Prof Sascha Hooker

Prof Sascha Hooker

My research concerns specifically the foraging and diving behaviour of marine predators and more generally how this can inform conservation planning in the ocean.

Current Projects

Marine predator foraging ecology

Work on predator foraging often relies on inference from dive profiles. Using a miniature video camera attached to the animal we can view the foraging space of a diving animal and test previously used proxies for foraging behaviour. The identification of foraging areas and assessment of the stability of these over time and space enable us to investigate variability in foraging success and the criteria driving this (whether anthropogenically or environmentally induced).

Diving physiology

The mechanisms allowing marine mammals to avoid problems associated with diving to depth are still only partially understood. Recent deaths of beaked whales associated with sonar exposure appear to be due to decompression sickness. I am interested in how problems such as shallow-water blackout and decompression sickness are avoided, and use modelling approaches to determine risk based on dive profiles.

Conservation planning and marine protected areas

An ecosystem-approach is widely advocated in conservation planning but ecosystem modelling approaches, despite their sophistication, often suffer from a lack of source data or inherent uncertainties. An alternative is to use spatially explicit management. I am interested in the application of such marine reserve areas to higher predators.

source: symbiosis

Research Overview:

I have broad interests in foraging and diving behaviour of marine mammals, and the physiological constraints underlying this.  I am keen to apply my work wherever possible toward conservation biology, and have worked on introduced pest species, the effect of anthropogenic sounds, contaminants, and the development of marine protected areas. 


Recent publications

20  (of 53 published available) for sh43. (source: University of St Andrews PURE)
Please click title of any item for full details.

2019 (25/1)
Frontiers in Marine Science
Future directions in research on beaked whales
Sascha Kate Hooker, Natacha Aguilar de Soto, Robin W. Baird, Emma Louise Carroll, Laura Feyrer, Patrick Miller, Aubrie Onoufriou, Greg Schorr, Hal Whitehead 
Keywords: Beaked whale, Hyperoodon, Mesoplodon, Ziphius, Berardius
2018 (14/6)
vol.558 pp.184-185
(Book/Film/Article review)

(Other contribution)
D. Decompression stress
Sascha Kate Hooker 
2017 (7)
Marine Mammal Science
vol.33 pp.955-965
Equity and career-life balance in marine mammal science?
Sascha Kate Hooker, Samantha E. Simmons, Alison K. Stimpert, Birgitte I. McDonald 
Keywords: Gender, Equality, Leadership, Work-life balance, STEM

(Entry for encyclopedia/dictionary)
Toothed whales
Sascha Kate Hooker 
2017 (14/7)

Philip Steven Hammond, Sonja Heinrich, Sascha Kate Hooker, Peter Lloyd Tyack 
2016 (12)
Proceedings of Meetings on Acoustics
(Review article)
From physiology to policy
Natacha Aguilar de Soto, Sascha Kate Hooker, Saana Isojunno, Mark Johnson, Patrick Miller, Peter Lloyd Tyack, Paul Wensveen, Carl Robert Donovan, Catriona M Harris, Danielle Harris, Laura Helen Marshall, Cornelia Sabrina Oedekoven, Rocio Prieto, Len Thomas 
2015 (3/6)
Royal Society Open Science
First indications that northern bottlenose whales are sensitive to behavioural disturbance from anthropogenic noise
Patrick Miller, P H Kvadsheim, F P A Lam, Peter Lloyd Tyack, C Cure, Stacy Lynn De Ruiter, L Kleivane, L D Sivle, S P van IJsselmuide, F Visser, Paul Wensveen, A M von Benda-Beckmann, Lucía Martina Martín López, Tomoko Narazaki, Sascha Kate Hooker 
Keywords: Bottlenose whale, Anthropogenic noise, Behavioural response, Mitigation, Naval sonar, Hyperoodon ampullatus
2015 (29/9)
Animal Biotelemetry
Images as proximity sensors
Sascha Kate Hooker, Tatsiana Barychka, Mark J Jessopp, Iain J Staniland 
Keywords: Pinniped, Animal-attached camera, Sociality, Foraging, Groups, Arctocephalus gazella
2015 (15/5)

(Entry for encyclopedia/dictionary)
2014 (3)
vol.37 pp.212-220
Prioritizing global marine mammal habitats using density maps in place of range maps
Joanna Grand, Sascha Kate Hooker, Stephen Terrence Buckland, Randall R. Reeves, Lorenzo Rojas-Bracho, Doug Sandilands, Kristin Kaschner 
Keywords: Marine systems, Range maps, Density maps, Marine mammal habitats, Species richness, Conservation
2013 (17/7)
PLoS One
Using energetic models to investigate the survival and reproduction of beaked whales (family Ziphiidae)
Leslie Frances New, Sascha Kate Hooker, Daniel P. Costa, Samantha E. Simmons 
2012 (22/3)
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
vol.279 pp.1041-1050
(Review article)
Deadly diving? Physiological and behavioural management of decompression stress in diving mammals
Sascha Kate Hooker, A. Fahlman, M. J. Moore, N. Aguilar de Soto, Y. Bernaldo de Quiros, A. O. Brubakk, D. P. Costa, A. M. Costidis, S. Dennison, K. J. Falke, A Fernandez, M. Ferrigno, J. R. Fitz-Clarke, M. M. Garner, D. S. Houser, P. D. Jepson, D. R. Ketten, P. H. Kvadsheim, P. T. Madsen, N. W. Pollock, D. S. Rotstein, T. K. Rowles, S. E. Simmons, W. Van Bonn, P. K. Weathersby, M. J. Weise, T. M. Williams, Peter Lloyd Tyack 
Keywords: Diving physiology, Marine mammals, Gas bubbles, Embolism, Decompression sickness
Endangered Species Research
vol.19 pp.47-61
Endangered Species Research
vol.13 pp.203-218
Making protected area networks effective for marine top predators.
Sascha Kate Hooker, Ana Maria Canadas, K. David Hyrenbach, Colleen Corrigan, Jeff J. Polovina, Randall R. Reeves 
Keywords: Marine Protected Areas, Marine Reserves, Reserve Networks, Top Predators, Marine Mammals, Marine Birds, Marine Turtles, Predatory Fish
Endangered Species Research
Biologging technologies: new tools for conservation
S. Bearhop, G. Bearzi, B. Block, S. Bograd, S.J. Cooke, D. Costa, M.H. Godfrey, B.J. Godley, C. Hamner, D. Hodgson, Sascha Kate Hooker, Jason Matthiopoulos, McMahon C., J.A. Seminoff, R. Wilson 
Bernie J McConnell, Mike Fedak, Sascha Kate Hooker, Toby Patterson