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Intra and interspecies association patterns of Atlantic spotted dolphins, Stenella frontalis, and Atlantic bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus, and the effects of demographic changes following two major hurricanes

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Date Issued:
2010
Summary:
Demographic changes, through immigration/emigration (or death) can affect the social and community structure of a population. This study reports on the effects of demographic changes following 2 intense hurricanes on two sympatric delphinid species: Atlantic bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus, and Atlantic spotted dolphins Stenella frontalis. Thirty percent of the bottlenose population was lost after the hurricanes, with an influx of roughly the same number of immigrants. The stable community split into two cohesive units. Preferences in association in relation to reproductive status and sex remained. Immigrants assimilated well into the population, especially males. There is a conflict of interest between resident males and females in accepting immigrants and often females find more resistance than males. Long-term analysis of spotted dolphins revealed a community structure defined by long-term site fidelity, natal philopatry of both sexes and three social clusters.
Title: Intra and interspecies association patterns of Atlantic spotted dolphins, Stenella frontalis, and Atlantic bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus, and the effects of demographic changes following two major hurricanes.
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Name(s): Elliser, Cindy Rogers.
Charles E. Schmidt College of Science
Department of Biological Sciences
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Electronic Thesis Or Dissertation
Date Issued: 2010
Publisher: Florida Atlantic University
Physical Form: electronic
Extent: xv, 176 p. : ill.
Language(s): English
Summary: Demographic changes, through immigration/emigration (or death) can affect the social and community structure of a population. This study reports on the effects of demographic changes following 2 intense hurricanes on two sympatric delphinid species: Atlantic bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus, and Atlantic spotted dolphins Stenella frontalis. Thirty percent of the bottlenose population was lost after the hurricanes, with an influx of roughly the same number of immigrants. The stable community split into two cohesive units. Preferences in association in relation to reproductive status and sex remained. Immigrants assimilated well into the population, especially males. There is a conflict of interest between resident males and females in accepting immigrants and often females find more resistance than males. Long-term analysis of spotted dolphins revealed a community structure defined by long-term site fidelity, natal philopatry of both sexes and three social clusters.
Summary: Female associations were influenced by reproductive status and social familiarity within clusters. Males formed long-term alliances and shorter-term coalitions. Some movement between clusters occurred. Alliance formation crystallized in adulthood. Mating strategies and sex were the primary factors shaping social structure. Thirty-six percent of the spotted dolphin population was lost after the hurricanes with no influx of immigrants. The spotted dolphin community differed little from long-term analysis, including definitive social clusters and sex preferences. Social cohesion increased within units and across age classes. Some juveniles had associations of alliance level. Loss of individuals resulted in subtle changes in social structure. Interspecies associations reveal striking differences in association patterns between species. Group sizes and re-sightings of spotted dolphins were larger than for bottlenose dolphins, particularly for aggressive encounters.
Summary: Male alliances and coalitions were prevalent for spotted dolphins, but not for bottlenose dolphins. After the hurricanes lower re-sighting and group sizes for spotted dolphin males and less aggressive behavior documented, indicates a re-structuring period of relationships between the species. This study shows that environmental variations may alter the structure of mammal societies through demographic upheaval and survival of populations may depend on their social structure and the social adaptability of the species.
Identifier: 608678832 (oclc), 1930485 (digitool), FADT1930485 (IID), fau:2987 (fedora)
Note(s): by Cindy Rogers Elliser.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Florida Atlantic University, 2010.
Includes bibliography.
Electronic reproduction. Boca Raton, Fla., 2010. Mode of access: World Wide Web.
Subject(s): Social behavior in animals
Dolphins -- Atlantic Ocean -- Geographical distribution
Population genetics
Weather -- Environmental aspects -- Atlantic Ocean
Held by: FBoU FAUER
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/FAU/1927313
Use and Reproduction: http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC/1.0/
Owner Institution: FAU