Long-term decline in survival and reproduction of dolphins following a marine heatwave

Sonja Wild, Michael Krützen, Robert W. Rankin, William J.E. Hoppitt, Livia Gerber, Simon J. Allen

Research output: Contribution to journalLetter

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

One of many challenges in the conservation of biodiversity is the recent trend in the frequency and intensity of extreme climatic events [1]. The Shark Bay World Heritage Area, Western Australia, endured an unprecedented marine heatwave in 2011. Catastrophic losses of habitat-forming seagrass meadows followed [2], along with mass mortalities of invertebrate and fish communities [3]. Our long-term demographic data on Shark Bay's resident Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) population revealed a significant decline in female reproductive rates following the heatwave. Moreover, capture–recapture analyses indicated 5.9% and 12.2% post-heatwave declines in the survival of dolphins that use tools to forage and those that do not, respectively. This implies that the tool-using dolphins may have been somewhat buffered against the cascading effects of habitat loss following the heatwave by having access to a less severely affected foraging niche [4]. Overall, however, lower survival has persisted post-heatwave, suggesting that habitat loss following extreme weather events may have prolonged, negative impacts on even behaviourally flexible, higher-trophic level predators. Video Abstract:[Figure presented]

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)R239-R240
JournalCurrent Biology
Volume29
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2019

Fingerprint

Dolphins
dolphins
habitat destruction
Reproduction
Ecosystem
Sharks
sharks
Bottle-Nosed Dolphin
Western Australia
Biodiversity
Weather
Invertebrates
Fish
meadows
Conservation
Fishes
niches
demographic statistics
weather
invertebrates

Cite this

Wild, Sonja ; Krützen, Michael ; Rankin, Robert W. ; Hoppitt, William J.E. ; Gerber, Livia ; Allen, Simon J. / Long-term decline in survival and reproduction of dolphins following a marine heatwave. In: Current Biology. 2019 ; Vol. 29, No. 7. pp. R239-R240.
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abstract = "One of many challenges in the conservation of biodiversity is the recent trend in the frequency and intensity of extreme climatic events [1]. The Shark Bay World Heritage Area, Western Australia, endured an unprecedented marine heatwave in 2011. Catastrophic losses of habitat-forming seagrass meadows followed [2], along with mass mortalities of invertebrate and fish communities [3]. Our long-term demographic data on Shark Bay's resident Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) population revealed a significant decline in female reproductive rates following the heatwave. Moreover, capture–recapture analyses indicated 5.9{\%} and 12.2{\%} post-heatwave declines in the survival of dolphins that use tools to forage and those that do not, respectively. This implies that the tool-using dolphins may have been somewhat buffered against the cascading effects of habitat loss following the heatwave by having access to a less severely affected foraging niche [4]. Overall, however, lower survival has persisted post-heatwave, suggesting that habitat loss following extreme weather events may have prolonged, negative impacts on even behaviourally flexible, higher-trophic level predators. Video Abstract:[Figure presented]",
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Long-term decline in survival and reproduction of dolphins following a marine heatwave. / Wild, Sonja; Krützen, Michael; Rankin, Robert W.; Hoppitt, William J.E.; Gerber, Livia; Allen, Simon J.

In: Current Biology, Vol. 29, No. 7, 01.04.2019, p. R239-R240.

Research output: Contribution to journalLetter

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T1 - Long-term decline in survival and reproduction of dolphins following a marine heatwave

AU - Wild, Sonja

AU - Krützen, Michael

AU - Rankin, Robert W.

AU - Hoppitt, William J.E.

AU - Gerber, Livia

AU - Allen, Simon J.

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