The “Dolphins of Cabrera” project aims to study the bottlenose dolphin population within Cabrera National Park, a protected marine area in the Balearic Islands. Utilising passive acoustics, each dolphin will be identified by its unique whistle signature. This will determine the number of dolphins inhabiting the area and assess how they are impacted by underwater noise, a significant threat to these cetaceans.
Underwater noise, particularly from recreational boating and the traffic of passenger and cargo vessels, poses a threat to marine wildlife. Cetaceans, such as the bottlenose dolphin, which rely on acoustics for their daily activities, are especially vulnerable. The bottlenose dolphin, being a coastal species, is most affected, especially during the summer months due to high tourist pressure in the archipelago.
To address the issue of underwater noise and its impact on the bottlenose dolphin population in Cabrera National Park, a partnership has been formed between Mallorca Preservation, the Tursiops Association, and Cabrera National Park. This collaboration will fund and support the project, providing necessary resources for the installation of hydrophones, data analysis, and the communication and dissemination of the findings.
- Identify and quantify the bottlenose dolphin population in Cabrera National Park.
- Assess the level of underwater noise.
- Analyse the impact of underwater noise on the presence and behaviour of dolphins.
- Compare the data obtained with other areas in the Balearics.
- Communicate and disseminate the results through publications and events.
- Raise public awareness about the importance of conserving these populations and encourage institutions to implement supportive measures.
- Provide relevant information for the improvement of management in the Protected Marine Area.