The animals were feeding opportunistically around a trawling research vessel. Hunting behaviour and mother-calf interactions are described

  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. Rehabilitation of Platanista gangetica (Lebeck, 1801) as the valid scientific name of the Ganges dolphin

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kinze, C.C.

    2000-01-01

    The Dutch scientist Heinrich Julius Lebeck’s description of the Ganges dolphin is, based on a deduced latest date of publication 24 August 1801, given priority over William Roxburgh’s account of the same species, for which no precise date could be established. Although very similar to the work of Ro

  15. Abundance and survival rates of the Hawai'i Island associated spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris stock.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julian A Tyne

    Full Text Available Reliable population estimates are critical to implement effective management strategies. The Hawai'i Island spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris is a genetically distinct stock that displays a rigid daily behavioural pattern, foraging offshore at night and resting in sheltered bays during the day. Consequently, they are exposed to frequent human interactions and disturbance. We estimated population parameters of this spinner dolphin stock using a systematic sampling design and capture-recapture models. From September 2010 to August 2011, boat-based photo-identification surveys were undertaken monthly over 132 days (>1,150 hours of effort; >100,000 dorsal fin images in the four main resting bays along the Kona Coast, Hawai'i Island. All images were graded according to photographic quality and distinctiveness. Over 32,000 images were included in the analyses, from which 607 distinctive individuals were catalogued and 214 were highly distinctive. Two independent estimates of the proportion of highly distinctive individuals in the population were not significantly different (p = 0.68. Individual heterogeneity and time variation in capture probabilities were strongly indicated for these data; therefore capture-recapture models allowing for these variations were used. The estimated annual apparent survival rate (product of true survival and permanent emigration was 0.97 SE ± 0.05. Open and closed capture-recapture models for the highly distinctive individuals photographed at least once each month produced similar abundance estimates. An estimate of 221 ± 4.3 SE highly distinctive spinner dolphins, resulted in a total abundance of 631 ± 60.1 SE, (95% CI 524-761 spinner dolphins in the Hawai'i Island stock, which is lower than previous estimates. When this abundance estimate is considered alongside the rigid daily behavioural pattern, genetic distinctiveness, and the ease of human access to spinner dolphins in their preferred resting habitats, this

  16. Evidence for Distinct Coastal and Offshore Communities of Bottlenose Dolphins in the North East Atlantic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oudejans, Machiel G.; Visser, Fleur; Englund, Anneli; Rogan, Emer; Ingram, Simon N.

    2015-01-01

    Bottlenose dolphin stock structure in the northeast Atlantic remains poorly understood. However, fine scale photo-id data have shown that populations can comprise multiple overlapping social communities. These social communities form structural elements of bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) populations, reflecting specific ecological and behavioural adaptations to local habitats. We investigated the social structure of bottlenose dolphins in the waters of northwest Ireland and present evidence for distinct inshore and offshore social communities. Individuals of the inshore community had a coastal distribution restricted to waters within 3 km from shore. These animals exhibited a cohesive, fission-fusion social organisation, with repeated resightings within the research area, within a larger coastal home range. The offshore community comprised one or more distinct groups, found significantly further offshore (>4 km) than the inshore animals. In addition, dorsal fin scarring patterns differed significantly between inshore and offshore communities with individuals of the offshore community having more distinctly marked dorsal fins. Specifically, almost half of the individuals in the offshore community (48%) had characteristic stereotyped damage to the tip of the dorsal fin, rarely recorded in the inshore community (7%). We propose that this characteristic is likely due to interactions with pelagic fisheries. Social segregation and scarring differences found here indicate that the distinct communities are likely to be spatially and behaviourally segregated. Together with recent genetic evidence of distinct offshore and coastal population structures, this provides evidence for bottlenose dolphin inshore/offshore community differentiation in the northeast Atlantic. We recommend that social communities should be considered as fundamental units for the management and conservation of bottlenose dolphins and their habitat specialisations. PMID:25853823

  17. The Behavioural Ecology of Indo-Pacific Humpback Dolphins in Hong Kong.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Würsig, Bernd; Parsons, E C M; Piwetz, Sarah; Porter, Lindsay

    2016-01-01

    Fewer than 200 Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins (Sousa chinensis) occur in Hong Kong waters (though these are part of a much larger population in the Pearl River Estuary), with a decrease in the past about 10 years. They have partially overlapping individual ranges (mean=100km(2)), and two partially overlapping communities. Seasonal occurrence is higher in June-November than December-May, approximate wet and dry monsoon seasons, respectively. Group sizes tend to average three dolphins, a decrease from the past decade. Feeding often occurs in abruptly changing water depths and off rocky natural shores. The area immediately north of Hong Kong International Airport is largely used for travelling between locations to the west, east and further north. The area around Lung Kwu Chau Island in northwest Hong Kong is a "hot spot" for foraging and socializing. The area off Fan Lau, southwest Lantau Island, is largely used for foraging. A former foraging "hot spot" was located around the Brothers Islands east of the airport, now reduced, possibly due to increases in high-speed ferries (HSFs) and other activities. Sound recordings of dolphins from bottom-mounted hydrophones suggest that northwestern Hong Kong waters are used more at night than in daytime. Sexual activity and calving occur throughout the year, with a peak in late spring to autumn (wet monsoon season). Humpback dolphins communicate acoustically with each other and probably passively listen to prey in murky waters, and anthropogenic noises may be masking communication and affecting prey location. Increasing sounds of shipping, HSFs and industrial activities are likely to alter dolphin habitat use patterns and overall behaviours beyond the present already affected status.

  18. Line transect estimates of Irrawaddy dolphin abundance along the eastern Gulf Coast of Thailand.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ellen eHines

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Effective conservation of coastal marine mammals is largely dependent on reliable knowledge of their abundance, as well as the ecological and human factors driving their distribution. In developing countries, lack of resources and capacity frequently impedes research needed to estimate abundance and to determine the ecological requirements of coastal marine mammals and the impact of threats related to coastal development and fisheries. Over the course of five years, we developed practical research methods and trained local scientists in Thailand to use accepted line transect distance sampling methods for abundance assessment. The study focused on a little-known coastal and freshwater species found throughout Southeast Asia, namely the Irrawaddy dolphin, which has been sighted regularly along the coast of the eastern Gulf of Thailand. During five years of line transect boat surveys in Trat Province, the eastern-most province in Thailand, we found an average of 423 dolphins distributed within 12km of the coast. Compared to other abundance estimates of coastal Irrawaddy dolphins in Southeast Asia, this is a relatively large number. This population could extend into the northern coast of Cambodia, where surveys are currently being planned. The Thai government has begun talks with Cambodia about a transboundary marine protected area that would include areas in both countries where coastal Irrawaddy dolphins are found. Other analyses include photo-identification, modeling environmental factors that determine presence, determination of fresh vs. salt water foraging using stable isotopes, and an assessment of threats. Collaboration between scientists in Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam is further needed to determine dolphin movement and habitat use across borders.

  19. Skin lesions on common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus from three sites in the Northwest Atlantic, USA.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leslie Burdett Hart

    Full Text Available Skin disease occurs frequently in many cetacean species across the globe; methods to categorize lesions have relied on photo-identification (photo-id, stranding, and by-catch data. The current study used photo-id data from four sampling months during 2009 to estimate skin lesion prevalence and type occurring on bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus from three sites along the southeast United States coast [Sarasota Bay, FL (SSB; near Brunswick and Sapelo Island, GA (BSG; and near Charleston, SC (CHS]. The prevalence of lesions was highest among BSG dolphins (P = 0.587 and lowest in SSB (P = 0.380, and the overall prevalence was significantly different among all sites (p<0.0167. Logistic regression modeling revealed a significant reduction in the odds of lesion occurrence for increasing water temperatures (OR = 0.92; 95%CI:0.906-0.938 and a significantly increased odds of lesion occurrence for BSG dolphins (OR = 1.39; 95%CI:1.203-1.614. Approximately one-third of the lesioned dolphins from each site presented with multiple types, and population differences in lesion type occurrence were observed (p<0.05. Lesions on stranded dolphins were sampled to determine the etiology of different lesion types, which included three visually distinct samples positive for herpesvirus. Although generally considered non-fatal, skin disease may be indicative of animal health or exposure to anthropogenic or environmental threats, and photo-id data provide an efficient and cost-effective approach to document the occurrence of skin lesions in free-ranging populations.

  20. BRIDGE TO TERABITHIA DAN ISLAND OF THE BLUE DOLPHIN SEBAGAI BAHAN AJAR BERMUATAN PENDIDIKAN KARAKTER

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abdu Rajab

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Tujuan penelitian ini adalah untuk menggambarkan: (1 Nilai-nilai pendidikan karakter yang termuat dalam novel Bridge to Terabithia dan Island of the Blue Dolphin (2 Sejauh mana novel-novel tersebut dapat dijadikan bahan ajar Bahasa Inggris bermuatan pendidikan karakter. Jenis penelitian ini adalah penelitian deskriptif kualitatif dengan menggunakan metode analisis isi. Penelitian kualitatif mengungkapkan gejala secara menyeluruh, dan sesuai dengan konteks permasalahannya dipecahkan melalui pengumpulan data dari latar alami dengan memanfaatkan diri peneliti sebagai instrumen kunci (Djukri dkk, 2010, p.18. Hasil penelitian menunjukkan bahwa: (1 Novel Bridge to Terabithia dan Island of the Blue Dolphin memberikan penggambaran contoh nilai-nilai pendidikan karakter dengan frekuensi dan variasi yang tinggi juga dengan kualitas penggambaran yang kuat dan realistis, (2 Kedua novel memiliki bahasa yang imajinatif dan kisah yang inspiratif, (3 Kedua novel relevan dengan tujuan pembelajaran Bahasa Inggris. ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ BRIDGE TO TERABITHIA AND ISLAND OF THE BLUE DOLPHIN AS INSTRUCTIONAL MATERIAL EMBODYING CHARACTER EDUCATION Abstract This study aims at describing: (1 Character education values embodied in the novel Bridge to Terabithia and Island of the Blue Dolphin, (2 The extent to which those novels can be utilized as English instructional material embodying character education.  This study is a descriptive qualitative research, which employs content analysis method. Qualitative research describes the entire indications based on the context of the matter which is solved through collecting data of natural context employing the researcher as key instruments (Djukri dkk, 2010, p.18.The results of the study show that: (1 Bridge to Terabithia and Island of the Blue Dolphin give examples of high frequency and high variation as well as strong and realistic

  1. 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.

  2. Modeling how shark and dolphin skin patterns control transitional wall-turbulence vorticity patterns using spatiotemporal phase reset mechanisms

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Bandyopadhyay, Promode R; Hellum, Aren M

    2014-01-01

    ... by underlying autonomous reaction-diffusion (RD) mechanisms. In contrast, sharks and dolphins contend with wall turbulence, are fast swimmers, and have more organized skin patterns that are proud and sometimes vibrate...

  3. Correlation and toxicological inference of trace elements in tissues from stranded and free-ranging bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stavros, Hui-Chen W; Stolen, Megan; Durden, Wendy Noke; McFee, Wayne; Bossart, Gregory D; Fair, Patricia A

    2011-03-01

    The significance of metal concentrations in marine mammals is not well understood and relating concentrations between stranded and free-ranging populations has been difficult. In order to predict liver concentrations in free-ranging dolphins, we examined concentrations of trace elements (Al, As, Ba, Be, Cd, Co, Cu, Fe, Li, Mn, Ni, Pb, Sb, Se, Sn, total Hg (THg), V, Zn) in skin and liver of stranded bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the South Carolina (SC) coast and the Indian River Lagoon, Florida (FL) during 2000-2008. Significantly higher concentrations of Zn, Fe, Se, Al, Cu and THg were found in skin while liver exhibited significantly higher Cu, Fe, Mn and THg concentrations for both study sites. Mean skin concentrations of Cu and Mn were significantly higher in SC dolphins while higher concentrations of THg and V were found in FL dolphins. In addition, liver tissues in SC dolphins exhibited significantly higher As concentrations while higher Fe, Pb, Se, THg, and V levels were found in FL dolphins. Two elements (Cu and THg) showed significant age-related correlations with skin concentration while five elements (Cu, Se, THg, Zn and V) showed age-related correlations with liver concentrations. Geographic location influenced age-related accumulation of several trace elements and age-related accumulation of THg in hepatic tissue was observed for both sites to have the highest correlations (r² = 0.90SC; r² = 0.69FL). Mean THg concentration in liver was about 10 times higher in FL dolphins (330 μg g⁻¹ dw) than those samples from SC dolphins (34.3 μg g⁻¹ dw). The mean molar ratio of Hg to Se was 0.93 ± 0.32 and 1.08 ± 0.38 for SC and FL dolphins, respectively. However, the Hg:Se ratio varied with age as much lower ratios (0.2-0.4) were found in younger animals. Of the 18 measured elements, only THg was significantly correlated in skin and liver of stranded dolphins and skin of free-ranging dolphins from both sites suggesting that skin may be

  4. Partially observed epidemics in wildlife hosts: modelling an outbreak of dolphin morbillivirus in the northwestern Atlantic, June 2013-2014

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Morris, Sinead E; Zelner, Jonathan L; Fauquier, Deborah A; Rowles, Teresa K; Rosel, Patricia E; Gulland, Frances; Grenfell, Bryan T

    2015-01-01

    ...; this is especially true for epidemics in cetaceans. However, the recent outbreak of dolphin morbillivirus in the northwestern Atlantic Ocean can provide new insights into the epidemiology and spatio-temporal spread of this pathogen...

  5. Cirolana narica n. sp., a New Zealand isopod (Crustacea) found in the nasal tract of the dolphin Cephalorhynchus hectori

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bowman, Thomas E.

    1971-01-01

    A new cirolanid isopod, Cirolana narica, is described from the vestibular diverticulum of the blowhole complex of the dolphin, Cephalorhynchus hectori. The isopod is believed to be a scavenger that entered the blowhole post mortem.

  6. Cirolana narica n. sp., a New Zealand isopod (Crustacea) found in the nasal tract of the dolphin Cephalorhynchus hectori

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bowman, Thomas E.

    1971-01-01

    A new cirolanid isopod, Cirolana narica, is described from the vestibular diverticulum of the blowhole complex of the dolphin, Cephalorhynchus hectori. The isopod is believed to be a scavenger that entered the blowhole post mortem.

  7. 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.

  8. Positive interactions between irrawaddy dolphins and artisanal fishers in the Chilika Lagoon of eastern India are driven by ecology, socioeconomics, and culture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Lima, Coralie; Marsh, Helene; Hamann, Mark; Sinha, Anindya; Arthur, Rohan

    2014-09-01

    In human-dominated landscapes, interactions and perceptions towards wildlife are influenced by multidimensional drivers. Understanding these drivers could prove useful for wildlife conservation. We surveyed the attitudes and perceptions of fishers towards threatened Irrawaddy dolphins (Orcaella brevirostris) at Chilika Lagoon India. To validate the drivers of fisher perceptions, we : (1) observed dolphin foraging behavior at stake nets, and (2) compared catch per unit effort (CPUE) and catch income of fishers from stake nets in the presence and absence of foraging dolphins. We found that fishers were mostly positive towards dolphins, believing that dolphins augmented their fish catch and using culture to express their perceptions. Foraging dolphins were observed spending half their time at stake nets and were associated with significantly higher catch income and CPUE of mullet (Liza sp.), a locally preferred food fish species. Wildlife conservation efforts should use the multidimensional drivers of human-wildlife interactions to involve local stakeholders in management.

  9. Trace element concentrations in skin of free-ranging bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the southeast Atlantic coast.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stavros, Hui-Chen W; Bossart, Gregory D; Hulsey, Thomas C; Fair, Patricia A

    2007-12-15

    Concentrations of trace elements (Al, As, Ba, Be, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Li, Mn, Ni, Pb, Sb, Se, Sn, Tl, U, V, Zn) and total mercury (THg) were determined in skin samples collected from free-ranging bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) populations. Dolphins were captured in the estuarine waters of Charleston (CHS), South Carolina (n=74) and the Indian River Lagoon (IRL), Florida (n=75) during 2003, 2004 and 2005. A subset of the skin tissue samples were used to determine methylmercury (MeHg) levels in CHS (n=17) and IRL (n=8) bottlenose dolphins. Distributions of trace element concentrations by age (adult vs. juvenile), gender (male vs. female) and study area (CHS vs. IRL) were examined. In general, higher elemental skin concentrations were found in CHS adult males than those of IRL adult males, except for THg and MeHg. For CHS dolphins, adult females showed significantly higher THg levels than juvenile females while higher Mn levels were found in juvenile females. For IRL dolphins, adult males showed significantly higher As concentrations than that in juvenile males and females while higher Co and V levels were found in juvenile males than adult males. Of all elements measured in this study, significantly higher levels of Fe, Se and Zn concentrations in skin tissue of both dolphin populations were similar to other studies reported previously. Percentage of MeHg/THg in skin tissue of CHS and IRL dolphin was about 72% and 73%, respectively. Dietary levels of trace elements may play an important role in contributing to concentration differences for As, Co, Mn, Sb, Se, THg and Tl between CHS and IRL dolphins. Total Hg concentrations were significantly correlated with the age of CHS dolphins, while an inverse relationship was detected for Cu, Mn, Pb, U and Zn. The only significant correlation found between trace element concentration and IRL dolphins' age was Mn. Geographic differences in several trace element concentrations (As, Co, Mn, Sb, Se, THg and Tl) in skin

  10. COMPARISON OF TEMPORAL PARAMETERS OF SWIMMING RESCUE ELEMENTS WHEN PERFORMED USING DOLPHIN AND FLUTTER KICK WITH FINS - DIDACTICAL APPROACH

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marek Rejman

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was an analysis of the time required to swim to a victim and tow them back to shore, while perfoming the flutter-kick and the dolphin-kick using fins. It has been hypothesized that using fins while using the dolphin-kick when swimming leads to reduced rescue time. Sixteen lifeguards took part in the study. The main tasks performed by them, were to approach and tow (double armpit a dummy a distance of 50m while applying either the flutter-kick, or the dolphin-kick with fins. The analysis of the temporal parameters of both techniques of kicking demonstrates that, during the approach to the victim, neither the dolphin (tmean = 32.9s or the flutter kick (tmean = 33.0s were significantly faster than the other. However, when used for towing a victim the flutter kick (tmean = 47.1s was significantly faster when compared to the dolphin-kick (tmean = 52.8s. An assessment of the level of technical skills in competitive swimming, and in approaching and towing the victim, were also conducted. Towing time was significantly correlated with the parameter that linked the temporal and technical dimensions of towing and swimming (difference between flutter kick towing time and dolphin-kick towing time, 100m medley time and the four swimming strokes evaluation. No similar interdependency has been discovered in flutter kick towing time. These findings suggest that the dolphin-kick is a more difficult skill to perform when towing the victim than the flutter-kick. Since the hypothesis stated was not confirmed, postulates were formulated on how to improve dolphin-kick technique with fins, in order to reduce swimming rescue time

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

    OpenAIRE

    Bressem, M.F.; Simões-Lopes, P. C.; Félix, F.; Kiszka, J.; Daura-Jorge, F.G.; Avila, I.C.; Secchi, E.R.; Flach, L.; Fruet, P.F.; K. Du Toit; Ott, P.H.; Elwen, S.; Di Giacomo, A.B.; J. Wagner; Banks, A

    2015-01-01

    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-resi...

  12. Validating the Novel Method of Measuring Cortisol Levels in Cetacean Skin by use of an ACTH Challenge in Bottlenose Dolphins

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-09-30

    National Marine Mammal Foundation, USA), Dr. Bjarne Styrishave (Copenhagen University, Denmark), and Dr. Andrew J. Wright (George Mason University, USA...using skin samples collected from bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). The dolphins will be sampled as part of an ongoing out-of water stress test ...and stress hormones study conducted by Dr. Dorian Houser in collaboration with the U.S. Navy Marine Mammal Program (MMP) under ONR project

  13. Mercury and selenium in stranded Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins and implications for their trophic transfer in food chains.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Duan Gui

    Full Text Available As top predators in the Pearl River Estuary (PRE of China, Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins (Sousa chinensis are bioindicators for examining regional trends of environmental contaminants in the PRE. We examined samples from stranded S. chinensis in the PRE, collected since 2004, to study the distribution and fate of total mercury (THg, methylmercury (MeHg and selenium (Se in the major tissues, in individuals at different ages and their prey fishes from the PRE. This study also investigated the potential protective effects of Se against the toxicities of accumulated THg. Dolphin livers contained the highest concentrations of THg (32.34±58.98 µg g(-1 dw and Se (15.16±3.66 µg g(-1 dw, which were significantly different from those found in kidneys and muscles, whereas the highest residue of MeHg (1.02±1.11 µg g(-1 dw was found in dolphin muscles. Concentrations of both THg and MeHg in the liver, kidney and muscle of dolphins showed a significantly positive correlation with age. The biomagnification factors (BMFs of inorganic mercury (Hginorg in dolphin livers (350× and MeHg in muscles (18.7× through the prey fishes were the highest among all three dolphin tissues, whereas the BMFs of Se were much lower in all dolphin tissues. The lower proportion of MeHg in THg and higher Se/THg ratios in tissues were demonstrated. Our studies suggested that S. chinensis might have the potential to detoxify Hg via the demethylation of MeHg and the formation of tiemannite (HgSe in the liver and kidney. The lower threshold of hepatic THg concentrations for the equimolar accumulation of Se and Hg in S. chinensis suggests that this species has a greater sensitivity to THg concentrations than is found in striped dolphins and Dall's porpoises.

  14. Seroprevalence of Toxoplasma gondii in free-living Amazon River dolphins (Inia geoffrensis) from central Amazon, Brazil

    OpenAIRE

    P.S. Santos; ALBUQUERQUE, G. R.; da Silva, V. M. F.; Martin, A R; Marvulo,M.F.V.; S.L.P. Souza; Ragozo, A. M. A. [UNESP; Nascimento, C. C.; Gennari,S.M.; Dubey, J. P.; Silva, J. C. R.

    2011-01-01

    Toxoplasma gondii is an important pathogen in aquatic mammals and its presence in these animals may indicate the water contamination of aquatic environment by oocysts. Serum samples from 95 free-living Amazon River dolphins (Inia geoffrensis) from the Mamiraua Sustainable Development Reserve (RDSM), Tefe, Amazonas, Central Amazon, Brazil were tested for T. gondii antibodies using the modified agglutination test (MAT). Antibodies (MAT >= 25) to T. gondii were found in 82 (86.3%) dolphins with ...

  15. Guiana Dolphins (Sotalia guianensis) and DR-CALUX for Screening Coastal Brazilian Environments for Dioxins and Related Compounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dorneles, Paulo R; Lailson-Brito, José; Bisi, Tatiana L; Domit, Camila; Barbosa, Lupércio A; Meirelles, Ana C O; Carvalho, Vitor L; Malm, Olaf; Azevedo, Alexandre F; Brose, François; Das, Krishna; Scippo, Marie-Louise

    2016-10-01

    Guiana dolphin is the top predator of highest toxicological concern in Brazil and many studies on levels of persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxicant (PBT) pollutants have been performed on the species. However, due to high costs of the analyses, only one investigation comprised the determination of dioxins and related compounds (DRCs) in Guiana dolphin tissues. The dioxin responsive-chemically activated luciferase gene expression (DR-CALUX(®)) cell bioassay was used in the present study for the analyses of hepatic samples from 28 male Guiana dolphins in order to screen estuarine environments for DRCs, comprising three regions (Northeastern, Southeastern, and Southern) and four states [Paraná (PR), Rio de Janeiro (RJ), Espírito Santo (ES), and Ceará (CE)] of Brazil. High bioanalytical equivalent (BEQ) concentrations [dioxins (pg BEQ/g lipid)] were found, varying from 1.94 to 15.6 pg BEQ/g. A significant negative correlation between BEQ concentrations and total length was found in Guiana dolphins from Brazil (all analysed dolphins). This pattern also was verified for RJ state, pointing to (1) chemically induced developmental disruption or to (2) increasing efficiency of the detoxifying activity with the growth of the animal. Comparison was performed with literature data and significantly higher BEQ levels were found in Brazilian Guiana dolphins than in those reported for North Sea harbour porpoises. Higher levels were found in Southeastern (the most PBT-contaminated area of the country) than in Southern region. However, it is not possible to affirm that Guiana dolphins are more contaminated by DRCs in SE than in S region, because individuals were lengthier in S than in SE region. Our results seem to have mirrored dolphin exposure to PCBs in Brazil according to the literature. Further studies are required for investigating the hypotheses 1 and 2 mentioned above.

  16. Cognitive Research with Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) at Disney’s The Seas: A Program for Enrichment, Science, Education, and Conservation

    OpenAIRE

    Harley, Heidi E.; Fellner, Wendi; Stamper, M. Andy

    2010-01-01

    The dolphins at Disney contribute to a cognitive research program. This program has been very successful in four main areas: enrichment, science, education, and conservation. Dolphins are large brained,long-lived mammals with extended developmental periods, complex social lives, a large variety of foraging techniques, and intricate vocal emissions; consequently, they need to engage incognitive tasks, and they respond well to them. Our tasks have been designed for scientifically valid data col...

  17. 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 ...

  18. Comparison of temporal parameters of swimming rescue elements when performed using dolphin and flutter kick with fins - didactical approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rejman, Marek; Wiesner, Wojciech; Silakiewicz, Piotr; Klarowicz, Andrzej; Abraldes, J Arturo

    2012-01-01

    The aim of this study was an analysis of the time required to swim to a victim and tow them back to shore, while perfoming the flutter-kick and the dolphin-kick using fins. It has been hypothesized that using fins while using the dolphin-kick when swimming leads to reduced rescue time. Sixteen lifeguards took part in the study. The main tasks performed by them, were to approach and tow (double armpit) a dummy a distance of 50m while applying either the flutter-kick, or the dolphin-kick with fins. The analysis of the temporal parameters of both techniques of kicking demonstrates that, during the approach to the victim, neither the dolphin (tmean = 32.9s) or the flutter kick (tmean = 33.0s) were significantly faster than the other. However, when used for towing a victim the flutter kick (tmean = 47.1s) was significantly faster when compared to the dolphin-kick (tmean = 52.8s). An assessment of the level of technical skills in competitive swimming, and in approaching and towing the victim, were also conducted. Towing time was significantly correlated with the parameter that linked the temporal and technical dimensions of towing and swimming (difference between flutter kick towing time and dolphin-kick towing time, 100m medley time and the four swimming strokes evaluation). No similar interdependency has been discovered in flutter kick towing time. These findings suggest that the dolphin-kick is a more difficult skill to perform when towing the victim than the flutter-kick. Since the hypothesis stated was not confirmed, postulates were formulated on how to improve dolphin-kick technique with fins, in order to reduce swimming rescue time.

  19. Molecular ecology meets remote sensing: Environmental drivers to population structure of humpback dolphins in the Western Indian Ocean

    OpenAIRE

    2011-01-01

    Genetic analyses of population structure can be placed in explicit environmental contexts if appropriate environmental data are available. Here, we use high-coverage and high-resolution oceanographic and genetic sequence data to assess population structure patterns and their potential environmental influences for humpback dolphins in the Western Indian Ocean. We analyzed mitochondrial DNA data from 94 dolphins from the coasts of South Africa, Mozambique, Tanzania and Oman, employing frequency...

  20. 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...

  1. A GIS analysis of coastal development and trends in bottlenose dolphin strandings in Charleston, SC: implications for coastal marine spatial planning

    OpenAIRE

    Green, Meredith A.; McFee, Wayne; Levine, Norm

    2010-01-01

    Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) inhabit estuarine waters near Charleston, South Carolina (SC) feeding, nursing and socializing. While in these waters, dolphins are exposed to multiple direct and indirect threats such as anthropogenic impacts (egs. harassment with boat traffic and entanglements in fishing gear) and environmental degradation. Bottlenose dolphins are protected under the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972. Over the years, the percentage of strandings in the estuari...

  2. In vitro assessment of environmental stress of persistent organic pollutants on the Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jia, Kuntong; Ding, Liang; Zhang, Lingli; Zhang, Mei; Yi, Meisheng; Wu, Yuping

    2015-12-25

    Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) are detected ubiquitously and are linked to range of adverse health effects. The Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin inhabited the Pearl River Estuary (PRE), China, where high concentrations of POPs have been reported. This study evaluated the threats posed by POPs in the environment to the dolphin using an in vitro system. We selected BNF(β-naphthoflavone) and four POPs (DDTs (dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethanes), CHLs(chlorides), HCHs(hexachlorocyclohexanes) and HCB(hexachlorobenzene)) which had been accumulated in the dolphin with high concentrations to treat the cultured skin fibroblast cells (ScSF cells) of the dolphin, and investigated the expression patterns of the ecological stress biomarkers CYP1A1, AHR and HSP70 in the cell line. The results showed that CYP1A1 was up-regulated after being exposed to different concentrations of BNF, DDTs and HCHs. CHLs, HCHs and HCB promoted AHR expression. HSP70 expression was increased by high concentrations of BNF and DDTs. Moreover, comet assay experiments revealed that DDTs produced higher degree of DNA damage to ScSF cells than other POPs, implying that the Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin in the PRE has been threatened by POPs accumulated in the body, especially by DDTs. Our results provided important information to assess the risk of the Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin raised by environmental POPs in vivo. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Hematologic, biochemical, and cytologic findings from apparently healthy atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) inhabiting the Indian River Lagoon, Florida, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldstein, Juli D; Reese, Eric; Reif, John S; Varela, René A; McCulloch, Stephen D; Defran, R H; Fair, Patricia A; Bossart, Gregory D; Hansen, Larry

    2006-04-01

    The objective of this study was to establish reference baseline data for hematologic, biochemical, and cytologic findings in apparently healthy Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) inhabiting the Indian River Lagoon, Florida, USA. Sixty-two dolphins were captured, examined, and released during June 2003 and June 2004. Mean, standard deviation, and range were calculated for each parameter, and values for which published data were available, were close to or within the ranges previously reported for free-ranging bottlenose dolphins. No pathologic abnormalities were found in fecal and blowhole cytologic specimens. However, 24% (7/29) of the dolphins examined in 2003 had evidence of gastritis, which was graded as severe in 14% (4/29) of the cases. In 2004, only 4% (1/24) of dolphins sampled had evidence of mild or moderate gastritis; no severe inflammation was present. Dolphins with evidence of gastritis were 8 yr of age or older and predominantly male. Several statistically significant differences were found between males and females, between pregnant and nonpregnant animals, and between juveniles ( or =6 yr). However, the values remained within the established ranges for this species, and the differences were not likely to be of clinical significance.

  4. Fishers' knowledge as a source of information about the estuarine dolphin (Sotalia guianensis, van Bénéden, 1864).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manzan, Maíra Fontes; Lopes, Priscila F M

    2015-01-01

    Fishers' local ecological knowledge (LEK) is an additional tool to obtain information about cetaceans, regarding their local particularities, fishing interactions, and behavior. However, this knowledge could vary in depth of detail according to the level of interaction that fishers have with a specific species. This study investigated differences in small-scale fishers' LEK regarding the estuarine dolphin (Sotalia guianensis) in three Brazilian northeast coastal communities where fishing is practiced in estuarine lagoons and/or coastal waters and where dolphin-watching tourism varies from incipient to important. The fishers (N = 116) were asked about general characteristics of S. guianensis and their interactions with this dolphin during fishing activities. Compared to lagoon fishers, coastal fishers showed greater knowledge about the species but had more negative interactions with the dolphin during fishing activities. Coastal fishing not only offered the opportunity for fishers to observe a wider variety of the dolphin's behavior, but also implied direct contact with the dolphins, as they are bycaught in coastal gillnets. Besides complementing information that could be used for the management of cetaceans, this study shows that the type of environment most used by fishers also affects the accuracy of the information they provide. When designing studies to gather information on species and/or populations with the support of fishers, special consideration should be given to local particularities such as gear and habitats used within the fishing community.

  5. Efficacy of a Newly Designed Cephalometric Analysis Software for McNamara Analysis in Comparison with Dolphin Software

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nouri, Mahtab; Hamidiaval, Shadi; Akbarzadeh Baghban, Alireza; Basafa, Mohammad; Fahim, Mohammad

    2015-01-01

    Objectives: Cephalometric norms of McNamara analysis have been studied in various populations due to their optimal efficiency. Dolphin cephalometric software greatly enhances the conduction of this analysis for orthodontic measurements. However, Dolphin is very expensive and cannot be afforded by many clinicians in developing countries. A suitable alternative software program in Farsi/English will greatly help Farsi speaking clinicians. The present study aimed to develop an affordable Iranian cephalometric analysis software program and compare it with Dolphin, the standard software available on the market for cephalometric analysis. Materials and Methods: In this diagnostic, descriptive study, 150 lateral cephalograms of normal occlusion individuals were selected in Mashhad and Qazvin, two major cities of Iran mainly populated with Fars ethnicity, the main Iranian ethnic group. After tracing the cephalograms, the McNamara analysis standards were measured both with Dolphin and the new software. The cephalometric software was designed using Microsoft Visual C++ program in Windows XP. Measurements made with the new software were compared with those of Dolphin software on both series of cephalograms. The validity and reliability were tested using intra-class correlation coefficient. Results: Calculations showed a very high correlation between the results of the Iranian cephalometric analysis software and Dolphin. This confirms the validity and optimal efficacy of the newly designed software (ICC 0.570–1.0). Conclusion: According to our results, the newly designed software has acceptable validity and reliability and can be used for orthodontic diagnosis, treatment planning and assessment of treatment outcome. PMID:26005455

  6. The impact of methylmercury on 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3-induced transcriptomic responses in dolphin skin cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-01-01

    The Atlantic bottlenose dolphin has been the focus of much attention owing to the considerable impact of environmental stress on its health and the associated implications for human health. Here, we used skin cells from the dolphin to investigate the protective role of the vitamin D pathway against environmental stressors. We previously reported that dolphin skin cells respond to 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 (1,25D3), the bioactive metabolite of vitamin D3, by upregulation of the vitamin D receptor (VDR) and expression of several genes. Methylmercury is a highly bioaccumulative environmental stressor of relevance to the dolphin. We currently report that in dolphin cells sublethal concentrations of methylmercury compromise the ability of 1,25D3 to upregulate VDR, to transactivate a vitamin D-sensitive promoter, and to express specific target genes. These results help elucidate the effects of vitamin D and methylmercury on innate immunity in dolphin skin and potentially in human skin as well, considering similarities in the vitamin D pathway between the two species.

  7. Efficacy of a Newly Designed Cephalometric Analysis Software for McNamara Analysis in Comparison with Dolphin Software.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mahtab Nouri

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Cephalometric norms of McNamara analysis have been studied in various populations due to their optimal efficiency. Dolphin cephalometric software greatly enhances the conduction of this analysis for orthodontic measurements. However, Dolphin is very expensive and cannot be afforded by many clinicians in developing countries. A suitable alternative software program in Farsi/English will greatly help Farsi speaking clinicians. The present study aimed to develop an affordable Iranian cephalometric analysis software program and compare it with Dolphin, the standard software available on the market for cephalometric analysis.In this diagnostic, descriptive study, 150 lateral cephalograms of normal occlusion individuals were selected in Mashhad and Qazvin, two major cities of Iran mainly populated with Fars ethnicity, the main Iranian ethnic group. After tracing the cephalograms, the McNamara analysis standards were measured both with Dolphin and the new software. The cephalometric software was designed using Microsoft Visual C++ program in Windows XP. Measurements made with the new software were compared with those of Dolphin software on both series of cephalograms. The validity and reliability were tested using intra-class correlation coefficient.Calculations showed a very high correlation between the results of the Iranian cephalometric analysis software and Dolphin. This confirms the validity and optimal efficacy of the newly designed software (ICC 0.570-1.0.According to our results, the newly designed software has acceptable validity and reliability and can be used for orthodontic diagnosis, treatment planning and assessment of treatment outcome.

  8. Assessing the potential health impacts of the 2003 and 2007 firestorms on bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops trucatus) in San Diego Bay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venn-Watson, Stephanie; Smith, Cynthia R; Jensen, Eric D; Rowles, Teri

    2013-08-01

    Firestorms negatively affected air quality throughout San Diego County during 2003 and 2007, including the San Diego Bay, which houses the Navy's bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). To assess the potential impact of the 2003 and 2007 fires on dolphin health. Hematology and serum chemistry values were evaluated retrospectively among Navy dolphins the year and month before; during; and the month after the 2003 and 2007 fires. Both 2003 and 2007 fires were associated with lower calcium either during or the month post-fire compared to the control periods. During and the month following the 2003 fire, dolphins had higher serum carbon dioxide compared to the control periods. Dolphins during and the month following the 2007 fire had lower absolute or percent neutrophils and higher chloride. The 2007 fire was also associated with increased percent eosinophils during the fire and higher percent monocytes and bilirubin the month following the fire compared to the control periods. Consistent with what has been previously reported in humans and other animals, this study supports that fire smoke inhalation may have mild effects on dolphin physiology, including calcium homeostasis, lung function and immune response.

  9. From genome-wide to candidate gene: an investigation of variation at the major histocompatibility complex in common bottlenose dolphins exposed to harmful algal blooms.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-02-01

    The role the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) plays in response to exposure to environmental toxins is relatively poorly understood, particularly in comparison to its well-described role in pathogen immunity. We investigated associations between MHC diversity and resistance to brevetoxins in common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). A previous genome-wide association study investigating an apparent difference in harmful algal bloom (HAB) resistance among dolphin populations in the Gulf of Mexico identified genetic variation associated with survival in close genomic proximity to multiple MHC class II loci. Here, we characterized genetic variation at DQA, DQB, DRA, and DRB loci in dolphins from central-west Florida and the Florida Panhandle, including dolphins that died during HABs and dolphins presumed to have survived HAB exposure. We found that DRB and DQB exhibited patterns of genetic differentiation among geographic regions that differed from neutral microsatellite loci. In addition, genetic differentiation at DRB across multiple pairwise comparisons of live and dead dolphins was greater than differentiation observed at neutral loci. Our findings at these MHC loci did not approach the strength of association with survival previously described for a nearby genetic variant. However, the results provide evidence that selective pressures at the MHC vary among dolphin populations that differ in the frequency of HAB exposure and that the overall composition of DRB variants differs between dolphin survivors and non-survivors of HABs. These results may suggest a potential role of MHC diversity in variable survival of bottlenose dolphins exposed to HABs.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. Dolphin Watching in the Southern Tañon Strait Protected Seascape, Philippines: Issues and Challenges

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lemnuel V. Aragones

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Dolphin watching is a growing economic activity in the southern Tañon Strait Protected Seascape (TSPS, the Philippines, an area that is also heavily exploited by fisheries. In order to examine the issues and challenges in this growing industry, we monitored relevant information regarding cetacean watching, conducted focus group discussions (FGDs and educational seminar-workshops for various local stakeholders from 2004 to 2006, and followed these up from 2008-2012. From 9 May to 16 August 2004, we conducted structured interviews to determine the perceptions of cetacean-watching tourists (CWTs and assess the level of local knowledge of f ishers and non-fishers (NFs regarding marine mammals and environmental management in this area. Ninety f ive (95 CWTs, 100 local fishers, and 64 NFs were interviewed. Sixty seven percent (n=64 of the CWTs believed that the overall quality of tours was impressive primarily because they were able to watch, at reasonable costs, large groups of dolphins in close proximity and in an almost pristine environment. The majority of CWTs (~91% felt that there is a need to develop a ‘Special Management Plan’ (SMP for the southern TSPS focusing on cetaceans and their habitats. The increasing number of dolphin watching boats, heavy exploitation of f ishing ground, misperception of local f ishers that cetaceans are competitors with f isheries, and lack of a SMP or a Management Plan per se for TSPS warranted the facilitation of a participatory management process to protect the cetaceans and their habitats.This study has shown that even with only preliminary results, survey interviews of key stakeholders in combination with FGDs and seminar-workshop could be critical in facilitating a participatory management process. In the case of the TSPS, this par ticipatory approach led to the formation of the Tañon Strait Association of Dolphin and Whale Watching Operators, Inc. (TaSADoWWI, and eventual development of cetacean

  13. Population Structure of Island-Associated Dolphins: Evidence from Photo-Identification of Common Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in the Main Hawaiian Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-04-01

    white square = 0–200 m; black circle = 201–1,000 m; gray triangle = both < and >200 m; black diamond = >1,000 m). Completely symmetrical clusters are...of 765 dis- tinctive individuals in a 1.5-yr period in an area of approximately 250 km2; most individuals were sighted only once. Around Bermuda ...myctophids (Walker 1981). The maximum dive depth of bottlenose dolphins is not known, although animals tagged off Bermuda did regularly dive below 450 m

  14. Struvite calculus in the vagina of a bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    McFee, Wayne E; Carl A, Osborne

    2004-01-01

    On 27 January 2000, a struvite calculus was observed in the vagina during necropsy of a 138-cm-long female bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) collected from the Stono River, South Carolina (USA). Vaginal calculi have been reported in other species of cetaceans but not in bottlenose dolphins. Urinary tract infection might have been an underlying cause of the calculus. While urinary tract inflammation was not detected by light microscopic evaluation of sections of the urinary tract, it is conceivable that sufficient time had lapsed following voiding of the calculus through the urethra for urinary tract infection to have resolved. To further define the prevalence and significance of urolithiasis, prosectors of dead stranded marine mammals are encouraged to closely observe their urinary and genital tracts for calculi and to submit them for quantitative analysis.

  15. Organochlorine contaminant and retinoid levels in blubber of common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) off northwestern Spain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tornero, Victoria [Department of Animal Biology (Vertebrates), Faculty of Biology, University of Barcelona, Diagonal 645, 08071 Barcelona (Spain)]. E-mail: victoriatornero@ub.edu; Borrell, Assumpcio [Department of Animal Biology (Vertebrates), Faculty of Biology, University of Barcelona, Diagonal 645, 08071 Barcelona (Spain); Aguilar, Alex [Department of Animal Biology (Vertebrates), Faculty of Biology, University of Barcelona, Diagonal 645, 08071 Barcelona (Spain); Forcada, Jaume [Biological Sciences Division, NERC, British Antarctic Survey, High Cross, Madingley Road, Cambridge CB3 0ET (United Kingdom); Lockyer, Christina [Age Dynamics, Huldbergs Alle 42, DK-2800 Kongens, Lyngby (Denmark)

    2006-03-15

    The effect of age, sex, nutritive condition and organochlorine concentration on blubber retinoid concentrations was examined in 74 common dolphins incidentally caught off northwestern Spain. Age and blubber lipid content were strong determinants of the retinoid concentrations in males, while these variables did not account for the variation found in females. Retinoids were positively correlated with organochlorines in males and negatively in females. However, pollution levels were moderate and likely to be below threshold levels above that a toxicological response is to be expected. Thus, a cause-effect relationship between organochlorine and retinoid concentrations could not be properly established, and the observed correlation may be the result of an independent association of the two variables with age. Further research on the influence of the best predictor variables on retinoid dynamics is required to implement the use of retinoids as biomarkers of pollutant exposure in cetaceans. - Organochlorine contaminants and retinoids in common dolphins.

  16. Marine debris ingestion by coastal dolphins: what drives differences between sympatric species?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Beneditto, Ana Paula Madeira; Ramos, Renata Maria Arruda

    2014-06-15

    This study compared marine debris ingestion of the coastal dolphins Pontoporia blainvillei and Sotalia guianensis in a sympatric area in Atlantic Ocean. Among the 89 stomach contents samples of P. blainvillei, 14 (15.7%) contained marine debris. For S. guianensis, 77 stomach contents samples were analyzed and only one of which (1.30%) contained marine debris. The debris recovered was plastic material: nylon yarns and flexible plastics. Differences in feeding habits between the coastal dolphins were found to drive their differences regarding marine debris ingestion. The feeding activity of P. blainvillei is mainly near the sea bottom, which increases its chances of ingesting debris deposited on the seabed. In contrast, S. guianensis has a near-surface feeding habit. In the study area, the seabed is the main zone of accumulation of debris, and species with some degree of association with the sea bottom may be local bioindicators of marine debris pollution.

  17. Plastic debris ingested by a rough-toothed dolphin, Steno bredanensis, stranded alive in northeastern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helen Maria Duarte do Rego Barros

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available An adult male rough-toothed dolphin, Steno bredanensis, stranded alive on Poço da Draga Beach, Fortaleza, Ceará State, northeastern Brazil. The animal was unable to swim, was visibly emaciated, and died while being transported to the AQUASIS rehabilitation facilities. During the necropsy, two plastic bags and four pieces of sea sponges were found in the fore-stomach chamber, where the mucosa had several ulcers. The ingestion of plastic debris by dolphins is not well understood. They can eat it by mistake, since it resembles some of their prey species, or ingest it along with a prey. In Ceará State, the inappropriate disposal of solid wastes and urban effluents are major sources of pollution in the coastal zone. Urgent measures are required to minimize this threat to coastal marine mammals, such as legal mechanisms, enforcement and awareness campaigns.

  18. Dolphin Morbillivirus in a Cuvier’s Beaked Whale (Ziphius cavirostris), Italy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Centelleghe, Cinzia; Beffagna, Giorgia; Palmisano, Giuseppe; Franzo, Giovanni; Casalone, Cristina; Pautasso, Alessandra; Giorda, Federica; Di Nocera, Fabio; Iaccarino, Doriana; Santoro, Mario; Di Guardo, Giovanni; Mazzariol, Sandro

    2017-01-01

    Dolphin morbillivirus (DMV) has caused several mortality events in Mediterranean striped (Stenella coeruleoalba) and bottlenose (Tursiops truncatus) dolphins populations since 19; in the last 5 years, the virus was reported to infect new hosts in this basin, such as fin whales (Balaenoptera physalus), sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus), and even a harbor seal (Phoca vitulina). Very recently, a calf Cuvier’s beaked whale (Ziphius cavirostris) calf stranded on the Southern Italian coastline with mild pathological findings suggestive of morbilliviral infection, received the first confirmation of DMV infection in this species by biomolecular evidences on lung tissue. This new cross-species infection report, along with 19% of the cetaceans specimens examined by the Italian Stranding Network being found positive to DMV, support the hypothesis of an endemic circulation of this virus among Mediterranean cetaceans. PMID:28197145

  19. Analysis of whistles produced by the Tucuxi Dolphin Sotalia fluviatilis from Sepetiba Bay, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erber Claudia

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available From July 2001 to June 2002, we recorded a total of 2h55min of Tucuxi Dolphin Sotalia fluviatilis vocalizations from Sepetiba Bay, Brazil (22º35'S-44º03'W. A total of 3350 whistles were analyzed quantitative and qualitatively and were divided into 124 types, by visual inspection of sonograms. The following parameters were measured: Initial Frequency, Final Frequency, Minimum Frequency, Maximum Frequency, Duration, Number of Inflections, Frequency at the Inflection Points, Frequency at 1/2, 1/4, and 3/4 of whistle duration, Presence of Frequency Modulation and Harmonics. Ascending type whistles (N=2719 were most common, representing 82% of the total. Dolphin behavior and average group size observed during recording influenced the whistle's quantitative and qualitative parameters. The results demonstrate the great diversity of whistles emitted and indicate a functional role of these vocalizations during the observed behaviors.

  20. 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.

  1. Aeromonas dhakensis pneumonia and sepsis in a neonate Risso's dolphin Grampus griseus from the Mediterranean Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pérez, Lola; Abarca, M Lourdes; Latif-Eugenín, Fadua; Beaz-Hidalgo, Roxana; Figueras, M José; Domingo, Mariano

    2015-09-17

    A neonate Risso's dolphin Grampus griseus was found stranded alive on a beach in Catalonia, Spain. Rehabilitation attempts were unsuccessful and it died 2 d later, showing pneumonia and sepsis. A pure bacterial culture was obtained from all tissues and blood and identified as Aeromonas hydrophila using the API 20NE. However, sequencing the rpoD gene showed that the strain in fact belongs to A. dhakensis, making this the first report of fatal haemorrhagic-necrotizing pneumonia and sepsis due to this species in a marine mammal. The A. dhakensis strain GMV-704 produced β-haemolysis, possessed several virulence genes and showed sensitivity to several antimicrobials. This study provides a new potential host for A. dhakensis, and its potential virulence in dolphins and its presence in the marine environment may warrant considering this species a potential threat to marine mammals.

  2. Evidence of Helicobacter sp. in dental plaque of captive dolphins (Tursiops gephyreus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldman, Cinthia G; Loureiro, Julio D; Quse, Viviana; Corach, Daniel; Calderon, Enrique; Caro, Ricardo A; Boccio, José; Rodríguez Heredia, Sergio; Di Carlo, Maria B; Zubillaga, Marcela B

    2002-07-01

    Gastrointestinal lesions have been extensively reported in wild and captive marine mammals. However, their etiology remains unclear. In humans and other animals, chronic gastritis and peptic ulcers have been associated with Helicobacter sp. Therefore, the aim of our study was to investigate the presence of Helicobacter sp. in the gastric juice, dental plaque, and saliva of marine mammals living in a controlled environment. Five dolphins (Tursiops gephyreus), one killer whale (Orcinus orca), one false killer whale (Pseudorca crassidens), three sea lions (Otaria flavescens), two elephant seals (Mirounga leonina), and two fur seals (Arctocephalus australis) were studied. Saliva, dental plaque, and gastric juice samples were examined for Helicobacter sp. using polymerase chain reaction. None of the gastric juice or saliva samples were positive for Helicobacter sp. However, Helicobacter sp. DNA was detected in dental plaque from two dolphins, suggesting the oral cavity might be a reservoir of this bacterium.

  3. Analysis and Modeling of Echolocation Signals Emitted by Mediterranean Bottlenose Dolphins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Greco Maria

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available We analyzed the echolocation sounds emitted by Mediterranean bottlenose dolphins. We extracted the click trains by visual inspection of the data files recorded along the coast of the Tuscany with the collaboration of the CETUS Research Center. We modeled the extracted sonar clicks as Gaussian or exponential multicomponent signals, we estimated the characteristic parameters and compared the data with the reconstructed signals based on the estimates. Results about the estimation and the data fitting are largely shown in the paper.

  4. Surviving Rescue: A Feminist Reading of Scott O'Dell's "Island of the Blue Dolphins"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baecker, Diann L.

    2007-01-01

    Scott O'Dell's "Island of the Blue Dolphins" tells the archetypal story of the young, virgin, orphan girl who is vulnerable to either debauchery or rescue. That such a girl must succumb to either one or the other is a necessary element of the archetype. In O'Dell's work--one intended, after all, for children--the heroine is rescued by a…

  5. Ecology and Conservation Status of Indian Ocean Humpback Dolphins (Sousa plumbea) in Madagascar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerchio, Salvatore; Andrianarivelo, Norbert; Andrianantenaina, Boris

    2015-01-01

    The Indian Ocean humpback dolphin (Sousa plumbea) has been studied in several range states in the Southwest Indian Ocean, however little information exists on populations in Madagascar. Here, we review available literature and describe a study on S. plumbea conducted between 2004 and 2013 on the west coast of Madagascar, involving boat-based field surveys in the southwest and northwest regions, and interview surveys with local fishers from villages along most of the west coast. Field surveys in the southwest region of Anakao/St. Augustine Bay revealed low encounter rates and mean group size, and markedly declining trends in both from 1999 to 2013. Conversely, in the northwest region around Nosy Be and Nosy Iranja, encounter rates were higher, as were mean group sizes, suggesting an apparently more abundant and less impacted population. Interview surveys revealed by-catch of coastal dolphins along the entire west coast, including S. plumbea, as well as other species. Directed hunting, including drive hunts of groups of dolphins, was reported primarily in the southern regions, in the range of the Vezo Malagasy ethnicity; however, there was evidence of hunting starting in one area in the northwest, where hunting dolphins is normally considered taboo for the predominant Sakalava ethnicity. Thus, the conservation status of S. plumbea in Madagascar appears to be spatially heterogeneous, with some areas where the local population is apparently more impacted than others. Conservation measures are recommended to mitigate further decline in the southwest of Madagascar, while protecting habitat and ensuring resilience in the northwest. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd All rights reserved.

  6. Distribution and home range of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) off Veracruz, Mexico

    OpenAIRE

    I Martínez-Serrano; Serrano, A.; Heckel, G; Y Schramm

    2011-01-01

    With the goal of gathering ecological data to develop future cetacean management and conservation plans, the distribution, home range, and residency of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) were studied in the central-north Mexican Gulf of Mexico. Between July 2005 and June 2008, 59 boat surveys were carried out for a total of 313 h of effort at sea. During these surveys, 471 individuals were observed in 88 different groups. Photographs of naturally marked animals resulted in 275 different...

  7. 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

  8. Guide for Teaching the Novel "Island of the Blue Dolphins," Grade 6.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prior, Kathleen W.

    As a guide for in-depth study of "Island of the Blue Dolphins" by sixth-graders who have completed the basal reader, this document focuses on ways of enabling each child to find satisfaction and enjoyment in the novel; to develop a greater interest in literature; to gain an understanding of plot development in a story; to realize what the mood,…

  9. 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

  10. Llinas’ Phase Reset Mechanism Delays the Onset of Chaos in Shark and Dolphin Wall Turbulence

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-02-10

    has potential application to tornado path management. Shark and dolphin skins are major targets of reverse engineering mechanisms of drag and noise...slightly tilted, near- wall (mushroom) vortex pairs (4d) as a nonlinear pendulum , where the saddle "s", a point of neutral equilibrium, oscillates. The...slanted, e: Schematic of nonlinear pendulum behavior ofvorticity diffusion; phase: (s: saddle, unstable 180°) and foci (f: stable, 0°). f (Upper

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. A Review of the Status of the Indian Ocean Humpback Dolphin (Sousa plumbea) in Pakistan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiani, Muhammad Shoaib; Van Waerebeek, Koen

    2015-01-01

    Limited historical and new information on Indian Ocean humpback dolphins, Sousa plumbea, in Pakistan are reviewed. Although present along most of the coast, S. plumbea concentrates in the mangrove-lined creek system of the Indus Delta (Sindh), Miani Hor (Sonmiani Bay), Kalmat Lagoon, Gwadar and the Dasht River estuary (Gwater Bay, Jiwani). Other areas of distribution comprise the Karachi coast, Kund Malir, Ormara and Pasni. In the Indus Delta, 46 small-boat surveys conducted monthly (minus July and October) in 2005-2009, documented 112 sightings (439 individuals) in major creeks, smaller channels and nearshore waters. Group sizes ranged from 1-35 animals (mean=3.92±4.60). Groups of 1-10 animals composed 91% of total (27.9% single animals). An encounter rate of 0.07-0.17 dolphins km(-1) lacked a significant trend across survey years. A discovery curve remained steep after 87 dolphins were photo-identified, suggesting the population is vastly larger. In Sonmiani Bay, Balochistan, during 9 survey days in 2011-2012, group sizes ranged from 1-68 animals (mean=11.9±13.59; n=36), totalling 428 dolphins. Incidental entanglements, primarily in gillnets, pollution (especially around Karachi), overfishing and the ship breaking industry in Gaddani, pose major threats. Incidental catches occur along the entire Pakistani coast. Of 106 stranded cetaceans, 24.5% were S. plumbea. Directed takes in Balochistan, driven by demand for bait in shark fisheries, have reportedly declined following dwindling shark stocks. Habitat degradation threats include depletion of prey and increased maritime traffic. Domestic sewage and solid waste pollution are predominant on the Balochistan coast, especially at Miani Hor, Kund Malir, Ormara, Kalmat Lagoon, Pasni, Gwadar and Jiwani. An exhaustive habitat assessment combined with appropriate fishery management is the only way to safeguard the future of S. plumbea in Pakistan.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Relationship between persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and ranging patterns in common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from coastal Georgia, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balmer, Brian C; Schwacke, Lori H; Wells, Randall S; George, R Clay; Hoguet, Jennifer; Kucklick, John R; Lane, Suzanne M; Martinez, Anthony; McLellan, William A; Rosel, Patricia E; Rowles, Teri K; Sparks, Kate; Speakman, Todd; Zolman, Eric S; Pabst, D Ann

    2011-05-01

    Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) are apex predators in coastal southeastern U.S. waters; as such they are indicators of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in coastal ecosystems. POP concentrations measured in a dolphin's blubber are influenced by a number of factors, including the animal's sex and ranging pattern in relation to POP point sources. This study examined POP concentrations measured in bottlenose dolphin blubber samples (n=102) from the Georgia, USA coast in relation to individual ranging patterns and specifically, distance of sightings from a polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) point source near Brunswick, Georgia. Dolphin ranging patterns were determined based upon 5years of photo-identification data from two field sites approximately 40km apart: (1) the Brunswick field site, which included the Turtle/Brunswick River Estuary (TBRE), and (2) the Sapelo field site, which included the Sapelo Island National Estuarine Research Reserve (SINERR). Dolphins were categorized into one of three ranging patterns from photo-identification data. Individuals with sighting histories exclusively within one of the defined field sites were considered to have either Brunswick or Sapelo ranging patterns. Individuals sighted in both field sites were classified as having a Mixed ranging pattern. Brunswick males had the highest concentrations of PCBs reported for any marine mammal. The pattern of PCB congeners was consistent with Aroclor 1268, a highly chlorinated PCB mixture associated with a Superfund site in Brunswick. PCB levels in Sapelo males were lower than in Brunswick males, but comparable to the highest levels measured in other dolphin populations along the southeastern U.S. Female dolphins had higher Aroclor 1268 proportions than males, suggesting that the highly chlorinated congeners associated with Aroclor 1268 may not be offloaded through parturition and lactation, as easily as less halogenated POPs. Individuals sighted farther from the Superfund point

  17. 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.

  18. Clicking in shallow rivers: short-range echolocation of Irrawaddy and Ganges River dolphins in a shallow, acoustically complex habitat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jensen, Frants H; Rocco, Alice; Mansur, Rubaiyat M; Smith, Brian D; Janik, Vincent M; Madsen, Peter T

    2013-01-01

    Toothed whales (Cetacea, odontoceti) use biosonar to navigate their environment and to find and catch prey. All studied toothed whale species have evolved highly directional, high-amplitude ultrasonic clicks suited for long-range echolocation of prey in open water. Little is known about the biosonar signals of toothed whale species inhabiting freshwater habitats such as endangered river dolphins. To address the evolutionary pressures shaping the echolocation signal parameters of non-marine toothed whales, we investigated the biosonar source parameters of Ganges river dolphins (Platanista gangetica gangetica) and Irrawaddy dolphins (Orcaella brevirostris) within the river systems of the Sundarban mangrove forest. Both Ganges and Irrawaddy dolphins produced echolocation clicks with a high repetition rate and low source level compared to marine species. Irrawaddy dolphins, inhabiting coastal and riverine habitats, produced a mean source level of 195 dB (max 203 dB) re 1 µPapp whereas Ganges river dolphins, living exclusively upriver, produced a mean source level of 184 dB (max 191) re 1 µPapp. These source levels are 1-2 orders of magnitude lower than those of similar sized marine delphinids and may reflect an adaptation to a shallow, acoustically complex freshwater habitat with high reverberation and acoustic clutter. The centroid frequency of Ganges river dolphin clicks are an octave lower than predicted from scaling, but with an estimated beamwidth comparable to that of porpoises. The unique bony maxillary crests found in the Platanista forehead may help achieve a higher directionality than expected using clicks nearly an octave lower than similar sized odontocetes.

  19. Habitat fragmentation and species extirpation in freshwater ecosystems; causes of range decline of the Indus river dolphin (Platanista gangetica minor.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gill T Braulik

    Full Text Available Habitat fragmentation of freshwater ecosystems is increasing rapidly, however the understanding of extinction debt and species decline in riverine habitat fragments lags behind that in other ecosystems. The mighty rivers that drain the Himalaya - the Ganges, Brahmaputra, Indus, Mekong and Yangtze - are amongst the world's most biodiverse freshwater ecosystems. Many hundreds of dams have been constructed, are under construction, or are planned on these rivers and large hydrological changes and losses of biodiversity have occurred and are expected to continue. This study examines the causes of range decline of the Indus dolphin, which inhabits one of the world's most modified rivers, to demonstrate how we may expect other vertebrate populations to respond as planned dams and water developments come into operation. The historical range of the Indus dolphin has been fragmented into 17 river sections by diversion dams; dolphin sighting and interview surveys show that river dolphins have been extirpated from ten river sections, they persist in 6, and are of unknown status in one section. Seven potential factors influencing the temporal and spatial pattern of decline were considered in three regression model sets. Low dry-season river discharge, due to water abstraction at irrigation barrages, was the principal factor that explained the dolphin's range decline, influencing 1 the spatial pattern of persistence, 2 the temporal pattern of subpopulation extirpation, and 3 the speed of extirpation after habitat fragmentation. Dolphins were more likely to persist in the core of the former range because water diversions are concentrated near the range periphery. Habitat fragmentation and degradation of the habitat were inextricably intertwined and in combination caused the catastrophic decline of the Indus dolphin.

  20. Clicking in shallow rivers: short-range echolocation of Irrawaddy and Ganges River dolphins in a shallow, acoustically complex habitat.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frants H Jensen

    Full Text Available Toothed whales (Cetacea, odontoceti use biosonar to navigate their environment and to find and catch prey. All studied toothed whale species have evolved highly directional, high-amplitude ultrasonic clicks suited for long-range echolocation of prey in open water. Little is known about the biosonar signals of toothed whale species inhabiting freshwater habitats such as endangered river dolphins. To address the evolutionary pressures shaping the echolocation signal parameters of non-marine toothed whales, we investigated the biosonar source parameters of Ganges river dolphins (Platanista gangetica gangetica and Irrawaddy dolphins (Orcaella brevirostris within the river systems of the Sundarban mangrove forest. Both Ganges and Irrawaddy dolphins produced echolocation clicks with a high repetition rate and low source level compared to marine species. Irrawaddy dolphins, inhabiting coastal and riverine habitats, produced a mean source level of 195 dB (max 203 dB re 1 µPapp whereas Ganges river dolphins, living exclusively upriver, produced a mean source level of 184 dB (max 191 re 1 µPapp. These source levels are 1-2 orders of magnitude lower than those of similar sized marine delphinids and may reflect an adaptation to a shallow, acoustically complex freshwater habitat with high reverberation and acoustic clutter. The centroid frequency of Ganges river dolphin clicks are an octave lower than predicted from scaling, but with an estimated beamwidth comparable to that of porpoises. The unique bony maxillary crests found in the Platanista forehead may help achieve a higher directionality than expected using clicks nearly an octave lower than similar sized odontocetes.

  1. A Targeted Metabolomics Assay to Measure Eight Purines in the Diet of Common Bottlenose Dolphins, Tursiops truncatus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ardente, A J; Garrett, T J; Wells, R S; Walsh, M; Smith, C R; Colee, J; Hill, R C

    2016-10-01

    Bottlenose dolphins managed under human care, human beings and Dalmatian dogs are prone to forming urate uroliths. Limiting dietary purine intake limits urate urolith formation in people and dogs because purines are metabolized to uric acid, which is excreted in urine. Managed dolphins develop ammonium urate nephroliths, whereas free-ranging dolphins do not. Free-ranging dolphins consume live fish, whereas managed dolphins consume different species that have been stored frozen and thawed. Differences in the purine content of fish consumed by dolphins under human care versus in the wild may be responsible for the difference in urolith prevalence. Commercially available purine assays measure only four purines, but reported changes in purines during frozen storage suggest that a wider range of metabolites should be measured when comparing fresh and stored fish. A method using high performance liquid chromatography with tandem mass spectrometry was developed to quantify eight purine metabolites in whole fish and squid commonly consumed by dolphins. The coefficient of variation within and among days was sometimes high for purines present in small amounts but was acceptable (≤ 25%) for guanine, hypoxanthine, and inosine, which were present in high concentrations. This expanded assay identified a total purine content up to 2.5 times greater than the total that would be quantified if only four purines were measured. Assuming additional purines are absorbed, these results suggest that additional purine metabolites should be measured to better understand the associated risk when fish or other purine-rich foods are consumed by people or animals prone to developing uroliths.

  2. 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.

  3. Habitat fragmentation and species extirpation in freshwater ecosystems; causes of range decline of the Indus river dolphin (Platanista gangetica minor).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braulik, Gill T; Arshad, Masood; Noureen, Uzma; Northridge, Simon P

    2014-01-01

    Habitat fragmentation of freshwater ecosystems is increasing rapidly, however the understanding of extinction debt and species decline in riverine habitat fragments lags behind that in other ecosystems. The mighty rivers that drain the Himalaya - the Ganges, Brahmaputra, Indus, Mekong and Yangtze - are amongst the world's most biodiverse freshwater ecosystems. Many hundreds of dams have been constructed, are under construction, or are planned on these rivers and large hydrological changes and losses of biodiversity have occurred and are expected to continue. This study examines the causes of range decline of the Indus dolphin, which inhabits one of the world's most modified rivers, to demonstrate how we may expect other vertebrate populations to respond as planned dams and water developments come into operation. The historical range of the Indus dolphin has been fragmented into 17 river sections by diversion dams; dolphin sighting and interview surveys show that river dolphins have been extirpated from ten river sections, they persist in 6, and are of unknown status in one section. Seven potential factors influencing the temporal and spatial pattern of decline were considered in three regression model sets. Low dry-season river discharge, due to water abstraction at irrigation barrages, was the principal factor that explained the dolphin's range decline, influencing 1) the spatial pattern of persistence, 2) the temporal pattern of subpopulation extirpation, and 3) the speed of extirpation after habitat fragmentation. Dolphins were more likely to persist in the core of the former range because water diversions are concentrated near the range periphery. Habitat fragmentation and degradation of the habitat were inextricably intertwined and in combination caused the catastrophic decline of the Indus dolphin.

  4. DNA origami design of dolphin-shaped structures with flexible tails.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andersen, Ebbe S; Dong, Mingdong; Nielsen, Morten M; Jahn, Kasper; Lind-Thomsen, Allan; Mamdouh, Wael; Gothelf, Kurt V; Besenbacher, Flemming; Kjems, Jørgen

    2008-06-01

    The DNA origami method allows the folding of long, single-stranded DNA sequences into arbitrary two-dimensional structures by a set of designed oligonucleotides. The method has revealed an unexpected strength and efficiency for programmed self-assembly of molecular nanostructures and makes it possible to produce fully addressable nanostructures with wide-reaching application potential within the emerging area of nanoscience. Here we present a user-friendly software package for designing DNA origami structures ( http://www.cdna.dk/origami ) and demonstrate its use by the design of a dolphin-like DNA origami structure that was imaged by high-resolution AFM in liquid. The software package provides automatic generation of DNA origami structures, manual editing, interactive overviews, atomic models, tracks the design history, and has a fully extendable toolbox. From the AFM images, it was demonstrated that different designs of the dolphin tail region provided various levels of flexibility in a predictable fashion. Finally, we show that the addition of specific attachment sites promotes dimerization between two independently self-assembled dolphin structures, and that these interactions stabilize the flexible tail.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fair, Patricia A; Lee, Hing-Biu; Adams, Jeff; Darling, Colin; Pacepavicius, Grazina; Alaee, Mehran; Bossart, Gregory D; Henry, Natasha; Muir, Derek

    2009-01-01

    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.

  6. Patterns of population structure for inshore bottlenose dolphins along the eastern United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richards, Vincent P; Greig, Thomas W; Fair, Patricia A; McCulloch, Stephen D; Politz, Christine; Natoli, Ada; Driscoll, Carlos A; Hoelzel, A Rus; David, Victor; Bossart, Gregory D; Lopez, Jose V

    2013-01-01

    Globally distributed, the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) is found in a range of offshore and coastal habitats. Using 15 microsatellite loci and mtDNA control region sequences, we investigated patterns of genetic differentiation among putative populations along the eastern US shoreline (the Indian River Lagoon, Florida, and Charleston Harbor, South Carolina) (microsatellite analyses: n = 125, mtDNA analyses: n = 132). We further utilized the mtDNA to compare these populations with those from the Northwest Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico, and Caribbean. Results showed strong differentiation among inshore, alongshore, and offshore habitats (ФST = 0.744). In addition, Bayesian clustering analyses revealed the presence of 2 genetic clusters (populations) within the 250 km Indian River Lagoon. Habitat heterogeneity is likely an important force diversifying bottlenose dolphin populations through its influence on social behavior and foraging strategy. We propose that the spatial pattern of genetic variation within the lagoon reflects both its steep longitudinal transition of climate and also its historical discontinuity and recent connection as part of Intracoastal Waterway development. These findings have important management implications as they emphasize the role of habitat and the consequence of its modification in shaping bottlenose dolphin population structure and highlight the possibility of multiple management units existing in discrete inshore habitats along the entire eastern US shoreline.

  7. Complete amino acid sequence of the myoglobin from the Atlantic bottlenosed dolphin, Tursiops truncatus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, B N; Vigna, R A; Dwulet, F E; Bogardt, R A; Lehman, L D; Gurd, F R

    1976-10-05

    The complete amino acid sequence of the major component myoglobin from the Atlantic bottlenosed dolphin, Tursiops truncatus, was determined by specific cleavage of the protein to obtain large peptides that are readily degraded by the automatic sequencer. Three easily separable peptides were obtained by cleaving the protein with cyanogen bromide at the 2 methionine residues and 4 peptides were obtained by cleaving the methyl acetimidated protein with trypsin at the 3 arginine residues. By subjecting 4 of these peptides and the apomyoglobin to automatic Edman degradation, over 80% of the covalent structure of the protein was obtained. The remainder of the primary structure was determined by further digestion of the central cyanogen bromide peptide with trypsin and staphylococcal protease. This myoglobin differs from that of the sperm whale, Physter catodon, at 15 positions, from that of the California gray whale, Eschrichtius gibbosus, at 14 positions, from that of the common porpoise, Phocoena phocoena, at 6 positions, and from the myoglobin of the Black Sea dolphin, Delphinus delphis and the Amazon River dolphin, Inia goeffrensis, at 5 and 7 positions, respecitvely. All substitutions observed in this sequence fit easily into the tertiary structure of sperm whale myoglobin.

  8. Humpback Dolphins in Hong Kong and the Pearl River Delta: Status, Threats and Conservation Challenges.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karczmarski, Leszek; Huang, Shiang-Lin; Or, Carmen K M; Gui, Duan; Chan, Stephen C Y; Lin, Wenzhi; Porter, Lindsay; Wong, Wai-Ho; Zheng, Ruiqiang; Ho, Yuen-Wa; Chui, Scott Y S; Tiongson, Angelico Jose C; Mo, Yaqian; Chang, Wei-Lun; Kwok, John H W; Tang, Ricky W K; Lee, Andy T L; Yiu, Sze-Wing; Keith, Mark; Gailey, Glenn; Wu, Yuping

    2016-01-01

    In coastal waters of the Pearl River Delta (PRD) region, the Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin (Sousa chinensis) is thought to number approximately 2500 individuals. Given these figures, the putative PRD population may appear strong enough to resist demographic stochasticity and environmental pressures. However, living in close proximity to the world's busiest seaport/airport and several densely populated urban centres with major coastal infrastructural developments comes with challenges to the long-term survival of these animals. There are few other small cetacean populations that face the range and intensity of human-induced pressures as those present in the PRD and current protection measures are severely inadequate. Recent mark-recapture analyses of the animals in Hong Kong waters indicate that in the past two decades the population parameters have not been well understood, and spatial analyses show that only a very small proportion of the dolphins' key habitats are given any form of protection. All current marine protected areas within the PRD fail to meet a minimum habitat requirement that could facilitate the population's long-term persistence. Demographic models indicate a continuous decline of 2.5% per annum, a rate at which the population is likely to drop below the demographic threshold within two generations and lose 74% of the current numbers within the lifespan of three generations. In Hong Kong, the case of humpback dolphins represents a particularly explicit example of inadequate management where a complete revision of the fundamental approach to conservation management is urgently needed.

  9. 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.

  10. Indo-Pacific Humpback Dolphins in Borneo: A Review of Current Knowledge with Emphasis on Sarawak.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minton, Gianna; Zulkifli Poh, Anna Norliza; Peter, Cindy; Porter, Lindsay; Kreb, Danielle

    2016-01-01

    Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins (Sousa chinensis) are documented from various locations along Borneo's coast, including three sites in Sarawak, Malaysia, three sites in Sabah, Malaysia, three locations in Kalimantan, Indonesia and the limited coastal waters of the Sultanate of Brunei. Observations in all these areas indicate a similar external morphology, which seems to fall somewhere between that documented for Chinese populations known as S. chinensis, and that of Sousa sahulensis in Australia and Papua New Guinea. Sightings occur in shallow nearshore waters, often near estuaries and river mouths, and associations with Irrawaddy dolphins (Orcaella brevirostris) are frequently documented. Population estimates exist for only two locations and sightings information throughout Borneo indicates that frequency of occurrence is rare and group size is usually small. Threats from fisheries by-catch and coastal development are present in many locations and there are concerns over the ability of these small and fragmented populations to survive. The conservation and taxonomic status of humpback dolphins in Borneo remain unclear, and there are intriguing questions as to where these populations fit in our evolving understanding of the taxonomy of the genus.

  11. Dolphins adjust species-specific frequency parameters to compensate for increasing background noise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papale, Elena; Gamba, Marco; Perez-Gil, Monica; Martin, Vidal Martel; Giacoma, Cristina

    2015-01-01

    An increase in ocean noise levels could interfere with acoustic communication of marine mammals. In this study we explored the effects of anthropogenic and natural noise on the acoustic properties of a dolphin communication signal, the whistle. A towed array with four elements was used to record environmental background noise and whistles of short-beaked common-, Atlantic spotted- and striped-dolphins in the Canaries archipelago. Four frequency parameters were measured from each whistle, while Sound Pressure Levels (SPL) of the background noise were measured at the central frequencies of seven one-third octave bands, from 5 to 20 kHz. Results show that dolphins increase the whistles' frequency parameters with lower variability in the presence of anthropogenic noise, and increase the end frequency of their whistles when confronted with increasing natural noise. This study provides the first evidence that the synergy among SPLs has a role in shaping the whistles' structure of these three species, with respect to both natural and anthropogenic noise.

  12. Long-Term Monitoring of Dolphin Biosonar Activity in Deep Pelagic Waters of the Mediterranean Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caruso, Francesco; Alonge, Giuseppe; Bellia, Giorgio; De Domenico, Emilio; Grammauta, Rosario; Larosa, Giuseppina; Mazzola, Salvatore; Riccobene, Giorgio; Pavan, Gianni; Papale, Elena; Pellegrino, Carmelo; Pulvirenti, Sara; Sciacca, Virginia; Simeone, Francesco; Speziale, Fabrizio; Viola, Salvatore; Buscaino, Giuseppa

    2017-06-28

    Dolphins emit short ultrasonic pulses (clicks) to acquire information about the surrounding environment, prey and habitat features. We investigated Delphinidae activity over multiple temporal scales through the detection of their echolocation clicks, using long-term Passive Acoustic Monitoring (PAM). The Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare operates multidisciplinary seafloor observatories in a deep area of the Central Mediterranean Sea. The Ocean noise Detection Experiment collected data offshore the Gulf of Catania from January 2005 to November 2006, allowing the study of temporal patterns of dolphin activity in this deep pelagic zone for the first time. Nearly 5,500 five-minute recordings acquired over two years were examined using spectrogram analysis and through development and testing of an automatic detection algorithm. Echolocation activity of dolphins was mostly confined to nighttime and crepuscular hours, in contrast with communicative signals (whistles). Seasonal variation, with a peak number of clicks in August, was also evident, but no effect of lunar cycle was observed. Temporal trends in echolocation corresponded to environmental and trophic variability known in the deep pelagic waters of the Ionian Sea. Long-term PAM and the continued development of automatic analysis techniques are essential to advancing the study of pelagic marine mammal distribution and behaviour patterns.

  13. 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.

  14. Conservation Status of the Australian Humpback Dolphin (Sousa sahulensis) Using the IUCN Red List Criteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parra, Guido J; Cagnazzi, Daniele

    2016-01-01

    Australian humpback dolphins (Sousa sahulensis) were recently described as a new species endemic to northern Australia and potentially southern New Guinea. We assessed the species conservation status against IUCN Red List Criteria using available information on their biology, ecology and threatening processes. Knowledge of population sizes and trends across the species range is lacking. Recent genetic studies indicate Australian humpback dolphins live in small and relatively isolated populations with limited gene flow among them. The available abundance estimates range from 14 to 207 individuals and no population studied to date is estimated to contain more than 104 mature individuals. The Potential Biological Removal method indicates populations are vulnerable to even low rates of anthropogenic mortality. Habitat degradation and loss is ongoing and expected to increase across the species range in Australia, and a continuing decline in the number of mature individuals is anticipated. Considering the available evidence and following a precautionary approach, we considered this species as Vulnerable under IUCN criterion C2a(i) because the total number of mature individuals is plausibly fewer than 10,000, an inferred continuing decline due to cumulative impacts, and each of the populations studied to date is estimated to contain fewer than 1000 mature individuals. Ongoing research efforts and recently developed research strategies and priorities will provide valuable information towards the future conservation and management of Australian humpback dolphins.

  15. Patterns of Population Structure for Inshore Bottlenose Dolphins along the Eastern United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Globally distributed, the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) is found in a range of offshore and coastal habitats. Using 15 microsatellite loci and mtDNA control region sequences, we investigated patterns of genetic differentiation among putative populations along the eastern US shoreline (the Indian River Lagoon, Florida, and Charleston Harbor, South Carolina) (microsatellite analyses: n = 125, mtDNA analyses: n = 132). We further utilized the mtDNA to compare these populations with those from the Northwest Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico, and Caribbean. Results showed strong differentiation among inshore, alongshore, and offshore habitats (ФST = 0.744). In addition, Bayesian clustering analyses revealed the presence of 2 genetic clusters (populations) within the 250 km Indian River Lagoon. Habitat heterogeneity is likely an important force diversifying bottlenose dolphin populations through its influence on social behavior and foraging strategy. We propose that the spatial pattern of genetic variation within the lagoon reflects both its steep longitudinal transition of climate and also its historical discontinuity and recent connection as part of Intracoastal Waterway development. These findings have important management implications as they emphasize the role of habitat and the consequence of its modification in shaping bottlenose dolphin population structure and highlight the possibility of multiple management units existing in discrete inshore habitats along the entire eastern US shoreline. PMID:24129993

  16. Common dolphin ( Delphinus delphis) habitat preferences using data from two platforms of opportunity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moura, André E.; Sillero, Neftalí; Rodrigues, Ana

    2012-01-01

    Cetaceans are difficult to observe in the wild, and demand complex logistics for dedicated collection of biological data. As such, the distribution of most cetacean species is still poorly understood. Ecological niche models are useful in studying species distributions and their ecological determinants, and platforms of opportunity (e.g. commercial nautical operators) can provide an alternative source for that data in cetaceans. In this study, we modelled common dolphin ( Delphinus delphis) habitat preferences using ecological niche modelling and presence data obtained from distinct platforms of opportunity in two different areas in the Portuguese coast (west and south mainland Portugal) for the period 2005-2007. Models from southern Portugal were projected to western Portugal and vice-versa, to check for robustness in predicting the species ecological niche. Our results show that data from platforms of opportunity can result in robust ecological models and provide extremely useful information on cetacean ecology. We found that common dolphins exhibit a patchy distribution pattern over the Portuguese coastline, and identified key habitats for their occurrence. The most important variable associated with this species' distribution was chlorophyll concentration which, given the results from previous research, we hypothesise reflects an ecological specialisation on pelagic schooling fish. Given that the most abundant schooling fish species in Portugal is increasingly overexploited and in constant decline, more attention should be given to the conservation of common dolphin in Portuguese waters.

  17. Brucella ceti from two striped dolphins stranded on the Apulia coastline, Italy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garofolo, Giuliano; Zilli, Katiuscia; Troiano, Pasquale; Petrella, Antonio; Marotta, Francesca; Di Serafino, Gabriella; Ancora, Massimo; Di Giannatale, Elisabetta

    2014-02-01

    Since 1994, when Brucella ceti was first isolated from an aborted dolphin fetus, several cases have been reported worldwide. The first case of B. ceti in the Mediterranean (and in Italy), however, was recorded only in 2012, off the coast of Tuscany. Extensive studies, using serological and microbiological methods, have documented this bacterium in dolphins and demonstrated its zoonotic potential. We describe the typing of two B. ceti strains isolated from striped dolphins (Stenella coeruleoalba) stranded on the southern Apulia coastline. B. ceti isolates were conventionally typed, and then genotyped by both the multilocus sequence typing (MLST) and the multilocus variable number of tandem repeats typing (MLVA) methodologies to infer phylogeny and potential epidemiological links between the two cases. The two isolates were identified through MLST analysis as belonging to the common sequence type 26 (ST26), while MLVA analysis, having established that the two isolates have identical profiles, assigned them to a novel genotype within cluster A - a unique representative of a new Mediterranean subcluster. The results thus revealed a link between the two cases studied, demonstrating the usefulness of MLST and MLVA for the epidemiological investigation of brucellae among marine mammals.

  18. Biology and Conservation of the Taiwanese Humpback Dolphin, Sousa chinensis taiwanensis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, John Y; Riehl, Kimberly N; Klein, Michelle N; Javdan, Shiva; Hoffman, Jordan M; Dungan, Sarah Z; Dares, Lauren E; Araújo-Wang, Claryana

    2016-01-01

    The humpback dolphins of the eastern Taiwan Strait were first discovered scientifically in 2002 and since then have received much research attention. We reviewed all information published in peer-reviewed scientific journals on these dolphins and where appropriate and available, peer-reviewed scientific workshop reports and graduate theses were also examined. Recent evidence demonstrated that this population warranted recognition as a subspecies, Sousa chinensis taiwanensis. It is found in a highly restricted and linear strip of coastal waters along central western Taiwan. Numbering fewer than 80 individuals and declining, five main threats (fisheries interactions, habitat loss and degradation, loss of freshwater to estuaries within their habitat, air and water pollution, and noise) threaten the future existence of this subspecies. These dolphins have cultural and religious importance and boast the highest level of legal protection for wildlife in Taiwan. However, despite enormous efforts by local and international non-governmental groups urging immediate conservation actions, there have been no real government efforts to mitigate any existing threats; instead, some of these threats have worsened. Based on recent studies, we suggest the IUCN Red List status be revised to Critically Endangered CR 2a(ii); D for the subspecies.

  19. Evidence of Brucella strain ST27 in bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) in Europe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cvetnić, Željko; Duvnjak, Sanja; Đuras, Martina; Gomerčić, Tomislav; Reil, Irena; Zdelar-Tuk, Maja; Špičić, Silvio

    2016-11-30

    Marine mammal brucellosis has been known for more than 20 years, but recent work suggests it is more widespread than originally thought. Brucella (B.) pinnipedialis has been isolated from pinnipeds, while B. ceti strains have been associated with cetaceans. Here we report a Brucella strain isolated from multiple lymph nodes of one bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) during routine examination of dolphin carcasses found in the Croatian part of the northern Adriatic Sea during the summer of 2015. Classical bacteriological biotyping, PCR-based techniques (single, multiplex, PCR-RFLP) and 16S rRNA DNA sequencing were used to identify Brucella spp. Multiple-locus variable number tandem repeat analysis of 16 loci and multilocus sequence typing of 9 loci were used for genotyping and species determination. The combination of bacteriological, molecular and genotyping techniques identified our strain as ST27, previously identified as a human pathogen. This report provides, to our knowledge, the first evidence of ST27 in the Adriatic Sea in particular and in European waters in general. The zoonotic nature of the strain and its presence in the Adriatic, which is inhabited by bottlenose dolphins, suggest that the strain may pose a significant threat to human health. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. 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.

  1. Surface Patterning: Controlling Fluid Flow Through Dolphin and Shark Skin Biomimicry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gamble, Lawren; Lang, Amy; Bradshaw, Michael; McVay, Eric

    2013-11-01

    Dolphin skin is characterized by circumferential ridges, perpendicular to fluid flow, present from the crest of the head until the tail fluke. When observing a cross section of skin, the ridges have a sinusoidal pattern. Sinusoidal grooves have been proven to induce vortices in the cavities that can help control flow separation which can reduce pressure drag. Shark skin, however, is patterned with flexible scales that bristle up to 50 degrees with reversed flow. Both dolphin ridges and shark scales are thought to help control fluid flow and increase swimming efficiency by delaying the separation of the boundary layer. This study investigates how flow characteristics can be altered with bio-inspired surface patterning. A NACA 4412 hydrofoil was entirely patterned with transverse sinusoidal grooves, inspired by dolphin skin but scaled so the cavities on the model have the same Reynolds number as the cavities on a swimming shark. Static tests were conducted at a Reynolds number of approximately 100,000 and at varying angles of attack. The results were compared to the smooth hydrofoil case. The flow data was quantified using Digital Particle Image Velocimetry (DPIV). The results of this study demonstrated that the patterned hydrofoil experienced greater separation than the smooth hydrofoil. It is hypothesize that this could be remediated if the pattern was placed only after the maximum thickness of the hydrofoil. Funding through NSF REU grant 1062611 is gratefully acknowledged.

  2. Deposition of growth layer groups in dentine tissue of captive common dolphins Delphinus delphis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sinéad Murphy

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Knowledge of age structure and longevity (maximum age are essential for modelling marine mammal population dynamics. Estimation of age in common dolphins (Delphinus spp. is primarily based on counting Growth Layer Groups (GLGs in the dentine of thin, decalcified and stained sections of teeth. An annual incremental deposition rate was validated for Delphinus spp. 30-years ago through the use of tetracycline. However, it is not known if the pulp cavity becomes occluded in older individuals or GLGs continue to be deposited in dentine tissue. To investigate the deposition of GLGs in dentine tissue, teeth samples were obtained during the necropsies of two short-beaked common dolphins (Delphinus delphis that were held in captivity for 31 and 33 years in New Zealand. Individuals were captured together in Hawkes Bay, North Island, New Zealand and classified as juveniles based on physical appearance. Teeth were processed in two ageing laboratories, using four different bone decalcifiers, two sectioning techniques incorporating the use of both a freezing microtome (-20°C and paraffin microtome, and two different stains. An age was estimated for one of the dolphins, in line with that proposed based on estimated age at capture and period in captivity. However, a hypomineralised area was observed in the dentine tissue close to the pulp cavity of the second individual, preventing estimation of maximum age. The presence and structure of this anomaly is explored further within the study.

  3. Post-flood status of the Endangered Ganges River Dolphin Platanista gangetica gangetica (Cetartiodactyla: Platanistidae in the Koshi River, Nepal

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    T.B. Khatri

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available The breach of the eastern embankment of the Koshi Barrage at Paschim Kusaha Village of Sunsari District on 18 August 2008, created havoc for wildlife and their habitats, as well as people’s livelihood and welfare. The Koshi River flowed through the breach for five months. Following the breach, a population assessment survey of the Endangered Ganges River Dolphin Platanista gangetica gangetica was made between March and November 2009 in the Koshi River main channel starting from Chatara to 2km south of Koshi Barrage to ascertain their status. A direct count survey was conducted by two teams of researchers simultaneously searching for animals by boat from Chatara to the Koshi Barrage including the Triyuga River and on foot along the river banks downstream of Koshi Barrage and along the Mariya River. Standard protocols were followed to record the number of sighted dolphins. A total of 11 dolphins were recorded in the entire 49-km river stretch with an encounter rate of 0.23 dolphins per km. The current result showed an encouraging population of dolphins in the Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve and its buffer zone but the threats for conservation still remain challenging. Close monitoring of dolphins and their habitats involving local communities are required for long term conservation of the river dolphins in Nepal. The breach of the eastern embankment of the Koshi Barrage at Paschim Kusaha Village of Sunsari District on 18 August 2008, created havoc for wildlife and their habitats, as well as people’s livelihood and welfare. The Koshi River flowed through the breach for five months. Following the breach, a population assessment survey of the Endangered Ganges River Dolphin Platanista gangetica gangetica was made between March and November 2009 in the Koshi River main channel starting from Chatara to 2km south of Koshi Barrage to ascertain their status. A direct count survey was conducted by two teams of researchers simultaneously searching for

  4. Post-flood status of the Endangered Ganges River Dolphin Platanista gangetica gangetica (Cetartiodactyla: Platanistidae in the Koshi River, Nepal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T.B. Khatri

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available The breach of the eastern embankment of the Koshi Barrage at Paschim Kusaha Village of Sunsari District on 18 August 2008, created havoc for wildlife and their habitats, as well as people’s livelihood and welfare. The Koshi River flowed through the breach for five months. Following the breach, a population assessment survey of the Endangered Ganges River Dolphin Platanista gangetica gangetica was made between March and November 2009 in the Koshi River main channel starting from Chatara to 2km south of Koshi Barrage to ascertain their status. A direct count survey was conducted by two teams of researchers simultaneously searching for animals by boat from Chatara to the Koshi Barrage including the Triyuga River and on foot along the river banks downstream of Koshi Barrage and along the Mariya River. Standard protocols were followed to record the number of sighted dolphins. A total of 11 dolphins were recorded in the entire 49-km river stretch with an encounter rate of 0.23 dolphins per km. The current result showed an encouraging population of dolphins in the Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve and its buffer zone but the threats for conservation still remain challenging. Close monitoring of dolphins and their habitats involving local communities are required for long term conservation of the river dolphins in Nepal. The breach of the eastern embankment of the Koshi Barrage at Paschim Kusaha Village of Sunsari District on 18 August 2008, created havoc for wildlife and their habitats, as well as people’s livelihood and welfare. The Koshi River flowed through the breach for five months. Following the breach, a population assessment survey of the Endangered Ganges River Dolphin Platanista gangetica gangetica was made between March and November 2009 in the Koshi River main channel starting from Chatara to 2km south of Koshi Barrage to ascertain their status. A direct count survey was conducted by two teams of researchers simultaneously searching for

  5. Photo-identification methods reveal seasonal and long-term site-fidelity of Risso’s dolphins (Grampus griseus) in shallow waters (Cardigan Bay, Wales)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boer, de M.N.; Leopold, M.F.; Simmonds, M.P.; Reijnders, P.J.H.

    2013-01-01

    A photo-identification study on Risso’s dolphins was carried out off Bardsey Island in Wales (July to September, 1997-2007). Their local abundance was estimated using two different analytical techniques: 1) mark-recapture of well-marked dolphins using a “closed-population” model; and 2) a census tec

  6. Whales and dolphins (Mammalia, Cetacea) of the Cape Verde Islands, with special reference to the Humpback Whale Megaptera novaeangliae (Borowski, 1781)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hazevoet, Cornelis J.; Wenzel, Frederick W.

    2000-01-01

    Observations of whales and dolphins in the Cape Verde Islands obtained in 1995 and 1996 are reported and data on the occurrence of 14 taxa are given, including four not previously reported from the region, viz. Bryde’s Whale Balaenoptera edeni, Killer Whale Orcinus orca, Rough-toothed Dolphin Steno

  7. High-Speed Vessel Noises in West Hong Kong Waters and Their Contributions Relative to Indo-Pacific Humpback Dolphins (Sousa chinensis

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    Paul Q. Sims

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The waters of West Hong Kong are home to a population of Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins (Sousa chinensis that use a variety of sounds to communicate. This area is also dominated by intense vessel traffic that is believed to be behaviorally and acoustically disruptive to dolphins. While behavioral changes have been documented, acoustic disturbance has yet to be shown. We compared the relative sound contributions of various high-speed vessels to nearby ambient noise and dolphin social sounds. Ambient noise levels were also compared between areas of high and low traffic. We found large differences in sound pressure levels between high traffic and no traffic areas, suggesting that vessels are the main contributors to these discrepancies. Vessel sounds were well within the audible range of dolphins, with sounds from 315–45,000 Hz. Additionally, vessel sounds at distances ≥100 m exceeded those of dolphin sounds at closer distances. Our results reaffirm earlier studies that vessels have large sound contributions to dolphin habitats, and we suspect that they may be inducing masking effects of dolphin sounds at close distances. Further research on dolphin behavior and acoustics in relation to vessels is needed to clarify impacts.

  8. Whales and dolphins (Mammalia, Cetacea) of the Cape Verde Islands, with special reference to the Humpback Whale Megaptera novaeangliae (Borowski, 1781)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hazevoet, Cornelis J.; Wenzel, Frederick W.

    2000-01-01

    Observations of whales and dolphins in the Cape Verde Islands obtained in 1995 and 1996 are reported and data on the occurrence of 14 taxa are given, including four not previously reported from the region, viz. Bryde’s Whale Balaenoptera edeni, Killer Whale Orcinus orca, Rough-toothed Dolphin Steno

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Connor, Richard C

    2007-04-29

    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 relationships with gentle contact behaviours such as petting, but synchrony also plays an important role in affiliative interactions. In general, selection for social intelligence in the context of shifting alliances will depend on the extent to which there are strategic options and risk. Extreme brain size evolution may have occurred more than once in the toothed whales, reaching peaks in the dolphin family and the sperm whale. All three 'peaks' of large brain size evolution in mammals (odontocetes, humans and elephants) shared a common selective environment: extreme mutual dependence based on external threats from predators or conspecific groups. In this context, social competition, and consequently selection for greater cognitive abilities and large brain size, was intense.

  10. A morphological and histological examination of the pan-tropical spotted dolphin (Stenella attenuata) and the spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris) adrenal gland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, L S; Cowan, D F; Pfeiffer, D C

    2008-04-01

    The morphology and histology of the cetacean adrenal gland are poorly understood. Therefore, this study examined 32 pairs of adrenal glands from 18 pan-tropical spotted dolphins (Stenella attenuata) and 14 spinner dolphins (Stenella longirostris). In both species, the cortex was pseudolobulated and contained a typical mammalian zonation. Medullary protrusions (0-3 per section) and a medullary band were identified in both species. For S. attenuata, no statistical differences were found in the cortex to medulla (CM) ratio or the percent cross-sectional area (PCA) of the adrenal glands compared with sex or sexual maturity. The mean CM ratio for S. attenuata was 2.34 and the PCA was 64.4% cortex, 29.4% medulla and 6.2%'other'. 'Other' indicates blood vessels, connective tissue and the gland capsule itself. For S. longirostris, there was no statistical difference in the CM ratio compared with sexual maturity. However, a statistical difference was found between the CM ratio and sex, suggesting sexual dimorphism (female CM ratio = 2.46 and males = 3.21). No statistical differences were found in the PCA of S. longirostris adrenal glands by sexual maturity. However, a statistical difference was found between the PCA by sex. Female S. longirostris adrenal glands consisted of 65.0% cortex, 27.3% medulla and 7.7% 'other', whereas male adrenal glands consisted of 71.7% cortex, 22.7% medulla and 5.6% 'other'.

  11. Spatial and Temporal Variation in the Acoustic Habitat of Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops aduncus within a Highly Urbanized Estuary

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah A. Marley

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available There is growing awareness of underwater noise in a variety of marine habitats, and how such noise may adversely affect marine species. This is of particular concern for acoustically-specialized species, such as dolphins. In order to ascertain the potential impacts of anthropogenic noise on these animals, baseline information is required for defining the soundscape of dolphin habitats. The Swan-Canning River system in Western Australia flows through the city of Perth, and experiences numerous anthropogenic activities. Despite this, the river system is home to a community of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus. To provide a baseline soundscape description of dolphin habitat, over 11,600 h of acoustic data were analyzed from five sites within the Swan River (from Fremantle Inner Harbor to 20 km upstream across an 8-year period. Multiple sound sources were recorded at these sites, including: snapping shrimp; fishes; dolphins; pile-driving; bridge and road traffic; and vessel traffic. The two most prevalent sound sources, vessel traffic and snapping shrimp, likely have very different effects on dolphin communication with the former expected to be more disruptive. Sites were characteristic in their prominent sound sources, showing clear among-site variations, with some sites being “noisier” than others based on broadband noise levels, octave-band noise levels, and power spectrum density percentiles. Perth Waters had the highest broadband noise (10–11 kHz; median 113 dB re 1 μPa rms, whilst Heirisson Island was quietest (median 100 dB re 1 μPa rms. Generalized estimating equations identified variation in broadband noise levels within sites at a fine temporal scale, although sites differed in the significance of temporal variables. At Mosman Bay, a long-term dataset spanning eight years highlighted inter-annual variation in broadband noise levels, but no overall upwards or downwards trend over time. Acoustic habitats of the Swan

  12. What caused the UK's largest common dolphin (Delphinus delphis) mass stranding event?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jepson, Paul D; Deaville, Robert; Acevedo-Whitehouse, Karina; Barnett, James; Brownlow, Andrew; Brownell, Robert L; Clare, Frances C; Davison, Nick; Law, Robin J; Loveridge, Jan; Macgregor, Shaheed K; Morris, Steven; Murphy, Sinéad; Penrose, Rod; Perkins, Matthew W; Pinn, Eunice; Seibel, Henrike; Siebert, Ursula; Sierra, Eva; Simpson, Victor; Tasker, Mark L; Tregenza, Nick; Cunningham, Andrew A; Fernández, Antonio

    2013-01-01

    On 9 June 2008, the UK's largest mass stranding event (MSE) of short-beaked common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) occurred in Falmouth Bay, Cornwall. At least 26 dolphins died, and a similar number was refloated/herded back to sea. On necropsy, all dolphins were in good nutritive status with empty stomachs and no evidence of known infectious disease or acute physical injury. Auditory tissues were grossly normal (26/26) but had microscopic haemorrhages (5/5) and mild otitis media (1/5) in the freshest cases. Five lactating adult dolphins, one immature male, and one immature female tested were free of harmful algal toxins and had low chemical pollutant levels. Pathological evidence of mud/seawater inhalation (11/26), local tide cycle, and the relative lack of renal myoglobinuria (26/26) suggested MSE onset on a rising tide between 06:30 and 08∶21 hrs (9 June). Potential causes excluded or considered highly unlikely included infectious disease, gas/fat embolism, boat strike, by-catch, predator attack, foraging unusually close to shore, chemical or algal toxin exposure, abnormal weather/climatic conditions, and high-intensity acoustic inputs from seismic airgun arrays or natural sources (e.g., earthquakes). International naval exercises did occur in close proximity to the MSE with the most intense part of the exercises (including mid-frequency sonars) occurring four days before the MSE and resuming with helicopter exercises on the morning of the MSE. The MSE may therefore have been a "two-stage process" where a group of normally pelagic dolphins entered Falmouth Bay and, after 3-4 days in/around the Bay, a second acoustic/disturbance event occurred causing them to strand en masse. This spatial and temporal association with the MSE, previous associations between naval activities and cetacean MSEs, and an absence of other identifiable factors known to cause cetacean MSEs, indicates naval activity to be the most probable cause of the Falmouth Bay MSE.

  13. What caused the UK's largest common dolphin (Delphinus delphis mass stranding event?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul D Jepson

    Full Text Available On 9 June 2008, the UK's largest mass stranding event (MSE of short-beaked common dolphins (Delphinus delphis occurred in Falmouth Bay, Cornwall. At least 26 dolphins died, and a similar number was refloated/herded back to sea. On necropsy, all dolphins were in good nutritive status with empty stomachs and no evidence of known infectious disease or acute physical injury. Auditory tissues were grossly normal (26/26 but had microscopic haemorrhages (5/5 and mild otitis media (1/5 in the freshest cases. Five lactating adult dolphins, one immature male, and one immature female tested were free of harmful algal toxins and had low chemical pollutant levels. Pathological evidence of mud/seawater inhalation (11/26, local tide cycle, and the relative lack of renal myoglobinuria (26/26 suggested MSE onset on a rising tide between 06:30 and 08∶21 hrs (9 June. Potential causes excluded or considered highly unlikely included infectious disease, gas/fat embolism, boat strike, by-catch, predator attack, foraging unusually close to shore, chemical or algal toxin exposure, abnormal weather/climatic conditions, and high-intensity acoustic inputs from seismic airgun arrays or natural sources (e.g., earthquakes. International naval exercises did occur in close proximity to the MSE with the most intense part of the exercises (including mid-frequency sonars occurring four days before the MSE and resuming with helicopter exercises on the morning of the MSE. The MSE may therefore have been a "two-stage process" where a group of normally pelagic dolphins entered Falmouth Bay and, after 3-4 days in/around the Bay, a second acoustic/disturbance event occurred causing them to strand en masse. This spatial and temporal association with the MSE, previous associations between naval activities and cetacean MSEs, and an absence of other identifiable factors known to cause cetacean MSEs, indicates naval activity to be the most probable cause of the Falmouth Bay MSE.

  14. Geographic variation in polychorinated biphenyl and organochlorine pesticide concentrations in the blubber of bottlenose dolphins from the US Atlantic coast.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansen, Larry J; Schwacke, Lori H; Mitchum, Greg B; Hohn, Aleta A; Wells, Randall S; Zolman, Eric S; Fair, Patricia A

    2004-02-05

    Concentrations of polychorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and other organochlorine contaminants (OCs) were measured in blubber collected from live bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) at three sites along the United States Atlantic coast. Dolphins were sampled via surgical biopsy during capture-release studies near Charleston, South Carolina and Beaufort, North Carolina. Additional animals were sampled using remote biopsy techniques in estuarine waters near Charleston and from the Indian River Lagoon, Florida. Overall concentrations of major contaminant groups were found to vary between sites and mean concentrations of most OCs from male dolphins in the Indian River Lagoon were less than half of those measured from Charleston and Beaufort males. Geometric mean total PCB concentrations were 30, 27 and 14 microg/g lipid for male dolphins sampled in Beaufort, Charleston and the Indian River Lagoon, respectively. Significant variation related to sex- and age-class, as well as geographic sampling location, was seen in the PCB congener profiles. The measured PCB concentrations, although lower than those reported for stranded animals from the 1987/1988 epizootic along the United States mid-Atlantic coast, are sufficiently high to warrant concern for the health of dolphins from the sampled populations, particularly the animals near Charleston and Beaufort.

  15. 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.

  16. Molecular and Morphological Differentiation of Common Dolphins (Delphinus sp.) in the Southwestern Atlantic: Testing the Two Species Hypothesis in Sympatry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cunha, Haydée A; de Castro, Rocio Loizaga; Secchi, Eduardo R; Crespo, Enrique A; Lailson-Brito, José; Azevedo, Alexandre F; Lazoski, Cristiano; Solé-Cava, Antonio M

    2015-01-01

    The taxonomy of common dolphins (Delphinus sp.) has always been controversial, with over twenty described species since the original description of the type species of the genus (Delphinus delphis Linnaeus, 1758). Two species and four subspecies are currently accepted, but recent molecular data have challenged this view. In this study we investigated the molecular taxonomy of common dolphins through analyses of cytochrome b sequences of 297 individuals from most of their distribution. We included 37 novel sequences from the Southwestern Atlantic Ocean, a region where the short- and long-beaked morphotypes occur in sympatry, but which had not been well sampled before. Skulls of individuals from the Southwestern Atlantic were measured to test the validity of the rostral index as a diagnostic character and confirmed the presence of the two morphotypes in our genetic sample. Our genetic results show that all common dolphins in the Atlantic Ocean belong to a single species, Delphinus delphis. According to genetic data, the species Delphinus capensis is invalid. Long-beaked common dolphins from the Northeastern Pacific Ocean may constitute a different species. Our conclusions prompt the need for revision of currently accepted common dolphin species and subspecies and of Delphinus delphis distribution.

  17. 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

    2016-08-09

    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.

  18. Spatiotemporal Trends of Heavy Metals in Indo-Pacific Humpback Dolphins (Sousa chinensis) from the Western Pearl River Estuary, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gui, Duan; Yu, Ri-Qing; Karczmarski, Leszek; Ding, Yulong; Zhang, Haifei; Sun, Yong; Zhang, Mei; Wu, Yuping

    2017-02-07

    We assessed the spatiotemporal trends of the concentrations of 11 heavy metals (HMs) in the liver and kidney of Indo-Pacific humpback dolphins (Sousa chinensis) from western Pearl River Estuary (PRE) during 2004-2015. The hepatic levels of Cr, As, and Cu in these dolphins were among the highest reported for cetaceans globally, and the levels of Zn, Cu, and Hg were sufficiently high to cause toxicological effects in some of the animals. Between same age-sex groups, dolphins from Lingdingyang were significantly more contaminated with Hg, Se, and V than those from the West-four region, while the opposite was true for Cd. Generalized additive mixed models showed that most metals had significant but dissimilar temporal trends over a 10-year period. The concentrations of Cu and Zn increased significantly in recent years, corresponding to the high input of these metals in the region. Body-length-adjusted Cd levels peaked in 2012, accompanied by the highest annual number of dolphin stranding events. In contrast to the significant decrease in HM levels in the dolphins in Hong Kong waters (the eastern reaches of the PRE), the elevated metal exposure in the western PRE raises serious concerns.

  19. Individual specialization in the foraging habits of female bottlenose dolphins living in a trophically diverse and habitat rich estuary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossman, Sam; Ostrom, Peggy H; Stolen, Megan; Barros, Nélio B; Gandhi, Hasand; Stricker, Craig A; Wells, Randall S

    2015-06-01

    We examine individual specialization in foraging habits (foraging habitat and trophic level) of female bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) resident in Sarasota Bay, Florida, USA, by analyzing time series of stable isotope (δ(15)N and δ(13)C) values in sequential growth layer groups within teeth. The isotope data provide a chronology of foraging habits over the lifetime of the individual and allowed us to show that female bottlenose dolphins exhibit a high degree of individual specialization in both foraging habitat and trophic level. The foraging habits used by adult females are similar to those they used as calves and may be passed down from mother to calf through social learning. We also characterized the foraging habits and home range of each individual by constructing standard ellipses from isotope values and dolphin sightings data (latitude and longitude), respectively. These data show that Sarasota Bay bottlenose dolphins forage within a subset of the habitats in which they are observed. Moreover, females with similar observational standard ellipses often possessed different foraging specializations. Female bottlenose dolphins may demonstrate individual specialization in foraging habits because it reduces some of the cost of living in groups, such as competition for prey.

  20. 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 <115 cm) stranded in Mississippi and Alabama during 2011. The proportion of annual 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 < 0.0001), have fetal distress (87 vs. 27%, p < 0.0001), and have pneumonia not associated with lungworm infection (65 vs. 19%, p = 0.0001). The percentage of perinates with Brucella sp. infections identified via lung PCR was higher among UME perinates stranding in Mississippi and Alabama compared to reference perinates (61 vs. 24%, p = 0.01), and multiple different Brucella omp genetic sequences were identified in UME perinates. These results support that from 2011 to 2013, during the northern Gulf of Mexico UME, bottlenose dolphins were particularly susceptible to late-term pregnancy failures and development of in utero infections including brucellosis.

  1. 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.

  2. Molecular and Morphological Differentiation of Common Dolphins (Delphinus sp.) in the Southwestern Atlantic: Testing the Two Species Hypothesis in Sympatry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cunha, Haydée A.; de Castro, Rocio Loizaga; Secchi, Eduardo R.; Crespo, Enrique A.; Lailson-Brito, José; Azevedo, Alexandre F.; Lazoski, Cristiano; Solé-Cava, Antonio M.

    2015-01-01

    The taxonomy of common dolphins (Delphinus sp.) has always been controversial, with over twenty described species since the original description of the type species of the genus (Delphinus delphis Linnaeus, 1758). Two species and four subspecies are currently accepted, but recent molecular data have challenged this view. In this study we investigated the molecular taxonomy of common dolphins through analyses of cytochrome b sequences of 297 individuals from most of their distribution. We included 37 novel sequences from the Southwestern Atlantic Ocean, a region where the short- and long-beaked morphotypes occur in sympatry, but which had not been well sampled before. Skulls of individuals from the Southwestern Atlantic were measured to test the validity of the rostral index as a diagnostic character and confirmed the presence of the two morphotypes in our genetic sample. Our genetic results show that all common dolphins in the Atlantic Ocean belong to a single species, Delphinus delphis. According to genetic data, the species Delphinus capensis is invalid. Long-beaked common dolphins from the Northeastern Pacific Ocean may constitute a different species. Our conclusions prompt the need for revision of currently accepted common dolphin species and subspecies and of Delphinus delphis distribution. PMID:26559411

  3. Geografiske forskelle i fløjtrepertoire fra hvidnæsede delfiner?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schmidt, Maria-Louise; Rasmussen, Marianne H.; Miller, Lee

    2009-01-01

    Fløjt fra hvidnæsede delfiner, Lagenorhynchus albirostris optaget i Skjálfandibugten i den nordlige del af Island (2008) blev sammenlignet med fløjt fra Faxaflóibugten fra den sydlige del af Island (1997). Optagelserne fra Skjálfandibugten blev optaget med et specialbygget vertikalt lineært array1...... være at de Islandske hvidnæser bruger samme fløjt repertoire bl.a. fordi det forekommer usandsynligt, at delfiner fra 2008 optagelser er de samme som fra 1997....

  4. Behavioural effects of tourism on oceanic common dolphins, Delphinus sp., in New Zealand: the effects of Markov analysis variations and current tour operator compliance with regulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meissner, Anna M; Christiansen, Fredrik; Martinez, Emmanuelle; Pawley, Matthew D M; Orams, Mark B; Stockin, Karen A

    2015-01-01

    Common dolphins, Delphinus sp., are one of the marine mammal species tourism operations in New Zealand focus on. While effects of cetacean-watching activities have previously been examined in coastal regions in New Zealand, this study is the first to investigate effects of commercial tourism and recreational vessels on common dolphins in an open oceanic habitat. Observations from both an independent research vessel and aboard commercial tour vessels operating off the central and east coast Bay of Plenty, North Island, New Zealand were used to assess dolphin behaviour and record the level of compliance by permitted commercial tour operators and private recreational vessels with New Zealand regulations. Dolphin behaviour was assessed using two different approaches to Markov chain analysis in order to examine variation of responses of dolphins to vessels. Results showed that, regardless of the variance in Markov methods, dolphin foraging behaviour was significantly altered by boat interactions. Dolphins spent less time foraging during interactions and took significantly longer to return to foraging once disrupted by vessel presence. This research raises concerns about the potential disruption to feeding, a biologically critical behaviour. This may be particularly important in an open oceanic habitat, where prey resources are typically widely dispersed and unpredictable in abundance. Furthermore, because tourism in this region focuses on common dolphins transiting between adjacent coastal locations, the potential for cumulative effects could exacerbate the local effects demonstrated in this study. While the overall level of compliance by commercial operators was relatively high, non-compliance to the regulations was observed with time restriction, number or speed of vessels interacting with dolphins not being respected. Additionally, prohibited swimming with calves did occur. The effects shown in this study should be carefully considered within conservation management

  5. Behavioural effects of tourism on oceanic common dolphins, Delphinus sp., in New Zealand: the effects of Markov analysis variations and current tour operator compliance with regulations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna M Meissner

    Full Text Available Common dolphins, Delphinus sp., are one of the marine mammal species tourism operations in New Zealand focus on. While effects of cetacean-watching activities have previously been examined in coastal regions in New Zealand, this study is the first to investigate effects of commercial tourism and recreational vessels on common dolphins in an open oceanic habitat. Observations from both an independent research vessel and aboard commercial tour vessels operating off the central and east coast Bay of Plenty, North Island, New Zealand were used to assess dolphin behaviour and record the level of compliance by permitted commercial tour operators and private recreational vessels with New Zealand regulations. Dolphin behaviour was assessed using two different approaches to Markov chain analysis in order to examine variation of responses of dolphins to vessels. Results showed that, regardless of the variance in Markov methods, dolphin foraging behaviour was significantly altered by boat interactions. Dolphins spent less time foraging during interactions and took significantly longer to return to foraging once disrupted by vessel presence. This research raises concerns about the potential disruption to feeding, a biologically critical behaviour. This may be particularly important in an open oceanic habitat, where prey resources are typically widely dispersed and unpredictable in abundance. Furthermore, because tourism in this region focuses on common dolphins transiting between adjacent coastal locations, the potential for cumulative effects could exacerbate the local effects demonstrated in this study. While the overall level of compliance by commercial operators was relatively high, non-compliance to the regulations was observed with time restriction, number or speed of vessels interacting with dolphins not being respected. Additionally, prohibited swimming with calves did occur. The effects shown in this study should be carefully considered within

  6. Behavioural Effects of Tourism on Oceanic Common Dolphins, Delphinus sp., in New Zealand: The Effects of Markov Analysis Variations and Current Tour Operator Compliance with Regulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meissner, Anna M.; Christiansen, Fredrik; Martinez, Emmanuelle; Pawley, Matthew D. M.; Orams, Mark B.; Stockin, Karen A.

    2015-01-01

    Common dolphins, Delphinus sp., are one of the marine mammal species tourism operations in New Zealand focus on. While effects of cetacean-watching activities have previously been examined in coastal regions in New Zealand, this study is the first to investigate effects of commercial tourism and recreational vessels on common dolphins in an open oceanic habitat. Observations from both an independent research vessel and aboard commercial tour vessels operating off the central and east coast Bay of Plenty, North Island, New Zealand were used to assess dolphin behaviour and record the level of compliance by permitted commercial tour operators and private recreational vessels with New Zealand regulations. Dolphin behaviour was assessed using two different approaches to Markov chain analysis in order to examine variation of responses of dolphins to vessels. Results showed that, regardless of the variance in Markov methods, dolphin foraging behaviour was significantly altered by boat interactions. Dolphins spent less time foraging during interactions and took significantly longer to return to foraging once disrupted by vessel presence. This research raises concerns about the potential disruption to feeding, a biologically critical behaviour. This may be particularly important in an open oceanic habitat, where prey resources are typically widely dispersed and unpredictable in abundance. Furthermore, because tourism in this region focuses on common dolphins transiting between adjacent coastal locations, the potential for cumulative effects could exacerbate the local effects demonstrated in this study. While the overall level of compliance by commercial operators was relatively high, non-compliance to the regulations was observed with time restriction, number or speed of vessels interacting with dolphins not being respected. Additionally, prohibited swimming with calves did occur. The effects shown in this study should be carefully considered within conservation management

  7. On doing two things at once: dolphin brain and nose coordinate sonar clicks, buzzes and emotional squeals with social sounds during fish capture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ridgway, Sam; Samuelson Dibble, Dianna; Van Alstyne, Kaitlin; Price, DruAnn

    2015-12-01

    Dolphins fishing alone in open waters may whistle without interrupting their sonar clicks as they find and eat or reject fish. Our study is the first to match sound and video from the dolphin with sound and video from near the fish. During search and capture of fish, free-swimming dolphins carried cameras to record video and sound. A hydrophone in the far field near the fish also recorded sound. From these two perspectives, we studied the time course of dolphin sound production during fish capture. Our observations identify the instant of fish capture. There are three consistent acoustic phases: sonar clicks locate the fish; about 0.4 s before capture, the dolphin clicks become more rapid to form a second phase, the terminal buzz; at or just before capture, the buzz turns to an emotional squeal (the victory squeal), which may last 0.2 to 20 s after capture. The squeals are pulse bursts that vary in duration, peak frequency and amplitude. The victory squeal may be a reflection of emotion triggered by brain dopamine release. It may also affect prey to ease capture and/or it may be a way to communicate the presence of food to other dolphins. Dolphins also use whistles as communication or social sounds. Whistling during sonar clicking suggests that dolphins may be adept at doing two things at once. We know that dolphin brain hemispheres may sleep independently. Our results suggest that the two dolphin brain hemispheres may also act independently in communication.

  8. Documenting and Assessing Dolphin Calls and Ambient and Anthropogenic Noise Levels via PAM and a SPL Meter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dudzinski, Kathleen M; Melillo-Sweeting, Kelly; Gregg, Justin D

    2016-01-01

    Song Meter SM2M marine recorders were deployed to document dolphin calls and ambient and anthropogenic noise. Recordings from Bimini were split into 2-h segments; no segment was without dolphin calls. At Dolphin Encounters, average noise levels ranged from 110 to 125 dB; the highest source level was 147.98 dB re 1 μPa at 1 m. Average ambient-noise levels documented at 4 sites in Guam were below 118 dB re 1 μPa at 1 m. These data were compared with values from a custom-built sound pressure level (SPL) meter and confirm that the SM2M recorder is a useful tool for assessing animal calls and ambient and anthropogenic noise levels.

  9. Sightings and behavioral observations of Indo-Pacific Humpback Dolphins Sousa chinensis (Osbeck, 1765 along Chennai coast, Bay of Bengal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Muralidharan

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Boat-based surveys were used to investigate the presence of Indo-Pacific Humpback Dolphins Sousa chinensis along the coast of Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India. Notes were collected on behavior, group size, coloration patterns and group composition on sighting cetaceans during the surveys. Four groups of Indo-Pacific Humpback Dolphins were sighted near-shore in the month of February 2011, between 10-25 m depth with an average group size of 20 individuals of which 10 individuals were photo-identifiable. Dominant group behavior was aerial display, feeding and traveling. This study gives a basic idea of presence, threats and habitat use of Humpback Dolphin areas along Chennai coast.

  10. First report of major histocompatibility complex class II loci from the Amazon pink river dolphin (genus Inia).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez-Agüero, M; Flores-Ramírez, S; Ruiz-García, M

    2006-07-31

    We report the first major histocompatibility complex (MHC) DQB1 sequences for the two species of pink river dolphins (Inia geoffrensis and Inia boliviensis) inhabiting the Amazon and Orinoco River basins. These sequences were found to be polymorphic within the Inia genus and showed shared homology with cetacean DQB-1 sequences, especially, those of the Monodontidae and Phocoenidae. On the other hand, these sequences were shown to be divergent from those described for other riverine dolphin species, such as Lipotes vexillifer, the Chinese river dolphin. Two main conclusions can be drawn from our results: 1) the Mhc DQB1 sequences seem to evolve more rapidly than other nuclear sequences in cetaceans, and 2) differential positive selective pressures acting on these genes cause concomitant divergent evolutionary histories that derive phylogenetic reconstructions that could be inconsistent with widely accepted intertaxa evolutionary relationships elucidated with other molecular markers subjected to a neutral dynamics.

  11. Sightings and behavioral observations of Indo-Pacific Humpback Dolphins Sousa chinensis (Osbeck, 1765 along Chennai coast, Bay of Bengal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Muralidharan

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Boat-based surveys were used to investigate the presence of Indo-Pacific Humpback Dolphins Sousa chinensis along the coast of Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India. Notes were collected on behavior, group size, coloration patterns and group composition on sighting cetaceans during the surveys. Four groups of Indo-Pacific Humpback Dolphins were sighted near-shore in the month of February 2011, between 10-25 m depth with an average group size of 20 individuals of which 10 individuals were photo-identifiable. Dominant group behavior was aerial display, feeding and traveling. This study gives a basic idea of presence, threats and habitat use of Humpback Dolphin areas along Chennai coast.

  12. Anthropogenic contaminants in Indo-Pacific humpback and Australian snubfin dolphins from the central and southern Great Barrier Reef.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cagnazzi, Daniele; Fossi, Maria Cristina; Parra, Guido J; Harrison, Peter L; Maltese, Silvia; Coppola, Daniele; Soccodato, Alice; Bent, Michael; Marsili, Letizia

    2013-11-01

    We present the first evidence of accumulation of organochlorine compounds (DDTs, PCBs, HCB) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in Indo-Pacific humpback and Australian snubfin dolphins from the central and southern Great Barrier Reef. These dolphins are considered by the Great Barrier Marine Park Authority to be high priority species for management. Analyses of biopsy samples, collected from free ranging individuals, showed PAHs levels comparable to those reported from highly industrialized countries. DDTs and HCB were found at low levels, while in some individuals, PCBs were above thresholds over which immunosuppression and reproductive anomalies occur. These results highlight the need for ongoing monitoring of these and other contaminants, and their potential adverse effects on dolphins and other marine fauna. This is particularly important given the current strategic assessment of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area being undertaken by the Australian Government and the Queensland Government.

  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. An assessment of the effectiveness of high definition cameras as remote monitoring tools for dolphin ecology studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guimarães Paiva, Estênio; Salgado-Kent, Chandra; Gagnon, Marthe Monique; Parnum, Iain; McCauley, Robert

    2015-01-01

    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. 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

  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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. [Influence of the dolphin-therapy on functioning of cardiovascular system of children with various cns lesions

    OpenAIRE

    Romanchuk, AP; Vasylevska, NYu; Sorokin, MYu; Podgorna, VV

    2015-01-01

     Dynamics of changes in functional maintenance of cardiovascular system under direct influence of one procedure and course dolphin-therapy has been shown in children with different CNS lesions. Optimizing effect of the dolphin-therapy is found on cardiac pumping function a sufficient level of which increased from 18,8 to 56,3 % of cases, and autonomic heart rate to ensure, a sufficient lever of which increased from 18,8 to 31,3 % of case. The existence of these positive changes indicates...

  20. Cutaneous nodules in Irrawaddy dolphins: an emerging disease in vulnerable populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Bressem, Marie-Francoise; Minton, Gianna; Sutaria, Dipani; Kelkar, Nachiket; Peter, Cindy; Zulkarnaen, Mohammad; Mansur, Rubaiyat M; Porter, Lindsay; Vargas, Luz H; Rajamani, Leela

    2014-01-16

    The presence of cutaneous nodules is reported in vulnerable populations of Irrawaddy dolphins Orcaella brevirostris from Malaysia (Kuching, Bintulu-Similajau, Kinabatangan-Segama and Penang Island), India (Chilika Lagoon) and Bangladesh (Sundarbans). Approximately 5700 images taken for photo-identification studies in 2004 to 2013 were examined for skin disorders. Nodules were detected in 6 populations. They appeared as circumscribed elevations of the skin and varied in size from 2 to >30 mm, were sparse or numerous and occurred on all visible body areas. In 8 photo-identified (PI) dolphins from India and Malaysia, the lesions remained stable (N = 2) or progressed (N = 6) over months but did not regress. The 2 most severely affected individuals were seen in Kuching and the Chilika Lagoon. Their fate is unknown. Cutaneous nodules were sampled in a female that died in a gillnet in Kuching in 2012. Histologically, the lesions consisted of thick collagen bundles covered by a moderately hyperplasic epithelium and were diagnosed as fibropapillomas. Whether the nodules observed in the other O. brevirostris were also fibropapillomas remains to be investigated. Disease prevalence ranged from 2.2% (N = 46; Bintulu-Similajau) to 13.9% (N = 72; Chilika) in 4 populations from Malaysia and India. It was not significantly different in 3 study areas in eastern Malaysia. In Chilika, prevalence was significantly higher (p = 0.00078) in 2009 to 2011 (13.9%) than in 2004 to 2006 (2.8%) in 72 PI dolphins. The emergence of a novel disease in vulnerable O. brevirostris populations is of concern.

  1. Cross-reactivity between immunoglobulin G antibodies of whales and dolphins correlates with evolutionary distance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nollens, Hendrik H; Ruiz, Carolina; Walsh, Michael T; Gulland, Frances M D; Bossart, Gregory; Jensen, Eric D; McBain, James F; Wellehan, James F X

    2008-10-01

    Growing morphological and molecular evidence indicates that the porpoises, dolphins, and whales evolved within the even-toed ungulates, formerly known as Artiodactyla. These animals are now grouped in the Cetartiodactyla. We evaluated the antigenic similarity of the immunoglobulin G (IgG) molecules of 15 cetacean species and the domestic cow. The similarity was scored using three distinct antibodies raised against bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) IgG in a Western blot, an indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), and a competitive ELISA format. A score was generated for the genetic distance between each species and T. truncatus using the cytochrome b sequence. Each antibody displayed a distinct pattern of reactivity with the IgG antibodies of the various species. The monoclonal antibody (MAb) specific for the gamma heavy chain of T. truncatus was reactive with all monodontids, delphinids, and phocoenids. The light-chain-specific MAb reacted with IgG of delphinoid and phocoenid species and one of the two mysticete species tested. The polyclonal antibody was broadly cross-reactive across all cetaceans and the domestic cow. Using the MAb specific for the gamma heavy chain, the degree of IgG cross-reactivity ranged from less than 17% for the mysticetes to 106% for killer whale Orcinus orca. The IgG in beaked whale and baleen whale sera was significantly less cross-reactive with bottlenose dolphin IgG than sera from other toothed whales. A strong negative correlation was demonstrated between antigenic cross-reactivity of IgG molecules and the genetic distance of their hosts. The data generated will be useful for the development of clinical serodiagnostics in diverse cetacean species.

  2. 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.

  3. Patterns of population structure at microsatellite and mitochondrial DNA markers in the franciscana dolphin (Pontoporia blainvillei).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gariboldi, María Constanza; Túnez, Juan Ignacio; Failla, Mauricio; Hevia, Marta; Panebianco, María Victoria; Paso Viola, María Natalia; Vitullo, Alfredo Daniel; Cappozzo, Humberto Luis

    2016-12-01

    The franciscana dolphin, Pontorporia blainvillei, is an endemic cetacean of the Atlantic coast of South America. Its coastal distribution and restricted movement patterns make this species vulnerable to anthropogenic factors, particularly to incidental bycatch. We used mitochondrial DNA control region sequences, 10 microsatellites, and sex data to investigate the population structure of the franciscana dolphin from a previously established management area, which includes the southern edge of its geographic range. F-statistics and Bayesian cluster analyses revealed the existence of three genetically distinct populations. Based on the microsatellite loci, similar levels of genetic variability were found in the area; 13 private alleles were found in Monte Hermoso, but none in Claromecó. When considering the mitochondrial DNA control region sequences, lower levels of genetic diversity were found in Monte Hermoso, when compared to the other localities. Low levels of gene flow were found between most localities. Additionally, no evidence of isolation by distance nor sex-biased dispersal was detected in the study area. In view of these results showing that populations from Necochea/Claromecó, Monte Hermoso, and Río Negro were found to be genetically distinct and the available genetic information for the species previously published, Argentina would comprise five distinct populations: Samborombón West/Samborombón South, Cabo San Antonio/Buenos Aires East, Necochea/Claromecó/Buenos Aires Southwest, Monte Hermoso, and Río Negro. In order to ensure the long-term survival of the franciscana dolphin, management and conservation strategies should be developed considering each of these populations as different management units.

  4. 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 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. © 2015 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.

  5. 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.

  6. Optimization Mathematical Model of Pile Forces for Offshore Piled Breasting Dolphins

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    周锡礽; 王东芹; 王晖; 朱福明

    2004-01-01

    An optimization mathematical model of the pile forces for piled breasting dolphins in the open sea under various loading conditions is presented. The optimum layout with the well distributed pile forces and the least number of piles is achieved by the multiplier penalty function method. Several engineering cases have been calculated and compared with the result of the conventional design method. It is shown that the number of piles can be reduced at least by 10% ~ 20%and the piles' bearing state is improved greatly.

  7. 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...

  8. Population differentiation and hybridisation of Australian snubfin (Orcaella heinsohni) and Indo-Pacific humpback (Sousa chinensis) dolphins in north-western Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Alexander M; Kopps, Anna M; Allen, Simon J; Bejder, Lars; Littleford-Colquhoun, Bethan; Parra, Guido J; Cagnazzi, Daniele; Thiele, Deborah; Palmer, Carol; Frère, Celine H

    2014-01-01

    Little is known about the Australian snubfin (Orcaella heinsohni) and Indo-Pacific humpback (Sousa chinensis) dolphins ('snubfin' and 'humpback dolphins', hereafter) of north-western Australia. While both species are listed as 'near threatened' by the IUCN, data deficiencies are impeding rigorous assessment of their conservation status across Australia. Understanding the genetic structure of populations, including levels of gene flow among populations, is important for the assessment of conservation status and the effective management of a species. Using nuclear and mitochondrial DNA markers, we assessed population genetic diversity and differentiation between snubfin dolphins from Cygnet (n = 32) and Roebuck Bays (n = 25), and humpback dolphins from the Dampier Archipelago (n = 19) and the North West Cape (n = 18). All sampling locations were separated by geographic distances >200 km. For each species, we found significant genetic differentiation between sampling locations based on 12 (for snubfin dolphins) and 13 (for humpback dolphins) microsatellite loci (FST = 0.05-0.09; Pdolphins in Western Australia, providing valuable information towards the assessment of their conservation status in this rapidly developing region. Our results suggest that north-western Australian snubfin and humpback dolphins may exist as metapopulations of small, largely isolated population fragments, and should be managed accordingly. Management plans should seek to maintain effective population size and gene flow. Additionally, while interactions of a socio-sexual nature between these two species have been observed previously, here we provide strong evidence for the first documented case of hybridisation between a female snubfin dolphin and a male humpback dolphin.

  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. Demographic Clusters Identified within the Northern Gulf of Mexico Common Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncates) Unusual Mortality Event: January 2010 - June 2013

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venn-Watson, Stephanie; Garrison, Lance; Litz, Jenny; Fougeres, Erin; Mase, Blair; Rappucci, Gina; Stratton, Elizabeth; Carmichael, Ruth; Odell, Daniel; Shannon, Delphine; Shippee, Steve; Smith, Suzanne; Staggs, Lydia; Tumlin, Mandy; Whitehead, Heidi; Rowles, Teri

    2015-01-01

    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 better

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kot, Brian Chin Wing; Lau, Thomas Yue Huen; Cheng, Sammy Chi Him

    2013-01-01

    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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venn-Watson, Stephanie; Garrison, Lance; Litz, Jenny; Fougeres, Erin; Mase, Blair; Rappucci, Gina; Stratton, Elizabeth; Carmichael, Ruth; Odell, Daniel; Shannon, Delphine; Shippee, Steve; Smith, Suzanne; Staggs, Lydia; Tumlin, Mandy; Whitehead, Heidi; Rowles, Teri

    2015-01-01

    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 better discerned

  14. Phylogenetic relationships among Streptococcus agalactiae isolated from piscine, dolphin, bovine and human sources: a dolphin and piscine lineage associated with a fish epidemic in Kuwait is also associated with human...

    Science.gov (United States)

    Group B Streptococcus agalactiae (GBS) causes of infections in multiple animals. This study examined the genetic relatedness of piscine, dolphin, and human GBS isolates and bovine GBS reference strains from different geographical regions using serological and multilocus sequence typing (MLST) techni...

  15. A case of stranded Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) with lobomycosis-like skin lesions in Kinko-wan, Kagoshima, Japan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tajima, Yuko; Sasaki, Kyoko; Kashiwagi, Nobuyuki; Yamada, Tadasu K

    2015-08-01

    Lobomycosis is a chronic fungal disease caused by the etiologic agent, Lacazia loboi, in the skin and subcutaneous tissues in humans and dolphins in tropical and transitional tropical climates. An Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) stranded in Kagoshima, Japan, had severe skin lesions characterized by granulomatous reactions and hyperkeratosis that were similar to those of the lobomycosis, but no fungal organism was observed in the skin lesion. In this paper, we report a stranded Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin with lobomycosis-like lesions based on pathological examinations in Japan.

  16. Evolution and the pathology of deep diving in the Bottlenosed Dolphin, Tursiops truncatus (Montagu, 1821) (Notes on Cetacea, Delphinoidea V)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Purves, P.E.; Bree, van P.J.H.

    1972-01-01

    Cadenat (1959) and Rancurel (1964) produced strong indirect evidence that off the west coast of Africa, the Bottle-nosed Dolphin, Tursiops truncatus, is in the habit of diving very deeply, possibly down to 600 m. Examination of the skulls of fully adult specimens of Tursiops taken off Dakar and St.

  17. Polyfluoroalkyl compounds in free-ranging bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Houde, Magali; Wells, Randall S; Fair, Patricia A; Bossart, Greg D; Hohn, Aleta A; Rowles, Teri K; Sweeney, Jay C; Solomon, Keith R; Muir, Derek C G

    2005-09-01

    Polyfluoroalkyl compounds (PFAs) have been used for decades in industrial and commercial products and are now detected worldwide. Concentrations of two major PFA groups, carboxylic acids (PFCAs) and sulfonic acids (PFSAs), were assessed in plasma of bottlenose dolphins from the Gulf of Mexico (Sarasota Bay, FL) and the Atlantic Ocean (Delaware Bay, NJ, Charleston, SC, Indian River Lagoon (IRL), FL, and Bermuda). Eight PFAs were detected in the plasma of all dolphins. Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) was the predominant compound at all locations (range from 49 ng/g wet weight (w.w.) in dolphins from Bermuda to 1171 ng/g w.w. in plasma of animals from Charleston). Sum of PFA concentrations were significantly higher in animals from Charleston compared to IRL, Sarasota Bay, and Bermuda. Concentrations of several PFAs were negatively associated with age in animals from IRL and Charleston. No differences between gender were observed for all compounds at all locations. An increase in PFA concentrations was associated with a decrease of blubber thickness in animals from Sarasota Bay and IRL. Fluorotelomer 8:2 and 10:2 unsaturated carboxylic acids (FTUCAs), known degradation products of fluorotelomer alcohols and suspected precursors to PFCAs, were detected for the first time at low concentrations in plasma of dolphins.

  18. Isolation of culturable microorganisms from free-ranging bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from the southeastern United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Pamela J; Johnson, Wesley R; Pisani, John; Bossart, Gregory D; Adams, Jeff; Reif, John S; Fair, Patricia A

    2011-03-24

    Reports of diseases in marine mammals are increasing worldwide, however our understanding of the microorganisms associated with marine mammals is still limited. In this study, we cultured bacteria and fungi isolated from the upper respiratory tract (blowhole), gastric fluid and anus of 180 wild bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) from two estuarine locations along the southeastern Atlantic Coast of the United States. A total of 339 and 491 isolates from Charleston, SC (CHS) and Indian River Lagoon, FL (IRL) dolphins, respectively, were cultured from gastric (70 CHS/82 IRL), fecal (141 CHS/184 IRL), and blowhole (128 CHS/225 IRL) swabs on selective media used for routine clinical microorganisms of human concern. The most frequently cultured Gram-negative bacteria from all sample and study types were Plesiomonas shigelloides, Aeromonas hydrophila, Escherichia coli, and Pseudomonas fluorescens. Among the Gram-positive bacteria, Clostridium perfringens, Bacillus sp., and Staphylococcus Coag. Neg were the predominant organisms. For fungi, the most abundant species were Candida glabrata, budding yeasts, and Candida tropicalis. Of concern, the MRSA strain of Staphylococcus aureus was detected in the blowhole and gastric swabs from CHS dolphins. In general, a greater prevalence of bacteria and fungi (four-fold increase) were cultured from IRL than CHS animals. Together, these culture-dependent studies, coupled to on-going culture-independent approaches, should help establish a baseline of microorganisms associated with bottlenose dolphins and aid in the identification of organisms responsible for infectious diseases(s) in these animals.

  19. An Unintentional System of Gaps: A Phenomenological Reading of Scott O'Dell's "Island of the Blue Dolphins."

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tarr, C. Anita

    1997-01-01

    Argues that, in "Island of the Blue Dolphins," Scott O'Dell offers a skeleton main character (Karana). Contends that O'Dell has sketched Karana as a stereotype and that readers complete her characterization, filling out the skeleton by perpetuating the stereotypes. Points out this trading of stereotype for true character development in his other…

  20. 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.