Saturday, March 31, 2018

Social Interactions of Sicklefin Lemon Sharks - Paper!

Click for detail!

Very nice!

Check this out.
It describes the behavior of Sicklefin Lemons at two provisioning sites in French Polynesia.
And assuming I understand the paper correctly, the observations coincide to a large degree with what we observe here with our Bulls, i.e. that these largely solitary animals develop a rudimentary etiquette when they aggregate at a provisioning site (and possibly equally at some communal feeding event like a Whale carcass) whereby a) dominance is not necessarily determined only by size and sex but rather, also by individual boldness; b) when there are many Sharks, some particularly dominant individuals react to the  increased competition by monopolizing the food source i.e. the bait cage and in our case, the suspended bin; c) as time goes by, "regular" Sharks appear to become more tolerant vis-a-vis other "regular" individuals of the same species whom they appear to recognize and d) the Sharks appear to tolerate conspecifics with equal ranking but tend to avoid more dominant individuals.
French synopsis here!

I really like it,  and the way they did collect the evidence.
We actually had a masters student do something similar a few years back with the Reefies - but it would be really cool if we were able to replicate this with our Bull Sharks that are our real focal species! The problem is the suspended vertical video camera as per the image at the top, as the rig would be unsightly for the tourists and above all, it would likely be eaten in no time - but I'm sure that we'll figure something out!

With that in mind, keep watching this space!
Enjoy the paper!

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Bull Shark vs Boat!

The behavior is certainly unusual - and no, I'm not gonna try and interpret it. :)

Story here - enjoy!

Friday, March 16, 2018

Big Sharks scavenging on a Whale!

Another Whale another GWS - source!

Enjoy - story here!

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Recovery of Sharks within a well enforced MPA - Paper!

Very nice - watch!

Paper here, synopsis here.
I must say that contrary to other papers looking at different aspects of those reefs off Western Australia where I am weary of some of the conclusions, I am quite impressed by this one as the evidence for the rapid recovery of those Sharks appears to be rock solid as e.g. evidenced by the video below.

This is good news indeed.
Provided that there is strict enforcement, MPAs appear to be an effective tool in the protection of at least those comparatively less migratory coastal Sharks - and if so, there is certainly reason for hope.

Of course for us this is nothing new.
But good to see our data (and here!) confirmed by research from other parts of the word.

Enjoy the paper!

Saturday, March 10, 2018

Gallivanting Tiger Sharks - new Paper!

Remember this post?
Sure you do! :)

Now, check this out.
Once again, this is evidence for the massive influence of environmental factors whereby both the coastal abundance and swimming performance of those migrating Tiger Sharks are being shown to be highest at ~22°C. Consequently, they track their optimal temperature and are thus more likely to be found in coastal areas in winter in the tropics; but towards temperate latitudes, they are more likely to be found in coastal areas in summer, see the figure at the top - and as climate change continues to heat up the oceans, those tracks are likely to shift poleward with according potential consequences for coastal communities, see the example of Sydney.

Very interesting!
Incidentally, this is very similar to what we are currently experiencing with our Bulls who have been shown to favor a temperature of ~26°C.
As the water temperature at Shark Reef has recently hovered around 29°C for a protracted period of time,  the number of especially the larger Bull Sharks has been appreciably lower - and whereas we don't dispose of any strong evidence, it is only fair to speculate that they may have retreated to greater depths or even absconded to places like Kadavu where the water temperature has been significantly lowered by Gita.

But I'm digressing as usual.
Great paper featuring numerous people I like and respect.

Bull Shark Tagging in Fiji!

Very nice!

Check this out.
Pascal was here to assist Kerstin in catching and tagging neonate Bulls. And whilst she has been concentrating on the Rewa River where she has managed to bag more than 100 pups, he and Gauthier of Projects Abroad did fish in the Sigatoka - not as productive as the Rewa but in exchange the results have been  very interesting indeed!
And whereas I'm not at liberty to elaborate quite yet, I can reveal that they will most certainly become an integral part of an upcoming paper, so keep watching this space!

Anyway, lovely post!
And I had to chuckle at the typically Swiss polite reference to cultural challenges = the usual shenanigans where the locals will always try and test any newbie!


Monday, March 05, 2018

Ian - well spoken !

Indefatigable - here at the CMS COP11 in Quito. Source.

And this is why we like him!

Friday, March 02, 2018

Escape to Shark Reef!

Very nice!

Check this out.
Juerg has been the scientific supervisor of our research and conservation for 15 years, and we simply could not be happier with the friendship, the level of cooperation and the many stellar papers our symbiotic relationship has spawned.
Contrary to what some self-appointed literal saviors of Fijian Sharks may want you believe, this is by far the most comprehensive and important collection of Shark research papers in Fiji. As such, it already has and continues to inform Government about sustainable Shark management, Shark conservation and sustainable Shark ecotourism.

And of course this is not the end by far!
As I consult my notes, there are several papers in the pipeline, some of which in preliminary stages all the way to some that are in final review and will be published very shortly indeed.

Keep watching this space!