Synopses & Reviews
Covering the behavior and ecology of the northern fur seal, this book is a model long-term study of marine mammals, one that tests theory through both observation of undisturbed behavior and manipulative experiments on individuals. Here Roger Gentry draws on nearly two decades of research on three different islands to show how behavior among these seals changes with population size, sex ratio, and environment, to explain the behavior of the population beginning with individuals, and to generalize the results to other members of the eared seal family. In so doing, he offers one of the most comprehensive studies of its kind on any marine mammal species to date.
Gentry shows that the species is driven by very different behavioral traits than have been assumed for it in the past. His book analyzes behavior on scales of hours to lifetimes, investigates the mating system, considers processes that underlie the mating system (site fidelity, behavioral estrus, and the development of territoriality), and addresses specific aspects of maternal strategy (female attendance behavior, pup growth, seasonal influences, and the effects of continental shelf width). Gentry contributes to knowledge about marine mammals by providing a very specific basis for interspecies comparisons, and he suggests a link between population trend and environmental regime shifts. He also guides the debate over seal mating systems from an interpretive to an empirical or experimental basis.
Originally published in 1997.
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"This book is a major scientific contribution to the fields of pinniped and behavioral ecology. . . . The book is very readable, yet it contains an enormous amount of detailed information. . . . [I]t should be on the list of any well-rounded biological scientist."--The Quarterly Review of Biology
Includes bibliographical references (p. -377) and indexes.
About the Author
Roger L. Gentry is a wildlife biologist at the National Marine Mammal Laboratory of the National Marine Fisheries Service. He has done intensive research on five eared-seal species other than northern fur seals. Gentry is the coeditor, with Gerald L. Kooyman, of Fur Seals: Maternal Strategies on Land and at Sea (Princeton).
Table of Contents
Preface Acknowledgments List of Contributors Pt. 1. Behavior at the Population Level
Pt. 2. The Mating System
- Ch. 1. Introduction
- Ch. 2. Population Changes, 1974 to 1986
- Ch. 3. Temporal Factors in Behavior
Pt. 3. Processes Fundamental to the Mating System
- Ch. 4. Behavior of Adult Males
- Ch. 5. Male-Female Associations
- Ch. 6. Behavior of Adult Females
Pt. 4. The Maternal Strategy
- Ch. 7. Site Fidelity and Philopatry
- Ch. 8. Estrus and Estrous Behavior
- By Roger L. Gentry, John R. Holt, Carolyn B. Heath
- Ch. 9. Ontogeny of Male Territorial Behavior
Pt. 5. Summary, Comparisons, and Conclusions
- Ch. 10. Female Attendance Behavior
- Ch. 11. Neonatal Growth and Behavior
- By Roger L. Gentry, Michael E. Goebel, John Calambokidis
- Ch. 12. Female Foraging Behavior: Inter- and Intra-Annual Variation in Individuals
- By Roger L. Gentry, Michael E. Goebel
- Ch. 13. Female Foraging Behavior: Effects of Continental Shelf Width
- By Roger L. Gentry, Mark O. Pierson, Valery A. Vladimirov
Appendix. Scientific and Common Names of Species Referred to in This Work Notes Literature Cited Author Index Subject Index
- Ch. 14. Synthesis
- Ch. 15. Implications for Otariid Studies