Toxicant exposure, population genetics, and trophic associations of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) in the Swan River
Holyoake, C., Finn, H., Stephens, N., Linke, T., Daniel, C., Allen, S., Smith, H., McElligott, D. and Bejder, L. (2011) Toxicant exposure, population genetics, and trophic associations of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) in the Swan River. Murdoch Cetacean Research Unit, Murdoch University, Murdoch, Western Australia.
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Although Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) are a valued component of the Swan-Canning Estuary and the Swan Canning Riverpark, little is known about the health and ecology of the small community of dolphins inhabiting the estuary.
To improve the scientific basis for management, we examined the population genetics, trophic associations, and contaminant exposure of dolphins within the estuary. This Swan Canning Research Innovation Program (SCRIP) study had the following objectives: (1) detail contaminant concentrations in dolphins (as a baseline for future monitoring); (2) provide a preliminary assessment of health risk posed by contaminants to dolphins; (3) examine trophic pathway associations for Swan River bottlenose dolphin community; (4) use genetic information to examine whether bottlenose dolphins from the Swan-Canning Estuary and adjacent waters (Cockburn Sound) represent one homogenous population or (alternatively) if fine-scale population structuring occurs; and (5) put project findings into the perspective of system ecology and management implications.
Tissue samples for this study were obtained through remote biopsy sampling of free-ranging dolphins and the collection of tissues during post-mortem examinations under permits and licences from the WA Department of Environment and Conservation and the Murdoch University Animal Ethics Committee.
|Murdoch Affiliation:||Centre for Fish and Fisheries Research|
School of Biological Sciences and Biotechnology
School of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences
|Publisher:||Murdoch Cetacean Research Unit, Murdoch University|
|Notes:||Final report to the Swan River Trust for the Swan Canning Research Innovation Program (SCRIP) Project RSG09MUR01, October 2011|
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