Photo by Alexandre M. S. Machado

Individual traits affect the society of bottlenose dolphins that forages cooperatively with artisanal fishermen

Master’s degree research project (Apr 2016 - May 2018)

I was supervised by Dr. Fábio Gonçalves Daura-Jorge and co-supervised by Dr. Mauricio Cantor, with a 2-year scholarship provided by the Brazilian Ministry of Education (CAPES).


In Laguna, southern Brazil, some individuals of a bottlenose dolphin population (Tursiops truncatus) forage in cooperation with artisanal fishermen. The social structure of this dolphin population is coupled to this specialized foraging tactic, in which social modules are defined by individuals that often or rarely forage in cooperation with fishermen. However, other individual traits might also underlie this social structure, but their effects are yet to be quantified. In this study, we aim to tease apart the contributions of other ecological, biological and behavioral traits in modulating the social relationships in different foraging and non-foraging contexts.


2016: The Society for Marine Mammalogy (USA)
2017: Animal Behaviour Society (USA)

Media coverage