Distribution and Demographics of Marine Mammals in SOCAL Through Photo-Identification, Genetics, and Satellite Telemetry: A Summary of Surveys Conducted 1 July 2011-15 June 2012
Falcone, Erin A.
Schorr, Gregory S.
MetadataShow full item record
Results from the second year of a three-year project investigating the distribution, demographics, and behavior of cetaceans in the US Navy’s Southern California operational area are summarized. Eighteen small vessel surveys for cetaceans, which included species verification tests in conjunction with M3R (Marine Mammal Monitoring on Navy Undersea Ranges) acoustic monitoring at the Southern California Anti-submarine Warfare Range (SOAR), as well as photo-identification, satellite tagging, and biopsy sampling of species of interest, were conducted in July 2011 and January and March 2012. 112 groups of 14 cetacean species were encountered. Twenty-one satellite tags, some depth reporting, were deployed on four species, with an emphasis on Cuvier’s beaked and fin whales. Among other findings, preliminary results of photo-identification studies combined with results from satellite tag data suggest that both Cuvier’s beaked whales and fin whales may have population sub-units with higher than expected residency to the Southern California Bight. Beaked whales particularly show this higher than expected residency to SOAR.
Prepared for: Chief of Naval Operations, Energy and Environmental Readiness Division, Washington, D.C.