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Garrigue Claire, Derville Solène, Bonneville C., Scott Baker C., Cheeseman T., Millet Laurent, Paton D., Steel D. (2020). Searching for humpback whales in a historical whaling hotspot of the Coral Sea, South Pacific. Endangered Species Research, 42, 67-82. ISSN 1613-4796

Fichier PDF disponiblehttp://horizon.documentation.ird.fr/exl-doc/pleins_textes/divers20-06/010078406.pdf[ PDF Link ]

Lien direct chez l'éditeur doi:10.3354/esr01038

En Libre Accès sur HAL https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-02878285

Titre
Searching for humpback whales in a historical whaling hotspot of the Coral Sea, South Pacific
Année de publication2020
Type de documentArticle
AuteursGarrigue Claire, Derville Solène, Bonneville C., Scott Baker C., Cheeseman T., Millet Laurent, Paton D., Steel D.
SourceEndangered Species Research, 2020, 42, p. 67-82. ISSN 1613-4796
RésuméHumpback whales Megaptera novaeangliae were severely depleted by commercial whaling. Understanding key factors in their recovery is a crucial step for their conservation worldwide. In Oceania, the Chesterfield-Bellona archipelago was a primary whaling site in the 19th century, yet has been left almost unaffected by anthropogenic activities since. We present the results of the first multidisciplinary dedicated surveys in the archipelago assessing humpback whale populations 2 centuries post-whaling. We encountered 57 groups during 24 survey days (2016−2017), among which 35 whales were identified using photographs of natural markings (photo-ID), 38 using genotyping and 22 using both. Humpback whales were sparsely distributed (0.041 whales km−1): most sightings concentrated in shallow inner-reef waters and neighbouring offshore shallow banks. The recently created marine protected area covers most of the areas of high predicted habitat suitability and high residence time from satellite-tracked whales. Surprisingly for a breeding area, sex ratios skewed towards females (1:2.4), and 45% of females were with calf. Connectivity was established with the New Caledonia breeding area to the east (mtDNA FSt = 0.001, p >0.05, 12 photo-ID and 10 genotype matches) and with the Australian Great Barrier Reef breeding area to the west (mtDNA FSt = 0.006, p > 0.05). Movement of satellite-tracked whales and photo-ID matches also suggest connections with the east Australian migratory corridor. This study confirms that humpback whales still inhabit the Chesterfield-Bellona archipelago 2 centuries post whaling, and that this pristine area potentially plays a role in facilitating migratory interchange among breeding grounds of the western South Pacific.
Plan de classementAutres vertébrés [034BIOVER03]
DescripteursMAMMIFERE MARIN ; SEX RATIO ; SURVEILLANCE ; DONNEES SATELLITE ; BALEINE A BOSSE ; CONNECTIVITE
LocalisationFonds IRD ; Nouméa
Identifiant IRDfdi:010078406
Lien permanenthttp://www.documentation.ird.fr/hor/fdi:010078406

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