Projecting uncertainty onto marine megafauna trajectories

Journal Article (Journal Article)

In this study, a method is proposed for estimating the uncertainty of a Lagrangian pathway calculated from an undersampled ocean surface velocity field. The primary motivation and application for this method is the differentiation between active and passive movements for sea turtles whose trajectories are observed with satellite telemetry. Synthetic trajectories are launched within a reconstructed surface velocity field and integrated forward in time to produce likely trajectories of an actual turtle or drifter. Uncertainties in both the initial conditions at launch and the velocity field along the trajectory are used to yield an envelope of possible synthetic trajectories for each actual trajectory. The juxtaposition of the actual trajectory with the resulting cloud of synthetic trajectories provides a means to distinguish between active and passive movements of the turtle. The uncertainty estimates provided by this model may lead to improvements in our understanding of where and when turtles are engaged in specific behaviors (i.e. migration vs. foraging)-for which potential management efforts may vary accordingly. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Robel, AA; Susan Lozier, M; Gary, SF; Shillinger, GL; Bailey, H; Bograd, SJ

Published Date

  • September 1, 2011

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 58 / 9

Start / End Page

  • 915 - 921

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0967-0637

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.dsr.2011.06.009

Citation Source

  • Scopus