Begun in 1982 by American researchers Richard Connor and Rachel Smolker, the Shark Bay Dolphin Project is an extensive long-term study of the dolphin population in Shark Bay, Western Australia, carried out by an international team of scientists from prestigious institutions in Australia, Europe, and North America.
Currently led by Georgetown’s Dr. Janet Mann, this is the second longest running dolphin study in the world, which investigates dolphin calf development, female reproduction, genetics, ecology and behavior.
The long-term records of the animals are currently managed in a database at Georgetown University that is a collaboration between biologist Dr. Janet Mann and computer scientist Dr. Lisa Singh.
This research has been featured in magazines and nature documentaries (including National Geographic, PBS-NOVA, BBC-Nature, ABC, Discovery) and international newspapers.
Read about the collaboration with Georgetown’s Center for New Designs in Learning and Scholarship.
The database now consists of over 870 animals, including 80 calves born to 50 females who have been observed from birth to weaning for over 1750 hours.