01 February 2009

Aerial survey in the Pelagos Sanctuary: message from the field

We are leaving Corsica due to bad weather conditions forecasted for the next week and we plan to resume the survey in 8-10 days, being based in Albenga (Villanova Airport).

In the figure you see the striped dolphin sightings in white and the sun fish (Mola mola) sightings in purple. We have also seen a few bottlenose dolphins (4 sightings) and one beaked whale.

The results so far are quite interesting, the absence of sightings of fin whales and other species (Risso's dolphins, pilot whales, sperm whales) needs further consideration and raises new research questions. The high number of Mola mola will probably allow a draft estimate of their density, even if we have no idea of G(0) for this fish species.

Eventually, we have finished the south west block, most of the east block and there is some work left to do in the north, north-west block.

Simone, Giancarlo and Nino

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