Simon Berrow

Simon Berrow
Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology | GMIT · Department of Life and Physical Sciences

PhD National University of Ireland

About

310
Publications
62,455
Reads
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3,529
Citations
Introduction
Lecturer at the Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology, Galway, Ireland contributing to Applied Freshwater and Marine Biology degree and EMBC+ Masters programme. Supervisor of PhD and MSc student thesis. Chief Executive Officer of the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (www.iwdg.ie) and Project Manager of the Shannon Dolphin Project (www.shannondolphins.ie). Main interests are conservation management of cetaceans but also research interests on basking sharks and seabirds. Believes good management requires strong science.
Additional affiliations
September 2009 - present
Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology
Position
  • Lecturer
Description
  • Modules in Aquaculture and Fisheries, Botany and Zoolgy, Environmental Legislation on Applied Freshwater and Marine Biology degree and EMBC+ Masters Programme.
July 1995 - December 1999
British Antarctic Survey
Position
  • Vertebrate Ecologist
Description
  • included 2.5 years on South Georgia
October 1987 - July 1995
University College Cork
Position
  • PhD student and Post-doctoral researcher
Description
  • PhD at Lough Hyne Marine Reserve on the impact of avian predators on the intertidal zone. Post-doctoral research on cetaceans, fisheries interactions and basking sharks.

Publications

Publications (310)
Poster
Full-text available
Through a long-term citizen science project, the IWDG have built an extensive humpback whale photo-identification catalogue since 1999, confirming the identification of 116 individual humpback whales to date. This unique catalogue in Ireland provides the chance to derive the first robust abundance estimates for humpback whales in Irish waters using...
Article
Full-text available
A recent increase in sightings and strandings of humpback and to a lesser extent, fin whales in the southern North Sea has been well documented. This positive trend in the marine mammal community is to be welcome. A similar increase has been documented off the south and southwest coasts of Ireland over the past 20 years. The first international mat...
Article
Full-text available
Global warming is affecting the population dynamics and trophic interactions across a wide range of ecosystems and habitats. Translating these real-time effects into their long-term consequences remains a challenge. The rapid and extreme warming period that occurred after the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) during the Pleistocene–Holocene transition (7–...
Article
Full-text available
Long-finned pilot whale (Globicephala melas) mitochondrial (mtDNA) genetic diversity is considered low, especially in the North Atlantic, where only seven haplotypes have been recorded in previous studies using a 345 bp control region fragment. Such studies have not included samples from Ireland or the Netherlands. In this study we analyzed a longe...
Article
Full-text available
Little is known about the ecological importance of fin whales found year-round in southwestern offshore Irish waters. Understanding their ecology is important to reduce potential harm through any spatio-temporal overlap with commercial shipping and fishing activities. This study explored the potential environmental drivers and impacts of low-freque...
Article
Full-text available
Marine mammals have been proposed as ecosystem sentinels due to their conspicuous nature, wide ranging distribution, and capacity to respond to changes in ecosystem structure and functioning. In southern European Atlantic waters, their response to climate variability has been little explored, partly because of the inherent difficulty of investigati...
Article
Full-text available
Abstract available in English, Spanish and Portuguese. The deep sea has been described as the last major ecological frontier, as much of its biodiversity is yet to be discovered and described. Beaked whales (ziphiids) are among the most visible inhabitants of the deep sea, due to their large size and worldwide distribution, and their taxonomic div...
Article
Full-text available
Studying repeated adaptation can provide insights into the mechanisms allowing species to adapt to novel environments. Here, we investigate repeated evolution driven by habitat specialization in the common bottlenose dolphin. Parapatric pelagic and coastal ecotypes of common bottlenose dolphins have repeatedly formed across the oceans. Analyzing wh...
Article
Full-text available
Cuvier’s and Sowerby’s beaked whales occur year-round in western Irish waters, yet remain some of the most poorly understood cetaceans in the area. Considering the importance of the area for anthropogenic activities and the sensitivity of beaked whales to noise, understanding their ecology is essential to minimise potential overlaps. To this end, f...
Article
Seabird eggs are considered a favourable matrix for monitoring marine pollutants and are widely used as higher trophic level indicators. Concentrations of Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (Σ15PAH) were determined in the eggs of four piscivorous seabirds in Ireland from multiple colonies for the first time, Common Guillemot Uria aalge, Northern Gann...
Article
Higher levels of persistent pollutants (Σ16PCB, Σ6PBDE, ΣHCH, ΣDDT, ΣCHL) were detected in fresh eggs of Common Terns Sterna hirundo from Rockabill Island near Dublin (Ireland's industrialised capital city) compared to Common and Arctic Terns S. paradisaea from Ireland's west coast. Intra-clutch variation of pollutant levels in Common Terns was sho...
Article
Full-text available
The Shannon dolphins are a population of bottlenose dolphins resident year round within the Lower River Shannon SAC, Ireland, which has been designated to protect this relatively small, genetically discrete population. Although trends in habitat use and foraging have been studied within the estuary, little is known about the movements of the Shanno...
Article
Guillemot eggs from multiple Irish colonies and one Welsh colony were analysed for legacy pollutants such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) and other organochlorine compounds (OCs), as well as metals. Stable isotope ratios of carbon (δ¹³C) and nitrogen (δ¹⁵N) were measured in eggs to understand the influenc...
Article
Full-text available
Adult survival is arguably the most important demographic parameter for long-lived species as it has a large impact on population growth, and it can be estimated for cetacean populations using natural markings and mark-recapture (MR) modelling. Here we describe a 26-year study of a genetically discrete, resident population of bottlenose dolphins in...
Article
Sperm whales Physeter macrocephalus and long-finned pilot whales Globicephala melas are the most abundant species among the community of deep-diving cetaceans occurring off the west coast of Ireland, northeast Atlantic. To address a knowledge gap on these elusive species in an area subject to increasing levels of anthropogenic noise, fixed bottom-m...
Article
Full-text available
The Shannon Estuary in Ireland is home to a resident population of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) and is designated as a Special Area of Conservation under the EU Habitats Directive. It is an important industrial area, with numerous deep-water berths for shipping. Despite its high conservation value, there are few published studies on hab...
Article
Full-text available
Previous studies off western Ireland have suggested that substantial numbers of, mainly male, sperm whales may be found in these habitats. Whaling vessels operating from shore stations in Ireland in the early 20th century frequently caught sperm whales in oceanic waters. It is likely that this North Atlantic region contains important foraging habit...
Article
Seabird eggs are considered a favourable matrix for monitoring marine pollutants and are widely used as higher trophic level indicators. Persistent organic pollutants such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) and other organochlorine compounds (OCs) as well as metals have been shown to have deleterious impacts...
Preprint
Full-text available
What are the mechanisms that allow species to extend their ranges and adapt to the novel environmental conditions they find in the newly available habitat? The study of parallel adaptation of pairs of populations to similar environments can provide great insights into this question. Here, we test for parallel evolution driven by niche specializatio...
Article
Full-text available
First confirmed sighting of pygmy killer whales from Cabo Verde. Recorded during our expedition in September 2019.
Article
ABSTRACT: A bacterial disease occurred in a seawater Atlantic salmon farm, over 2 yr, causing serious mortalities. The causative agent was subsequently named as Oceanivirga salmonicida, a member of the Leptotrichiaceae. Searches of 16S rRNA gene sequence databases have shown sequence similarities between O. salmonicida and uncultured bacterial clon...
Article
Photo-identification has been used to monitor the resident bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) population in the Lower River Shannon Special Area of Conservation in Ireland as part of European Union obligations since 1997. A discovery curve using data collected by the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) between 2011 and 2015 suggested all anim...
Article
Full-text available
Migratory movements in response to seasonal resources often influence population structure and dynamics. Yet in mobile marine predators, population genetic consequences of such repetitious behaviour remain inaccessible without comprehensive sampling strategies. Temporal genetic sampling of seasonally recurring aggregations of planktivorous basking...
Article
Full-text available
Effective conservation of the endangered North Atlantic humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) which breeds in the eastern North Atlantic around the Cape Verde Islands off West Africa requires information about their spatio-temporal distribution, population size, and migratory patterns. Understanding temporal distribution is particularly important...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Cruise reports for two dedicated surveys of Cabo Verde in August and SIrish weptember 2019
Poster
Full-text available
Photo-identification is used to monitor the resident bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in the Shannon Estuary SAC (Ireland) as part of EU obligations to ensure Favourable Conservation Status. In 2015 a discovery curve using IWDG data collected during 77 photo-identification surveys suggested all animals in the population were captured provid...
Technical Report
Full-text available
This was the fourth dedicated cetacean survey of the Cabo Verde archipelago during late summer. It continued the series started in 2014 to improve our knowledge of the distribution and abundance of cetaceans around the archipelago and to establish the provenance of humpback whales reported during this time of year. Irish W
Article
Bio-accumulation of persistent organic pollutants including polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), brominated flame retardants and organochlorine pesticides continue to be of major concern for marine apex predators such as killer whales. The concentrations of 16 polychlorinated biphenyls, 7 poly-brominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), 1 poly-brominated biph...
Technical Report
Full-text available
The Irish Whale and Dolphin Group in collaboration with Bios.CV and NOAA carried out biopsy sampling and photo-id on humpback whales off Boa Vista, Cabo Verde during April 2019. Between 17-28 April, photo-id and biopsy sampling was carried out from a dedicated vessel off Sal Rei, Boa Vista. The purpose of the research was not only to improve our kn...
Article
omplex mammalian societies. In this study, we analyzed the fine‐scale sociality of wild bottlenose dolphins in the Shannon Estuary, Ireland, by examining associations between members of the whole population and between specific female and male dolphins. We carried out 51 boat‐based individual focal follows on 18 identifiable bottlenose dolphins ove...
Article
Full-text available
Description of first record of Bowhead Whale as a new species to Ireland
Article
Full-text available
List of cetacean stranding records from Ireland during 2017 with a brief review
Article
Full-text available
The advent of massive parallel sequencing technologies has resulted in an increase of studies based upon complete mitochondrial genome DNA sequences that revisit the taxonomic status within and among species. Spatially distinct monophyly in such mitogenomic genealogies, i.e., the sharing of a recent common ancestor among con-specific samples collec...
Article
Full-text available
Aim The knowledge of a species biogeographical patterns greatly enhances our understanding of geographical ecology, which can improve identifying key conservation needs. Yet, this knowledge is still scarce for many marine top predators. Here, we aim to analyse movement patterns and spatial structuring of a large predator, the short‐finned pilot wha...
Preprint
Full-text available
The demography of baleen whales and their prey during the past 30 thousand years was assessed to understand the effects of past rapid global warming on marine ecosystems. Mitochondrial and genome-wide DNA sequence variation in eight baleen whale and seven prey species revealed strong, ocean-wide demographic changes that were correlated with changes...
Preprint
Full-text available
Highlights Mitochondrial monophyly is commonly employed to define evolutionary significant units. Monophyly may be caused by insufficient sampling or a recent common ancestor. Mitogenomic studies are generally based on few samples and prone to sampling issues. Expanded mitogenome sampling negates previous monophyly in fin whales. Abstract The adve...
Article
Full-text available
Abstract Two sightings are reported of Sowerby’s beaked whales with calves off western Ireland. Despite individuals of the species being occasionally stranded in the UK and Ireland, these are the first at-sea sightings of calves in the north-east Atlantic. This record contributes to our knowledge of a poorly known species.
Article
Full-text available
List and short review of cetacean stranding records from Ireland during 2015
Article
Full-text available
List and review of cetacean stranding records from Ireland for 2016.
Article
Full-text available
Little is known of the spatio-temporal occurrence of beaked whales off western Ireland, limiting the ability of Regulators to implement appropriate management and conservation measures. To address this knowledge gap, static acoustic monitoring was carried out using eight fixed bottom-mounted autonomous acoustic recorders: four from May to December...
Data
Period 2, station1 automated detections for Sowerby’s beaked whales. (CSV)
Data
Period 3, station7 automated detections for Cuvier’s beaked and northern bottlenose whales. (CSV)
Data
Period 3, station8 automated detections for Cuvier’s beaked and northern bottlenose whales. (CSV)
Data
Period 4, station7 automated detections for Cuvier’s beaked and northern bottlenose whales. (CSV)
Data
Period 3, station7 automated detections for Sowerby’s beaked whales. (CSV)
Data
Period1, station1 automated detections for Cuvier’s beaked and northern bottlenose whales. (CSV)
Data
Period 2, station2 automated detections for Cuvier’s beaked and northern bottlenose whales. (CSV)
Data
Period 1, station2 automated detections for Cuvier’s beaked and northern bottlenose whales. (CSV)
Data
Period 1, station2 automated detections for Sowerby’s beaked whales. (CSV)
Data
Period 1, station4 automated detections for Sowerby’s beaked whales. (CSV)
Data
Period 2, station3 automated detections for Sowerby’s beaked whales. (CSV)
Data
Period 2, station4 automated detections for Sowerby’s beaked whales. (CSV)
Data
Period 3, station5 automated detections for Cuvier’s beaked and northern bottlenose whales. (CSV)
Data
Period 4, station5 automated detections for Cuvier’s beaked and northern bottlenose whales. (CSV)
Data
Period 1, station1 automated detections for Sowerby’s beaked whales. (CSV)
Data
Period 2, station3 automated detections for Cuvier’s beaked and northern bottlenose whales. (CSV)
Data
Period 3, station6 automated detections for Cuvier’s beaked and northern bottlenose whales. (CSV)
Data
Period 3, station3 automated detections for Sowerby’s beaked whales. (CSV)
Data
Period 4, station8 automated detections for Cuvier’s beaked and northern bottlenose whales. (CSV)