Marine Studies Institute

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The significance of Jervis Bay for humpback whale mother-calf groups during their southern migration

Alex Jones

My research is aiming to determine if Jervis Bay, on the south coast of NSW, is a resting ground for humpback whale mother-calf groups. During the southern migration, females and their newly born calves are thought to rest in calm and protected coastal waters or embayments for protection from rough seas, predators, conspecifics and to conserve energy. This resting behaviour has been well documented in Hervey Bay, QLD, and over the last decade there has been an observed increase of mother-calf groups in Jervis Bay.

I use dedicated land- and boat-based survey methods to collect data on the abundance, composition, behaviour, residency time, and distribution of whale groups in the Bay.

This work will have direct implications for the conservation significance and environmental management of the Jervis Bay Marine Park area. In addition, I am investigating the effectiveness of visual and thermal UAV-deployed sensors for whale detection.

Contact: Alex Jones

Email: alexandra.jones1@sydney.edu.au

Address: F09 – Madsen Building

School of Geosciences, The University of Sydney