DO HUMAN ACTIVITIES IMPACT SHARK BEHAVIOR?
No persistent behavioral effects of SCUBA diving on reef sharks
Despite rapid growth in the marine tourism sector, the impacts of recreation on the marine environment are generally not well understood. Most existing studies of marine recreation ecology have focused on behavioral changes resulting from direct interactions between humans and wildlife including provisioning. However, non-consumptive, non-provisioning human impacts may also result in persistent behavioral impacts to shark populations. In this study, we examined differences in residency, abundance, and behavior of reef sharks in response to long-term scuba diving activity using a combination of survey techniques including baited remote underwater video systems and multi-year passive acoustic monitoring at Palmyra Atoll.
Bradley D, Papastamatiou YPP, Caselle JE. 2017. No persistent behavioural effects of SCUBA diving on reef sharks. Marine Ecology Progress Series 567:173-184. doi.org/10.3354/meps12053