Our first Large Marine Vertebrate Project, Philippines (LAMAVE) whale shark paper is out. Follow the link above to check it out. The study looked at the population structure and residency patterns of R. typus (whale shark) at the Oslob provisioning site, in Cebu, Philippines.
Big shout out to lead author Gonzalo Araujo and a massive thank you to our team and all our amazing LAMAVE volunteers. Go team!
This study represents the first description of whale sharks, Rhincodon typus, occurring at a provisioning site in Oslob, Cebu, Philippines. Frequent observations of sharks are often difficult, even at tourism sites, giving rise to provisioning activities to attract them. The present study provides repeated longitudinal data at a site where daily provisioning activities took place, and whale sharks were present every day. A total of 158 individual whale sharks were photographically identified between Mar 2012 and Dec 2013, with 129 males (82%), 19 females (12%) and 10 (6%) of undetermined sex. Mean estimated total length was 5.5 m (±1.3 m S.D.). Twenty individuals were measured with laser photogrammetry to validate researchers’ estimated sizes, yielding a good correlation (r2 = 0.83). Fifty-four (34%) individuals were observed being hand-fed by local fishermen (provisioned), through in-water behavioural observations. Maximum likelihood methods were used to model mean residency time of 44.9 days (±20.6 days S.E.) for provisioned R. typus contrasting with 22.4 days (±8.9 days S.E.) for non-provisioned individuals. Propeller scars were observed in 47% of the animals. A mean of 12.7 (±4.3 S.D.) R. typus were present in the survey area daily, with a maximum of 26 individuals (Aug 10 2013) and a minimum of 2 (Dec 6 2012). Twelve (8%) individuals were seen on at least 50% of survey days (n = 621), with a maximum residency of 572 days for one individual (P-396). Twenty four individuals were photographically identified across regional hotsposts, highlighting the species’ migratory nature and distribution. Extended residency and differences in lagged identification rates suggest behavioural modification on provisioned individuals, underlying the necessity for proper management of this tourism activity.
"In an announcement this afternoon, Environmental Protection Authority chairman Paul Vogel said the regulator had recommended against the policy following a detailed assessment. Premier Colin Barnett responded by saying it was unlikely the [Australian] government would appeal the EPA’s recommendation."
hey! i just joined tumblr and found you looking through the 'ocean science' tag! i'm from puerto rico and am going to plymouth uni to study ocean science! finding this blog made me as happy as a clam :)
Just wanted to drop a note saying your blog is awesome- especially your "about" section and your story. It's an inspiring story that demonstrates your determination and dedication to reach your goal! I know you have influenced many young viewers to chase their dreams and passions! Take care and I followed!
Thank you! I appreciate that - but I have to give credit to all those who influence(d) me to chase my passion and dreams.
HI! To start off I just want to say that I love your blog, but I do have some questions. I'm a senior who just decided that I want to switch my major to Marine Biology. What colleges/universities did you apply to for this? This information will really help me a bunch! P.S. There will be more questions in the future, but this was all I could think of at this point.
Hi! Thanks for the question. You can read about my journey to marine biology and then marine conservation here.
I studied in the UK, and applied for marine biology at Newcastle, Liverpool, Bangor, Plymouth, and another one I don’t remember now (it’s been a while!) and choose Plymouth University in the end.
When female angler fish release eggs, do the parasitic males (at least, whats left of them) release the sperm into the water, or directly into the females? Is the fertilization process internal or external?