2016 ODO Research Camps are ON !

watching 01After a winter full of activities of analysis of photo-id and acoustic data, scientific workshops, and public outreach events, ODO researchers are back at sea involved in the two field research camps in the Mediterranean Sea: Ischia Dolphin Project and Roman Dolphins.  




Ischia Dolphin Project (IDP) - running for more than two decades – aims at researching cetaceans that inhabit the waters of Ischia and Ventotene, including the Marine Protected Area “Regno di Nettuno” – on board the historical lab vessel Jean Gab. The project set sail for 2016 on 16th May with many interesting news.

In order to strengthen the activity of acoustic recording, the research crew has added a new hydrophone. It is a fixed hydrophone – made for static conditions – able to record frequencies up to 120 kHz, enabling the sampling of a much bigger spectrum of frequencies compared to what was able to be sampled by the previous hydrophones.

hydrophone 01Confirmed also this year the presence on board the Jean Gab of researchers of Ardea Onlus, an association of ornithologists with whom ODO has established a collaboration based on know-how sharing on monitoring methods and protocols of the species subjects of investigations. Marine birds like the Scopoli’s shearwater, the Yelkouan shearwater and the Audouin’s gull have then become “targets” of the binoculars and cameras of the researchers and volunteers.

Moreover, in order to give an account of the days spent on the Jean Gab, amongst researchers and volunteers, sighting turns, cetology lessons and sailing manoeuvres….IDP opens a blog “Jean Gab’s Diary” – social platform on which to publish updates, photos, videos, stories and tales, week by week.

Roman Dolphins - the research programme on the Bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) along the Roman coastline between Fiumicino, Ostia and Torvajanica, including the Marine Protected Area “Secche di Tor Paterno” – this year has already performed 10 boat journeys and recorded 2 sightings, both in March. Thanks to the numerous local awareness and outreach activities for conservation of cetaceans, our researchers have also received 6 sightings information from local sailors, divers, and general sea-goers at the following phone number: +39 3485934685. In all instances, the dolphins were observed during feeding activities and in some cases very near the coast.

The programmes “Ischia Dolphin Project” and “Roman Dolphins” are managed in great synergy by ODO research team, and have produced significant results for the knowledge of the presence and movements of cetaceans in Tyrrhenian Sea. Thanks to the analysis of photo-id data from both projects, there have been found 22 bottlenose dolphins matching in both areas within few days of sighting. More info soon!

 Best Wishes to all ODO researchers and volunteers, may your journeys be fruitful!