Limits...
Using hierarchical bayes to understand movement, health, and survival in the endangered north atlantic right whale.

Schick RS, Kraus SD, Rolland RM, Knowlton AR, Hamilton PK, Pettis HM, Kenney RD, Clark JS - PLoS ONE (2013)

Bottom Line: We also included the effect of reproductive status and entanglement status on health.The resulting time series of individual health highlight both normal variations in health status and how anthropogenic stressors can affect the health and, ultimately, the survival of individuals.This modeling approach provides information for monitoring of health in right whales, as well as a framework for integrating observational data at the level of individuals up through the health status of the population.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Nicholas School of the Environment, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, United States of America. rss5@st-andrews.ac.uk

ABSTRACT
Body condition is an indicator of health, and it plays a key role in many vital processes for mammalian species. While evidence of individual body condition can be obtained, these observations provide just brief glimpses into the health state of the animal. An analytical framework is needed for understanding how health of animals changes over space and time.Through knowledge of individual health we can better understand the status of populations. This is particularly important in endangered species, where the consequences of disruption of critical biological functions can push groups of animals rapidly toward extinction. Here we built a state-space model that provides estimates of movement, health, and survival. We assimilated 30+ years of photographic evidence of body condition and three additional visual health parameters in individual North Atlantic right whales, together with survey data, to infer the true health status as it changes over space and time. We also included the effect of reproductive status and entanglement status on health. At the population level, we estimated differential movement patterns in males and females. At the individual level, we estimated the likely animal locations each month. We estimated the relationship between observed and latent health status. Observations of body condition, skin condition, cyamid infestation on the blowholes, and rake marks all provided measures of the true underlying health. The resulting time series of individual health highlight both normal variations in health status and how anthropogenic stressors can affect the health and, ultimately, the survival of individuals. This modeling approach provides information for monitoring of health in right whales, as well as a framework for integrating observational data at the level of individuals up through the health status of the population. This framework can be broadly applied to a variety of systems - terrestrial and marine - where sporadic observations of individuals exist.

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Related in: MedlinePlus

Visual health parameters.Photo plate depicting whale #1621, an adult male last seen in 2000. Photo in panel a) was taken in 1997, and panel b) was taken in 1999. Photos show examples from four of the visual health parameters: 1) entanglement severity, 2) presence of orange cyamids around the blowholes, 3) poor skin condition, and 4) rake marks forward of the blowholes. There are multiple ordinal classes within each health parameter. For example, in a) skin condition received a score of 2– good skin condition, while in b) skin condition would receive a score of 1– poor skin condition.
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pone-0064166-g003: Visual health parameters.Photo plate depicting whale #1621, an adult male last seen in 2000. Photo in panel a) was taken in 1997, and panel b) was taken in 1999. Photos show examples from four of the visual health parameters: 1) entanglement severity, 2) presence of orange cyamids around the blowholes, 3) poor skin condition, and 4) rake marks forward of the blowholes. There are multiple ordinal classes within each health parameter. For example, in a) skin condition received a score of 2– good skin condition, while in b) skin condition would receive a score of 1– poor skin condition.

Mentions: Here we build a HB model that assimilates 30+ years of data in an effort to understand how the health and movement of individual animals in different demographic categories change over time. We incorporate long-term broadscale survey information [37], [41], [42], and 4 visual health parameters [36] to estimate the true, but hidden, health of individual animals. These parameters include body condition (Figure 2), skin condition, the presence of cyamids (“whale lice”) around the blowholes, and the presence of rake marks forward of the blowholes (Figure 3). We also include the reproductive status of adult females, and visual estimates of entanglement severity. We use location data from documented sightings and prior knowledge to estimate movements of individuals in broad geographic regions at a monthly time step. Using this approach we are also able to estimate the health status and movements of individuals. In turn we use these estimates to quantify survival at both individual and population levels. These estimates identify the changing patterns of the health status in this population, as well as create a framework for understanding the effects of anthropogenic stressors.


Using hierarchical bayes to understand movement, health, and survival in the endangered north atlantic right whale.

Schick RS, Kraus SD, Rolland RM, Knowlton AR, Hamilton PK, Pettis HM, Kenney RD, Clark JS - PLoS ONE (2013)

Visual health parameters.Photo plate depicting whale #1621, an adult male last seen in 2000. Photo in panel a) was taken in 1997, and panel b) was taken in 1999. Photos show examples from four of the visual health parameters: 1) entanglement severity, 2) presence of orange cyamids around the blowholes, 3) poor skin condition, and 4) rake marks forward of the blowholes. There are multiple ordinal classes within each health parameter. For example, in a) skin condition received a score of 2– good skin condition, while in b) skin condition would receive a score of 1– poor skin condition.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3675107&req=5

pone-0064166-g003: Visual health parameters.Photo plate depicting whale #1621, an adult male last seen in 2000. Photo in panel a) was taken in 1997, and panel b) was taken in 1999. Photos show examples from four of the visual health parameters: 1) entanglement severity, 2) presence of orange cyamids around the blowholes, 3) poor skin condition, and 4) rake marks forward of the blowholes. There are multiple ordinal classes within each health parameter. For example, in a) skin condition received a score of 2– good skin condition, while in b) skin condition would receive a score of 1– poor skin condition.
Mentions: Here we build a HB model that assimilates 30+ years of data in an effort to understand how the health and movement of individual animals in different demographic categories change over time. We incorporate long-term broadscale survey information [37], [41], [42], and 4 visual health parameters [36] to estimate the true, but hidden, health of individual animals. These parameters include body condition (Figure 2), skin condition, the presence of cyamids (“whale lice”) around the blowholes, and the presence of rake marks forward of the blowholes (Figure 3). We also include the reproductive status of adult females, and visual estimates of entanglement severity. We use location data from documented sightings and prior knowledge to estimate movements of individuals in broad geographic regions at a monthly time step. Using this approach we are also able to estimate the health status and movements of individuals. In turn we use these estimates to quantify survival at both individual and population levels. These estimates identify the changing patterns of the health status in this population, as well as create a framework for understanding the effects of anthropogenic stressors.

Bottom Line: We also included the effect of reproductive status and entanglement status on health.The resulting time series of individual health highlight both normal variations in health status and how anthropogenic stressors can affect the health and, ultimately, the survival of individuals.This modeling approach provides information for monitoring of health in right whales, as well as a framework for integrating observational data at the level of individuals up through the health status of the population.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Nicholas School of the Environment, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, United States of America. rss5@st-andrews.ac.uk

ABSTRACT
Body condition is an indicator of health, and it plays a key role in many vital processes for mammalian species. While evidence of individual body condition can be obtained, these observations provide just brief glimpses into the health state of the animal. An analytical framework is needed for understanding how health of animals changes over space and time.Through knowledge of individual health we can better understand the status of populations. This is particularly important in endangered species, where the consequences of disruption of critical biological functions can push groups of animals rapidly toward extinction. Here we built a state-space model that provides estimates of movement, health, and survival. We assimilated 30+ years of photographic evidence of body condition and three additional visual health parameters in individual North Atlantic right whales, together with survey data, to infer the true health status as it changes over space and time. We also included the effect of reproductive status and entanglement status on health. At the population level, we estimated differential movement patterns in males and females. At the individual level, we estimated the likely animal locations each month. We estimated the relationship between observed and latent health status. Observations of body condition, skin condition, cyamid infestation on the blowholes, and rake marks all provided measures of the true underlying health. The resulting time series of individual health highlight both normal variations in health status and how anthropogenic stressors can affect the health and, ultimately, the survival of individuals. This modeling approach provides information for monitoring of health in right whales, as well as a framework for integrating observational data at the level of individuals up through the health status of the population. This framework can be broadly applied to a variety of systems - terrestrial and marine - where sporadic observations of individuals exist.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus