Başkır, Saba
Cetacean hunting was banned in Turkey in 1983. In the following decades, as the ecological shifts in the Black Sea occur, over-increase in the cetacean populations were hypothesized as the cause of the decline in economically valuable pelagic fish species like Anchovy (Engraulis encrasicolus) and Sprat (Sprattus sprattus). These arguments create the pressure of re-legalization of direct killing of cetaceans, whom are assumed to be foraging mainly on Anchovy. These arguments, although raise concerns from the fishery economy aspect, lacked scientific foundation due to absence of cetacean foraging studies in the Black Sea. Therefore, this thesis study aimed its efforts at determining cetacean distributions and their foraging habitats in the Turkish waters of the Southern Black Sea, to explore whether the assumptions of highly overlapping prey preference and competition of resources did actually hold. For this purpose, active acoustics data that was collected for Anchovy Stock Assessment research was utilized, with the implementation of recently developed algorithms that enable extraction of cetacean distributions, from the vocalization marks from the echograms. The extracted vocalization marks from the clicks that are assumed to be in higher occurrences during foraging, are quantified within 1nmi running radius. These foraging activities were then compared with the pelagic fish abundances that were analyzed via echointegration techniques from the data active acoustic data set of November 2016. Both pelagic species, showed high abundances in the western coast of the Southern Black Sea, whereas cetacean distribution and foraging areas were observed dominantly in the eastern coast of the Southern Black Sea. When the cetacean and pelagic distributions were analyzed for spatial and temporal overlap both within layers in the water column and at different times of the day, results showed no significant positive linear correlation between the mentioned top predators and Anchovy. These results are indicative of the inoperative assumption of cetacean foraging pressure playing a significant role in the declining of the Anchovy stocks. Cetacean encounters were shown to be correlated with Sprat distributions, during Night time form the presented GAM results. Therefore, outcome of this study is aimed to be of consideration in management and conservation strategies in the Black Sea. The methodology used in this study is an innovative approach to cetacean ecology studies, which is opportunistic in nature, is holding great potential for the research of cetacean foraging with the enabling the use of existing concurrent data sets of predator and prey, and further potential of development.


Saydam, Gülce; Gücü, Ali Cemal; Department of Marine Biology and Fisheries (2015-6-06)
Large numbers of small cetaceans (common dolphin, harbor porpoises and bottlenose dolphins) were hunted in the Black Sea until the hunting of cetaceans was banned in Turkey in 1983. Even though the practice of hunting cetaceans has ceased by Turkish fleets, ongoing threats such as viral infections, overfishing, by-catch, habitat loss, seismic surveys and the pressure of fishermen continue to persist. One of the most overwhelming reasons as to why overcoming these threats proves so difficult, is the insuffic...
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Durmuş, Mustafa; Kence, Meral; Department of Biology (2010)
Goitered gazelle is one of the threatened species of Turkey living in only ġanlıurfa region. In this study, goitered gazelles have been released to their previous habitat in Şanlıurfa-Suruç region and seven of females were collared with GPS collars. These individuals were monitored for a year and their seasonal habitat selection and home range sizes are determined by using location data recorded on the collars. In addition to 4 seasons of the year, home range and habitat selection are estimated for mating a...
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Ambarlı, Huseyin; Bilgin, Cemal Can (Ursus, 2008-01-01)
The brown bear (Ursus arctos) is the largest carnivore in Turkey and has been legally protected since 2003. However, increasing levels of conflict between brown bears and humans have been reported for several regions, especially for Artvin in northeastern Turkey. We documented the conflict in an attempt to understand human attitudes and responses and evaluate existing and potential damage prevention techniques. The study was conducted within landscapes at different scales, ranging from a core area defined b...
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Durmuş, Mustafa; Bilgin, Cemal Can; Department of Biology (2019)
The Fallow Deer (Dama dama) population in Turkey is presumed to be one of the few autochthonous populations globally. Although the species has been under protection since the 1960s, it had become restricted to a single site in Düzlerçamı, Antalya. Within the context of a reintroduction project, 21 deer were translocated into Dilek Peninsula National Park (Aydın, Turkey) in 2011 and 2012. Fifteen individuals were GPS-collared and monitored between 2011 and 2013 to understand their movements, habitat choice a...
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Mengüllüoğlu, Deniz; Bilgin, Cemal Can; Department of Biology (2010)
Information about large mammals in Turkey usually does not go further than species lists or annual counts of particular species such as the wild goat. Camera trapping is a very useful technique to overcome this deficiency by gathering information about species presence, numbers, habitat use and behavior. Hence, a one year long camera trap study was conducted to demonstrate the diversity, activity, distribution patterns, habitat preferences and interspecific interactions of medium and large mammals in a 148 ...
Citation Formats
S. Başkır, “DISTRIBUTION OF CETACEAN AND THEIR FORAGING HABITATS IN THE BLACK SEA,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2019.