Patchett Kristen

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  • Article
    Mortality trends of stranded marine mammals on Cape Cod and southeastern Massachusetts, USA, 2000 to 2006
    (Inter-Research, 2010-01-25) Bogomolni, Andrea L. ; Pugliares, Katie R. ; Sharp, Sarah M. ; Patchett, Kristen ; Harry, Charles T. ; LaRocque, Jane M. ; Touhey, Kathleen M. ; Moore, Michael J.
    To understand the cause of death of 405 marine mammals stranded on Cape Cod and southeastern Massachusetts between 2000 and 2006, a system for coding final diagnosis was developed and categorized as (1) disease, (2) human interaction, (3) mass-stranded with no significant findings, (4) single-stranded with no significant findings, (5) rock and/or sand ingestion, (6) predatory attack, (7) failure to thrive or dependent calf or pup, or (8) other. The cause of death for 91 animals could not be determined. For the 314 animals that could be assigned a cause of death, gross and histological pathology results and ancillary testing indicated that disease was the leading cause of mortality in the region, affecting 116/314 (37%) of cases. Human interaction, including harassment, entanglement, and vessel collision, fatally affected 31/314 (10%) of all animals. Human interaction accounted for 13/29 (45%) of all determined gray seal Halichoerus grypus mortalities. Mass strandings were most likely to occur in northeastern Cape Cod Bay; 97/106 (92%) of mass stranded animals necropsied presented with no significant pathological findings. Mass strandings were the leading cause of death in 3 of the 4 small cetacean species: 46/67 (69%) of Atlantic white-sided dolphin Lagenorhynchus acutus, 15/21 (71%) of long-finned pilot whale Globicephala melas, and 33/54 (61%) of short-beaked common dolphin Delphinus delphis. These baseline data are critical for understanding marine mammal population health and mortality trends, which in turn have significant conservation and management implications. They not only afford a better retrospective analysis of strandings, but ultimately have application for improving current and future response to live animal stranding.
  • Technical Report
    Seals and ecosystem health : meeting report of the Northwest Atlantic Seal Research Consortium
    (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 2015-05) Bass, Anna L. ; Bogomolni, Andrea L. ; Early, Greg A. ; Nichols, Owen C. ; Patchett, Kristen
    On May 1 and 2, 2015, over 75 people attended the Northwest Atlantic Seal Research Consortium's first official biennial two day scientific meeting, "Seals and Ecosystem Health", at Salem State University in Salem, Massachusetts. The focus of the meeting was addressed by two keynote presentations: "Seals and Ecosystem Health" and "Marine mammals and ecosystem functioning: what can recovering seal populations teach us?" The first day of the meeting featured 16 oral and two poster presentations, covering a diverse range of topics highlighting the important underlying concepts, data gaps and future directions. Following the theme of the meeting, attendees discussed the nature of ecosystems, acknowledging the complex and often cryptic interactions between components, with cumulative and synergistic effects on animals and their environment. As our understanding of the ecological role of seals in the Northwest Atlantic grows, the cumulative interactions increase our recognition of seals as sentinels of ecosystem health. Meeting presentations highlighted the value of existing data and ongoing research efforts, including long-term population monitoring, tagging and photo-identification, stranding response, and rehabilitation facilities. The importance of observational effort was recognized as a critical component in detecting mortality events, documenting population processes in remote locations and cryptic species interactions. Research priorities identified included development of molecular tools for study of diet and disease, population dynamics studies (demographics and trends), telemetry-based investigations of spatiotemporal distribution, and model- and field-based ecosystem-level studies. Several of the presentations and the panel discussion, "Addressing Perception vs. Reality: How data (or lack of data) affects public perceptions and management decisions," highlighted the diverse and evolving perspectives with which society views seals, perspectives that are often biased by the backgrounds of individual humans. Diverse opinions necessitate engagement of stakeholders and the public, and societal objectives need to be defined in order to effect science-based natural resource management at an ecosystem level. At the closing of the meeting, recommendations from the panel discussion and for the overall goals of NASRC were discussed.