Life history of harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) in Scottish (UK) waters

Jennifer A. Learmonth, Sinead Murphy, Patricia L. Luque, Robert J. Reid, I. Anthony P. Patterson, Andrew Brownlow, Harry M. Ross, Jason P. Barley, M. Begona Santos, Graham J. Pierce*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Citations (Scopus)
4 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Life history parameters were determined for stranded and bycaught harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) from Scottish (UK) waters (1992-2005). Fetal growth rate was 84.4 mm/mo and mean size at birth was 76.4 cm (range 65-88 cm). Males and females had a similar range of body lengths (65-170 cm and 66-173 cm, respectively), although asymptotic lengths were higher in females than males (approximately 158 cm and 147 cm, respectively). Nonpregnant females were significantly lighter, in relation to their length than males. Maximum estimated age was 20 yr for both sexes. Age at sexual maturity (ASM) was estimated as 4.35 yr in females and 5.00 yr in males. Conception occurred mainly in July and August although reproductively active males were recorded during April to July. Gestation lasted 1011 mo, with calving mainly between May and July. Lactating females were recorded during June to November, while small calves with solid food in their stomachs were found mainly during February to May. Estimated pregnancy rate (0.34-0.40) is lower than recorded elsewhere, but is likely underestimated due to the prevalence of mature females of poor health status in the sample. Nevertheless, cetacean strandings can be an essential source of data on demographic parameters.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1427-1455
Number of pages29
JournalMarine Mammal Science
Volume30
Issue number4
Early online date24 Apr 2014
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2014

Keywords

  • porpoise
  • age
  • growth
  • maturation
  • reproductive status
  • seasonality
  • mortality
  • Scotland
  • strandings
  • conservation
  • bottle-nosed dolphins
  • beaked common dolphin
  • delphinus-delphis
  • North-Sea
  • reproductive seasonality
  • tursiops-truncatus
  • postnatal-growth
  • sexual-maturity
  • bay

Cite this

Learmonth, J. A., Murphy, S., Luque, P. L., Reid, R. J., Patterson, I. A. P., Brownlow, A., ... Pierce, G. J. (2014). Life history of harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) in Scottish (UK) waters. Marine Mammal Science, 30(4), 1427-1455. https://doi.org/10.1111/mms.12130

Life history of harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) in Scottish (UK) waters. / Learmonth, Jennifer A.; Murphy, Sinead; Luque, Patricia L.; Reid, Robert J.; Patterson, I. Anthony P.; Brownlow, Andrew; Ross, Harry M.; Barley, Jason P.; Begona Santos, M.; Pierce, Graham J.

In: Marine Mammal Science, Vol. 30, No. 4, 10.2014, p. 1427-1455.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Learmonth, JA, Murphy, S, Luque, PL, Reid, RJ, Patterson, IAP, Brownlow, A, Ross, HM, Barley, JP, Begona Santos, M & Pierce, GJ 2014, 'Life history of harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) in Scottish (UK) waters', Marine Mammal Science, vol. 30, no. 4, pp. 1427-1455. https://doi.org/10.1111/mms.12130
Learmonth JA, Murphy S, Luque PL, Reid RJ, Patterson IAP, Brownlow A et al. Life history of harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) in Scottish (UK) waters. Marine Mammal Science. 2014 Oct;30(4):1427-1455. https://doi.org/10.1111/mms.12130
Learmonth, Jennifer A. ; Murphy, Sinead ; Luque, Patricia L. ; Reid, Robert J. ; Patterson, I. Anthony P. ; Brownlow, Andrew ; Ross, Harry M. ; Barley, Jason P. ; Begona Santos, M. ; Pierce, Graham J. / Life history of harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) in Scottish (UK) waters. In: Marine Mammal Science. 2014 ; Vol. 30, No. 4. pp. 1427-1455.
@article{026f07f708e940309c694772772577ff,
title = "Life history of harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) in Scottish (UK) waters",
abstract = "Life history parameters were determined for stranded and bycaught harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) from Scottish (UK) waters (1992-2005). Fetal growth rate was 84.4 mm/mo and mean size at birth was 76.4 cm (range 65-88 cm). Males and females had a similar range of body lengths (65-170 cm and 66-173 cm, respectively), although asymptotic lengths were higher in females than males (approximately 158 cm and 147 cm, respectively). Nonpregnant females were significantly lighter, in relation to their length than males. Maximum estimated age was 20 yr for both sexes. Age at sexual maturity (ASM) was estimated as 4.35 yr in females and 5.00 yr in males. Conception occurred mainly in July and August although reproductively active males were recorded during April to July. Gestation lasted 1011 mo, with calving mainly between May and July. Lactating females were recorded during June to November, while small calves with solid food in their stomachs were found mainly during February to May. Estimated pregnancy rate (0.34-0.40) is lower than recorded elsewhere, but is likely underestimated due to the prevalence of mature females of poor health status in the sample. Nevertheless, cetacean strandings can be an essential source of data on demographic parameters.",
keywords = "porpoise, age, growth, maturation, reproductive status, seasonality, mortality, Scotland, strandings, conservation, bottle-nosed dolphins, beaked common dolphin, delphinus-delphis, North-Sea, reproductive seasonality, tursiops-truncatus, postnatal-growth, sexual-maturity, bay",
author = "Learmonth, {Jennifer A.} and Sinead Murphy and Luque, {Patricia L.} and Reid, {Robert J.} and Patterson, {I. Anthony P.} and Andrew Brownlow and Ross, {Harry M.} and Barley, {Jason P.} and {Begona Santos}, M. and Pierce, {Graham J.}",
year = "2014",
month = "10",
doi = "10.1111/mms.12130",
language = "English",
volume = "30",
pages = "1427--1455",
journal = "Marine Mammal Science",
issn = "0824-0469",
publisher = "Wiley-Blackwell",
number = "4",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Life history of harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) in Scottish (UK) waters

AU - Learmonth, Jennifer A.

AU - Murphy, Sinead

AU - Luque, Patricia L.

AU - Reid, Robert J.

AU - Patterson, I. Anthony P.

AU - Brownlow, Andrew

AU - Ross, Harry M.

AU - Barley, Jason P.

AU - Begona Santos, M.

AU - Pierce, Graham J.

PY - 2014/10

Y1 - 2014/10

N2 - Life history parameters were determined for stranded and bycaught harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) from Scottish (UK) waters (1992-2005). Fetal growth rate was 84.4 mm/mo and mean size at birth was 76.4 cm (range 65-88 cm). Males and females had a similar range of body lengths (65-170 cm and 66-173 cm, respectively), although asymptotic lengths were higher in females than males (approximately 158 cm and 147 cm, respectively). Nonpregnant females were significantly lighter, in relation to their length than males. Maximum estimated age was 20 yr for both sexes. Age at sexual maturity (ASM) was estimated as 4.35 yr in females and 5.00 yr in males. Conception occurred mainly in July and August although reproductively active males were recorded during April to July. Gestation lasted 1011 mo, with calving mainly between May and July. Lactating females were recorded during June to November, while small calves with solid food in their stomachs were found mainly during February to May. Estimated pregnancy rate (0.34-0.40) is lower than recorded elsewhere, but is likely underestimated due to the prevalence of mature females of poor health status in the sample. Nevertheless, cetacean strandings can be an essential source of data on demographic parameters.

AB - Life history parameters were determined for stranded and bycaught harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) from Scottish (UK) waters (1992-2005). Fetal growth rate was 84.4 mm/mo and mean size at birth was 76.4 cm (range 65-88 cm). Males and females had a similar range of body lengths (65-170 cm and 66-173 cm, respectively), although asymptotic lengths were higher in females than males (approximately 158 cm and 147 cm, respectively). Nonpregnant females were significantly lighter, in relation to their length than males. Maximum estimated age was 20 yr for both sexes. Age at sexual maturity (ASM) was estimated as 4.35 yr in females and 5.00 yr in males. Conception occurred mainly in July and August although reproductively active males were recorded during April to July. Gestation lasted 1011 mo, with calving mainly between May and July. Lactating females were recorded during June to November, while small calves with solid food in their stomachs were found mainly during February to May. Estimated pregnancy rate (0.34-0.40) is lower than recorded elsewhere, but is likely underestimated due to the prevalence of mature females of poor health status in the sample. Nevertheless, cetacean strandings can be an essential source of data on demographic parameters.

KW - porpoise

KW - age

KW - growth

KW - maturation

KW - reproductive status

KW - seasonality

KW - mortality

KW - Scotland

KW - strandings

KW - conservation

KW - bottle-nosed dolphins

KW - beaked common dolphin

KW - delphinus-delphis

KW - North-Sea

KW - reproductive seasonality

KW - tursiops-truncatus

KW - postnatal-growth

KW - sexual-maturity

KW - bay

U2 - 10.1111/mms.12130

DO - 10.1111/mms.12130

M3 - Article

VL - 30

SP - 1427

EP - 1455

JO - Marine Mammal Science

JF - Marine Mammal Science

SN - 0824-0469

IS - 4

ER -