Vic Cockcroft

Vic Cockcroft
Nelson Mandela University | NMMU · Department of Zoology

About

190
Publications
17,773
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3,245
Citations
Citations since 2016
28 Research Items
1106 Citations
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2016201720182019202020212022050100150200
2016201720182019202020212022050100150200

Publications

Publications (190)
Article
Full-text available
The Indian Ocean humpback dolphin (Sousa plumbea) is "endangered" with likely less than 500 animals remaining in South African waters. Established in 2016, the SouSA Consortium is a formalised network of scientists and conservationists to combine knowledge and research efforts, and make coordinated decisions with the aim of conserving the species....
Article
Full-text available
Many marine species exhibit fine-scale population structure despite high mobility and a lack of physical barriers to dispersal, but the evolutionary drivers of differentiation in these systems are generally poorly understood. Here we investigate the potential role of habitat transitions and seasonal prey distributions on the evolution of population...
Article
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True’s beaked whales have a uniquely fragmented distribution of sightings recorded, mostly from stranding reports. The species is assumed to be associated with deep oceanic waters, occurring in both the northern and southern hemispheres. A hotspot for strandings in the southern hemisphere is South Africa. The third and fourth reported stranding of...
Article
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Coastally distributed dolphin species are vulnerable to a variety of anthropogenic pressures, yet a lack of abundance data often prevents data-driven conservation management strategies from being implemented. We investigated the abundance of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) along the south coast of South Africa, from the Goukamma...
Article
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This study was conducted to determine dugong's population status and their distribution in respect to explore the possible threats and managements approaches of dugongs and their habitat in coastal waters of Pemba Island. Questionnaire-based interviews were conducted between 2016 and 2017 with fishers (n= 180) at four sites. One focus group discuss...
Article
There is limited information concerning the cetaceans inhabiting the coastal waters of Mauritius. This document details the sightings of cetaceans encountered during April 2008 – September 2014. Boat-based surveys were conducted throughout the year, primarily focusing on spinner and bottlenose dolphin populations that are important for the local do...
Preprint
Full-text available
We investigated the abundance of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins ( Tursiops aduncus ) along the south coast of South Africa, from the Goukamma Marine Protected Area (MPA) to the Tsitsikamma MPA, between 2014 and 2016. During this period, 662.3h of boat-based photo-identification survey effort was carried out, and the sighting histories of 817 iden...
Article
Full-text available
The distribution and habitat use of the Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin Tursiops aduncus along the south coast of South Africa was investigated using bi-monthly boat-based surveys, from 2013 to 2016, over a distance of 145 km between the Goukamma and Tsitsikamma marine protected areas (MPAs). Survey effort totalled 6 239 km and 750.6 hours. Encount...
Article
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Bryde’s whales (Balaenoptera edeni) are medium-sized balaenopterids with tropical and subtropical distribution. There is confusion about the number of species, subspecies and populations of Bryde’s whale found globally. Two eco-types occur off South Africa, the inshore and offshore forms, but with unknown relationship between them. Using the mtDNA...
Article
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The Indian Ocean humpback dolphin was recently uplisted to 'Endangered' in the recent South African National Red List assessment. Abundance estimates are available from a number of localized study sites, but knowledge of movement patterns and population linkage between these sites is poor. A national research collaboration, the SouSA project, was e...
Article
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Although most knowledge on the biology of Sousa plumbea has primarily come from South African waters, a number of research gaps remain on the natural history and status of the species in the region. Research on two populations in South African waters for which some historical data exist may aid in highlighting long-term changes in the biology and n...
Article
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Spinner dolphins Stenella longirostris longirostris off the south-west coast of Mauritius are subject to ongoing anthropogenic disturbance in the form of daily dolphin tourism, which has intensified since 1998. Abundance of this species was estimated using photo-identification data and mark-recapture analysis. Between April 2008 and June 2010, iden...
Article
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The abundance of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins Tursiops aduncus off the south-west coast of Mauritius was estimated using capture-mark-recapture modelling. Over the past two decades this population has been subjected to ongoing anthropogenic disturbance in the form of extensive coastal development. Furthermore, daily dolphin tourism, which start...
Article
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Common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) use individually distinctive signature whistles which are highly stereotyped and function as contact calls. Here we investigate whether Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (T. aduncus) use signature whistles. The frequency trace of whistle contours recorded from three genetically distinct free-ranging po...
Article
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Populations of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) are distributed along coastal regions of the south-west Indian Ocean (SWIO), from South Africa to Kenya. An account of whistles from wild T. aduncus inhabiting the SWIO is provided here. Recordings were made at Plettenberg Bay (South Africa) and Zanzibar Island (Tanzania) and the fre...
Article
Full-text available
Populations of Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) are distributed along coastal regions of the southwest Indian Ocean (SWIO), from South Africa to Kenya. An account of whistles from wild T. aduncus inhabiting the SWIO is provided here. Recordings were made at Plettenberg Bay (South Africa) and Zanzibar Island (Tanzania) and the freq...
Article
Full-text available
Cape fur seals Arctocephalus pusillus pusillus were harvested to extirpation on the Robberg Peninsula, Plettenberg Bay, on the south-east coast of South Africa, between the 17th and early 20th centuries. Seals returned to Robberg in small numbers during the early 1990s and their numbers subsequently increased. We studied the diet of this increasing...
Data
Cape fur seals Arctocephalus pusillus pusillus were harvested to extirpation on the Robberg Peninsula, Plettenberg Bay, on the south-east coast of South Africa, between the 17th and early 20th centuries. Seals returned to Robberg in small numbers during the early 1990s and their numbers subsequently increased. We studied the diet of this increasing...
Article
Seasonal fluctuations in the occurrence of inshore South African Bryde's whales Balaenoptera edeni were investigated between November 2005 and June 2008. Sighting data were collected in Plettenberg Bay on the south-east coast of South Africa. Bryde's whale occurrence was modelled in relation to the following environmental covariates: sea surface te...
Article
Full-text available
Despite the distribution of dugongs Dugong dugon ranging across nearshore waters of the tropical and subtropical regions of the Indian Ocean and western Pacific Ocean, their distribution in the western Indian Ocean is highly fragmented and appears to be declining. The population of the Bazaruto Archipelago is believed to comprise the only viable po...
Data
The Cape fur seal Arctocephalus pusillus pusillus colony at Robberg Peninsula, Plettenberg Bay, on the south-east coast of South Africa, was driven to extinction by indiscriminate harvesting by the late 1800s. Seals only began to recolonise this site in the 1990s. This study describes the recolonisation process from 2000 to 2009, exploring both wit...
Article
A minimum of 250 bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus, was caught in anti-shark nets off Natal, South Africa between January 1980 and December 1988. Males and females constituted 45.4% and 54.6% of the catch, respectively. Sexually mature males and females constituted 18.2% and 24% of the total catch, respectively. Of the latter, 65% were lactat...
Article
A total of 297 common dolphin (Delphinus delphis) stomachs was used for these diet analyses. All originated from common dolphins incidentally captured in Natal, where their occurrence is strongly associated with an annual, northward fish migration, the sardine run, along the east coast. Thirty-six fish and four cephalopod prey species were identifi...
Article
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Humpback dolphins (Sousa spp.) have a wide distribution in the tropical Atlantic and Indo-Pacific Oceans and a confused taxonomy. Morphological assessments suggest three species groupings – Sousa teuszii (eastern Atlantic), Sousa plumbea (western Indo-Pacific), and Sousa chinensis (eastern Indo-Pacific) – but most taxonomies recognise only two spec...
Article
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DNA sequences from orthologous loci can provide universal characters for taxonomic identification. Molecular taxonomy is of particular value for groups in which distinctive morphological features are difficult to observe or compare. To assist in species identification for the little known family Ziphiidae (beaked whales), we compiled a reference da...