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The rough-toothed dolphin, Steno bredanensis, in the eastern Mediterranean Sea: a relict population?
Kerem, D.; Goffman, O.; Elasar, M.; Hadar, N.; Scheinin, A.; Lewis, T. (2016). The rough-toothed dolphin, Steno bredanensis, in the eastern Mediterranean Sea: a relict population? Adv. Mar. Biol. 75: 233-258.
In: Advances in Marine Biology. Academic Press: London, New York. ISSN 0065-2881; e-ISSN 2162-5875, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 

    Steno bredanensis (G. Cuvier in Lesson, 1828) [WoRMS]
    MED, Mediterranean [Marine Regions]
Author keywords
    Rough-toothed dolphin; Acoustic monitoring; Genetic profile; Gill-net entanglement; Encounter rate

Authors  Top 
  • Kerem, D.
  • Goffman, O.
  • Elasar, M.
  • Hadar, N.
  • Scheinin, A.
  • Lewis, T.

    Only recently included among the cetacean species thought to regularly occur in the Mediterranean, the rough-toothed dolphin (Steno bredanensis) is an obscure and enigmatic member of this ensemble. Preliminary genetic evidence strongly indicates an Atlantic origin, yet the Mediterranean distribution for this species is conspicuously detached from the Atlantic, with all authenticated records during the last three decades being east of the Sicilian Channel and most within the bounds of the Levantine Basin. These dolphins are apparently a small, relict population, probably the remnant of a larger one, contiguous with that in the Atlantic and nowadays entrapped in the easternmost and warmest province. Abundance data are lacking for the species in the Mediterranean. Configuring acoustic detection software to recognise the apparently idiosyncratic vocalisations of rough-toothed dolphins in past and future acoustic recordings may prove useful for potential acoustic monitoring. Evidence accumulated so far, though scant, points to seasonal occupation of shallow coastal waters. Vulnerability to entanglement in gill-nets, contaminants in the region, and the occurrence of mass strandings (possibly in response to anthropogenic noise), are major conservation concerns for the population in the Mediterranean Sea.

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