Monitoring Population Dynamics of ‘Western’ Right Whales off Southern Australia Milestone Report

To continue an annual series of aerial surveys off the southern Australian coast between Cape Leeuwin WA and Ceduna SA since 1993, an aerial survey was undertaken as planned over six days, 2-6 September, 2015. For comparison with previous results, counts were obtained of 462 individuals including 97 calves of the year. From 3679 photographic images obtained, 377 have been selected for computer-assisted ‘matching’ with those (some 5000 images of some 2000 individuals) already available in the catalogue, and 126 data sightings sheets have been added to the sightings database, currently totalling 3670 sightings sheets.

Full details, including trend analysis since 1993 and current population size, will be included in the Final Report due on 30 March 2016

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