Conference Contribution Details
Mandatory Fields
del Villar, D., Bartlett, D. and Cronin, M.;
GIS 2010 Conference
Using telemetry derived temperature data from tagged seals to examine fine scale changes in the
Dublin Ireland
Oral Presentation
Optional Fields
Bio‐logging, defined as the theory and practise of recording and relaying physical and biological data using animal‐attached tags, has increased rapidly over the last decade. Advances in sampling and data retrieval devices have made it possible to create a synergy between biology, oceanography and geoinformatics, creating a new discipline where GI/GIS contributes to effective compilation, analysis and display of data provided by tagged animals. Seals are ideal subjects for marine bio‐logging studies, allowing us to study the underwater environment in a multidimensional domain.
Since 2006 twenty five seals off the west coast of Ireland, tagged with sophisticated telemetry devices, have recorded more than 22,400 temperature `casts┐ of the water column totalling over a quarter of a million temperature readings. The data collected by these seals have been analysed to expand knowledge about the upper ocean┐s thermal structure in areas where research vessels cannot access, and where there are issues of accuracy with remotely sensed sea surface
temperature (SST) data. The results demonstrate that data obtained from tagged seals offer an extremely effective means of complementing existing oceanographic sampling methods. Significant correlations were found when comparing the data provided by the tagged animals with those obtained by more traditional means, as well as when results were compared with those from oceanographic models. We conclude that the use of tagged animals as autonomous samplers broaches a new field of oceanography studies in Irish waters, while the methods could also usefully be applied to other coastal regions.