NEFSC Harbor Porpoise 1991

NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center (NEFSC)

Dataset credit

National Marine Fisheries Service


Primary contact Debi Palka NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center
Data entry Ei Fujioka Duke University



The ship survey was performed from 22 July 1991 to 30 August 1991 to estimate the abundance and spatial distribution of harbor porpoises.
The study area, covering approximately 13,300 nm , was from Port Clyde, ME to 2
St. John, New Brunswick over to the Nova Scotian coast, up to Liverpool, Nova Scotia.


1) Estimate the abundance of harbor porpoises in the Gulf of Maine - Bay of Fundy - Nova Scotia area.
2) Investigate if there are any spatial distribution patterns of the harbor porpoises, and if those patterns are correlated with water depth or harbor porpoise group

1) Estimate the abundance and spatial distribution of other cetaceans.
2) Determine if harbor porpoise avoid this ship, and if so, at what distance.
3) Determine if there is a spatial distribution pattern of mother-calf pairs of harbor porpoise.
4) Compare the abundance estimate and spatial distribution of harbor porpoise as seen this year with that seen in previous years.
5) Investigate if inland bays can be surveyed using a rigidhull inflatable boat as the observation platform in a line transect survey.
6) Determine if Buckland's sighting procedure (1991), which is a line transect survey using both a primary and marking team, is a feasible procedure to estimate the abundance of harbor porpoise in the Bay of Fundy area.

Supplemental information

In addition to the sighting data, effort data was recorded every half hour or whenever conditions change.
This dataset, therefore, should be used with the effort data.


David Potter, National Marine Fisheries Service. 1991. CRUISE REPORT OF THE HARBOR PORPOISE SURVEY. Cruise report. 1991 AJ91-02.



This section explains attributes included in the original dataset. OBIS-SEAMAP restricts the attributes available to the public to date/time, lat/lon and species names/counts only. Should you need other attributes described here, you are encouraged to contact the data provider.

Attributes described below represent those in the original dataset provided by the provider.
All attributes are included in the downloadable file (CSV or ESRI File Geodatabase) for "Complete Set of Dataset".

Attributes in dataset

Attribute (table column)Description
datasetDataset ID
linenoLine number
cruiseCruise ID
dateDate of the observation
timeTime of the observation (local time)
latitudeLatitude in decimal degrees
longitudeLongitude in decimal degrees
speciesSpecies name
commonCommon name
tsnITIS Taxonomic Serial Number added by OBIS-SEAMAP
scientificScientific name
group_Group size
rankTaxonomic rank
herdsizeGroup size
transectTransect No
legLeg No
excludedFor internal use
geomGeometry field added by OBIS-SEAMAP
oidUnique ID number (generated by OBIS-SEAMAP)
Marine mammals770
Sea turtles1
Rays and sharks11
Other species0
Non spatial0
Non species0
Date, Begin1991-07-24
Date, End1991-08-27
Temporal prec.111111
Latitude42.81 - 45.10
Longitude-69.02 - -64.55
Coord. prec.3 decimal digits
Data typeAnimal sighting
EffortYES (ID: 289)
Traveled (km)3,547
Effort hours225
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