Ecotourism increases the field metabolic rate of whitetip reef sharks

Barnett, Adam, Payne, Nicholas L., Semmens, Jayson M., and Fitzpatrick, Richard (2016) Ecotourism increases the field metabolic rate of whitetip reef sharks. Biological Conservation, 199. pp. 132-136.

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Abstract

Wildlife tourism has been shown to cause behavioural changes to numerous species. Yet, there is still little understanding if behavioural changes have consequences for health and fitness. The current study combined accelerometry and respirometry to show that provisioning whitetip reef sharks (Triaenodon obesus) for tourism increases their daily energy expenditure by elevating activity levels during periods when they normally rest. Field metabolic rate increased by 637% on provisioning days compared to non-provisioning days. Since metabolism is a key parameter influencing most biological and ecological processes, this represents some of the clearest evidence to date that ecotourism can impact critical biological functions in wild animals.

Item ID: 45521
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1873-2917
Keywords: accelerometry, biologging, circadian rhythms, energetics, provisioning, Triaenodon obesus
Funders: Save Our Seas Foundation, Winifred Violet Scott Foundation
Date Deposited: 10 Aug 2016 07:31
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0602 Ecology > 060201 Behavioural Ecology @ 30%
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0602 Ecology > 060203 Ecological Physiology @ 40%
05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050211 Wildlife and Habitat Management @ 30%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960507 Ecosystem Assessment and Management of Marine Environments @ 34%
90 COMMERCIAL SERVICES AND TOURISM > 9003 Tourism > 900399 Tourism not elsewhere classified @ 33%
90 COMMERCIAL SERVICES AND TOURISM > 9098 Environmentally Sustainable Commercial Services and Tourism > 909899 Environmentally Sustainable Commercial Services and Tourism not elsewhere classified @ 33%
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