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Photo-identification of Dolphins in the Cojimies River Estuary
Photo-identification of dolphins in the Cojimies River Estuary
Mach Chindul Protected Research, Esmeraldas and Manabi Province
• Identify and monitor cetaceans in estuaries in Esmeraldas and Cojimies.
• Document the habitat use and population status of small cetacean.
• Provide recommendations for local managers to conserve these habitats for small cetaceans.
In the north and south coastal areas of Ecuador, there are two large remnant mangroves. These remnants have formed estuaries that are frequently visited by dolphins. In the case of Guayas in the south, this site has recently been named a protected area. Little is known of the northern estuary, although bottlenose dolphins have been observed. The goal will be to create a similar marine protected area as that found in Guayas.
Photo-identification will be carried out from a 10 meter research vessel with 60 hp outboard motors departing Cojimies in Pedernales. Surveys will be conducted in a nonsystematic fashion within the study area (depending on reports of sightings, as well as weather conditions). Data is collecting opportunistically in the form of digital photographs, audio tape recordings, and real time observations recorded on pre-formatted data sheets.
Miinisterio de Ambiente - In review
Municipio de Pedernales, Hotel Las Gaviotas, Ministerio de Ambiente, Reserva Mache Chindul, Ministerio de Turismo.
Determine the abundance, species and habitat use of small cetaceans found in the Cojimies estuary. Anticipated result will be the creation of a new wildlife protected area.