Through various long-standing institutional collaborations between the Ocean Giants Program at WCS and other research and conservation programs based in the US, Africa, Madagascar, Oman, Bangladesh and Australia, this project addresses issues related to population connectivity and dispersal of humpback dolphins in the West Indian Ocean, and issues of species identity throughout the entire genus distribution. In addition, we are exploring some potentially important environmental agents related to dispersal and population connectivity for this species in the region.
I am collaborating in the evaluation of ocean-basin scale, and worldwide, population structure of humpback whales. These analyses combine frequency-based and likelihood algorithms for the characterization of population structure and dispersal, and are based on mitochondrial and nuclear genetic data. In a previous publication (below) we showed that humpback whale stocks in the South Atlantic and Eastern Indian Ocean are genetically distinct, and that there is a degree of subpopulation structure within each ocean basin.
Research Keywords: Dolphin populations, Conservation education