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   Bottlenose Dolphins
   Antillean Manatees


Turneffe has a resident population of Bottlenose Dolphins, which includes a population of nursing calves. Turneffe's dolphins have been studied for more than a decade by the Ocean Society, a Turneffe-based environmental NGO.  


Links to some pertinent publications are listed below.

Campbell, G. S., et al. (2002). "Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in Turneffe Atoll, Belize: occurrence, site fidelity, group size, and abundance." Aquatic Mammals 28(2): 170-180. Oceanic Society

Eierman, L. E. and R. C. Connor (2014). "Foraging behaviour, prey distribution, and microhabitat use by bottlenose dolphins Tursiops truncatus in a tropical atoll." MEPS 503: 279-288. Oceanic Society

Grigg E and Markowitz H., "Habitat use by bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) at Turneffe Atoll, Belize”, Aquatic Mammals 1997, 23.3, 163-170.  
Campbell GS. 2004. Quantitative comparison of Bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops spp.) whistles from three geographic regions. [San Diego, CA]: San Diego State University.
Dick DM, Hines EM. Using distance sampling techniques to estimate bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) abundance at Turneffe Atoll, Belize. Marine Mammal Science. 2011.
Ramos EA, Lammers M, Reiss D, May-Collado LJ. 2014. A Study of Variation in Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) Whistles at Turneffe Atoll, Belize, Using Two Acoustic Monitoring Techniques. In: 16 Reunión de Trabajo de Especialistas en Mamíferos Acuáticos de América Latina, SOLAMAC, IV Congreso Colombiano de Zoología, Cartagena.
Ramos EA, Reiss D. 2014. Foraging-related Calls Produced by Bottlenose Dolphins at Turneffe Atoll, Belize. In: 16 Reunión de Trabajo de Especialistas en Mamíferos Acuáticos de América Latina, SOLAMAC, IV Congreso Colombiano de Zoología, Cartagena. Colombia


An estimated population of 25-30 Antillean Manatees inhabits Turneffe Atoll. These manatees regularly move between the coastal areas near Belize City, and Turneffe. The Oceanic Society has actively studied Turneffe's manatees for several years.  Pertinent publications are listed below.  


Holguin. S. B. P. (2004). Contextual Conservation: Antillean Manatees (Trichechus manatus manatus) of Turneffe Atoll, Belize. Geography: Resource Management and Environmental Planning, San Francisco State University. Master: 122. Oceanic Society
Edwards HH, Stone SB, Hines EM, Gomez NA, Winning BE. Documenting Manatee (Trichechus manatus manatus) Presence at Turneffe Atoll, Belize, Central America and its Conservation Significance. Caribbean Journal of Science 48(1): 71-75. 2014.

Auil, Nicole E., "Abundance and Distribution Trends of the West Indian Manatee in the Coastal Zone of Belize: A Thesis submitted to the Office of Graduate Studies of  Texas A&M University in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of  MASTER OF SCIENCE, May 2004  

Platt S., Rainwater T.,  Miller B., AND Miller C, "Notes on the mammals of Turneffe Atoll, Belize”, Caribbean Journal of Science, Vol. 36, No. 1-2, 166-168, 2000 Copyright 2000 College of Arts and Sciences University of Puerto Rico, Mayagu¨ez
Auil-Gomez NE. 1988. Belize manatee recovery plan. BZE/92/G31, UNDP/GEF Coastal Zone Management Project, Belize/UNEP Caribbean Environment Programme, Kingston, Jamaica.
Auil-Gomez NE. The fate of manatees in Belize. In: Too Precious to Drill: the Marine Biodiversity of Belize.Edited by M. L. D. Palomares and D. Pauly:  Fisheries Centre Research Reports, p. 175. 2011.
Castelblanco Martínez DN, Powell J, Galves J, Auil Gomez N. Preliminary information from first tagged manatees in Turneffe Atoll (Belize) reveal regular travel patterns to the mainland. Sirenews 6012-13. 2013.
Castelblanco-Martínez DN, Edwards H, Hines E, Stone SBP. 2013. West Indian manatees in Turneffe Atoll, Belize: pros and cons of living in paradise. In: International Sirenian Symposium, Dunedin, NZ.
Castelblanco-Martínez DN, Müller V, Ramos EA. 2014. Turneffe Atoll‚ Belize: A salty but rich refuge for manatees? Simposio Latinoamericano para la Investigación y Conservación de manatíes, 16 Reunión de Trabajo de Especialistas en Mamíferos Acuáticos de América Latina, SOLAMAC, IV Congreso Colombiano de Zoología, Cartagena, Colombia.
Hunter ME, Auil-Gomez NE, Tucker KP, Bonde RK, Powell J, McGuire PM. Low genetic variation and evidence of limited dispersal in the regionally important Belize manatee. Animal Conservation 13(6): 592-602. 2010.
Morales-Vela B, Olivera-Gomez LD, Reynolds III JE, Rathbun GB. Distribution and habitat use by manatees (Trichechus manatus manatus) in Belize and Chetumal Bay, Mexico. Biological Conservation 95(1): 67-75. 2000.