The study was conducted at the Indian River Lagoon (IRL) in the past six and a half years, exposed that bottlenose dolphins exhibit a preference and avoidance behavior, just like humans, dolphins have associates they like and others they elude.
“One of the unique aspects of our study was the discovery that the physical dimensions of the habitat, the long, narrow lagoon system itself, influenced the spatial and temporal dynamics of dolphin association patterns,” Elizabeth Murdoch Titcomb said, Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute (HBOI) biologist at the Florida Atlantic University said.
Titcomb added, “For example, communities that occupy the narrowest stretches of the Indian River Lagoon have the most compact social networks, akin to humans who live in small towns and have fewer people with whom to interact.”
A 156-mile long estuary situated on the eastern coastline of Florida. The IRL is composed of three long and narrow water forms, namely Mosquito Lagoon, Banana River, and Indian River.
Through thorough photo-ID inspections directed along the IRL, the researchers learned about the association patterns, movement behavior and habitat inclinations of 200 specific dolphins.
They also found that IRL dolphins assembled into separate groupings of related animals, or “communities,” which inclined to dwell in discrete core areas in the north and south axis of the IRL lagoon system.
Moreover, to give an exceptional glimpse into dolphin clusters, this innovative study provides central insight and information on how dolphins unify themselves, who they interact and who they tend to avoid, and also to answer the question when and where, according to the study published in the j Marine Mammal Science journal.