Social structure can have a significant impact on divergence and evolution within species, especially in the marine environment, which has few environmental boundaries to dispersal. On the other hand, genetic structure can affect social structure in many species, through an individual preference towards associating with relatives. One social species, the short-finned pilot whale (Globicephala macrorhynchus), has been shown to live in stable social groups for periods of at least a decade.

Cuvier’s beaked whales (Ziphius cavirostris) are distributed world-wide and are the most common cetacean to strand coincident with navy sonars. They are known for their extreme diving capabilities but diet information, fundamental to understanding foraging at depth, is limited from most regions. We report on 11,441 prey items from stomach contents of 16 stranded or bycaught specimens collected from 1976-2016 across the North Pacific. Overall diet was composed of cephalopods, fish and crustaceans, but was dominated by cephalopods.

Foraging specialization, environmental barriers, and social structure have driven the development of strong genetic differentiation within many marine species, including most of the large dolphin species commonly referred to as ‘blackfish’ (subfamily Globicephalinae).  We used mitochondrial sequence data (mtDNA) and genotypes from 14 nuclear microsatellite loci (nDNA) to examine patterns of genetic population structure in melon-headed whales (MHWs, Peponocephala electra), a poorly known member of the blackfish family for which genetic structuring is unknown.  M

The United States Navy’s marine species monitoring program addresses four general topics surrounding the impact of mid-frequency active sonar (MFAS) on protected species: occurrence, exposure, response, and consequences.

As part of a long-term U.S. Navy-funded marine mammal monitoring program, in February 2016 a combining boat-based field effort and passive acoustic monitoring was carried out on and around the Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF). The U.S. Navy funded five days of small-boat effort and the National Marine Fisheries Service funded an additional two days of effort. There were 859 kilometers (49 hours) of small-vessel survey effort over the course of the seven‑day project.

As awareness of the effects of anthropogenic noise on marine mammals has grown, research has broadened from evaluating physiological responses including injury and mortality to considering effects on behavior and acoustic communication. Most mitigation efforts attempt to minimize injury by enabling animals to move away as noise levels are increased gradually. Recent experiences demonstrate that this approach is inadequate or even counterproductive for small, localized marine mammal populations, for which displacement of animals may itself cause harm.

There are 18 species of odontocetes found around the main Hawaiian Islands, and 11 of these have resident, island-associated populations in the eastern main Hawaiian Islands (Baird 2016). Until recently, relatively little was known about the presence and residency status of most of these species in the western main Hawaiian Islands, in particular around Kaua‘i and Ni‘ihau. The U.S.

Divergence in acoustic signals used by different populations of marine mammals can be caused by a variety of environmental, hereditary, or social factors, and can indicate isolation between those populations. Two types of genetically and morphologically distinct short-finned pilot whales, called the Naisa- and Shiho-types when first described off Japan, have been identified in the Pacific Ocean.

Cookiecutter sharks (Isistius spp.) are small pelagic squaloid sharks found throughout tropical and sub-tropical waters that are known to feed opportunistically on a range of prey including animals much larger than themselves. Short-finned pilot whales are resident to the island of Hawai‘i and are often observed with fresh and healed bites from these sharks. As cookiecutters are pelagic, observing their behaviour directly can be problematic, but studying their bite patterns allows us to infer the dynamics of their predatory behaviour.