Sea Change: Global tracking of marine megafauna under anthrogenic footprint
Join us for this talk in the Anthropocene Sea Change Seminar Series at the UWA Oceans Institute with Ana Martins Sequeira.
Human impacts (e.g. overharvesting, by-catch mortality, pollution, acoustic and habitat degradation) have led to declines in abundance of many marine megafauna.
Many species are threatened and with a bleak outlook for recovery due to little or no management in some cases, and a lack of international agreements on conservation of high seas biodiversity.
Tracking data have led to evidence-based conservation of marine megafauna, but a disconnect remains between the many tens of 1000s of individual animals that have been tracked and the data used in conservation and management actions.
I will discuss how, through the Marine Megafauna Movement Analytical Program (mmmp.wordpress.com) I am currently leading, we see that a global approach combining tracked movements of marine megafauna and human activities at-sea, and using existing and emerging technologies (e.g., artificial intelligence and big data approaches) can be applied to deliver near-real time diagnostics on existing risks and threats to mitigate global risks for marine megafauna.
With technology developments over the next decade expected to catalyse the potential to survey marine animals and human activities in ever more detail and at global scales, the development of dynamic predictive tools based on near-real time tracking and environmental data will become crucial to address increasing risks.