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Chero G., Pradel R., Derville S., Bonneville C., Gimenez O., Garrigue Claire. (2020). Reproductive capacity of an endangered and recovering population of humpback whales in the Southern Hemisphere. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 643, 219-227. ISSN 0171-8630

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Reproductive capacity of an endangered and recovering population of humpback whales in the Southern Hemisphere
Année de publication2020
Type de documentArticle référencé dans le Web of Science WOS:000545931200016
AuteursChero G., Pradel R., Derville S., Bonneville C., Gimenez O., Garrigue Claire.
SourceMarine Ecology Progress Series, 2020, 643, p. 219-227. ISSN 0171-8630
RésuméEstimating demographic parameters is essential to assessing the recovery potential of severely depleted populations of marine mammal species such as the baleen whales, which were decimated by commercial whaling of the past century. The Oceania humpback whale Megaptera novaeangliae population is classified as endangered by the IUCN because of low numbers and a slow recovery rate. Nevertheless, an anomalously strong increase has recently been detected in the New Caledonia breeding population. To determine the drivers of population growth, reproductive parameters were estimated for the first time for a humpback whale population of Oceania. Based on an extensive monitoring program (1995-2018), recapture histories were reconstructed for 607 females and incorporated in multi-event capture-recapture models. As the females' ages were generally unknown (87%), 2 models with contrasting age scenarios were investigated. For females of unknown age, the mature scenario assumed maturity at the first encounter, while the immature scenario assumed immaturity within 7 yr after the first encounter, unless the female was encountered breeding. These models respectively resulted in a calving interval of 1.49 yr (95% CI: 1.21-2.08) or 2.83 yr (95% CI: 2.28-3.56) and a calving rate of 0.67 or 0.35. The relatively high calving rate modelled by the mature model is consistent with high pregnancy rates recently observed in the migratory corridors of the Kermadec Islands and on the feeding grounds of the Antarctic Peninsula. Therefore, our results suggest that the recovery of the New Caledonia humpback whale population from past exploitation may be partially driven by an increased reproductive capacity.
Plan de classementLimnologie biologique / Océanographie biologique [034]
LocalisationFonds IRD [F B010079152]
Identifiant IRDfdi:010079152
Lien permanenthttp://www.documentation.ird.fr/hor/fdi:010079152

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