Marine Mammal Research in Canada
The Center of Expertise in Marine Mammalogy (CEMAM): grouping DFO science experts working on a wide variety of innovative scientific projects to obtain information on the dynamics, ecology, habitat, migration and health of marine mammals from coast to coast.
Marine mammal research is organized into three broad themes:
- Population dynamics
- Role of Marine Mammals in Marine Ecosystems
- Human impacts on Marine Mammals
- Impacts of climate change on marine mammals
- Atlantic Seal Research Program
- Trans North Atlantic Sightings Survey
- High Arctic Cetacean Survey
- Structure of Populations Levels of Abundance, and Status of Humpbacks
These themes are not mutually exclusive. In some studies there can be considerable overlap.
Marine mammals spend much of their time below the surface, which complicates attempts to study them. Early attempts to obtain information on marine mammals used stomach contents from hunted animals and incidental catches for information on diet, and derived diving patterns, habitat use and movements from their prey's distribution. Over the last three decades significant developments in miniaturization of electronic devices have led to the conception of highly useful research tools. VHF and satellite-linked transmitters, time-depth recorders, and even video cameras now provide information on numerous aspects of marine mammal behaviour. Moreover, improvements in genetics and biochemistry have resulted in new techniques enabling the study of animal health, foraging ecology and evolution, to name but a few.
Laboratories and Teams
Laboratories and Teams
Scientists and science programs are based in DFO research institutes across the country.
Maurice Lamontagne Institute (IML)
- Dr. Mike Hammill, Research scientist and section head Seal and beluga whale ecology, population dynamics
- Dr. Veronique Lesage, Research scientist Foraging ecology and diving behaviour of marine mammals, particularly cetaceans
- Dr. Lena Measures, Research Scientist Marine mammal diseases and parasites
- Dr. Thomas Doniol-Valcroze, Biologist
- Dr. Arnaud Mosnier, Biologist
- Jean-Francois Gosselin, Biologist Marine Mammal abundance, distribution and critical habitat
- Dr. Yvan Simard, Research Scientist
- Nathalie Roy, Physicist
- Pierre Carter, Research Technician
- Yves Morin, Research Technician
- Samuel Turgeon, Research Technician
- Johanne Guérin, Research Technician
Pacific Biological Station (PBS)
Bedford Institute of Oceanography (BIO)
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