The Potomac-Chesapeake Dolphin Project (PCDP) is seeking two dedicated research assistants for the upcoming fall field season (September 3rd to October 23rd, 2019) in Heathsville, Virginia, USA. Scientists are focused on determining how many dolphins are in the Bay, when they appear, why those sightings have increased, and in which rivers and tributaries these benevolent mammals are most active. It quickly became so popular that the existing staff couldn’t validate the sightings being reported. DolphinWatch was launched the beginning of July and they’re looking for reports on DolphinWatch.org and photos for their Instagram and Facebook accounts. on bottlenose dolphins in the Potomac-Chesapeake region. The Chesapeake Bay has dolphins swimming through even during years when times were tough for crabs and oysters. While the PCDP research is broadly concerned with better understanding all aspects of these animal's biology, we are focusing our initial efforts on a few key areas. Figure 2. In 2015 (July – October) the PCDP began collecting initial data on the location and number of dolphins in an ~37 square km area near the mouth of the Potomac River. Chesapeake Bay map of dolphins reported, maintainly in the central and lower bay. Association (A & C) and synchrony (B & D) networks for two bottlenose dolphins (data taken from the Shark Bay Dolphin Research Project for illustrative purposes). Dolphins were reported in the Lower Bay nearly year-round. The correlation between a healthy dolphin population and a healthy Bay can be attributed to the Chesapeake Clean Water Blueprint. The Chesapeake Bay’s Spice: Old Bay or J.O.? View my sightings. The suspected cause of this mortality event is a type of morbillivirus, a genus of viruses that affects a variety of animals worldwide. West Indian Manatee. Two bottlenose dolphins in the Potomac River, surfacing in almost perfect synchrony. (Kim Hairston / … A Vampire Movie Made in Annapolis. Besides the surveys, the only major source of information about Bay dolphins in the Chesapeake comes from the handful of reports each year to the marine mammal stranding programs in Maryland and Virginia, which rescue beached animals and research those that are recovered dead. The PCDP was established in 2015 by Professor Janet Mann of Georgetown University. But as pollution degraded the Chesapeake’s water quality through the 20th century, they became more rare. Report and view sightings on our iPhone and Android Chesapeake DolphinWatch app. As of July 15, people on the Bay have reported 500 sightings using the DolphinWatch smartphone app, compared to 400 at the same time last year. Another major aim of the PCDP is to understand the population structure of the Potomac-Chesapeake bottlenose dolphins. Map of dolphin sightings from 2015 (left, blue dolphin symbols represent a dolphin sightings) and shipping traffic from 2013–2014 (right, colors reflect a heat map, from green to red, of shipping traffic). He counted almost 50 in the lower Chesapeake Bay. One possible way is through what is called synchronous breathing (Fig. Related News Follow shark catchers (and their prey) online Lines indicate connections based on either associations or synchronous breathing and the thickness of the lines indicates the strength of the connections. Our understanding of this recent morbillivirus outbreak is somewhat hindered by our understanding of how the disease spreads in wild animals. Specify “DolphinWatch” with your donation. The Potomac-Chesapeake Dolphin Project contributes and compares data and images of dorsal fins with other scientists up and down the Atlantic Seaboard through a central database of dorsal fin images (OBIS-SEAMAP). Using high quality photographs of individual dolphin dorsal fins (see a sample of our catalog here) we can match our PC dolphins to photographs in the Mid-Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphin Catalog. Harbor Seal. Dolphins are loving #ChesBay. The web-based app allows users to report dolphin sightings in the Chesapeake Bay. Here’s a presentation with Dr. Bailey about their efforts to track dolphins in the Chesapeake Bay. Pollution reduction goals are in place to better the Bay's water quality, which aids the growth of underwater grasses and decreases the Bay's dead zones. Marine Species Monitoring. The information collected through Chesapeake Dolphin Watch will help scientists decide where to place more microphones. Ann-Marie Jacoby is the Associate Director of the Potomac-Chesapeake Dolphin Project, a PhD student at Duke University, and a National Geographic Young Explorer.She is interested in better understanding which bottlenose dolphin populations use the Potomac-Chesapeake area, as well as their temporal and geographic distribution in the Potomac to develop more effective management. This tracker includes the ability to view the locations of recent and past dolphin sightings on a map and provides information about dolphins and the Chesapeake Bay. Ongoing research by the Potomac-Cheseapeake Dolphin Project—the first of … Tursiops truncatus. All rights reserved. Published reports of sightings date back into the 1800s. DOLPHIN R ESEARCH C ENTER, 58901 Overseas Hwy, Grassy Key, FL 33050 (305) 289 -1121 www.dolphins.org Grade Level: 6th-8 th Objectives: Students will be able to identify human causes of environmental degradation in Following a dolphin die-off in the Bay caused by a virus outbreak, Mann and her research team launched the first-ever formal study of the local population in 2015. Dolphins have spotted in more than 170 locations, in big and small pods (groups). ... a research professor with the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science. It’s usually be bottlenose dolphins, which can be 300-1,200 pounds  and 9 to 12 feet in length when they’re adults. We need your help to find out!”. Amber Fandel, Research Analyst with the Chesapeake Biological Lab has been investigating dolphin behavior as part of conservation efforts across the U.S. since 2012. commonly hunt in the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries. Shipping map taken from www.marinetraffic.com. They’ve created an app for people to report sightings. To help us better understand morbillivirus transmission, the PCDP is collecting detailed data on social behavior (associations, synchronous breathing, direct contact, etc.) Odocoileus virginianus It researches the dolphin’s … Very little is known about the common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops trunctaus) that inhabit the Chesapeake Bay and Potomac River. Scientists say dolphins used to visit the bay more frequently. They swing through the bay during the summer, and there have been reports of dolphins leaping in the air or bow-riding boats. For comparison, in Shark Bay, Australia, which is thought to have one of the highest densities of bottlenose dolphins in the world, with similar research effort one would expect to see less than half as many dolphins (~80). Fun. A third major aim of our initial work with the PCDP is to better understand how variation in social behavior affects an individual's likelihood of spreading and contracting disease. “Lots of dolphin sighting by the Bay Bridge,” according to UMCES. Raccoon. It is thought that during such events dolphins may exchange infectious respiratory droplets. This website serves as an online portal for information on the background, history, and progress of the program, as well as provides access to reports, documentation, data, and updates on current monitoring projects. Some dolphins may venture as far north as Baltimore Harbor, the Chester River and Washington, D.C. Dr. Helen Bailey and her team at the Chesapeake Biological Laboratory, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science  think dolphin numbers are up in the bay, but they want to be scientific about it. See where they've been spotted & report your own sightings with @DolphinWatch_CB https://t.co/eQFqoaFDOl pic.twitter.com/8O2ADfgr3T. Using network modeling techniques, we plan to investigate both transmission mechanism and compare simulated outbreaks to actual stranding data in order to elucidate the most likely mechanism of transmission. Bottlenose dolphins are frequently spotted in the Chesapeake Bay during the summer with reports of them leaping in the air or bow riding boats. While these seems like fairly straightforward questions, for migratory animals, coming up with the answers is quite difficult. “We know very little about them,” says UMCES DolphinWatch. The DolphinWatchappwas launched by University of Maryland Center for Environmental Sciencein 2017 to provide a way to report sightings — and gather data — of dolphins in the Chesapeake Bay. Rare opportunity to buy a Chesapeake Bay lighthouse. By 2018, we have nearly 1000 individuals documented in the Potomac River. 4A & 4C). Dr. Helen Bailey, a research associate professor with the Chesapeake Biological Laboratory, displays an underwater microphone used to detect dolphin calls in the bay. One way to help determine which population the PC dolphins belong to is through what is called Photo ID. That effort grew into the Potomac-Chesapeake Dolphin Project, which today surveys the social and super-smart mammals from May through October in about 14 square miles of the Potomac. With the dolphins identified, scientists can determine where the dolphins are coming from and going to. Dolphins might be more common and wide-ranging in the Chesapeake Bay than once thought, if recent reports from citizen spotters are any indication. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! Amber Fandel, Research Analyst with the Chesapeake Biological Lab has been investigating dolphin behavior as part of conservation efforts across the U.S. since 2012. Indeed, dolphin sights have been abundant this summer, according to the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science (UMCES) Chesapeake Biological Lab’s Chesapeake DolphinWatch program. Since a Chesapeake Dolphin Watch website launched at the end of June, 1,200 people have signed up and reported more than 500 dolphin sightings, often of 10 or more of the mammals at once. Doing so will help us better understand what population(s) of dolphins are visiting the Chesapeake Bay region, where they go during the winter (bottlenose dolphins are usually only found in the Chesapeake Bay area during warmer months), and how they fit into the greater Atlantic bottlenose dolphins population structures. They feed on a variety of prey, including fish and squid. (Courtesy UMCES) Dr. Helen Bailey and her team at the Chesapeake Biological Laboratory, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science think dolphin numbers are up in the bay… What we found was quite surprising! The White House has a new occupant, but there are still dolphins in the Chesapeake Bay and the Potomac River. Welcome to the US Navy's Marine Species Monitoring Program website. Two of the most basic pieces of information needed about any wild animal population is: how many of them are there and where are they? The PCDP aims to better understand and protect the bottlenose dolphins of the Potomac River and Chesapeake Bay. Circles represent individual dolphins with the colored circles representing the two individuals (blue, red) for which networks were constructed. What Bay Crabs Used to Look Like — A Huge 9-inch Blue Crab. Virginia’s Hidden (Chesapeake Bay) Beaches, Rock Hall -> Eastern Neck Island: Overview, St. Michaels -> Neavitt Landing Bike Route: Overview. But as pollution degraded the … DOLPHIN RESEARCH CENTER Who Polluted the Bay? Figure 1. That’s where Jamie Testacame in. Copyright © 2019-2020 www.chesapeakeliving.com. UMCES is also looking for money to maintain the new database and $2,000 to buy a device to listen for dolphin sounds. Now researchers in Maryland and Virginia are undertaking the first comprehensive studies of bottlenose dolphins in the Chesapeake Bay. Bottlenose Dolphin. Figure 4. A website version of our dolphin tracker is available at: chesapeakedolphinwatch.org. In fact, humans are affected by a type of morbillivirus, better known as the measles. We found dolphins in most of Chesapeake Bay In 2017 and 2018 dolphin sightings were seasonally stratified in Chesapeake Bay, meaning that dolphins were seen in different portions of the bay in different months. Healthy dolphin population and a chesapeake bay dolphin research Bay can be attributed to the National Marine Fisheries Service ( )... New database and $ 2,000 to buy a device to listen for dolphin sounds scientists dolphins! Bay nearly year-round “ we know very little is known about the common dolphins. 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