Dr Mia Wege chaired the session on Marine Mammals during the 6th SANAP Symposium that resorts within the Marine and Antarctic Research Strategy – ecosystems, biodiversity and biodiscovery. The session includes talks on various marine and the presentations were arranged according roughly to species and area.  This Included elephant seals, fur seal, Ross seal, whales in ice, whales along the Southern African coast The session was presented in panel, discussion format, that allowed for questions form the audience. (Photo Credit: ALSA Archive)

  • Dr Christian Murray:   Understanding the drivers of Marion Island’s elephant seal population. (Abstract)
  • Leandri de Kock:  Considering individual variation when investigating marine predator behaviours during life- history events(Abstract)
  • Dr Liezl Pretorius and  Dr Greg Hofmeyr (presenting):  Canine morphometrics as a tool for distinguishing species, sex and age in Southern Ocean fur seals(Abstract)
  • Dr Mia Wege:  The conveyor belt of Ross seals in the Lazarev Sea and their behaviour. (Abstract)
  • Matthew Germishuizen:  Sea ice declines coincide with a period of reduced reproductive success in Southern Ocean top predator (Abstract)
  • Oluwaseyi Paul Babalola:  Entropy-based Detection and Classification of Bryde’s Whale Vocalizations: An Approach for Understanding and Conserving an Endangered Species(Abstract)

(Above L-R: Dr Christian Murray, Leandri de Kock, Dr Greg Hofmeyr, Oluwaseyi Paul Babalola)

It was great to see the Mammal Research Institute Whale Unit of the University of Pretoria based in Hermanus, Western Cape represented during the symposium by Dr Els Vermeulen, Matthew Germishuizen, Elisa Seyboth and Antonia Immerz. (Above L-R)

The Prince Edward Island scientific expedition was able to join the symposium on the 30th November and Chris Oosthuizen did his presentation in the session, ‘Data Management and the Summer Survey Participants’ chaired by Dr Christel Hansen. Liezel Pretorius was also able to join the conference on the Thursday. (Above L-R: Chris Oosthuizen, Liezel Pretorius, Yinhla Shihlomuhle)

  • Dr Chris Oosthuizen. Marine predators: ecosystem sentinels that help inform Southern Ocean management. (Abstract)

An initiative by Mia Wege was to use the SANAP symposium to bring all “bio loggers/trackers” together, that included researchers who tag animals, mostly top predators across the globe. The purpose was to get some structure going and talk about a potential larger workshop specifically for the entire community. The meeting was well represented, and this was a great opportunity used.

Two of the Principal investigators of the project were able to attend the symposium. ( Nico de Bruyn(left) – University of Pretoria and Jaco Versfeld (Right) Stellenbosch University)

© South African National Antarctic Programme • Managed and administered by Antarctic Legacy of South Africa • Photo Credits
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