We live in the era of the fourth industrial revolution, where everything - from small objects to entire factories-is smart and connected, and we are also strongly accustomed to comforts and services, but emergent questions are arising. What are the consequences of human activities on terrestrial and aquatic/marine systems? And how does the loss of biodiversity alter the integrity and functioning of ecosystems? It is reasonable to assert that there are correlations between the anthropic pressure and degradation of natural habitats and loss in biodiversity. In fact, the alteration of ecosystem structure affects ecosystem services and resilience, the level of perturbation that an ecosystem can withstand without shifting to an alternative status providing fewer benefits to humans . To that regards, the research studies on cetacean species distribution and conservation status along with their habitats can give an idea of the current impact of human pressure on marine biodiversity and its ecosystem services, being both dolphins and whales key species in the marine food webs. However, although the inherent complexity of food-web dynamics often makes difficult to investigate and quantify the role of marine mammals in the ecosystem , the challenge to investigate their ecological significance is leading and highly informative when facing human induced environmental changes from local to global scales. For this reason, dedicated research activities have been performed in the last years to standardize the best practices for sampling and collecting scientific relevant information on the cetaceans in the Gulf of Taranto (Northern Ionian Sea in the Central-Eastern Mediterranean Sea) [3, 4, 5, 6]. Standardized scientific protocols and technological innovations have been brought by integrating interdisciplinary approaches: a genetic study on dolphin's social structure, an automated photo-identification, assisted by intelligent unsupervised algorithms and the study of acoustic signals. Finally, education and citizen science were applied as fundamental to raise awareness on the need of marine environmental protection among the active population, from children to adults.
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|Titolo:||Review on research studies and monitoring system applied to cetaceans in the gulf of taranto (northern ionian sea, central-eastern mediterranean sea)|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2017|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||4.1 Contributo in Atti di convegno|