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Data from: Movement and seasonal energetics mediate vulnerability to disturbance in marine mammal populations


Gallagher, Cara et al. (2020), Data from: Movement and seasonal energetics mediate vulnerability to disturbance in marine mammal populations, Dryad, Dataset,


In marine environments noise from human activities is increasing dramatically, causing animals to alter their behavior and forage less efficiently. These alterations incur energetic costs that can result in reproductive failure, death, and may ultimately influence population viability; yet the link between population dynamics and individual energetics is poorly understood. We present an energy budget model for simulating effects of acoustic disturbance on populations. It accounts for environmental variability and individual state, while incorporating realistic animal movements. Using harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) as a case study, we evaluated population consequences of disturbance from seismic surveys and investigated underlying drivers of vulnerability. The framework reproduced empirical estimates of population structure and seasonal variations in energetics. The largest effects predicted for seismic surveys were in late summer and fall, and were unrelated to local abundance, but instead to lactation costs, water temperature, and body fat. Our results demonstrate that consideration of temporal variation in individual energetics and their link to costs associated with disturbances is imperative when predicting disturbance impacts. These mechanisms are general to animal species, and the framework presented here can be used for gaining new insights into the spatiotemporal variability of animal movements and energetics that control population dynamics.

Usage Notes

This repository includes two zip files: 1) agent-based model code and associated files (, and 2) the data and scripts used to create the figures presented in the main text ( Details for each can be found in the associated file, in the main text of the manuscript, and in the associated supplementary TRACE document.