Area of Expertise:
Dr Trites oversees the Marine Mammal Research Unit and a research program that involves captive and field studies of seals, sea lions, whales and dolphins.
His research is primarily focussed on pinnipeds (Steller sea lions, northern fur seals, and harbor seals) and involves captive studies, field studies and simulation models that range from single species to whole ecosystems. His research spans the fields of ecology, nutrition, physiology, and animal behaviour—and is designed to further the conservation of marine mammals. It is also designed to further the conservation and understanding of marine mammals, and resolve conflicts between people and marine mammals. The research program includes researchers, students, technicians, and support staff. The training of students, and the collaboration between researchers specializing in other disciplines (such as nutrition, ecology, physiology and oceanography) is central to the success of his research program.
Select Presentation(s) / Publication(s):
Majewski, Sheena; Nordstrom, Chad; Thomas, Austen; and Trites, Andrew, “Harbour seals consume more juvenile and adult salmon in estuaries than elsewhere in the Strait of Georgia” (2018). Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference. 453. https://cedar.wwu.edu/ssec/2018ssec/allsessions/453
Fortune SME, Koski WR, Higdon JW, Trites AW, Baumgartner MF, Ferguson SH (2018) Correction: Evidence of molting and the function of “rock-nosing” behavior in bowhead whales in the eastern Canadian Arctic. PLoS ONE 13(2): e0192813. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0192813
Jeanniard du Dot, Tiphaine & Trites, Andrew & Arnould, John & Speakman, John & Guinet, Christophe. (2018). Trade-offs between foraging efficiency and pup feeding rate of lactating northern fur seals in a declining population. Marine Ecology Progress Series. 600. 207-222. 10.3354/meps12638.
W Nelson, Benjamin & J Walters, Carl & Trites, Andrew & K. McAllister, Murdoch. (2018). Wild Chinook salmon productivity is negatively related to seal density, and not related to hatchery releases in the Pacific Northwest. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences. 10.1139/cjfas-2017-0481.
Wright, Brianna & Ford, John & M. Ellis, Graeme & Deecke, Volker & Daniel Shapiro, Ari & C. Battaile, Brian & Trites, Andrew. (2017). Fine-scale foraging movements by fish-eating killer whales (Orcinus orca) relate to the vertical distributions and escape responses of salmonid prey (Oncorhynchus spp.). Movement Ecology. 5. 10.1186/s40462-017-0094-0.
Nelson, Benjamin; Thomas, Austen; Trites, Andrew; McAllister, Murdoch; Walters, Carl;”Impacts of harbour seals on Chinook and coho salmon in the Strait of Georgia” (2016). Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference. 32. https://cedar.wwu.edu/ssec/2016ssec/species_food_webs/32/
Thomas, Austen; Franzheim, Albert; Lindstrom, Todd; Leach, Warren; Trites, Andrew; Battaile, Brian, “Development of a head-mounted satellite-linked PIT tag reader for seals and sea lions” (2014). Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference. 242. https://cedar.wwu.edu/ssec/2014ssec/Day2/242/