Conservation & Management

The number of common dolphin (Delphinus delphis) in the Mediterranean Sea is dramatically decreased and is now endangered of extinction, hence concrete action for its protection is a priority.

This dramatic, remarkable drop in abundance during the last few decades raised conservation problems for the species, and in 2003 the Mediterranean short-beaked common dolphin ‘subpopulation’ was listed as endangered in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Animals, based on criterion A2, which refers to a 50% decline in abundance over the last three generations, the causes of which ‘may not have ceased or may not be understood or may not be reversible’.

Direct conservation actions, such as the publication of the data collected on the common dolphin’s population frequenting the waters off the island of Ischia (Mammal Review 33: 224-252, 2003), contributed to the listing in the IUCN and encouraged the Ministry of Environment to undertake specific protection measures.

In particular, we solicited and achieved the inclusion, and thus the protection, of the critical habitat of the only registered Italian population of common dolphin within the perimeter of the Marine Protected Area “Regno di Nettuno ” of the islands of Ischia, Procida and Vivara (NA). This was the first concrete action for the safeguard of the species in the Mediterranean Sea.



AMP ischia