Pamlico Sound Sharks and Rays

Project Title: Pamlico Sound Sharks and Rays
MATOS Project Code: PSRAY
Project Duration: May 2019 - October 2019
Project Description: Cownose Rays and juvenile Bull Sharks often occupy similar estuarine habitats despite the rays being potential prey of the sharks. Pamlico Sound, North Carolina hosts a significant but relatively understudied population of Cownose Rays, and juvenile Bull Shark numbers have been increasing in the estuary in association with rising water temperatures. In this project, acoustic telemetry is used to identify movement behavior and key habitat areas within the estuary for both species, and to determine whether these species interact and influence each other's habitat use patterns.
Objectives:
  1. Identify local movement and habitat use patterns
  2. Determine whether rays and sharks occur in the same areas or interact
  3. Determine whether the movements of either species influence the habitat use by the other
Management Benefits:
Investigators:
  1. Charles Bangley (Smithsonian Environmental Research Center) bangleyc@si.edu
Participating Organizations:
  1. Smithsonian Environmental Research Center
  2. North Carolina Aquariums
Funding:
  1. North Carolina Aquarium Society Conservation Grant 2018-09