Distance sampling surveys of marine mammal density and abundance: from introductory ideas to latest developments

The goal of this workshop is to introduce the latest developments in distance sampling methods and software of particularly relevance to marine mammal scientists. Distance sampling surveys, particularly line transects, are widely used to estimate marine mammal population density and abundance. We will begin by introducing the basic ideas and then, through a series of short talks describe how they have been extended to tackle issues commonly encountered in marine surveys. We will demonstrate the Windows software and latest R-based software packages. At the end of the session, we will divide into groups and discuss topics suggested by workshop participants (we’ll poll you in advance for topics), as well as priorities for future methods and software development. This workshop is suitable both for complete beginners interested in getting a jump-start on methods for estimating marine mammal density and abundance, as well as seasoned distance sampling practitioners wanting to hear what’s new.