Meta-analyses of whale-watching impact studies

Comparisons of cetacean responses to disturbance

V. Senigaglia*, F. Christiansen, L. Bejder, D. Gendron, D. Lundquist, D. P. Noren, A. Schaffar, J. C. Smith, R. Williams, E. Martinez, K. Stockin, D. Lusseau

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

30 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Whale-watching activities can induce behavioral changes that may negatively affect cetacean populations. However, these changes may vary depending on species, populations and environmental features. It is important to determine inter-specific variation in cetacean responses to stressors in order to identify the best metrics for evaluation of consequences of anthropogenic disturbance. We used meta-analyses to assess the consistency of cetacean responses to whalewatching vessels across a pool of suitable studies covering a variety of species and sites. We analyzed several metrics to capture cetacean heterogeneous responses and to explore their reliability across species. We found disruptions of activity budget and of path directionality as the most consistent responses towards whale-watching vessels. In a similar manner across species, animals were more likely to travel and less likely to rest and forage in the presence of vessels. Cetaceans also showed a tendency to increase path sinuosity (deviation index) and decrease path linearity (directness index) during boat interactions. We also explored the influence of socio-ecological factors on behavioral response but found no consistent results among studies. Further population-specific studies should address the potential long-term consequences of these behavioral responses to inform management of the whale-watching industry.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)251-263
Number of pages13
JournalMarine Ecology Progress Series
Volume542
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 19 Jan 2016

Fingerprint

cetacean
whales
whale
disturbance
vessel
behavioral response
boats
interspecific variation
travel
anthropogenic activities
forage
industry
activity pattern
linearity
comparison
animals
index

Keywords

  • Activity budget
  • Animal behavior
  • Disturbance response
  • Ecotourism
  • Mysticetes
  • Odontocetes
  • Random effect models

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aquatic Science
  • Ecology
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

Cite this

Meta-analyses of whale-watching impact studies : Comparisons of cetacean responses to disturbance. / Senigaglia, V.; Christiansen, F.; Bejder, L.; Gendron, D.; Lundquist, D.; Noren, D. P.; Schaffar, A.; Smith, J. C.; Williams, R.; Martinez, E.; Stockin, K.; Lusseau, D.

In: Marine Ecology Progress Series, Vol. 542, 19.01.2016, p. 251-263.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Senigaglia, V, Christiansen, F, Bejder, L, Gendron, D, Lundquist, D, Noren, DP, Schaffar, A, Smith, JC, Williams, R, Martinez, E, Stockin, K & Lusseau, D 2016, 'Meta-analyses of whale-watching impact studies: Comparisons of cetacean responses to disturbance', Marine Ecology Progress Series, vol. 542, pp. 251-263. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps11497
Senigaglia V, Christiansen F, Bejder L, Gendron D, Lundquist D, Noren DP et al. Meta-analyses of whale-watching impact studies: Comparisons of cetacean responses to disturbance. Marine Ecology Progress Series. 2016 Jan 19;542:251-263. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps11497
Senigaglia, V. ; Christiansen, F. ; Bejder, L. ; Gendron, D. ; Lundquist, D. ; Noren, D. P. ; Schaffar, A. ; Smith, J. C. ; Williams, R. ; Martinez, E. ; Stockin, K. ; Lusseau, D. / Meta-analyses of whale-watching impact studies : Comparisons of cetacean responses to disturbance. In: Marine Ecology Progress Series. 2016 ; Vol. 542. pp. 251-263.
@article{437020b6b1524e1f9b8703547200b628,
title = "Meta-analyses of whale-watching impact studies: Comparisons of cetacean responses to disturbance",
abstract = "Whale-watching activities can induce behavioral changes that may negatively affect cetacean populations. However, these changes may vary depending on species, populations and environmental features. It is important to determine inter-specific variation in cetacean responses to stressors in order to identify the best metrics for evaluation of consequences of anthropogenic disturbance. We used meta-analyses to assess the consistency of cetacean responses to whalewatching vessels across a pool of suitable studies covering a variety of species and sites. We analyzed several metrics to capture cetacean heterogeneous responses and to explore their reliability across species. We found disruptions of activity budget and of path directionality as the most consistent responses towards whale-watching vessels. In a similar manner across species, animals were more likely to travel and less likely to rest and forage in the presence of vessels. Cetaceans also showed a tendency to increase path sinuosity (deviation index) and decrease path linearity (directness index) during boat interactions. We also explored the influence of socio-ecological factors on behavioral response but found no consistent results among studies. Further population-specific studies should address the potential long-term consequences of these behavioral responses to inform management of the whale-watching industry.",
keywords = "Activity budget, Animal behavior, Disturbance response, Ecotourism, Mysticetes, Odontocetes, Random effect models",
author = "V. Senigaglia and F. Christiansen and L. Bejder and D. Gendron and D. Lundquist and Noren, {D. P.} and A. Schaffar and Smith, {J. C.} and R. Williams and E. Martinez and K. Stockin and D. Lusseau",
note = "Acknowledgements. The International Whaling Commission funded this study through a grant assigned to D.L. D.L. was also funded by the Scottish Funding Council for funding through grant HR09011 to the Marine Alliance for Science and Technology for Scotland. While writing the manuscript, V.S. was sponsored by a Fulbright scholarship. We thank the many people that replied to the 2 MAR - MAM calls and Dr. Stankowich for his previous comments on the manuscript.",
year = "2016",
month = "1",
day = "19",
doi = "10.3354/meps11497",
language = "English",
volume = "542",
pages = "251--263",
journal = "Marine Ecology Progress Series",
issn = "0171-8630",
publisher = "Inter-Research",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Meta-analyses of whale-watching impact studies

T2 - Comparisons of cetacean responses to disturbance

AU - Senigaglia, V.

AU - Christiansen, F.

AU - Bejder, L.

AU - Gendron, D.

AU - Lundquist, D.

AU - Noren, D. P.

AU - Schaffar, A.

AU - Smith, J. C.

AU - Williams, R.

AU - Martinez, E.

AU - Stockin, K.

AU - Lusseau, D.

N1 - Acknowledgements. The International Whaling Commission funded this study through a grant assigned to D.L. D.L. was also funded by the Scottish Funding Council for funding through grant HR09011 to the Marine Alliance for Science and Technology for Scotland. While writing the manuscript, V.S. was sponsored by a Fulbright scholarship. We thank the many people that replied to the 2 MAR - MAM calls and Dr. Stankowich for his previous comments on the manuscript.

PY - 2016/1/19

Y1 - 2016/1/19

N2 - Whale-watching activities can induce behavioral changes that may negatively affect cetacean populations. However, these changes may vary depending on species, populations and environmental features. It is important to determine inter-specific variation in cetacean responses to stressors in order to identify the best metrics for evaluation of consequences of anthropogenic disturbance. We used meta-analyses to assess the consistency of cetacean responses to whalewatching vessels across a pool of suitable studies covering a variety of species and sites. We analyzed several metrics to capture cetacean heterogeneous responses and to explore their reliability across species. We found disruptions of activity budget and of path directionality as the most consistent responses towards whale-watching vessels. In a similar manner across species, animals were more likely to travel and less likely to rest and forage in the presence of vessels. Cetaceans also showed a tendency to increase path sinuosity (deviation index) and decrease path linearity (directness index) during boat interactions. We also explored the influence of socio-ecological factors on behavioral response but found no consistent results among studies. Further population-specific studies should address the potential long-term consequences of these behavioral responses to inform management of the whale-watching industry.

AB - Whale-watching activities can induce behavioral changes that may negatively affect cetacean populations. However, these changes may vary depending on species, populations and environmental features. It is important to determine inter-specific variation in cetacean responses to stressors in order to identify the best metrics for evaluation of consequences of anthropogenic disturbance. We used meta-analyses to assess the consistency of cetacean responses to whalewatching vessels across a pool of suitable studies covering a variety of species and sites. We analyzed several metrics to capture cetacean heterogeneous responses and to explore their reliability across species. We found disruptions of activity budget and of path directionality as the most consistent responses towards whale-watching vessels. In a similar manner across species, animals were more likely to travel and less likely to rest and forage in the presence of vessels. Cetaceans also showed a tendency to increase path sinuosity (deviation index) and decrease path linearity (directness index) during boat interactions. We also explored the influence of socio-ecological factors on behavioral response but found no consistent results among studies. Further population-specific studies should address the potential long-term consequences of these behavioral responses to inform management of the whale-watching industry.

KW - Activity budget

KW - Animal behavior

KW - Disturbance response

KW - Ecotourism

KW - Mysticetes

KW - Odontocetes

KW - Random effect models

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84955306246&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.3354/meps11497

DO - 10.3354/meps11497

M3 - Article

VL - 542

SP - 251

EP - 263

JO - Marine Ecology Progress Series

JF - Marine Ecology Progress Series

SN - 0171-8630

ER -