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Population abundance, structure and turnover estimates for leopard seals during winter dispersal combining tagging and photo-identification data

Forcada, Jaume; Robinson, Sarah L.. 2006 Population abundance, structure and turnover estimates for leopard seals during winter dispersal combining tagging and photo-identification data. Polar Biology, 29 (12). 1052-1062. 10.1007/s00300-006-0149-y

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Abstract/Summary

Winter dispersal in leopard seals is poorly understood because of its low density in most of its range. By combining photo-identification and tagging data from Bird Island, South Georgia, in mark-recapture models, leopard seal abundance over the winter of 2005 was estimated as 118 (95% CI: 78–179). Seasonal residents arrived earlier and stayed longer around the island (27 days; 95% CI: 23–32) and their numbers were low and stable over the winter Most of the seals (81; 95% CI: 31–130) were young transients, stayed only 1–7 days, and arrived later in the season. This suggests (1) very low predatory pressure upon the locally abundant prey populations; (2) two different patterns of winter movements: a winter migration in adult seals with long-term site fidelity, and large numbers of juveniles in dispersal possibly attracted by locally abundant prey colonies, and potentially influenced by increased environmental stress.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1007/s00300-006-0149-y
Programmes: BAS Programmes > Global Science in the Antarctic Context (2005-2009) > DISCOVERY 2010 - Integrating Southern Ocean Ecosystems into the Earth System
ISSN: 0722-4060
Additional Information. Not used in RCUK Gateway to Research.: Full text not available from this repository
Additional Keywords: Seals, Hydrurga leptonyx
NORA Subject Terms: Zoology
Date made live: 06 Sep 2007 15:13
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/936

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