Derek Hamer

My earliest experiences of the marine environment stem back to my childhood, growing up on the beaches and in the surf on King Island (Bass Strait, Australia). In particular, I remember being fascinated by whales during a number of stranding events on the rugged west coast and with fur seals when swimming with them at Reid Rocks.

I've worked on a variety of animal conservation and welfare projects in Australia and overseas, with my career in marine mammal science commencing in 2000 when I spent a year on sub-Antarctic Macquarie Island, studying the haul-out behaviour and maternal investment strategies of southern elephant seals. In recent years, I have managed a number of projects aimed at mitigating the negative effects of operational interactions (i.e. by-catch and depredation) between marine mammals and commercial fisheries, from a conservation and economic perspective. These projects have involved working with common dolphins, pilot and false killer whales, Australian fur seals and Australian sea lions, acrosss four major commercial fisheries in southern Australia, and in the Pacific and Indian Oceans. Some of the resultant journal publications contributed to the completion of my PhD.

In my current role as Project Manager: Marine Mammal - Fishery Interactions, my responsibilities include:

  • Management and policy advice on the conservation of marine mammals and their interactions with fisheries. Specifically, I contribute to discussions and decisions in internal and broad stakeholder groups focused on rolling out management objectives for the Australian sea lion.
  • Research and development of technologies and strategies to mitigate by-catch and depredation of marine mammals in commercial fisheries in Australia and internationally. Specifically, I lead a project aimed at mitigating catch depredation by toothed whales of pelagic longlines in the Australian and Indo-Pacific regions. The general aim is to bring together a diverse group of stakeholders in the fishing, research and conservation community to identify, trial and implement solutions at a regional and global scale, which improve conservation outcomes for marine mammals and economic outcomes for fisheires.
  • Assisting in the investigation of movements of baleen whales in Australian and Southern Ocean waters.

Contact details for Derek Hamer

Phone: +61 (0) 3 6232 3357
Fax: +61 (0) 3 6232 3449
Email: derek.hamer@aad.gov.au

Address:

Derek Hamer
Australian Marine Mammal Centre
Australian Antarctic Division
203 Channel Highway
Kingston TAS 7050
Australia

Selected publications

Journals

Hamer, D.J., Shaughnessy, P.D., Goldsworthy, S.D., Linnane, A., in prep. Quantitative assessment of seal exclusion devices (SEDs) used in rock lobster pots: can 'spikes' mitigate Australian sea lion by-catch mortality?

Hamer, D.J., Shaughnessy, P.D., Goldsworthy, S.D., in prep. Exploring spatial exclusion scenarios to protect Australian sea lions from drowning in demersal gill-nets.

Hamer, D.J., Childerhouse, S.J., in prep. Win-win: mitigating odontocete by-catch and depredation in pelagic longline fisheries using non-lethal physical and psychological deterrence at the hook.

Hamer, D.J., Litchfield, C., in review. 'Stop, drop and roll!': evidence of paradoxical behaviour in common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) encircled by purse-seine nets and how it can be used to mitigate by-catch with minimal impact on the fishery. Animal Behaviour.

Hamer, D.J., in review. Getting to the bottom of why Endangered Australian sea lions become by-catch in demersal gill-nets in South Australia: can the already stringent mitigation plan be improved to benefit both affected parties? Journal of Applied Ecology.

Hamer, D.J., Goldsworthy, S.D., Costa, D.P., Fowler, S.L., Page, B., Sumner, M.D., 2013. The endangered Australian sea lion extensively overlaps with and regularly becomes by-catch in demersal shark gill-nets in South Australian shelf waters. Biological Conservation 157, 386-400.

Rogers, P.J., Huveneers, C., Page, B., Hamer, D.J., Goldsworthy, S.D., Mitchell, J.G., Seuront, L., 2012. A quantitative comparison of the diets of sympatric pelagic sharks in gulf and shelf ecosystems off southern Australia. Journal of Marine Science. DOI: 10.1093/icesjms/fss100.

Hamer, D.J., Childerhouse, S.J., Gales, N.J., 2012. Odontocete by-catch and depredation in longline fisheries: a review of the literature and of potential solutions. Marine Mammal Science 28, E345-E374.

Lowther, A.D., Harcourt, R.G., Hamer, D.J., Goldsworthy, S.D., 2011. Creatures of habit: foraging habit fidelity of adult female Australian sea lions. Marine Ecology Progress Series 443, 249-263.

Hamer, D.J., Ward, T.M., Shaughnessy, P.D., Clark, S.R., 2011. Assessing the effectiveness of the Great Australian Bight Marine Park in protecting the endangered Australian sea lion (Neophoca cinerea) from by-catch mortality in shark gill-nets. Endangered Species Research 14, 203-216.

Izzo, C., Hamer, D.J., Bertozzi, T., Donnellan, S.C., Gillanders, B.M., 2011. Telomere length and age in pinnipeds: the endangered Australian sea lion as a case study. Marine Mammal Science 27, 841-851.

Shaughnessy, P.D., Goldsworthy, S.D., Hamer, D.J., Page, B., McIntosh, R.R., 2011. Australian sea lions Neophoca cinerea at colonies in South Australia: distribution, abundance and trends, 2004 to 2008. Endangered Species Research 13, 87-98.

Baylis, A.M.M., Hamer, D.J., Nichols, P., 2009. Assessing the use of milk fatty acids to infer the diet of the Australian sea lion (Neophoca cinerea). Wildlife Research 36, 169-176.

Hamer, D.J., Ward, T.M., McGarvey, R., 2009. Objective reporting of scientific results is critical for maintaining relationships with industry and achieving conservation outcomes for fisheries. Animal Conservation 12, 287-288.

Hamer, D.J., Ward, T.M., McGarvey, R., 2008. Measurement, management and mitigation of operational interactions between the South Australian Sardine Fishery and short-beaked common dolphins (Delphinus delphis). Biological Conservation 141, 2865-2878.

Hamer, D.J., 2006. “Seal-friendly” nets are overrated. Conservation in Practice 7(3), 12-14.

Hamer, D.J., Goldsworthy, S.D., 2006. Seal-fishery operational interactions: identifying the environmental and operational aspects of a trawl fishery that contribute to by-catch mortality of Australian fur seals (Arctocephalus pusillus doriferus). Biological Conservation 130, 517-529.

Government reports

Hamer, D.J., Childerhouse, S.J., 2012. Physical and psychological deterrence strategies to mitigate odontocete by-catch and depredation in pelagic longline fisheries: progress report. Progress report to the Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA), World Wildlife Fund (WWF) South Pacific, and Pacific Islands Tuna Industry Association (PITIA). Australian Marine Mammal Centre (AMMC), Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPaC). 47 pp.

Hamer, D.J., Ward, T.M., Goldsworthy, S.D., Shaughnessy, P.D., 2010. Mitigating the impact of shark gill-nets on Australian sea lions in South Australia using spatial management options. Final report to Fisheries Research and Development Corporation (FRDC), project no. 2007/041. 64pp. p

Ward, T.M., Ivey, A., Hamer, D.J., Burch, P., 2010. Effectiveness of an industry Code of Practice in mitigating the operational interactions of the South Australian Sardine Fishery with short-beaked common dolphin (Delphinus delphis). Report to PIRSA Fisheries. SARDI Aquatic Sciences Publication no. F2010/000726-1, SARDI Research Report Series no. 493. 38pp.

Hamer, D.J., Childerhouse, S.J., Gales, N.J., 2010. Mitigating operational interactions between odontocetes and the longline fishing industry: a preliminary global review of the problem and of potential solutions. Report to the International Whaling Commission (IWC) Scientific Committee, Report no. SC/62/BC3. Australian Marine Mammal Centre (AMMC), Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPaC). 30pp.

Hamer, D.J., Shaughnessy, P.D., Goldsworthy, S.D., 2010. Operational interactions between seals and the tuna farming industry in Port Lincoln. In: Goldsworthy, S.D., Page, B., Shaughnessy, P.D., Hamer, D.J., Peters, K.D., McIntosh, R.R., Baylis, A.M.M., McKenzie, J. Innovative solutions for aquaculture and management: addressing seal interactions in the finfish aquaculture industry. Report to Primary Industries and Resources South Australia (PIRSA) and the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation (FRDC). pp. 22-51.

Goldsworthy, S.D., Hamer, D.J., Page, B., Shaughnessy, P.D., Ward, T., 2010. The impact and mitigation of Australian sea lion bycatch in the Commonwealth managed shark gillnet fishery off South Australia. Interim report to the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation (FRDC), project no. 2007/041. SARDI Aquatic Sciences Publication no. F2009/000613-1, SARDI Research Report Series no. 405. 151pp.

Hamer, D.J., Ward, T.M., Goldsworthy, S.D., Shaughnessy, P.D., 2009. Effectiveness of the Great Australian Bight Marine Park in protecting the Australian sea lion (Neophoca cinerea) from by-catch mortality in shark gill-nets. Final report to the Great Australian Bight Marine Park steering Committee. SARDI Aquatic Sciences Publication no. F2009/000227-1, SARDI Research Report Series no. 357. 59pp.

Goldsworthy, S.D., Page, B., Shaughnessy, P.D., Hamer, D.J., Peters, K.P., McIntosh, R.R., Baylis, A.M.M., McKenzie, J., 2009. Innovative solutions for aquaculture planning and management: addressing seal interactions in the finfish aquanculture industry. Final report to Fisheries Research and Develpment Corporation (FRDC), FRDC Project no. 2004/201. SARDI Aquatic Sciences Publication no. F2009/000222-1, SARDI Research Report Series no. 288. 290pp.

Hamer, D.J., Ivey A., Ward, T.M., 2009. Operational interactions between the South Australian Sardine Fishery with common dolphins: November 2004 to March 2009. Report to PIRSA Fisheries. SARDI Aquatic Sciences Publication no. F2007/000198-2, SARDI Research Report Series no. 354. 32pp.

Hamer, D.J., Ward, T.M., 2008. Operational interactions between the South Australian Sardine Fishery and common dolphins in 2006/07: assessing the effectiveness of the industry code of practice. Report to PIRSA Fisheries. SARDI Aquatic Sciences Publication no. F2007/000198-1, SARDI Research Report Series no. 252. 30pp.

Hamer, D.J., Ward, T.M., Goldsworthy, S.D., McGarvey, R., Rogers, P.J., 2007. Measurement, management and mitigation of operational interactions between common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) and the South Australian Sardine Fishery. Report to PIRSA Fisheries. SARDI Aquatic Sciences Publication no. F2006/000212, SARDI Research Report Series no. 174. 38pp.

Hamer, D.J., Page, B., Goldsworthy, S.D., 2007. The spatial distribution of foraging effort in Australian sea lion populations in close proximity to areas of high catch and effort in the SA rock lobster and Commonwealth shark gill-net fisheries. In: Goldsworthy, S.D., Peters, K.J., Page, B. (eds.). Foraging ecology and diet analysis of Australian sea lions. Final report to the Department of Environment and Water Resources, Australian Commonwealth Government. Report to DEWHA. SARDI Aquatic Sciences Publication no. F2007/001024-1, SARDI Research Report Series no. 251. pp. 19-34.

Goldsworthy, S.D., Shaughnessy, P.D., Page, B., Dennis, T.E., McIntosh, R.R., Hamer, D.J., Peters, K.J., Baylis, A.M.M., Bradshaw, C.J.A., 2007. Developing population monitoring protocols for Australian sea lions. Final report to DEWR. SARDI Aquatic Sciences Publication no. F2007/000554, SARDI Research Report Series no. 219. 65pp.

Goldsworthy, S.D., Hamer, D.J., Page, B., 2007. Assessment of the implications of interactions between fur seals and sea lions and the southern rock lobster and gillnet sector of the South and Eastern Scalefish and Shark Fishery (SESSF) in South Australia. Final report to Fisheries Research and Development Corporation (FRDC), project no. 2005/077. SARDI Aquatic Sciences Publication no. F2007/000711-1, SARDI Research Report Series no. 225. 163pp.

Tilzey, R., Goldsworthy, S.D, Cawthorn, M., Calvert, N., Hamer, D.J., Russell., S., Shaughnessy, P.D., Wise, B., Stewardson, C., 2006. Assessment of seal-fishery interactions in the winter blue grenadier fishery off west Tasmania and the development of fishing practices and seal exclusion devices to mitigate seal by-catch by factory trawlers. Final report to FRDC. Project no. 2001/008. Bureau of Rural Sciences. 69pp.

This page was last modified on March 25, 2014.