Fin whales Gulf of California 2001 - Argos Data

When using this dataset, please cite the original article.

Jiménez-López ME, Palacios DM, Jaramillo A, Urbán J, Mate BR (2019) Fin whale movements in the Gulf of California, Mexico, from satellite telemetry. PLoS ONE 14: e0209324. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0209324

Additionally, please cite the Movebank data package:

Mate BR, Palacios DM, Follett TM (2019) Data from: Fin whale movements in the Gulf of California, Mexico, from satellite telemetry. Movebank Data Repository. doi:10.5441/001/1.65h5s5p2
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File Identifier doi:10.5441/001/1.65h5s5p2/1  
Description Fin whales (Balaenoptera physalus) have a global distribution, but the population inhabiting the Gulf of California (GoC) is thought to be geographically and genetically isolated. However, their distribution and movements are poorly known. The goal of this study was to describe fin whale movements for the first time from 11 Argos satellite tags deployed in the southwest GoC in March 2001. A Bayesian Switching State-Space Model was applied to obtain improved locations and to characterize movement behavior as either “area-restricted searching” (indicative of patch residence, ARS) or “transiting” (indicative of moving between patches). Model performance was assessed with convergence diagnostics and by examining the distribution of the deviance and the behavioral parameters from Markov Chain Monte Carlo models. ARS was the predominant mode behavior 83% of the time during both the cool (December-May) and warm seasons (June-November), with slower travel speeds (mean= 0.84 km/h) than during transiting mode (mean= 3.38 km/h). We suggest ARS mode indicates either foraging activities (year around) or reproductive activities during the winter (cool season). We tagged during the cool season, when the whales were located in the Loreto-La Paz Corridor in the southwestern GoC, close to the shoreline. As the season progressed, individuals moved northward to the Midriff Islands and the upper gulf for the warm season, much farther from shore. One tag lasted long enough to document a whale’s return to Loreto the following cool season. One whale that was originally of undetermined sex, was tagged in the Bay of La Paz and was photographed 10 years later with a calf in the nearby San Jose Channel, suggesting seasonal site fidelity. The tagged whales moved along the western GoC to the upper gulf seasonally and did not transit to the eastern GoC south of the Midriff Islands. No tagged whales left the GoC, providing supporting evidence that these fin whales are a resident population.
Keywords animal behavior, animal movement, animal tracking, Balaenoptera physalus, Bayesian state-space models, fin whale, Gulf of California, satellite telemetry,
Scientific Names Balaenoptera physalus
Contained in Data Package Data from: Fin whale movements in the Gulf of California, Mexico, from satellite telemetry.

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