Catalog Home Page

Quantitative assessment of relative ship strike risk to humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area

Smith, J.N.ORCID: 0000-0001-9912-422X, Peel, D. and Kelly, N. (2019) Quantitative assessment of relative ship strike risk to humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area.

[img]
Preview
PDF (Final Report) - Authors' Version
Download (3MB) | Preview

Abstract

The Australian east coast population of humpback whales (E1 sub-population) annually migrate to the Great Barrier Reef for mating and calving. Recent improvements in our understanding of the distribution of humpback whales on their breeding ground in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area (GBRWHA) indicate the main breeding aggregation (highest density area) is in offshore waters of the southern GBR, in close proximity to coastal areas undergoing significant port development. The core breeding area overlaps the inner shipping route that services all ports on the Qld coast. A quantitative assessment of relative ship strike risk (ships > 80m) to humpback whales in the GBRWHA was recently undertaken. However, it was not possible to model the Capricorn Bunker Group due to limited humpback whale distribution data. This Capricorn Bunker Group is an area of significant shipping activity and represents a significant information gap on relative risk of ship strike to humpback whales in the GBR. This report presents data on the distribution of humpback whales in the Capricorn Bunker Group area from an aerial survey undertaken in July 2018. This data enabled a quantitative relative ship strike risk assessment for this area and a re-assessment of risk in the extended GBRWHA when integrated with existing aerial survey data.

Item Type: Report
Murdoch Affiliation: Environmental and Conservation Sciences
United Nations SDGs: Goal 14: Life Below Water
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/52711
Item Control Page Item Control Page

Downloads

Downloads per month over past year